IS there a way to do an advanced search in Outlook with more search criteria than can fit in the GUI's search box?

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Am I difficult?  In outlook, I don't delete / empty the deleted items folder.  Invariably, there's something I have to look back at months later.

But there's loads of things that really could / should get deleted - USA Today, NY Times news things, etc.

I have a long list of senders that I can load into advanced search and delete  those emails from the deleted items folder.  but it's a long list and the search field for sender isn't long enough.  So I really have 8 lists of address1 OR address2 OR ....

Is there a way to link them or search for more than what will fit in the search field in advanced search of outlook 2016?

Yes, I've saved some space by using rather than (search by the domain not an exact email).  BUt they still take 8 lists.
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Senior Infrastructure Analyst
The long and the short is no, what you're trying to do really doesn't make any sense, your better option would be to do the following.

Set up rule of your mail going in to seperate folders for each of your news lists.

Then set up rules which send mail after a specific date from these folders into your deleted items list.

Then when you want go into your deleted items and clear out what you want.

I've said this so many times before, i'll say it again, your deleted items is NOT a storage area, if you wish to keep folders or emails etc, please please please do set up folders and store things the way they are meant to be. You have no recovery if you empty your deleted items. Actually that a Lie, you do, but it's not likely to work and it's not fun.

Why not skip a complex rule and just sort the folder by sender. Then click the first item of the group you want to delete, scroll to the last item from that sender, shift-click to select all in that group and hit delete.  Depends on how many of those senders you have, but three or four delete quickly

But I fully agree with Alex, don’t use deleted items as storage.  I recommend something similar to Alex as well. I set up individual rules for things I MAY want to read later and automatically send each to their own folder, not deleted items. In you case, maybe one called News?  As he suggested, you can clean that folder by age, or in my case, I just sort those by date and go delete old items I’m never going to read.  

I also created a MISC folder for older thing I might delete at some time but as you say, really want to be able to search.

I also wonder why you need one long rule instead of a handful of individual rules that handle each of those possible keep thing individually.  Seperate rules will allow you to set different criteria on each item. Say, toss USA Today sooner than older NY Times articles.

Sadly, I do this too, and finally learned to empty trash often so as not to ever depend on anything put in there being available. It does mean I have more storage folders, but each is handled by its own set of rules for deleting and archiving.
Yeah, I know - it's not a storage space... and 99.9999999% of the time I never go in there. But..... that once in a blue moon (or what's a better cliche for an even rarer event?) it helps to have those there.

But I am cleaning up all kinds of things for 2019... cancelling old phone numbers that just get spam callers, merging bank accounts, etc. Cleaning contacts in outlook - went from over 6000 to < 2000 (businesses that have closed years ago, people I've never spoke to (I imported my kids class directories in elementary / middle / high school... and they're graduating grad school soon : )

so yeah, just delete the deleted folder I guess. I have the data on a backup if I really need something.  Anything important, I've replied to, so it'd be in the sent folder.  Sounds good, but something will come up to screw my logic : )

As for the rules / folders... don't know what I might need to put in the misc folder .... till I need it.  oh, that old dilbert cartoon that I didn't save at the time but it was funny / came up in a conversation, etc.   (I get dilbert each day).
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AlexSenior Infrastructure Analyst


Exactly, I mean you just need to get your mail more organised and then you can deal with it in a more efficient way. If you need help setting up rules give me a shout, otherwise Merry Christmas :-)

Very Kind Regards,


I get the problem. My wife hates to throw away any mail and uses the trash folder as an "old mail" box.

For her, since mail does not use a lot of space, just copy her trash to a "Saved trash" folder, and then it becomes searchable, and it's off the server IMAP as well.

I dont like it, but it works for her.
my wife and I joke about how things come in waves - something comes up and it keeps coming up right after.

sure enough... I have a fax to email service.  old faxes I've gotten are in the deleted folder.  

Something just came up and I could make some calls to get the answer / maybe more accurate /current info but I thought 'i might have an old fax which might have what I need'.  a) the old fax is in the deleted folder b) things come in waves : )

yes, I like your wife's idea... but I am just trying to weed out the REALLY blatent things I KNOW for sure will never need - all those USAToday news blurbs, etc.

But as you describe to do it manually, there's a few dozen of these senders emails I don't need.  and with thousands of emails total, even doing the batches of xxx OR xxx or XXXX  takes time.

Love to be able to sequence several OR commands, or a powershell that does what advanced search does but to all the xxx or commands to get all of these I want to completely trash in 1 action on my part ; )

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