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How to remove all attachments from email in Outlook?

Author: Kelly Last Modified: 2020-05-29

Normally when you are previewing an email, you can delete an attachment with right clicking and select the Remove Attachment item. Sometimes there may be many attachments in an email message, and it will be tedious to remove them one by one. Here we arrange you with two easy tricks to remove all attachments in one email, and remove all attachments from multiple emails as well in Outlook.

Manually remove all attachments in one email message in Outlook
Remove all attachments from multiple email messages in Outlook with VBA code
Easily remove all attachments from one or multiple emails with Kutools for Outlook

Manually remove all attachments in one email message in Outlook

It is easy to remove all attachments in a selected email messages with the Remove Attachments feature in Outlook.

Step 1: Select the email message whose attachments you will remove later.

Step 2: Click one of attachments in the Reading Pane to activate the Attachments Tools.

Step 3: Click the Select All button in the Selection group on the Attachments tab.

This step will enable you to select all attachments in this selected email messages at once.

Step 4: Click the Remove Attachment button in the Actions group on the Attachments tab.

Step 5: In the warning dialog box, click the Remove Attachments button.

Then all attachments in this selected email messages are deleted as soon as possible.

Note: The Remove Attachments feature works fine in Outlook 2010 and the later version, but not in Outlook 2007.

Easily remove all attachments from multiple selected emails in Outlook:

With the Detach All attachments utility of Kutools for Excel, you can easily remove all attachments from multiple selected emails as the below demo shown. (The attachments will be saved into a specified folder) Download and try now! (30-day free trail)

Remove all attachments from multiple email messages in Outlook with VBA code

If you want to remove all attachments from multiple email messages in Microsoft Outlook, the following method will help you do it easily. We recommend you enable all macros in your Microsoft Outlook firstly.

Step 1: Go to the folder of My Document, create a new folder, and name it as OLAttachments

Step 2: Select multiple email messages whose attachments you will remove later.

Note: You can select inconsecutive email messages with holding the Ctrl key and clicking.

You can select consecutive email messages with holding the Shift key and clicking.

Step 3: Open the VBA Editor with pressing the Alt key and F11 key at the same time.

Step 4: Expand the Project1 > Microsoft Outlook Objects in the left bar, and then double click the ThisOutlookSession to open it in the Editor. See following screen shot:

Step 5: Copy and paste the following VBA code in the editing pane.

Public Sub ReplaceAttachmentsToLink()
Dim objApp As Outlook.Application
Dim aMail As Outlook.MailItem 'Object
Dim oAttachments As Outlook.Attachments
Dim oSelection As Outlook.Selection
Dim i As Long
Dim iCount As Long
Dim sFile As String
Dim sFolderPath As String
Dim sDeletedFiles As String
    ' Get the path to your My Documents folder
    sFolderPath = CreateObject("WScript.Shell").SpecialFolders(16)
    On Error Resume Next
    ' Instantiate an Outlook Application object.
    Set objApp = CreateObject("Outlook.Application")
    ' Get the collection of selected objects.
    Set oSelection = objApp.ActiveExplorer.Selection
    ' Set the Attachment folder.
    sFolderPath = sFolderPath & "\OLAttachments"
    ' Check each selected item for attachments. If attachments exist,
    ' save them to the Temp folder and strip them from the item.
    For Each aMail In oSelection
    ' This code only strips attachments from mail items.
    ' If aMail.class=olMail Then
    ' Get the Attachments collection of the item.
    Set oAttachments = aMail.Attachments
    iCount = oAttachments.Count
    If iCount > 0 Then
        ' We need to use a count down loop for removing items
        ' from a collection. Otherwise, the loop counter gets
        ' confused and only every other item is removed.
        For i = iCount To 1 Step -1
            ' Save attachment before deleting from item.
            ' Get the file name.
            sFile = oAttachments.Item(i).FileName
            ' Combine with the path to the Temp folder.
            sFile = sFolderPath & "\" & sFile
            ' Save the attachment as a file.
            oAttachments.Item(i).SaveAsFile sFile
            ' Delete the attachment.
            'write the save as path to a string to add to the message
            'check for html and use html tags in link
            If aMail.BodyFormat <> olFormatHTML Then
                sDeletedFiles = sDeletedFiles & vbCrLf & "<file://" & sFile & ">"
                sDeletedFiles = sDeletedFiles & "<br>" & "<a href='file://" & _
                sFile & "'>" & sFile & "</a>"
            End If
        Next i
        'End If
       ' Adds the filename string to the message body and save it
       ' Check for HTML body
       If aMail.BodyFormat <> olFormatHTML Then
           aMail.Body = aMail.Body & vbCrLf & _
           "The file(s) were saved to " & sDeletedFiles
           aMail.HTMLBody = aMail.HTMLBody & "<p>" & _
           "The file(s) were saved to " & sDeletedFiles & "</p>"
       End If
       'sets the attachment path to nothing before it moves on to the next message.
       sDeletedFiles = ""
       End If
    Next 'end aMail
Set oAttachments = Nothing
Set aMail = Nothing
Set oSelection = Nothing
Set objApp = Nothing
End Sub

Step 6: Press the key of F5 to run this VBA code.

