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Empty 80,000 messages from Sent mailbox on Mail.app

Posted on 2010-09-08
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Last Modified: 2013-11-24
Hey,

I have 80,000 sent messages in my Mail.app , i need to empty my Sent messages but i am not able to Select All and Delete, the application is simply crashing. I even tried deleting by small bulks but that is taking ages and still not working because sometimes mail is crashing.

What i was able to do was Delete the retrieved messages from /Library/Mail but my problem is that they are still showing inside the application, i cannot preview them since the actual messages have been deleted.

So is there a way to remove all those entries ?

I am using Mac OS X Server 10.4.11

Mail.app version 2.1.3 (753.1)

Thanks in advance
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Question by:jmhabis2
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Expert Comment

by:jhyiesla
ID: 33626070
You could try going to Finder and going to Username->library->mail and finding the deleted items folder associated with the account.  You should be able to delete the files from there.
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Expert Comment

by:jhyiesla
ID: 33626075
Make sure that you shut down mail first and have a backup just in case.
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Author Comment

by:jmhabis2
ID: 33626420
my problem is that i am not being able to run the delete action from Mail in the first place, the application is crashing when i do so...
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Expert Comment

by:jhyiesla
ID: 33626473
What I am saying is to shut down Mail and navigate to the files in Finder and delete them from there.
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Author Comment

by:jmhabis2
ID: 33626548
I already did that, i deleted the physical files. But once i re-open mail, tehy are still showing in the Sent mailbox, that is my main problem.
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Expert Comment

by:jhyiesla
ID: 33626608
Have you tried renaming the Sent items folder in Finder and then starting Mail to see if it will create a new folder?
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Author Comment

by:jmhabis2
ID: 33626811
I renamed the folder, it recreated the folder once i re-entered Mail but the entries were still there.
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jhyiesla earned 500 total points
ID: 33626934
Assuming that you are working with the Sent Items folder associated with that account and you are still seeing messages even after you have deleted then in Finder, try this. Open Mail and select the account in question. Then go to the Menu, select Mailbox and then Rebuild.
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Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 33627243
How are you connecting to your mail server? If you are on an exchange server or IMAP, the sent messages you see may be stored on the remote mail server, not on your Mac.
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Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 33627256
If the sent mail is on the remote mail server, trying logging in using webmail and delete the messages that way.
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Author Comment

by:jmhabis2
ID: 33634325
It took 5 hours to complete, but rebuilding the mailbox did the trick! thanks jhyiesla
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