ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Permanence, impermanence (K2 #79)

Question of the Week 
How do I recover emails that were permanently deleted a few months ago?
— Samden, Chhukha

Dear Samden,

All three popular online email services - Yahoo! Mail, Hotmail (now called, and Google Gmail - allow you to recover recently-deleted messages. This is similar to the Recycled folder on Windows. Gmail keeps deleted messages in the Trash folder for about 30 days. After 30 days in the Trash folder, the message is deleted permanently (but keep reading). Hotmail and Yahoo have similar policies. To restore messages that were deleted recently, go to the Trash folder (or the Deleted folder), check the checkboxes of the messages you want to un-delete, and move (or drag) the messages back to the Inbox.

Sand mandala: nothing is permanent
If you are using Hotmail (or, you can ask Microsoft to recover even more messages. Go to the Deleted folder, and look for the “recover deleted messages” option at the bottom of the screen. Clicking the option will request the server to retrieve as many deleted messages as possible.

Even if you used Gmail, do not despair.Google has an online form to request email recovery in case your account was hacked. It might be worth a shot. The link is

Since free email accounts these days come with tons of storage (Gmail has 15 GB, enough for tens of thousands of text emails), many people choose to keep all of their correspondence (in Gmail, you can hit the Archive button to move the message from the Inbox to the Archive). Archiving emails saves you the effort of thinking which conversations to delete as well as reduces the chance that a message you deleted will end up being important.

Readers are encouraged to submit technology-related questions to