As more people try Office 2013, I'm seeing more complaints and confusion about Outlook 2013's handling of IMAP sent folders.
Choosing a Sent Folder
I upgraded from Outlook 2010 to Outlook 2013. Is it true that "Saving Sent Messages" on the server is no longer possible with IMAP servers? If not, where are my "Sent Messages"? When I look at a conversation, sent messages show up and Outlook shows that it's in the "sent" folder but I can't find it in my Sent folder.
As I mentioned in the last tip, Outlook 2013 gets the Sent Items folder from the server using the XLIST command and falls back to the local Sent Items folder if the IMAP server does not support XLIST. Users can no longer select a sent folder to use.
How this works: when you set up the account, Outlook "talks" to the IMAP server, "asking" what the server supports. If the server supports XLIST, it responds with the folder that should be used for Sent items. If the server does not use XLIST, Outlook 2013 uses the local Sent items folder. If you want to use a different folder, you need to rules to move the sent item.
For example, when Outlook 2013 connects to GMail, GMail responds with this:
[rx] * CAPABILITY IMAP4rev1 UNSELECT IDLE NAMESPACE QUOTA ID XLIST CHILDREN X-GM-EXT-1 XYZZY SASL-IR AUTH=XOAUTH AUTH=XOAUTH2
Then Outlook gets the folder list:
[tx] md83 XLIST "" "*" [db] OnNotify: asOld = 5, asNew = 5, ae = 3 [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren \Inbox) "/" "Inbox" [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren) "/" "Junk E-mail" [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren) "/" "Outlook Users" [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren) "/" "Tips" [rx] * XLIST (\Noselect \HasChildren) "/" "[Gmail]" [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren \AllMail) "/" "[Gmail]/All Mail" [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren \Drafts) "/" "[Gmail]/Drafts" [rx] * XLIST (\HasNoChildren \Important) "/" "[Gmail]/Important" [rx] * XLIST (\HasChildren \HasNoChildren \Sent) "/" "[Gmail]/Sent Mail"
Find the Sent folder
If you can't find the sent folder but see the sent items when you use the conversation view, you can use the macro at Folder: Get the path to identify the folder path. Simply select a sent message in a conversation and run the macro. A message box will show you the path (in \\email@example.com\Inbox\Sent format) and you can click the button to switch to it.
If you switch to the Folder list (Ctrl+6) after letting the macro take you to the folder, it will be expanded so you can see where it is in relation to the other folders.
When you create an Outlook 2013 profile that contains only an IMAP account, your calendar, contacts, notes, and tasks will be stored in the IMAP data file (*.ost). These folders are marked with (This computer only) for easy identification. If your IMAP data file includes folders marked (This computer only) and you want to keep the contents, you need to export those folders to a pst file before removing the IMAP account from your profile.
Published December 3, 2012. Last reviewed on August 7, 2014.