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Our production servers went into a spam-frenzy yesterday and I now have literally hundreds of thousands of emails strewn throughout my Outlook folders. I gave up even displaying one of the folders after three hours of 100% CPU. Is there a simple way to delete boatloads of emails without spending days wading through the mess? I don't want to delete the folders themselves because I have a stack of rules attached to them.

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what version of Outlook & Windows? – John T Oct 2 '09 at 4:28
up vote 10 down vote accepted

You can create an Outlook rule to delete any incoming email which satisfies your condition. And you can also apply the rule on your existing folders and delete any email which you have already received.

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What a simple solution! Thank you. – Marcelo Cantos Oct 2 '09 at 7:02

That still isn't ideal though. Right now I am trying to delete 260k of emails with that method and it's taking forever. By far, the fastest way to delete a large number of emails is to delete a whole inbox subfolder, but that only works if you have rules set up in advance so that you know it's ok to delete the whole folder. The only reason I'm not using that method now, is because I didn't have a rule set up for my current mass email problem.

For your particular problem, deleting the whole folder won't delete your associated rules. The rule will just have a step mentioning an unspecified folder. It'll be flagged as a rule with an error, so you'll have to go through and fix them. But, it'll probably still be faster than waiting for a rule delete.

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