Windows Live Mail works a little differently than online services such as Yahoo and Gmail. Like Outlook, Windows Live Mail stores information on your hard drive instead of online. While you don't need to know where the program keeps this data to send and receive messages, you can find the folder that contains the message data that Windows Live Mail stores.

Find Your Message Store

After you launch Windows Live Mail, click "File" followed by "Options" and then click "Mail." The Options window opens and displays several tabs. Click "Advanced" and then click "Maintenance" and you'll see a "Store Folder" button. Click that button and a pop-up window opens and shows you the location where Windows Live Mail stores your data. By default, that location will be in a subfolder in your AppData folder. Click "OK" after you view that location to close the pop-up.

What's in the Folder?

Many applications create subfolders within your AppData folder. This special folder is secure because you are the only one who can open it. It contains a subfolder whose name matches your Windows username. Each person who creates a user ID on your computer gets one of these subfolders. If you share a computer and want to keep your Windows Live Mail data secure, a good place to store it is in the default folder Windows Live creates for you.

Choose Another Storage Location

If you'd like to use a different folder to store your data, click "Store Folder" and then click "Change." A dialog box opens that shows your computer's folders. Navigate to any folder you like and click that folder to select it. Click "OK" and Windows Live Mail uses that folder to store your message data. This may be a good solution if you have multiple hard drives and the one that stores your data is low on space.

Learn How Windows Live Mail Works

Explore other options on the Maintenance window if you'd like to change the way the program operates. The “Cleaning up Messages” section has options you can select that tell Windows Live Mail when to empty messages from your Deleted Items folder. You can also view troubleshooting logs, such as Calendar and Contacts. These logs may provide information that could help you troubleshoot problems you have.