Removing an Entry from the Outlook Autocomplete list

If we have to create a new personal email ID, the first thing which we have to do is create a unique username Nowadays, it is actually not possible to get the email ID we want because of the high number of users using services like Gmail. It’s very likely you would have people with the same first name and last name, so once you try to create an Email ID with that, it would say that it is not available.

For Companies, this is not the case. The company has it’s own email domain and it has the freedom to create the username of an email ID in whichever way it wants. Companies normally follow a naming policy in creating new email accounts for employees. For Example you might have a policy which says to use the first letter of the First Name and the last letter of the Last Name. Suppose we have a new employee whose name is Jacob Peterson. Following this policy his email ID would be . Let’s say he leaves the company after 3 or 4 months and later we have a new employee whose name is Jim Phillips. So, following the policy the Exchange admin would create the email ID as Now, this is not a problem since Jacob has left the organization and there would be no conflict.

Outlook has unfortunately a good memory and it will not forget people easily! Even though the person has left the company, Outlook would still keep him in his list. Outlook has a feature called AutoComplete. This gives an End user the ability to add an email address in the address field just by typing a couple of letters. The autocomplete feature maps the name with the email ID. So if you had an employee say Robert Stevens, you could type certain letters like R, O, B and it would show up in the auto complete list. Once you select the name, Instead of showing, it would show Robert Stevens.

Now because of this mapping, Outlook would be confused whether to stick with the original mapping – Jacob Peterson or establish a new mapping Jim Phillips. And when we try to send an email with the address, it might not get delivered since it uses the old mapping. We might get a message which would appear to be something like this

Your message to couldn’t be delivered.

Your email program is using outdated address information for


Office 365


Action Required


Outdated To address

So, in order to resolve this we need to remove Jacob Peterson from the Auto Complete List.  In order to do that one would have to follow these steps-

Steps to remove an entry from an Auto Complete List

  1. Open a New Email Message
  2. On the To Field, Type James
  3. Scroll down to the entry “Jim Phillips” and hit the Delete button.


Now, we have essentially removed the person from the memory of Outlook and Outlook would then map with Jim Phillips.

Please note that in normal scenarios, Outlook should be able to resolve this normally. But as you all know Outlook is prone to Issues, so sometimes it doesn’t do it automatically.


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