How to recall an email in Outlook

I have sent countless emails that I wish I didn’t send. I have sent countless messages that I wish I didn’t send.

Fortunately, most social media platforms allow unsending messages. But is it truly possible to recall an email or even replace the email you sent?

The good news is if you use the Outlook app on your Windows computer, you can actually recall an email or replace the content of the email.

But what’s the bad news?

There are several conditions to meet to recall an email in Outlook. And you can’t recall an email if you are a free user.

Rules To Recall an Email in Outlook

Microsoft-365

You and the receiver must be Microsoft Exchange or Microsoft 365 users of the same organization. So, if your company uses Microsoft 365 for staff emails, you can recall emails sent to your colleagues or boss.

You can send emails to others outside the organization, but you won’t be able to use the recall or replace feature of Outlook.

mail-inbox

Your sent email should stay in the Inbox folder. So, if the receiver has a custom rule that moves emails from a particular sender or topic to a custom folder, you can’t recall the email even if it’s your colleague in the same organization.

Also, the email should not be read by the recipient. If you sent the email hours ago and the recipient has already read the email, you can apply the recall feature, but it will fail.

Microsoft Outlook is a cross-platform email application. They have native apps for MacOS, Windows, Android & iOS.

But, you can only recall an email from the Outlook app that is a part of Office 365. You can’t use the web version, native Mail app on Windows, mobile app, or, Outlook for Mac.

So, even if you are eligible to recall an email but you use MacOS, then you are out of luck.

Microsoft-outlook

If you meet all the requirement to recall an email, here’s some information for you:

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  • There’s no time-frame before you can recall an email, as long as the email is unread.
  • The recalled email will disappear from the recipient.
  • You can see the recall status on Outlook app.

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How to recall an email in Outlook?

  1. Open the Outlook app on your Windows computer.
  2. Navigate to the Sent Items folder from the left sidebar.
  3. Double-click on the sent email you want to recall; it will open the email in a new window. Open the email in a new window
  4. There’s a three-dot menu icon at the top right corner of the toolbar; click on it. Move your mouse to Actions and select Recall This Message. Recall an email in Outlook
  5. If there’s no menu icon on the toolbar, click on Move, and navigate to Actions > Recall this message.
  6. Ensure that Delete unread copies of this message is marked, and click OK. Delete unread copies of this message.
  7. Outlook will change the email’s subject if the recall is successful, which says Message Recall Success: Subject. Message Recall Success

But the solution is not applicable to average users. Why?

Because if you try to recall an email from someone outside your organization, they will receive a separate email that says, “[Sender ] would like to recall the message, [email subject].

Recall email doesn't work outside the same organisation

It’s embarrassing. Instead, you can set a certain amount of delay before your emails are sent. It’s a great way to cancel any outgoing email.

Delay Sending the emails

Like recalling the message, you must have Office 365 apps installed on your computer. The default Mail/Outlook app on Windows doesn’t have this feature.

  1. Launch the Outlook app on your computer.
  2. Click on File from the menu bar. A new window will appear on the screen. Click on File in Outlook app
  3. Find Rules and Alerts and click on it.Rules and Alerts in Outlook
  4. Click on New Rule, select Apply on messages I send, and click Next. Create a new rule in Outlook
  5. Don’t select any option in this step, and click Next. It will show a warning that the rule will apply to all emails you send; click YES on the pop-up.Don't select anything in this step
  6. Select defer delivery by a number of minutes, click on a number of hyperlink, enter the number of minutes, and click OK. Defer delivery by a number of minutes
  7. Click on Finish, and Select OK on the pop-up. Finish setting up the rule

The rule you created will only work if the Outlook app is running on your computer. If the app is not running, then if you send emails from the web or other devices won’t apply the rule.

You can use 1 minute to a maximum of 120 minutes for the defer delay time. Two hours is long enough time to decide whether the email is not worth sending.

How to delete a delayed email in Outlook?

If you set a delay of 60 minutes, your emails will be in the Outbox folder for that period.

You can delete emails from the folder, and prevent Outlook from sending them.

Open the Outlook app on your Windows computer and go to the Outbox folder from the sidebar.

Go to Outbox in Outlook

Right-click on the email you wish to unsend and click Delete from the menu.

Delete an email from Outbox in Outlook

What does the outbox folder mean?

Outbox shows the delayed emails or the emails that weren’t sent already.

Outbox is a common feature in Outlook and Yahoo Mail. You can’t find it in Gmail, as the platform allows unending emails within 30 seconds.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I recall an Outlook email from the Mail app on Windows?

No, you can’t. You must install the Office 365 applications on your computer. Outlook app, which is part of Office 365, can recall an email, but only on Windows.

Can everyone who uses an Outlook email recall an email?

You and the receiver must be working at the same company, and the company must use Microsoft Exchange or Microsoft 365.

How to recall an email after 2 days in Outlook?

As I said earlier, there’s no fixed timeframe to recall an email. But the recipient must not read the email, or it won’t work.

How do I know if a recalled email was successful?

Outlook will take some time to recall the email, if you meet all the requirements. You can see the recall status by opening the email you tried to recall. Message Recall Success

Can you recall an email sent externally?

No, it only works for internal emails. If you use your company email to send an email to someone outside your company, don’t even try to recall the email. Because Outlook will send another email that says you are trying to recall an email. Recall email doesn't work outside the same organisation

How do I recall an email in Outlook on Chrome?

You can’t use the web version of Outlook to recall an email. It’s an exclusive feature that only exists on the Outlook app in Windows. Even the Outlook app on Mac is unable to recall an email.

Uchchash Talukder Rana is the founder of @ansmegeek. He is the jack of all trades and master of a few. He uses Windows, Mac, Android & iOS on a daily basis. If he is not sleeping, either he is writing articles or playing Valorant.

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