How can I search Windows Live Mail for specific messages by sender, subject, message, or date range?
Question by morning /

The “find” feature with regard to finding a specific message by either sender/subject/message or whatever seems to be useless. Regardless of what I put in to search or the date range, I keep getting a result of ‘0’.

Does anyone have any advice as to how I can get this to work? I seem to have misfiled some messages and can’t find them among the hundreds of messages or folders I have. Any advice will be appreciated.

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Answers (21)
  • Ted Xasperay

    This may be a eureka moment, but it probably isn’t.  Looking around the web, I see you have to unhide folders if you want to remove the exclusion. So unhide in Folder Options  containing appdata in any way you can, I guess, , then it appears in the list and can be ticked.  Managed to get rid of one exclusion of AppData that way.  Another remains, as does “Data”.  I thought those might refer to an external Hard Drive: but ticking that does not remove it.  Guess I’m waiting to see if it will index these now.(Not much use as this matter is urgent)  Got sceptical as my projects are now severely delayed while trying to fix this.

    • Tina

      Thanks for sharing your partial solution, Ted.

      If you still have an issue there, please ask a new question as this question will likely only be seen by other people looking for solutions and probably not by people who can contribute an answer.

  • Ted Xasperay

    hear hear! exactly same problems. Can’t remove the exclusion of Apdata. Tried all this advice, but I’m  not going to reinstall WLM, especially as that will likely not work anyway. I have another life.
    WLM has driven me to distraction. Is there a better alternative to WLM?  If so I’ll take it.  Loved Outlook Express, but Microsoft have lost the plot.

  • shane brown

    Im having the same problem. Has been a constant problem since i got my laptop a year ago. I have just let it go for the past year but today i really needed to find an old email during a meeting fast and i had to manually look through a ton of emails. I organise my emails quite well but thats besides the point. You should be able to search your mail without having to come up with workarounds.

  • Morning

    The system of entering something, searching all emails, deleting that “something” does not solve the problem of searching for something that is in the text. That is still the missing element in the “search” function.

  • Albertswk

    I found a way around this to search by date, sort of.
    If you type in a search term (anything you want) and then select Search In: ALL EMAIL, you can then delete the search term you typed in, and you have all email listed, you can sort by date and then go to the date you are looking for. Not ideal, but it works.

  • Jones Jack66

    I am having the same frustrating problem with WLM and the same in Windows Explorer search, all down to the Indexer no doubt and my AppData now shows several exclusions!
    WLM: Only searches the subject title! USELESS!
    Windows Explorer & Start Search: always finds ZERO files when I can see the file name and content contains the search term. USELESS!
    Yes I have also tried all of the above and everything should be correct but I know the ‘offline files’ should surely show all My Documets(21k files) but only shows 6K(seens to vary!) in total and when I select C:USERS… I get 33k files, BUT the DEFAULT for Libraries is to INDEX! Win Explorer works but NOT WLM! Can’t set AppData!!!

    What’s it all about microsoft??? This is a REALLY POOR Search System microsoft (WIN 7 Pro 32bit)

  • Anonymous

    Hi

    reinstal windowsmail
    http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/5481-windows-mail.html

    or

    Control Panel – Indexing Options – Modify
    navigate to C:Users

    checkmark in front of AppData
    Ok
    click on Advanced
    click on Rebuild
    Ok

    Now the search index will be rebuilt to include AppData so you will be able
    to search thru all your messages.
    It may take a while to rebuild, especially if you continue to use the
    computer while it is working.

    • Morning

      I really feel stupid BUT AppData under my longin account IS checked and has been checked the whole time – I have already rebuilt the index twice. Despite that, AppData still appears as being excluded under Indexing Options. I have also tried unchecking AppData, restarting the computer, rechecking AppData, restarting the comuter and still, a big ‘0’ results. I just CAN’T reformat my hard-disk and reinstall Winows 7 – thre’s got to be another way.

  • Anonymous

    You can force WLMail to replace the entire Message Store when it starts, by renaming the existing corrupt Message Store.

    The default location for WLMail’s Message Store in Vista is:

    C:UsersAppDataLocalMicrosoftWindows Live Mail
    (%localappdata%microsoftwindows live mail)

    The Message Store in its default location is a hidden folder, so ensure “Show hidden files and folders” is checked under Folder Options in Windows Explorer.

    So I suggest that you rename the “Windows Live Mail” Message Store folder to “Windows Live Mail (old)” and then restart WLMail. WLMail should then start successfully and recreate the Message Store.

    After WLMail recreates the Message Store, you will need to set up your accounts again and import your messages if necessary. Messages can be imported directly from your old renamed Message Store by dragging them onto the WLMail interface, or by using the File->Import->Messages->Windows Live Mail option and pointing it to your old renamed Message Store folder.

    If any extra spellchecking languages have been installed, or you want to re-use your custom dictionary, then you can replace the contents of the “Proof” folder within the new Message Store with the contents of the “Proof” folder in your old Message Store.

    • Morning

      Thank you for your suggestion – my OS is not Vista but Windows 7 – and I cannot find the Message Store, not even by entering the words “message store” in the START – there is no AppData under users, much less “local” – when I was using Vista, I had no problems – assuming you can send me the default location for WLMail’s Message Store for Windows 7, how do I restart WLMail after renaming the Message Store folder OLD?
      Just had a thought – the search/find function to us is the one in the START function [globe bottom left of the screen] or the “find” function in the top bar of the LiveMail? It just occured to me that after having indexed the computer properly, with your help and that of other contributors, I’ve been using the wrong “search/find” function.
      At any rate, thank you for all of your help.

    • Morning

      Further to what I wrote as a reply previously – the find/search function as part of the Start function only searches in the back-up file of emails [windows live] which is stored on D [the backup file from prior to my upgrading to Windows 7] and none of the items contained in the Windows Live Mail since I upgraded. It does, however, find internet sites/pages and word documents produced since then. Very confusing and aggravating. I REALLY need the search feature for emails.

  • Morning

    I have done everything suggested: gone into Indexing Options etc., even rebuilt the index, etc. Also went into Find and Fix Problems with Windows Search, selecting the “files option”, to no avail. The only thing I find different is that AppData is excluded TWICE but going into modify and taking a look at the file location, I find only one place with AppData and it is checked off! I have more than 52,000 items indexed and regardless of how I qualify the search – to, from, subject, message, inbox, sent … – I still come up with a result of 0. I appreciate all of the advice but HELP…….

    I should also mention that I have the same problem on my laptop as I have on my desktop computer.

    This has me convinced that it’s probably me who is doing something wrong and I’m missing someting.

  • Morning

    I have done everything suggested: gone into Indexing Options etc., even rebuilt the index, etc. Also went into Find and Fix Problems with Windows Search, selecting the “files option”, to no avail. The only thing I find different is that AppData is excluded TWICE but going into modify and taking a look at the file location, I find only one place with AppData and it is checked off! I have more than 52,000 items indexed and regardless of how I qualify the search – to, from, subject, message, inbox, sent … – I still come up with a result of 0. I appreciate all of the advice but HELP…….

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