Now all attachments from selected email messages are removed, with leaving hyperlinks to each deleted attachment at the bottom of all selected email messages.

Easily remove all attachments from one or multiple emails with Kutools for Outlook

The Detach All attachments utility of Kutools for Outlook can quickly remove all attachments from one or multiple selected emails in Outlook. Please do as follows.

Kutools for Outlook : with more than 100 handy Outlook add-ins, free to try with no limitation in 30 days.

1. Select one or multiple email messages with the attachments you want to remove, then click Kutools > Attachment ToolsDetach All. See screenshot:

2. In the Detach Settings dialog box, please configure as follows.

  • 2.1 Click the Browse button to select a folder to save all deleted attachments.
  • 2.2 By default, the Detach attachment(s) in below style box is checked, please choose an option to save the attachments into different folders based on emails as you need.
  • 2.3 Click the OK button. See screenshot:

1. If you want to save all attachments into the same folder, please uncheck the Create subfolders in the following style box.
2. After removing attachments, the attachment icon will disappear from the email of the mailing list. You can check the Attachment icon is still remained in the emails box to always keep it.
2. Besides removing all attachments from selected emails, you can remove attachments by specific conditions only. For example, you only want to remove the attachments which the size is more than 500KB, please click the Advanced options button to expand the conditions, and then configure as the below screebshot shown.

3. Click the Yes button in the Detach All dialog box.

4. Then a Kutools for Outlook dialog box will pop up to tell you how many attachments are deleted. Please click the OK button. 

Now all attachments are removed immediately with only the hyperlinks leaving in selected emails. You can click the hyperlink to open the corresponding attachment as you need.

  If you want to have a free trial (30-day) of this utility, please click to download it, and then go to apply the operation according above steps.

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Comments (33)
No ratings yet. Be the first to rate!
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
MS recently changed the storage limits for Hotmail. Attachments are counted towards storage used.
Many users would like to remove only the attachments in bulk. Your VBA script may be the solution for these users.
Can you confirm if this script still works for Hotmail users in 2023?
Thank you in advance.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
The article and the comments below are very helpful! Thanks!
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
 Hello, I use the VBA code, unfortunaltely all the attachements were deleted from the emails, and they were not storage in any of the folders... so i lost many attachment files. anyone knows how can i restored
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
The VBA code shown in solution 2 works fine, however, but my goal is to remove only attachments which are not inline the message. Being VBA ignorant I would like to ask if it is possible to modify the code in that manner it would remove only attached files, not pictures inside the email text. It would surely make my day :)

Thank you in advance
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Can somebody change the code so that only for example attachments named "TermsAndConditions.pdf" are deleted
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Dear Rene,
Please follow the steps in the above second method, run the below VBA code. In an opening dialog box, please enter the attachment's name with the file extension (such as test.docx), and then click the OK button to just remove it from the selected email.

Sub ReplaceAttachmentsToLink()
Dim xMail As Outlook.MailItem
Dim xAttachments As Outlook.Attachments
Dim xSelection As Outlook.Selection
Dim i, xCount As Long
Dim xFile, xFldPath, xDelFiles, xFileName As String
Dim xFlag As Boolean

xFldPath = CreateObject("shell.Application").NameSpace(5).self.Path
On Error Resume Next
Set xSelection = Outlook.ActiveExplorer.Selection
xFldPath = xFldPath & "\OLAttachments"
xFlag = False
xFileName = InputBox("Attachment name:", "Kutools for Outlook")

If StrPtr(xFileName) = 0 Then Exit Sub
If xFileName <> "" Then
For Each xMail In xSelection
Set xAttachments = xMail.Attachments
xCount = xAttachments.Count
If xCount > 0 Then
For i = xCount To 1 Step -1
xFile = xAttachments.Item(i).FileName
If xFileName = xFile Then
xFlag = True
xFile = xFldPath & "\" & xFile
xAttachments.Item(i).SaveAsFile xFile
If xMail.BodyFormat <> olFormatHTML Then
xDelFiles = xDelFiles & vbCrLf & ""
xDelFiles = xDelFiles & "
" & "" & xFile & ""
End If
End If
Next i
If xFlag = True Then
If xMail.BodyFormat <> olFormatHTML Then
xMail.Body = xMail.Body & vbCrLf & "The file(s) were saved to " & xDelFiles
xMail.HTMLBody = xMail.HTMLBody & "
" & "The file(s) were saved to " & xDelFiles & "
End If
End If
xDelFiles = ""
End If
If xFlag = False Then
MsgBox "The Attachment does not exist!"
MsgBox "The attachment has been deleted."
End If
MsgBox "Please input a attachment name"
End If
Set xAttachments = Nothing
Set xMail = Nothing
Set xSelection = Nothing
End Sub
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