Outlook For Mac 2021 Empties Inbox

Hello “All”! I have been computing since 1986 with PC and eventually Windows. And in 2008, went over to Apple. I have always used Office Professional. For Mac, it became Office for Mac 2008 and then through the iterations to Office For Mac 2021.

Just recently, an update brought 16.73 to replace 16.72 and either with the update or just before it, something occurred that I have never witnessed in all my years in front of a monitor, specifically, my Outlook for Mac 2021 emptied my Inbox spontaneously and instantaneously accompanied by several sounds as the Sync Error window (you have to access it) filled up with CREATE Failed and then a subdirectory follows, i.e., Trash, Send, etc.

First time, I did a double take as in did that just happened or more like what just happened. Like most helpless feeling users even with my experience (I learn more from when things go wrong than when they go right), I started pressing keys. And lo and behold, the program started downloading 2911 emails ( I have 10XX in my inbox) including all the emails I deleted, including the deleted emails, then, emptied from the Delete and Junk folders.

I also discovered that Contact Support in the HELP tab of Outlook was missing. So, I launched Word and asked their team for help. Was rewarded with Contact Support restored and the impression my tech support person provided in the belief all was solved. This by over the phone and with a screen share. Outlook Support is only text chatting. Well, allow me to cut to the chase: The Inbox is now emptying with and eventually downloading what it emptied. The sounds accompany the emptying. And it’s reached a frequency that prevents me from using my Outlook with any consistency.

AOL is the server given Verizon FiOS sold their email business. AOL over time demanded a special app password for third party email client users like Outlook For Mac. But then the server objects to the password frequently. Now I am met with this new occurrence and it rapidly increased to the point that it has made using Outlook torturous. Their Support Team, seemingly willing to help, gives out task to perform and send them, but so far, no resolution. Not even a hint. Nothing I have attempted suffices. Full Mac HDD scan results in no findings. Tech Support finally acknowledged other user including Yahoo also suffer from a similar experience.

After all this time in developing Office for Mac, I am presented with a problem of this magnitude and difficulty to resolve.I’d put up a sign Office for rent, but I so established with Office and my email address, I don’t know what to do. Yes, of course, I opened up Mail on my iMac and it performs without (shhh!) the emptying. But it’s just not Outlook. Thought I should reveal this ugly outcome to We who rely on our email clients to accomplish…I have been told to wait a second time having submitted everything Support requested except a screen recording of what I have ably described to them. They asked for the same tasks, i.e., Diagnostic Log, etc. I am hoping the Gremlins get tired. I am exhausted by it and feeling quite set upon. My fault for depending on Outlook, which presently looks bleak. That’s it for now. Best, REShaman as I refer to myself.

Not that it helps, but I have Outlook 16.73 and my inbox with a MS 365 account and an iCloud account is working normally.
You don’t say what kind of account you are pointing Outlook to (IMAP, POP3, etc.) Can you use Outlook on the web?

My apologies. The verizon.net account is an IMAP and so is my wife’s. Both are acting the same way. I do not use an iCloud account, merely an IMAP account for each of us. and two other alias which are also verizon.net accounts, which don’t appear to be affected by this behavior. How odd. And they both are IMAP. I have not used Outlook on the web. And, frankly, I haven’t a clue how to do that. Best, REShaman

My Mail (Apple) account is not susceptible to this behavior.Once again, apologies, I am guessing as I don’t know what format my Mail accounts are in. I am guessing POP, but I could be wrong. Though I have a Mail account, I set it up but don’t use it until now just to see how the accounts are responding. No issues. Wait! I just did some research and did a control click on my email account in Mail to get account details. The details indicate that one of my accounts (the one for me) is AOL IMAP. I did not add my wife’s verizon.net account to Mail on my iMac but I did with Outlook for Mac 2021 for my wife which as I wrote is also an IMAP account.

Earl, this is what I found out from the Contact Support person from Outlook for Mac who took the time to inform me as to what is happening. I, of course, do not understand the relationships and how Yahoo’s bug is affecting my accounts with version.net transferred to AOL by Verizon when it left the email business. What appears next is the direct communication I received from the Support person who encouraged me to switch over to the new Outlook unless I have data in My Computer directory which can be lost. The following is my pathway, which looks a bit bumpy…

"Thank you for patiently waiting. The above behavior is identified as a bug with email account hosted on Yahoo server where the emails disappear or download the complete mailbox and a report is already filed with our engineering team who is working on the same with High priority. We do not have an ETA for the same at the moment. Please keep Outlook updated all the time to receive the fixes as and when available. You may refer the link below for release notes to know about the fixes and features included into every update in Outlook.

