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Re-creating contacts from the sent mail folder

Please note that this method is currently the only way to recover local contact groups that were not stored online and were not deemed recoverable by the NDSU Help Desk. For it to work, you must have previous emails to your old contact groups stored in your sent mail folder. It has the highest chance of success if you have not deleted messages from sent mail in the past. If you have already cleaned out your sent mail, this method will not work. This can be done in both Outlook 2010 and 2013.


Please note that this only works if you have email in your sent items folder that contains the addresses of the contact group you wish to re-create.


COntacts fro Sent items_1.jpg

First, in Outlook, locate and click on your Sent Items folder to open it.


Contacts fro Sent items_2.jpg

Next, locate a past e-mail that contains the contact group you are looking to re-create.  Open the message so that all the recipients are visible.


Contacts fro Sent items_3.jpg

Now select one of the names (any name in the "To:" area will work) so it is highlighted.  Now press the A key while holding down the Ctrl key.  This should cause all of the names to be highlighted.  With all of the names highlighted, right click on one of the names and select Copy.


Contacts fro Sent items_4.jpg

Now we need to create a new group to put the names in.  Open your contacts by clicking on the Contacts (People in Office 2013) link in the lower left corner of Outlook (next to mail & calendar).  Once open, locate and click on New Contact Group.


Contacts fro Sent items_5.jpg

A new contact window will appear.  In the Name field, enter the name of your re-created contact list.  Now click on the Add Members button.


Contacts fro Sent items_6.jpg

You will be presented with several options.  Select From Outlook Contacts.


Contacts fro Sent items_7.jpg

You will now see a screen like this one.  Instead of searching for contacts, we will paste the ones you previously copied from your old email message.  To do this, located the text box to the right of the Members button at the bottom of the screen.  Right click on this box and select Paste.


Contacts fro Sent items_8.jpg

You should now see all the members of your previous e-mail listed in the text box.  Now, before going any further, you will want to check each of the email addresses listed for bad addresses.  Addresses that contain "ndusbpos" will not work and will need to be modified. You can make changes to each address directly in the text box.

For example, is a bad address.  We will need to modify it to display the correct NDSU address: 

If we do not locate and modify any address containing "ndusbpos", those addresses will be returned as undeliverable. Once you have modified the addresses so they are correct, click OK to continue.


Contacts fro Sent items_9.jpg

Once you have finished modifying any necessary addresses and clicked OK, you should see a screen similar to this one.  You have successfully re-created your contact group!

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