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Dealing With a Full Mailbox in Outlook 2010

Dealing With a Full Mailbox in Outlook 2010


    We’ve all seen it. The dreaded “Your mailbox is over the limit.” message.

    This means that not only can you not receive any new mail messages, you can’t send any emails either. This usually happens right at the climax of a very important project. The question is: What can we do about it?

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    You could always ask your email administrator to increase your limits, but that could take some time depending upon how busy they are with other help desk tickets. Below I’ve offered ways to help yourself. Plus, if you’ve already done these steps below, then when you do request the help desk ticket for increasing your limits, you will stand a much better chance of getting them increased.

    Three Solutions

    The first thing that you can do is empty your Deleted Items folder. The following steps are if you are using Outlook, but the concepts work in almost any mail program. Like your trash can at home, if you don’t empty the Deleted Items once in a while, you won’t ever get the space back. Simply right-click on the Deleted Items folder and choose Delete.

    The next one that’s often overlooked is your Sent Items folder. Outlook by default, saves every mail message to your Sent Items folder. Most other mail programs have the same capabilities. What this means is that every single “Hey…what are you doing for lunch?” email is in there. All five years worth of them. You don’t need to hang onto those messages. Go ahead and delete them. This step may take a bit longer than emptying the Deleted Items folder, but it will get the job done as well. You may want to sift through the messages, since there will be some messages that you have sent that you want to retain.

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    The third option is to use the AutoArchive function of Outlook. This one could be an issue for you, since the criteria for most archiving is by date. There are some messages (an annual or biannual contract negotiation with a vendor, for example) that you need to keep. Instead of auto-archiving those, move the messages to another folder manually.

    Outlook is usually configured to store messages on the Exchange server, which is good because you can sign into any PC in your organization and still retrieve your messages. Likewise, you can sign into webmail while you are traveling and still have access to those same messages. Unfortunately, this is where those mailbox limits come into play.

    For less critical mail, create an archive for yourself , since we’ve determined that AutoArchiving may not be the answer.

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    Your Own Personal Email Archive

    The way to do this is to have Outlook open, then go to File > Account Settings. Click on the Data Files tab and click on Add. This will let you create a new .PST file. You can name it anything your want. (I would suggest something along the lines of “2011 Archives” vs. “Personal Folders”, which is the default name. And no, I don’t know how they got PST out of Personal Folders. It’s a mystery to me too…)

    When you go to create the new PST file, you may want to create it in your shared files drive letter (commonly called H: for home, P: for Personal or U: for Users — your mileage may vary depending upon your network administrator.) This will create a new folder icon underneath your normal mailbox icons on the left. Expand this folder and start dragging emails over to the new folder. This folder used to have a limit of 2 GB in size, although you could always create more PST files. In Outlook 2010, they changed its formatting, increasing the limit to 50 GB — more than enough space. (If you need more than 50 GB of email, you have bigger issues than “mailbox full” messages.)

    There are some caveats to this method of archiving. First, this PST file won’t be available to you from machine to machine, unless you saved it to your U: drive. Secondly, if the machine that you put it on gets corrupted or has a hard disk failure, say goodbye to your e-mail (unless it’s backed up…you do have a backup, right? ). Third, your email administrator or your network security may not favor you doing this. If there is a virus in the email system, they can clean the mail servers. If if makes it into your PST file, it’s a whole lot harder to eradicate it. Of course, you should have anti-virus scanning your email as it comes in, but it still is a concern.

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    If this still doesn’t do the trick, then you simply need a larger quota. Doing the steps above will help support your request for more space.

    (Photo credit: White Email Symobls with One Red One via Shutterstock)

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    Last Updated on May 14, 2019

    8 Replacements for Google Notebook

    8 Replacements for Google Notebook

    Exploring alternatives to Google Notebook? There are more than a few ‘notebooks’ available online these days, although choosing the right one will likely depend on just what you use Google Notebook for.

    1. Zoho Notebook
      If you want to stick with something as close to Google Notebook as possible, Zoho Notebook may just be your best bet. The user interface has some significant changes, but in general, Zoho Notebook has pretty similar features. There is even a Firefox plugin that allows you to highlight content and drop it into your Notebook. You can go a bit further, though, dropping in any spreadsheets or documents you have in Zoho, as well as some applications and all websites — to the point that you can control a desktop remotely if you pare it with something like Zoho Meeting.
    2. Evernote
      The features that Evernote brings to the table are pretty great. In addition to allowing you to capture parts of a website, Evernote has a desktop search tool mobil versions (iPhone and Windows Mobile). It even has an API, if you’ve got any features in mind not currently available. Evernote offers 40 MB for free accounts — if you’ll need more, the premium version is priced at $5 per month or $45 per year. Encryption, size and whether you’ll see ads seem to be the main differences between the free and premium versions.
    3. Net Notes
      If the major allure for Google Notebooks lays in the Firefox extension, Net Notes might be a good alternative. It’s a Firefox extension that allows you to save notes on websites in your bookmarks. You can toggle the Net Notes sidebar and access your notes as you browse. You can also tag websites. Net Notes works with Mozilla Weave if you need to access your notes from multiple computers.
    4. i-Lighter
      You can highlight and save information from any website while you’re browsing with i-Lighter. You can also add notes to your i-Lighted information, as well as email it or send the information to be posted to your blog or Twitter account. Your notes are saved in a notebook on your computer — but they’re also synchronized to the iLighter website. You can log in to the site from any computer.
    5. Clipmarks
      For those browsers interested in sharing what they find with others, Clipmarks provides a tool to select clips of text, images and video and share them with friends. You can easily syndicate your finds to a whole list of sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Digg. You can also easily review your past clips and use them as references through Clipmarks’ website.
    6. UberNote
      If you can think of a way to send notes to UberNote, it can handle it. You can clip material while browsing, email, IM, text message or even visit the UberNote sites to add notes to the information you have saved. You can organize your notes, tag them and even add checkboxes if you want to turn a note into some sort of task list. You can drag and drop information between notes in order to manage them.
    7. iLeonardo
      iLeonardo treats research as a social concern. You can create a notebook on iLeonardo on a particular topic, collecting information online. You can also access other people’s notebooks. It may not necessarily take the place of Google Notebook — I’m pretty sure my notes on some subjects are cryptic — but it’s a pretty cool tool. You can keep notebooks private if you like the interface but don’t want to share a particular project. iLeonardo does allow you to follow fellow notetakers and receive the information they find on a particular topic.
    8. Zotero
      Another Firefox extension, Zotero started life as a citation management tool targeted towards academic researchers. However, it offers notetaking tools, as well as a way to save files to your notebook. If you do a lot of writing in Microsoft Word or Open Office, Zotero might be the tool for you — it’s integrated with both word processing software to allow you to easily move your notes over, as well as several blogging options. Zotero’s interface is also available in more than 30 languages.

    I’ve been relying on Google Notebook as a catch-all for blog post ideas — being able to just highlight information and save it is a great tool for a blogger.

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    In replacing it, though, I’m starting to lean towards Evernote. I’ve found it handles pretty much everything I want, especially with the voice recording feature. I’m planning to keep trying things out for a while yet — I’m sticking with Google Notebook until the Firefox extension quits working — and if you have any recommendations that I missed when I put together this list, I’d love to hear them — just leave a comment!

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