operation cannot be performed because message has been changed

operation cannot be performed because message has been changed is a widely used email client for sending and receiving emails. Outlook also has a feature to move specific emails to a particular folder, which is useful when searching for important emails. However, an error message “The operation cannot be performed because the message has been changed” can occur while moving emails to a folder or sending emails, which is frustrating for users.

The operation cannot be performed because the message has been changed

There are some workaround fixes that some users have tried and were able to solve the problem. We have described these solutions below:

Mark the message you are having trouble moving as unread, then try moving it to another folder.
To move an email to a particular folder:-Open the email you want to move.
Open the email message you are experiencing the error with and then open another email message. You may be able to move the email with the error to the desired folder.

The temporary fixes mentioned above will not completely solve the problem. If you want to get rid of the problem permanently, try the following solutions:

Related post: Outlook Calendar error The modified permissions cannot be saved

  1. Microsoft’s Support and Recovery Assistant can help you identify and fix issues with your computer.
    Disable the Conversation Clean Up options to prevent your conversations from being automatically deleted.
    Delete the email from your Drafts folder.
  2. Outlook Safe ModeWhen Outlook is in Safe Mode, it’s running with a reduced feature set. This can help you troubleshoot problems with Outlook.
  3. In order to disable your antivirus email scanner
  4. Kaspersky customer support can provide solutions for Kaspersky antivirus users.
  5. IMAP account in Outlook, you can configure the account settings to match the settings of your email provider.
  6. Turn off Autosave in the Outlook options.
  7. Repair your installation online

1] Run Microsoft Support and Recovery Assistant Tool

Microsoft’s Support and Recovery Assistant Tool is designed to help users troubleshoot and fix issues with their Office, Office 365, and Windows products. The desktop client will run tests to identify the problem and offer a solution. If the problem persists, the tool will offer suggestions on how to fix it.

The steps to run the SARA tool are listed below:

  1. SARA lets you download the tool from Microsoft.
  2. To install the tool on your system, run the installer file.
  3. Run the tool, read the Microsoft Services Agreement, and if you accept the agreement, click I Agree.
  4. Select the app you’re experiencing problems with and click Next.
  5. Select the issue and click Next.
  6. Follow the instructions on the screen.

2] Disable Conversation Clean Up options

If you’re having trouble with Conversations, disabling the Conversation Clean Up options may help. Many users have reported this as a fix, so it’s worth a try.

Follow the instructions below:

  1. Launch Microsoft Outlook.
  2. Go to “File > Options.”
  3. From the left side in the Outlook Options window, select Mail.
  4. In order to prevent your replies from moving the original message, you will want to scroll down and uncheck the “When a reply modifies a message, don’t move the original” option. This option can be found under the Conversation Clean Up section.
  5. Click OK.
  6. Restart Outlook.

If the “Use Microsoft Word to edit email messages” option is already unchecked in Outlook Settings, check or enable it, restart Outlook, then follow the above steps to uncheck the same option and then restart Outlook again. Check if the issue is fixed after unchecking all conversation cleanup options and restarting Outlook.

3] Delete the email from Drafts

The error message “The Operation cannot be performed because the message has been changed” might be caused by an existing email in Drafts for the same email address. To fix this issue, delete the email from Drafts. Follow the instructions below:

  1. First, open Drafts and check if any email messages are saved for the same email address. If there are, delete them. But before you do, copy the email message from the Compose email window and paste it into any word processing software or text editor tool, like Notepad.
  2. Click ‘No’ when prompted to save an unsent email in the Compose window.
  3. Open your Drafts and delete the email.
  4. Open up your email client, paste in your copied message, and hit send.

This time, the message should be sent without displaying the error message.

Some users have found the following Add-ins the cause of the problem:

Adobe Send & Track for Microsoft Outlook lets you send large files as attachments in Outlook, and then track when they’re viewed.
Kaspersky Outlook Anti-Virus provides protection against viruses, spam, and other threats. It is easy to install and use, and provides excellent protection against all types of threats.

If you have installed any of the above Add-ins, disable these Add-ins and check if the error occurs in Outlook Safe Mode. This will save you time in troubleshooting Outlook. If you did not install the Add-ins, troubleshoot Outlook in Safe Mode to identify the problematic Add-in. The procedure is explained below.

  1. Press Win + R keys to launch the Run command box.
  2. To launch Microsoft Outlook in Safe Mode, type outlook.exe /safe and click OK.
  3. Now, go to “File > Options.”
  4. From the left pane in the Outlook Options window, select Add-ins.
  5. In the Manage drop-down menu, select COM Add-Ins, and then click Go.
  6. To fix the “out of memory” error message in Outlook, disable each Add-in one at a time, and then try to move or send the email. If Outlook still throws the same error message, disable another Add-in and then move or send the email. Repeat this process until you stop receiving the error message.

When you are able to move or send the email without receiving the error message after disabling a particular Add-in, that Add-in is the culprit. To fix the problem, exit Outlook Safe Mode and launch Outlook in the normal mode. Remove the problematic Add-in.

5] Disable your Antivirus Email Scanner

Some antivirus programs come with an Email Scanner. The Email Scanner in antivirus software can cause some issues with Email Clients if it is enabled. You may be able to fix the issue by disabling email scanning and then trying to move or send your email messages.

6] Contact Kaspersky customer support (solution for Kaspersky antivirus users)

Some users say the error was fixed when they disabled Kaspersky antivirus. So try that and see if you can send or move emails. If it works, contact Kaspersky customer support to get the issue fixed.

7] Configure IMAP account settings (solution for the users with an IMAP account in Outlook)

There are three types of accounts in Outlook: Exchange, IMAP, and POP. If you’re using an IMAP account in Outlook and having issues, this solution may help.

Follow the instructions written below:

  • Launch Microsoft Outlook.
  • To access your account settings, go to “File > Account Settings.” Click on “Account Settings” again to confirm.
  • Double-click on your IMAP account and select the ‘More Settings’ option.
  • Click on the Advanced tab.
  • In the IMAP Account Settings window, type Inbox in the Root folder path field.
  • Click on Next to save the settings.

8] Turn off Autosave in Outlook

Disabling the Autosave feature in Outlook has fixed the issue for many users. You can also try this fix, but after disabling the Autosave feature, Outlook will not save your email messages automatically to Drafts.

The instructions to disable this feature in Outlook are listed below:

Launch Microsoft Outlook.

  1. Go to “File > Options.”
  2. Select Mail from the left pane.
  3. Scroll down to locate the Save messages section.
  4. Uncheck the checkbox that says “Automatically save items that have not been sent after this many minutes.”
  5. Click OK to save the settings.

Restart Outlook and check if the issue occurs. Turning on the Autosave feature again may fix the issue.

9] Perform an Online Repair

If the solutions above don’t fix the issue, the last hope is to perform an Online Repair to Microsoft Office. If you still experience the issue after preparing Outlook, we suggest you contact Microsoft support.

Why do I keep getting an error message in Outlook?

One of the most common reasons you may receive error messages in Outlook is due to an issue with your internet connection. Sometimes Outlook throws error messages if your connection is poor or unstable. However, the most common reason many users experience several errors in Outlook is due to corruption in their .pst and .ost files. In this case, repairing the .pst and .ost files can fix the problem.

How do you reset Outlook?

Windows 10 and Windows 11 both have a built-in option to repair and reset installed apps. The option to reset Outlook is available in Windows 11/10 Settings.

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