Recover message deleted from deleted items folder (OE Express)

Posted on 2003-02-20
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-25
It's in the subject line. I deleted messages from the deleted items folder in OE Express, is there any way to recover them if it hasn't been compacted?  I know how to do it on a Windows machine, but not Mac.

Question by:sswany
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Expert Comment

ID: 7990876
The windows method is probably similar to the mac method. What is the windows method you use?

Accepted Solution

biglug earned 200 total points
ID: 8114915
You don't mention if you're in classic or in OS-X, if you're in OS-X I'm sure the process will be similar only the file locations will be different.

First, locate your 'Messages' file. You could use Sherlock for this, or look in something like: HD:Applications:Internet Applications:Outlook Express 5.02 Folder:Identities:Main Identity

Now in there is a file called 'Messages' which you hope isn't too big! Mine here is 600MB so I'd be in trouble. (See note below if you have a huge Messages file (over a couple of MB))

You now need to open this file. I have BBEdit here which opens any file I throw at it but there's plenty of others. (SimpleText will not be able to open it unless its under 32K!) Microsoft Word will open it if you tell it to open 'Any File' from the Open dialog box, just make sure you open it as 'Text Only'

Now at the top is a pile of binary data that Outlook uses for some mysterious procedure (it probably says that you deleted this message!). Now if you remember what the message was about you'll be able to find its raw form using search. (Raw form means if there were attachments or it had text styles applied, you'll see all the codes).

If the message was only text, or you can reconstruct from where we are, then bingo! Otherwise read on...

If you message is in MIME format (there'll be a header near the From: and Subject: telling you such), you'll need to decode it. The easiest way to do this is to select your entire message (every thing from the first header right down to the last character before the next message's headers). Copy that to your clipboard.

Now make a new text document (in Word, just make a new doc) and paste it in there. Save that file some place that you'll remember, just making sure you save it as 'Text Only' (NOT 'Text Only with Line Breaks').

Go back to OE, go to File:Import. Select 'Import mail from a text file' and import the file we saved. It should now be sitting in you inbox, all fresh like.

Hope this helps, if anything is unclear, just let me know.

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