Email - Saving emails by the click-and-drag method

Microsoft Outlook, running on a Windows computer, and some other email apps, allow you to copy emails to an external folder by selecting the emails and then clicking and dragging them together to the external folder. However you have to be careful when doing this that you do not overwrite any files in the external folder. The emails will generally be stored in the external folder with filenames which are the same as the Subject of the email. Obviously it is common for more than one email to have the same Subject, but click-and-drag copes with this by adding a numerical suffix where necessary to ensure that the emails being clicked and dragged are given unique filenames. However if you do a second click and drag, dragging further emails to the same external folder and the name of an file already in that Windows folder happens to be the same as the Subject of an email you are clicking and dragging, click and drag is not clever enough to add a suffix: it simply gives you the option of "copy and replace" or "don't copy" neither of which are satisfactory. Here are a few ways of avoiding this problem:

1. Only ever click and drag to an empty external folder. If you create external folders with the same names as the folders within your email system and click and drag all the emails in a folder in one go, then the problem does not arise.

2. After you have done one click-and-drag operation, rename all the files in the external folder so that they have unique names which will not conflict when a further click and drag is done. 

3. Instead of using click-and-drag, such as Aid4Mail or MessageExport to create copies in the external folder.


The information on this page about specific computer techniques is provided for information purposes only. Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate and up to date at the time it was written but no responsibility for its accuracy, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by me. You should satisfy yourself, before using any of the techniques or software described, that the techniques are appropriate for your purposes and that the software is reliable.

This page was lasted updated in November 2016Disclaimer