As a workaround, I would request you to switch to the new UI if you do not have any data saved locally under ‘On My Computer’ folder which should help. Please try and let us know the outcome of the same. Thank you."

I thought you might want to get a better explanation than I could ever provide. I gather I will have to wait this out until the engineers who broke their system and are causing me a hardship get it straight. Honestly, I wish I knew how to make changes that would keep me in a stand-alone email client and just maintain a reliable and stable email client. I don’t want to pay Microsoft a dime for 365 and Office for Mac. But I don’t know who to seek out to advise me on how to improve my system from the vagaries I am subject to with AOL dictating to me how insufficient the security is with Outlook as a third party app requiring their generated passwords, which they then reject as a matter of course. I know I sound like a victim, but I really don’t know what a really good set up would involve. I’d do it if I did. It’s not the money to buy software. But I don’t want to be on the hook to pay Microsoft every month or year to use Office. In any crichardase, I wanted to share with you what I learned in case it was of interest to you.
Best, Richard

Richard, thanks for all the updates. While I only play a software expert on TV, there are two main things at play here: the server and the client. My guess is that the servers, owned now by a private equity firm trying to make money, are likely keeping costs as low as possible. Perhaps not doing the maintenance needed to deal with evolving protocols and standards. Then you have the “old” Outlook which Microsoft is also avoiding maintenance on as it puts its efforts into the “new” Outlook. Stability here may be tough.

Did you try the new Outlook? I try to avoid the “On My Mac” folders so it is easy for me to switch between the old and the new (either a switch on the window header or under “Outlook” on the top menu bar.

Dear Earl, you appear to have excellent insight. I decided to pose a question to my support contact. His response will cue you into what my question I put to him was:

“Yahoo own a few domains like Yahoo.com, sbcglobal.net, sky.com, verizon.net and aol.com. These are the domains now owned by Yahoo and the the accounts are hosted on their servers. As a workaround, you may try using the new Outlook UI until the fix for the bug is released. Hope this information helps.”

You’re most likely close to what happened. I have been verizon.net since I left Optimum cable for Verizon FiOS and fiber optics. I don’t think I had more than two or three years before I was summarily sent on to AOL.com where I had once had an account decades (many) and left when I couldn’t put up with them. I thought I was making the right moves. As it turned out, hmmm!

You are correct, given I was told that My Computer directories in Outlook would suffer should I venture into New Outlook. So, Earl, no I haven’t tried the new because of the idiotic format constraints. I say that even though I am not competent to comment on what email formats are best, better, good, enough. I always thought IMAP was the better choice all around. So I agree with you about My Computer or its other On My Mac. I just started cleaning out that directory. The thing is AOL makes me jumps through hoops. They made me adopt a generated AOL third party password several times and gave me trouble with each one as they are doing now. So if I clean up and switch to the New Outlook as you have advised me (thank you) and Support agrees with you, I then need to know what format to use. I believe I am constrained to use POP? IMAP is not tolerated. I will take your advice, finish the clean up of My Computer and then I have to figure out how to arrive at passwords while still using my verizon.net, which is and has been my main account for so long and with and accounts. I hope I can successfully discover what passwords are acceptable to AOL since they won’t leave me alone. But I will have to switch as the bug they created successfully or Yahoo’s engineers did or somebody did (COVID 19?). I’ll let you know if I will be forced to jump from my residence and give all up. I live in a private house so the distance is slight. Thank you, Earl. I imagine you did expect me to be so verbose (my way I am sorry). I was just trying to keep you informed possibly about a condition that exists that affects some users of Outlook. You have obviously set up an email client that you rely upon, whereas I just wanted stand-alone, easy, reliable. I don’t trust the iCloud. My passwords are usually 37 integers ( I know them all, but so what…) Once I click on New Outlook and figure out how to have an email client again, I’ll just keep it brief and not torture you. You’ve been very helpful. And I regret if I have given so much more than you anticipated from me. I meant well. Warm regards, Richard (I didn’t miss what you wrote about being an expert on TV. Straining to fathom were what when how. I’ll do a search and find out who I have been tormenting – smile). Richard

As a short term remedy, you may try https://mail.aol.com and use the web based email client. Many people actually prefer the web clients over desktop clients. I often go to the web client as I figure it is closer to the “truth” of the server than my removed desktop client may be.

