My Hotmail Account Gets Amnesia

I just lost hundreds of old emails from my hotmail account, and thought I should share their corporate response for those out there who might someday lose their correspondence as well:

Question Summary

Hundreds of emails disappeared from prior to 2003 — NOT DELETED, DISAPPEARED.

Please provide your impacted Email address :

Choose one of the following scenarios :

I don’t know how, but my Emails are missing

How long has it been since you lost your Emails ?

I don’t know

Additional Details

I have lost hundreds of emails from prior to 2003 on my hotmail account.  I did not delete them or export them to my knowledge.  They just disappeared.  I first noticed this yesterday, but it could have happened earlier.  How do I recover them?  Is hotmail deleting old emails on under-used accounts?  I have kept this account active for over 10 years, although it is no longer my primary email address.  Please advise.

RESPONSE (from a”Daniel G”):


We are not deleting any emails due to privacy reason. Based on our investigation your account has been inactive. If you don’t sign in for more than 270 days or within the first 10 days after signing up for an account. After an account becomes inactive, all messages, folders, and contacts are deleted. Your account name is still reserved. However, if the account stays inactive for an additional 90 days, the account name may be permanently deleted. If you don’t use your Windows Live ID for 365 days, your Windows Live ID may be permanently deleted. We are sorry to inform you that we cannot recover your emails anymore.

Check out this Solution Article on the causes of lost mail and how you can prevent it:

Emails are missing from your Windows Live Hotmail account  (A Useless Article that does not apply to me…)


Thank you for the reply, however, I never let that account go inactive.  I check in roughly once every 2-3 weeks on average, and have been doing so for several years — if by “active” you mean logging in and deleting junk mail.  In addition, NOT all messages, folders, and contacts have been deleted — only messages older than about 2003. How is it you cannot recover emails that I did not delete, when I did not allow the account to go inactive?  Can you check a little further — those messages are far more important, and deserve far more than a stock response.

If there is any way to recover those emails, I would really appreciate advice, because I DID NOT ALLOW MY ACCOUNT TO GO INACTIVE.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to My Hotmail Account Gets Amnesia

  1. Justine says:

    I have exactly the same problem all my mail older than 2004 disapeared !!

  2. Dee says:

    Had exactly the same thing just happen. I last logged in about 40 days ago – been traveling in Asia & South Pacific & checked twice on trip. So first everything from before 2007 was gone (had the account since 2003). So, I contacted support and now everything from before Jan 2013 is gone! Nice! And I got substantially the same exact response as you. Way to be Microsoft.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *