Canceling Email

How to set up ‘undo send’ to cancel emails in Outlook

Did you send an email by mistake using Outlook? Don't worry, here are the steps to undo a sent message using Outlook desktop app or Outlook.com.

Outlook undo send emails

One could say that the best way to undo an email message is to not send it at all. However, we send a lot of emails in the daily basis, accidents will happen, and many times you don’t realize your message is incorrect until you click the send button.

Google’s Gmail was the first email service to include an “undo send” button giving you 30 seconds to cancel an email, then Microsoft followed by adding the same feature to Outlook.com, but for those using the Outlook desktop app there isn’t such feature. Though, you probably didn’t know, but the Outlook desktop app actually include settings you can configure to delay sending a message to mimic “undo send”.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to configure a rule in the Outlook desktop app to easily undo sending an email message, and you’ll learn the steps set up “undo send” in Outlook.com.

How to set up ‘undo send’ in the Outlook app with a simple rule

  1. On Outlook, open File, and click on Manage Rules & Alerts.

    Rules and alerts settings
    Rules and alerts settings
  2. Click New Rule.

  3. Under “Start from a blank rule”, select Apply rule on messages I send, and don’t add anything else.

  4. Click Next.

    Outlook rule settings
    Outlook rule settings
  5. Do not select any condition and click Next to continue.

  6. Click Yes to confirm that the rule will apply to every message you send.

  7. Check the defer delivery by a number of minutes option.

    Defer delivery by a number of minutes rule
    Defer delivery by a number of minutes rule
  8. On the edit rule section, click the a number of link and change the number of minutes. It’s recommended you use 1 minute, but you can use a different number up to 120 minutes.

  9. Click Next.

    Outlook defer delivery rule
    Outlook defer delivery rule
  10. Click Next again without adding any more conditions.

  11. Enter a descriptive name for the rule (e.g., “Outlook Undo Send”).

  12. Make sure the Turn on this rule option is checked.

  13. Click Finish.

    Outlook undo send rule
    Outlook undo send rule
  14. Click Apply.

  15. Click OK to complete the task.

Once you completed the steps, you’ll be ready to stop emails from reaching their destination when you accidentally click the send button.

Your emails will queue up for the number of minutes you configured the new Outlook rule in the Outbox folder of your account.

The best way to undo a sent email is to click the Work Offline button located in the Send / Receive tab immediately after accidentally hitting the Send button. After you do that, you can go to the Outbox folder edit or delete the message.

Keep in mind that while Microsoft Outlook is available in a number of platforms, this feature isn’t available on Mac or in the Mail app for Windows 10.

How to set up ‘undo send’ on Outlook.com

If you don’t use the Outlook app, you can actually set up “undo send” on your Outlook.com account.

  1. Open your Outlook.com account on your web browser.

  2. Navigate to the Undo send configuration page.

  3. Select the Let me cancel messages I’ve sent for option, and choose the number of seconds (maximum time to recall a message is 30 seconds).

    Outlook web "undo send" options
    Outlook web “undo send” options
  4. Click Save to complete the task.

After completing the steps, every time you click the Send button on a new message, you’ll notice an Undo button in the top-right corner, which you can use to cancel the message.

Once you click the button, you can edit and resend the message, or you can click the Discard button to delete the email.

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