How do I recover deleted folders in Apple Mail?


Valued Member
I need serious help ... !!! I accidentally deleted a folder (with lots of folders inside!) of very important e-mail containing years of research ... !!!

I'm using Mac Mail .... OS X 10.4.11

Is there possible way to get it back? I was trying to change the names of folders, from lower case to upper case, and I got a message telling me that I couldn't do that, because there was already a folder like that.

I saw an extra folder, and clicked on it, but there appeared to be nothing in it, so I chose Delete from the menu. Only to find out it was the real folder with many other folders inside.

I need to get that e-mail back somehow ....

Any suggestions ... ??? Help !!!

Big Dan

EQ Forum Moderator
vja, I don't know enough about Apple mail to comment intelligently. As Ray said normally once you delete a folder within a program, it's gone.

By any chance have you looked in your Mail's trash folder? How about your system's trash? Mac sometimes put deleted items from it's apps into the system trash folder.

Sorry I cannot be of more help, if you find a solution by searching and need help carrying out the operations just holler.

EQ Admin

EQ Forum Admin
Staff member
If you don’t have a backup (which you should have made before doing something like that), you may try to salvage as many deleted .emlx files as possible with a data recovery tool such as Data Rescue II or FileSalvage. Of these, the only one I know for sure that can currently recover deleted .emlx files is FileSalvage. Stop using your computer right now if you want to try that, as anything you do with the computer may cause the deleted files to be overwritten.


Valued Member
Earlier today I posted my problem to many computer forums, mostly Mac. My mail is most certainly gone ... forever ... !!!

If I could afford the huge cost, I could take my computer in to a professional recovery services, but that could cost as much as $1,000 or more! I can't afford even the cost of a cheap recovery app.

Luckily, some of the deleted mail is still on my DreamHost server. All of that deleted mail that came through my ClearWire is already deleted.

I have over 27,000 (that's twenty seven thousand !!!) messages in the old-mail folder on just one of my DreamHost mail accounts to look through.

I've been able to find several dozen messages that I forwarded to my Mac Mail. Also, I did back up my Mac Mail back in 2007, so I was able to import those messages back into Mac Mail.

If only ..... everybody should listen to this, and I'm sure that some of you have heard and seen this before ....

I'm going to post a note by my computer, reminding me to back up my e-mail regularly, and I will start writing down names, and e-mail addresses in a notebook.

Another terrible thing happened, and this is a complete mystery .... My Address Book is completely empty ... !!! This is total disaster. I didn't write down all those contacts, so they are gone.