I use Outlook's Rules and Alerts facility to automatically file my emails. I find it a great time saver. However, I've recently been unable to add further rules - Outlook suggests that there is insufficient space to store all of my rules. I've removed any unnecessary rules (and shortened others), but am still bouncing against this limit. This equates to about 60 rules.

I found that there is a 32KB limit for rules and this cannot be extended due to the limitations of the exchange server 2003 (see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/147298).

Has anyone been able to circumvent this limit? Or maybe move server-side rules to client-side? If so, how? Or is there another way of filing email that I could use?

I've thought about using another email client (Thunderbird) to connect my account via IMAP4, and to use Thunderbird's rules for filing. However, this brings it's own issues, by having to subscribe to each mail folder first (I have quite a few), and having to run Thunderbird (every so often at the very least).



Microsoft offers some suggestions in this KB article:


But your best long term solution is to upgrade to Exchange 2007 which allows for up to 256KB of rule space per inbox


You could use Outlooks 'Search Folders' to 'file' your email.

An added benefit of using Searh folders instead of creating subfolders, is that an email can be in more than one Search Folder.

  • 1
    Interesting workaround. Downside is you end up with an inbox with possibly thousands, if not tens of thousands of emails which can really drag your Outlook performance down. Jul 22 '09 at 14:32
  • Interesting suggestion, but I agree with Kevin - in practice it's like wading through treacle, but then anything search-related in Outlook is. Jul 22 '09 at 14:51

It's a bit messy, but I've also thought about splitting rules across folders, i.e. having 40-50 rules for my Inbox and the final rule to run would move everything left in the Inbox into folder, Inbox2. I can then have another 40+ rules on this folder before moving everything into Inbox3 and so on...

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