Expert Guide to Save Outlook Attachments to Desktop Folder [2024]

Written By Ashwani Tiwari
Anuraag Singh
Approved By Anuraag Singh
Published On February 28th, 2024
Reading Time 8 Minutes Reading

Emails communication is an excellent way to stay connected over the Internet. Also, various email services like Microsoft Outlook allows users to transfer documents, images, and other crucial data items by the way of attachments.

So, if you are one of those users who use Outlook as their email client and receive several emails with attachments daily then, this article must be useful for you. This is so because here I’m going to demonstrate some simple techniques to save Outlook attachment to desktop or some other location in your computer rather than keeping them in Outlook.

How to Save Outlook Attachment to Folder Automatically Using VBA Script?

The steps mentioned here for how to save attachments from Outlook  to desktop automatically are tested in Microsoft Outlook 2007 and 2010. So, let’s see how to save Outlook email attachments to hard drive.

    • First of all, launch Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) by pressing Alt and F11 keys in Outlook to save Outlook attachment to folder
    • Paste the following script in the Modules section from the left side. If there is no any Modules in the Module section, create on via hitting a right-click on Modules. Click Insert >> Module
Public Sub saveAttachtoDisk (itm As Outlook.MailItem)
Dim objAtt As Outlook.Attachment
Dim saveFolder As String
saveFolder = "c:\temp\" 
For Each objAtt In itm.Attachments
objAtt.SaveAsFile saveFolder & "\" & objAtt.DisplayName
Set objAtt = Nothing
End Sub
    • After that, paste the following script in the main window of VBA to save Outlook attachments to desktop and close it
    • Now, you need to create a Rule that will call the script to save outlook attachment to folder automatically. For this, click on Tools >> Rules and Alerts. Select New Rule… option
    • In new rule wizard, select Check messages when they arrive option
    • Then, you can specify certain criteria for emails to save outlook email attachment to local folder,
Pro Tip: For the search string to save .txt files, you must try ‘with specific words in the message header’ along with .txt.
  • From the third screen, select ‘run a script’ option. After clicking on the ‘script’ you need to check the pasted script in VBA console.
  • Hit the Finish button and test what you’ve done to automatically save outlook attachments to hard drive.

In case if you receive several email messages with the same file name but, do not want to overwrite their attachments with the already saved attachments then, add the following code in previous code.

 Dim dateFormat     dateFormat = Format(Now, "yyyy-mm-dd H-mm")

After this, you need to replace the ‘objAtt.SaveAsFile‘ code with the following code to make outlook save email attachments to desktop folder automatically:

objAtt.SaveAsFile saveFolder & "\" & dateFormat & objAtt.DisplayName

There might be some users who may need to save certain type of attachments then, they can use the following code within the ‘For Each’ loop (rather than the mentioned code) to save Outlook attachments to desktop:

if InStr(objAtt.DisplayName, '.xml') Then
objAtt.SaveAsFile saveFolder & "\" & objAtt.DisplayName
end if

Recommendation – Read more to know how to save attachments from multiple emails in Outlook.

Finding Issues With Outlook Rule?

While executing the above steps to save outlook email attachments, I faced a strange issue that I was not getting the Rule to work with it. If the same thing is happening with you, then you need to adjust the Outlook Security Settings. Now, if you’re thinking how to do this exactly then, follow the steps below:

  • Open Microsoft Outlook and click on the File tab and select Outlook Options
  • In Outlook Options wizard, select Trust Center and click on Trust Center Settings
  • In the left side, you’ll get the Macro Settings option. Select Notifications for all the macros
  • Click OK so that outlook macro can save attachments to hard drive
  • However, before macro runs, Outlook will ask you to confirm if you want to run the macro to automatically save outlook attachments to hard drive
  • Re-launch your Outlook application to apply the configuration change

So, this was the manual approach i.e., using Outlook rule to save Outlook attachment to desktop. Nevertheless, if you are not so technically savvy and finding this manual technique somehow complicated then, I’ve another amazing solution for you to save outlook attachments to folder automatically.

Use Expert Solution to Download Attachments from MS Outlook to Desktop

One of the majorly used and powerful software to save Outlook attachments to desktop automatically is none other than the Microsoft Outlook Attachment Extractor. The software proficiently extracts attachments from different Outlook data files such as PST, OST and BAK files. One can make the best use of various customized filters from the software panel. Some of them include the option to save attachments from all folders or selective folders. Provides support to extract attachments from Outlook data files from single files or bulk files.

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One of the highlighted features of the tool is the date filter option wherein only the attachments which is specified under the date range category will be extracted. This selective attachment extraction provides great relief for users who do not want to extract all the attachments thereby saving their valuable time.

Another advanced feature includes “Size filter” in which one needs to mention the size range from 1KB to 100MB. With this, the attachment will be extracted based on the specified size. All these advanced features are induced in the all-rounder software to swiftly process the Outlook attachment extraction.

Steps to Save Outlook Attachments to Desktop Automatically

  • To begin with, install and run the software on your Windows system.
  • Select Auto Locate MS Outlook Default Storage Location to add Outlook file. save outlook attachments to desktop automatically
  • You can save Outlook attachments to desktop automatically for all folders or selective folders as shown in the below image. One can exclude PST attachment extraction from deleted items & junk folder by marking the required checkbox.
  • The software renders various customized filters such as option to apply date filter, selective date items attachment extraction, advanced size filter option and much more. apply advanced filters
  • After applying all the required settings, simply click on the “Extract” button to begin extracting Outlook extract to save outlook attachments to desktop automatically
  • Once the attachments are extracted successfully, it will be placed at the mentioned folder path.

Time To Wrap Up

In this article, I’ve shared my personal experience to resolve a common Outlook issue i.e., save Outlook attachment to desktop. Here, I’ve discussed a manual technique for how to save attachment from outlook to desktop automatically without any kind of data loss. Despite this, an automated solution also mentioned here to automatically save outlook attachments to hard drive.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this segment, we answer some of the commonly asked queries by users related to saving attachments from Outlook to their desktop folder/s.

How to bulk download attachments from Outlook?

Download the aforementioned software and add your Outlook PST, OST & BAK file. Once you apply the required settings, click on Extract button and seamlessly get your attachments extracted from the Outlook data file.

How do I automatically save email attachments to a folder?

There are top three ways you can save your ataachments from MS Outlook to desktop folder. You can use VBA Script, Outlook Rules or the above-mentioned expert-recommended automated utility according to your preference to accomplish the task.

Can I save multiple pictures from an Outlook email at once?

Yes, for this open your Outlook email and select a picture/ image. Hit a right-click on the picture and choose Save All Attachments. Browse a destination location in your computer and all your pictures will be saved at once.

Where can I find PST files in Windows 10?

The default location of Outlook PST in Windows 10 is drive >> users >> AppData >> Local >> Microsoft >> Outlook

Do attachments also expires in Microsoft Outlook?

Since attachments are a part of email so, as long as you have the email you have attachments too. But, sometimes the basic properties of attached files can be missing like font, layout etc.


By Ashwani Tiwari

Being a Chief Technical Analyst, I am aware of the technicalities faced by the user while working with multiple technologies. So, through my blogs and articles, I love to help all the users who face various challenges while dealing with technology.