Webmail revises purge policy

Andrea Ford

University Webmail users will now be able to keep received e-mails in their Inboxes for three times as long as originally planned under the newly instituted purging policy. Recognizing that students and faculty may not be able to access their mailboxes for long periods of time because of travel or summer vacation, the Office of University Information Technologies has extended the automated Inbox purge from 60 to 180 days.

“It’s a full six months,” said Stephen Fugale, the chief information officer of UNIT. “It’s unlikely that someone would not be able to access their mailbox in that length of time.”

Fugale said the revision was made in response to concerns expressed by users.

The new policy, which was designed to improve Webmail performance after an unstable period in the beginning of the semester, took effect over Thanksgiving break.

Because of the vast number of messages being eliminated on the server, UNIT is taking precautions to ensure that the initial process does not cause further instability. Deleting all e-mails at once could potentially create problems, so UNIT is gradually stepping down to the 180-day purge. Messages older than 700 days have already been removed, and UNIT will continue to increase the purge of the system progressively until it is maintained at 180 days.

Purges of the other folders remain the same. Messages in the Sent folder will be purged after 60 days, and messages in the Trash folder will be purged after 15 days. Students whose accounts do not exceed the established 50 megabyte limit are able to create additional folders on the server that will not be affected by the automated purge.