Did you make a mistake in your last email sent through Microsoft Outlook? Forgot to include important information? Did you realize that the email you sent needed additional context? Maybe your email needs to be retracted? If you feel any of these apply to you, don’t you worry. Microsoft Outlook has the ability to unsend emails.

But how is it done? First, you need to know if your account has the feature enabled.

Can You Unsend an Email in Outlook?

It isn’t enough to have an Outlook email account. In order to “unsend” an email in Outlook, you need to be using a specific communications server. Known as Microsoft Exchange Server, it comes with the helpful ability to unsend emails. In the event that you made a mistake in your last email, forgot important information, or realized you sent it to the wrong person, you can retract your previous email.

Not only do you need to be a part of Microsoft Exchange Server, the receivers of your email also have to be as well. If neither you, nor the other person use Microsoft Exchange Server, you do NOT have the ability to “unsend” and email.

And yes, there is a way to check. Here’s how:

1. In the top left corner of Outlook, click File. When the menu opens, choose Info. It’s in the top left corner as well.

2. At the top of Account Information, you’ll see your Microsoft account name. If you see “Microsoft Exchange” listed beneath it, you can access the ability to recall or resend emails.

3. If you see MAPI or POP listed below your account name, then you CANNOT access the ability to recall or resend emails.

How to Recall an Email Sent in Outlook

If you have an Exchange email address, congratulations! You can unsend emails, so long as the other person has an Exchange email, too. It’s called “Recall” and the feature will delete the original email from your inbox as well as the inbox of the other person.

However, there is one additional caveat: if the email has already been read, you won’t be able to recall. In the event that it isn’t, you need to act fast.

1. Start by accessing the Sent Items page. Locate and open the email you want to “unsend.”

2. After the email opens in a separate window, click File in the top left corner. When the menu opens, choose Info.

3. Head down to Resend or Recall and click it. In the drop down menu that follows, choose Recall This Message. Yet another pop-up window will appear.

4. Choose “Delete unread copies of this message.” While you’re at it, checkmark “Tell me if recall succeeds or fails for each recipient.” What that does is send you a receipt, stating whether or not the recall went through. Click OK.

5. If it was successful, check in your Inbox for a receipt email. It will tell you if the recall was successful.

How to Resend an Email Sent in Outlook

Additionally, you can resend an email. This is great if you need to include information you forgot or to add context to your emails. When it’s successful, it deletes the original message and replaces the old one. As long as the email hasn’t been read, you’re in the green but need to act quickly.

1. Start by accessing the Sent Items page. Locate and open the email you want to resend.

2. After the email opens in a separate window, click File in the top left corner. When the menu opens, choose Info.

3. Head down to Resend or Recall and click it. In the drop down menu that follows, choose Resend This Message.

Delete unread copies and replace with a new message

4. In the pop-up window that appears, click “Delete unread copies and replace with a new message.” Also, put a checkmark next to “Tell me if recall succeeds or fails for each recipient.” Click OK.

5. Now make changes to the original message. After you’ve made all necessary corrections and or changes, click Send.

6. You’ll get a receipt email stating if it were successful or not. If it was successful, the original email is deleted and replaced with the new one.

Bottom Line

As you can see Microsoft Outlook makes it incredibly easy to recall or resend emails that were mistakes or needed correcting. The next time you send an email by mistake or need to fix something, use one of the two methods.

However, it goes without saying: double-check your emails before you send them. You’re lucky Outlook has a Plan B for you.