SOLVED: Outlook 2007 IMAP “The folder … cannot be selected”

Outlook IMAP errorHere’s an obscure one. I was escalated a call today (my job involves, amongst other things, third line support for email issues) where a user was unable to delete or open some items of email within Outlook 2007. An error message pops up saying, “The folder … cannot be selected. This may be because of a limitation of your IMAP server or the folder may have been deleted or moved.”

It turns out the error message is a bit of a red herring. By a process of elimination (starting Outlook in safe mode and selectively disabling add-ins) I found the culprit to be AVG Free. Whether the blame lies with AVG or Outlook 2007 is a moot point. Microsoft has taken a long time to implement IMAP correctly, so I suspect the latter. Whichever the case, no one in a corporate environment should be using a product not licensed commercially, so I sent my user off to buy Kaspersky Anti-Virus.

26 Replies to “SOLVED: Outlook 2007 IMAP “The folder … cannot be selected””

  1. I installed AVG Free on a Windows XP machine running an older version of MS Outlook (maybe MS Outlook 2003) recently just to tide it over in the gap between it’s Norton licence expiring and renewing the rest of the office’s Avast Anti Virus licences.
    MS Outlook then refused to purge any deleted items on this machine.
    Very strange but uninstalling AVG Free done the trick!

  2. Ran into the same problem and seemed to solve it by changing the port number to match the custom port that gmail uses.

    1. Close outlook
    2. open the avg user interface and go into the advance view
    3. expand email protection > email scanner > servers > imap and select auto imap
    4. change local port to 993
    5. remove checkbox beside “activate this server and use it for sending/receiving e-mails”

    1. Very well spotted! That does make sense. The email account in question in the article above was using IMAP/SSL, on port 465. No doubt AVG has a bug that means the port or protocol is incorrectly handled unless you explicitly configure as you suggest.



    2. The fix with changing AVG Free local server port worked. Thanks! These little things can really drive you mad and this one thankfully did not since I stumbled on this fix.

      1. Thank you, Rob! Actually I think it may be solved…we switched from IMAP to SSL and so far all seems to be well. 🙂 Appreciate your help and getting back with me, though!!!

      2. Oops! No, Rob! I just remembered we changed the IMAP to SSL, but I still had problems the next day with not receiving all my emails…having to check them on webmail, and then they would decide to come in later on Outlook…and not all of them would open…and I could not flag some of them…no rhyme or reason…some had attachments, some didn’t, etc., etc.! THEN we found I had a Trojan!!! :0

  3. 2016-04-06
    I have the same problem originally reported even though my AVG Free was never configured to handle the email component. Nevertheless. I will delete AVG Free 2015 and see if it solves the problem.
    (Windows 7, Outlook 2007, AVG Free 2015 was up to date)

  4. 2016-04-06 update
    I used Start – Control Panel – Programs and Features – and discovered 2 instances of AVG. I kept the top main instance marked “AVG” but uninstalled the second instance (AVG-name-forgotten) and rebooted the computer. Thereafter, the original error on this topic did not happen again. I was able to delete items in my inbox.

  5. I got this error, but don’t use AVG. I was able to fix it by stopping Outlook and running scanpst.exe (in my case, scanpst lives in C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12).

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