Gmail Does Not Save Sent Messages

By Andrew Aarons

Like any popular website, Gmail -- Google's free webmail service -- is constantly updating and changing. Google offers its users new interfaces of Gmail regularly, and with each update to the Web-based email platform come some tweaks in the way you interact with your email. Gmail keeps a record of all messages unless you tell it not to, but finding your sent messages can sometimes be a little tricky.

Chat Messages

Gmail has a built-in chat program that, by default, saves all incoming and outgoing messages in a "Chat" folder. To see your sent chat messages, scroll down the left menu and click "More" to reveal all of Gmail's folders. Then choose "Chats" to see all of your transcripts, including sent messages. If you don't see your messages, you may have turned off your chat history, which will prevent Gmail from recording your sent messages.

Enable Chat History

Gmail can stop recording your chats if you go "Off the record" during a chat or if you disable chat history. To turn these features back on and ensure that Gmail stores all of your sent messages, click the gear icon in Gmail and choose "Settings," then "Chat." Beside "My chat history," choose "Save chat history." This won't recover previous chats, but will begin recording your chat messages after you click "Save changes."

Sent Mail Messages

Google saves all outgoing mail messages by default. When you view an email conversation, your sent messages will appear as part of the conversation view; each email you send will appear with the message with the same subject line in the order in which they were sent. Open any of your email conversations and click on the space between the first message and last to expand the conversations. The email messages you've sent appear here.

View Sent Folder

Gmail also creates a sent message folder for all outgoing mail. To view your sent messages, click "Sent Mail" in the left-hand menu. Gmail may not be configured to show this folder by default, however. This doesn't mean your messages aren't being sent and saved, it simply means that you can't access them as part of the standard view. Click the gear icon and open "Settings," then choose "Labels" to see which of your message types are displayed in the left menu. Click "Show" beside "Sent Mail." Access your sent messages by clicking "Sent Mail" in the left menu.