I much prefer IMAP as I use multiple devices and POP3 can get really messy with that.

Hello, Earl, thank you again for your thoughts. I agree about IMAP, which I must give up for the opportunity (Is that what the :new” Outlook amounts to?) of converting. I looked you up (the page for your employment), and reading about you in many respects mirrors my own mind working. I am very intuitive and have practiced Shamanism. I feel fortunate in writing about or bemoaning my Outlook for Mac experience and my unfortunate association ultimately with Yahoo’s unfortunate introduction of a bug that is causing chaos. Never stayed long with anything connected with Yahoo until the choice was made for me. I enjoyed discovering about you. I find you to be a lovely person. And I appreciate you taking the time to counsel me in ways to deal with the present Outlook troubles. I do and have visited AOL.com for various reasons. Interesting that you find the advantage of connecting to one’s email via online. Your rationale makes sense, of course. I hope my detour to recognize you doesn’t violate any of Adam’s policies. Good to know you, Earl. Warm personal regards, Richard PS I am cleaning out My Computer and redirecting my sub directories. Thank you for that understanding.

Microsoft updated my Outlook today to version 16.73.23052000 which is a small bug update. Hopefully it is your bug :-)

Hello, Earl, thank you for the heads up about the Microsoft Outlook update. On my M1 iPad Pro 12.9 all day. Hope Yahoo’s bug gets fumigated by the Office Update. Soon to find out. With appreciation, Richard

There are two things to try:

Try creating a new Outlook Profile. Not the same type of Profile found on the pulldown menu of 16.73. But buried deep inside /Applications/Microsoft Outlook.app/Contents/SharedSupport/Outlook Profile Manager

Open the Outlook Profile Manager and click the + to create a new profile. Then click the ellipsis (…) menu button and Set as Default. Quit Outlook and relaunch it. Setup your email accounts from scratch. You can always change the default back to your original Outlook Profile. But if things are working and all data intact, you can remove the old profile.

Microsoft has a tool that can reset / uninstall 365 for Mac Apps and can resolve corrupted configuration files, etc.

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Hello.stottm, and thank you for taking the time to respond to my situation. Given that Outlook for Mac 2021’s Contact Support tech support person (one of the staff) has acknowledged that Yahoo has created a bug which affects a certain population, with me one of the unfortunate ones, and furthermore, the admission included that Yahoo’s engineers are scurrying to repair their monster, i am doing some clean up suggested by Earl Beede (abov) and may decided to temporarily initiate Outlook’s “New” formart despite being designed to disallow certain formats that are both popular, practical and possibly prominent.While I appreciate your recommendation and the thoughtful steps that accompany said recommendation, for the time being I am already on the way to ridding my Outlook of one of the directories that was described as not optimal. Conatdc Support had already warned me that initiating the new Outlook for Mac format would negatively affect data in a My Computer or On My Mac directory, so I am engaged in cleaning the up. I am not suggesting your recommendation isn’t a good one. I am just on the way towards an outcome that is intended to be tempororary and when Yahoo fumigates’ the bug they created, I will want to return to my IMAP accounts not support remarkably by Microsoft’s updated New Outlook for Mac. If I am missing the advantage your recommendation provides then it’s my own failure to recognize and solution that affords me a better organization. I remain incongruously unsatisfied that an email client created for Mac by Microsoft is so unaccomplished in many ways. One would expect email clients to be an easy, facile and accomplished written piece of software that individuals can rely upon with no difficulties and send their missive galore wherever. Again, that’s my expectation that has yet to be accomplished or at least in my experience. More better informed users may have just that already because of their understanding what works best and how to get there. I continue to be at the mercy of what Microsoft’s updates and upgrades fail to provide me. Thank you again for your offer of help. Best, Richard

Hello Earl, I finally booted my iMac and there was, thank you, an update but just one for Outlook for Mac and “NO!” the update did not address the emptying of my inbox which persists. I gather the programmer who created the bug at Yahoo and his/her colleagues are working on an update that will end this absolute PITA, excuse me, bug. Actually, I expect it to take much more time. I appreciate all who have offered solutions, temporary or otherwise. I cleaning out my In My Computer and getting rid of that arrangement and will initiate the “New” Outlook, give up IMAP for the time being, and wait for a resolution. I wonder if that bug was intended to move us to a different orientation, or not. Best, Richard