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The Message Recall feature in Outlook fails

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A user has sent a message recall request through Outlook, and the message recall fails.
Message Recall is purely a function of Outlook with no outward effect from Exchange other than routing the recall request. Functionality is different between the various version of the Outlook client.

Message Recall will not be successful if:
  • The recipient is not using Outlook.
  • The recipient is not logged on to the mail service provider.
  • The message has been moved from the Inbox.
  • The message has been read. This includes viewing the message with the Preview Pane so that the message is flagged as Read.
There are a number of circumstances in which message recall doesn't work. Since it is an Outlook feature here are some reasons why it might not work:
  • You can only attempt to recall a message you sent if you're using Outlook.
  • Recipients who aren't using Outlook (e.g. POP3, IMAP4, and OWA users) will get the recall request messages, but they have no way to do a recall.
  • If an Outlook recipient opens the message before opening the recall request, the recall will fail.
  • Outlook users who have the preview pane turned on may still be able to read the recalled message, even if they haven't opened it.
  • Most users will see the recall request and immediately rush to read the message.

Recall can only work for:
  • The recipient uses Outlook, and Outlook is running.
  • The recipient's mailbox must be open for the recall to succeed.
  • The message must still be unread and in the recipient's Inbox.

The following Microsoft Outlook Help and How-to articles can also help you understand this issue.

Outlook 2010 - Recall or replace an e-mail message after it is sent

Outlook 2007 - Recall or replace a message after it is sent

Outlook 2003 - How message recall works

Note This is a "FAST PUBLISH" article created directly from within the Microsoft support organization. The information contained herein is provided as-is in response to emerging issues. As a result of the speed in making it available, the materials may include typographical errors and may be revised at any time without notice. See Terms of Use for other considerations.

Article ID: 2544448 - Last Review: 04/26/2011 17:09:00 - Revision: 2.0

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