Using Outlook 2007 as an IMAP Mail Station Without Saving Data Locally

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Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account

I know this is a far-fetched idea, but a relative of mine (who has Outlook 2007 as I do, but doesn't actually use it, preferring webmail exclusively) was asking me whether it would be possible to set up Outlook in such a way that it could be used as kind of a desktop mail station for her IMAP accounts but without it saving downloaded data between sessions.

IOW, she would open Outlook, access all her IMAP accounts from it and manage her email (read, move/file, delete, compose, send, etc.) then close Outlook and have it automatically purge all locally saved/downloaded email content leaving all the online folders unaffected by that purging.

So, her email activity would be done via IMAP within Outlook, but when Outlook is closed no email data would be found on the computer itself. Then when she has her next email session and opens Outlook, all the account information would still be there (account server settings, username, password, even folder list and maybe even some/most of the headers), but none of the actual email content, which would be re-downloaded each time, if necessary. This would make Outlook more of an "email browser" for her, kind of like the online service Mail2Web (for those familiar with that).

Regardless of the reason why someone might want to do this (privacy, secrecy, whatever), is it possible for her to set something up like this?

Thanks. :)

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
It's possible but defaults the purpose of using Outlook. She'd need to use a batch file to delete the imap data files when she closed outlook. If her imap account contains much mail, it would be slow as it needs to sync everything every time - it wouldn't be noticeable if she just has a few hundred.


Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Thanks, Diane, for your reply. I'll pass along the information!
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