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samuelthomson
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 1 of 24

Email recovery after IMAP accident

Hello, 

Yesterday I deleted around 10 years worth of emails from within Outlook without realising that I had IMAP switched on. Accordingly, these changes seem to have been replicated to my BT Email inbox (https://email.bt.com/mail). 

Is there any way that BT can help me to restore these emails?

Sam

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23 REPLIES 23
licquorice
Distinguished Sage
Distinguished Sage
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Message 2 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

Did you hard delete them, i.e Shift+Delete or just soft delete them? If the latter, they will be in your Trash/Deleted items folder.

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samuelthomson
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 3 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

They aren't in Trash. 

I'm wondering whether BT email can help me restore the email folders from an older copy or something. 

Like I said, I deleted a bunch of files from within Outlook, and then those changes propagated to BT email unexpectedly due to my IMAP settings. For some reason, my "sent" messages all got copied to the trash folder, but not things in other folders. I also created a  .pst archive right before I deleted any emails in Outlook, but most of the folders in there are empty despite the file being 5GB. If you have any suggestions about that then great, but my main purpose in posting here is to find out if BT can help me restore my old email another way.

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licquorice
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Message 4 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

I would be very surprised if the mails are recoverable but will ask if the mods can help.

Have you added the archive .PST file to Outlook as a Data file? They should be in there.

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licquorice
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Message 5 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

You should also be able to recover them from the .PST file from the last backup of your device.

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samuelthomson
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 6 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

"Have you added the archive .PST file to Outlook as a Data file? They should be in there."

- They should be, but despite being around 5GB, many of the folders in the .PST file are empty. I've tried the free version of StellaRepair and RemoRepair and neither tool looked like it could see any emails in the empty folders. I don't know why this has happened.

"You should also be able to recover them from the .PST file from the last backup of your device".

- That would be great, where should I look for old .PST files? I'm using a desktop PC with Windows. My gut feeling though is that this PC doesn't make regular backups. I also have a laptop PC that I very occasionally use, but I looked at Outlook on that computer and there were no emails in any of its folders when I wasn't connected to the internet, and presumably if I connect it to the internet then it will just become a duplicate of the Outlook folder structures on my PC and BT web mail. 

 

 
 
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licquorice
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Message 7 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

If you haven't got any backup software that you have configured for regular backups, then I'm afraid you won't have any backups to recover the .PST file from.

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gg30340
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Message 8 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

It is doubtful that BT will be able recover the emails. Any time that other posters have requested a recovery it has been met with a "not possible" with the very few exceptions when it was a BT fault that deleted them and even then it was rarely a 100% recovery.

Have you checked all the folders that you have set up in Outlook and on BTMail .

If you have found your .pst file and it is showing as being 5GB there must be something there.

See link about how to view the file.

How to manage .pst files in Microsoft Outlook - Outlook | Microsoft Docs

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samuelthomson
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 9 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

Ok, is there a way I can make a request to BT to look into it though? There are around 12 years of emails that have gone missing, both personal and professional, and I want to try all possible options for getting them back.

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Keith_Beddoe
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Message 10 of 24

Re: Email recovery after IMAP accident

https://www.bt.com/help/email/bt-email--some-of-my-emails-are-missing--can-i-recover-them-

If you have take a Windows system image very recently, then you can mount that image, and copy the data files back again.

I normally take monthly system images, just in case something goes wrong, although I use Gmail not BT Mail, and the Thunderbird email client. 

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