I’m not sure what is going on, whether people are changing their rules accidently or Outlook/Outlook.com is doing it, but several people needed my help finding missing email and discovered their rules were messed up.
The complaint goes something like this: My email is not in my Inbox. When I search for them, they are found in a folder called IPM_Subtree.
IPM_Subtree (or Top of Information Store) is the top-level folder in the data file, where the Outlook Today home page is normally shown. The messages got there one of two ways: you've somehow dragged them into that folder or have a rule mistakenly moving mail there.
Recovering the email is not difficult; it does not require the use of any 3rd party programs or MFCMAPI (contrary to some information floating around the Internet). Simply disable Outlook Today, select all, then use the Move to command to move them back to the Inbox, then turn Outlook Today back on.
Before moving the mail back to the Inbox, check your rules and make sure any that are moving mail are moving the messages to the expected folder.
To turn off Outlook Today and move the messages:
- Right click on the folder in the Navigation pane and choose Properties (or Data File Properties).
- On the Properties dialog, select the Home page tab
- Untick ‘Show home page by default for this folder’.
- Click Ok to close the dialog.
- Select all the messages (Ctrl+A)
- Open the Move to common (Ctrl+Shift+V) and select your Inbox.
- Repeat steps 1 -3, ticking ‘Show home page..’ to re-enable Outlook Today.
Back in the early days of Outlook, many users used that location to store (or hide) messages. While you can still do that, don’t forget where they are or how to access them.