Outlook recall: How to recall an email on Outlook?

Most people have sent an email before realising it was addressed to the wrong person, did not include an important attachment, or featured a prominent mistake. Fortunately, Microsoft Outlook provides a helpful feature capable of recalling an email or replacing a message.

There are several requirements for recalling an Outlook email.

Both you and your recipient must have an Exchange server email account and use Outlook as the email client.

The recipient’s mailbox needs to be open when a recall is attempted.

The original message also needs to be both unread and in the recipient’s Inbox.

Finally, the message cannot be touched by any process, such as a rule, spam filter, or add-in.


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How to recall and replace an email in Outlook:

To recall an email in Outlook, open the service and navigate to the Sent Items folder.

Next double-click the sent message you wish to recall to open the email in a separate window.

The ‘recall a message’ option is not available when the message is displayed in the Reading Pane.

Now head to the Message tab, select the Actions dropdown arrow, and choose Recall This Message.

In the Recall This Message dialog box, select either: Delete Unread Copies of This Message to recall the message, or Delete Unread Copies and Replace With a New Message to replace the message with a new one.

If you want to receive notification of the results, select the Tell Me if Recall Succeeds or Fails for Each Recipient checkbox.

If you selected Delete Unread Copies and Replace with a New Message, modify the original message and select Send.

You will now receive an Outlook notification message regarding the success or failure of your attempt to retract or replace the email.

Sending an incorrect email can be counterproductive and even embarrassing.

While Outlook’s recall feature might save you in a pinch, you can alleviate some stress by scheduling or delaying messages to be sent.

This function can provide the necessary time to spot mistakes or update information before your email lands in your recipient’s inbox.

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What happens when an Outlook email is recalled?

The results of your attempt to recall a message can vary, depending on several factors.

If the recipient has read the message, the recall will fail.

Both the original message and the new message – or notification of your attempt to recall the original message – are available to the recipient.

If the recipient has not opened the original message and opens the recall message first, the original message is deleted.

Outlook informs the recipient that you deleted the message from their mailbox.

These results also occur if the recipient moves both messages to the same folder, either manually or using a rule.

If the recipient enabled Automatically process requests and responses to meeting requests and polls, under Tracking, and the recipient has not read the original email, Outlook deletes the original message and informs the recipient the message has been deleted.

However, if the original message is marked as read when the recall message is processed, the recipient is informed you wish to delete the message.

The original message remains in the recipient’s Outlook email inbox.

If the recipient moves the original message out of the inbox and into another folder and the recall message goes to the inbox, the retraction fails regardless of whether either has been read or not.

The recipient is informed a recall attempt failed and the recipient has access to both the original and new email message.

Additionally, if you use Outlook on a smartphone and attempt to recall a message, the process will most likely be unsuccessful.

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