iOS 17: How to Stop Automatically Deleting Messages on iPhone

Are you tired of your iPhone automatically deleting your precious messages? Don’t fret! In just a few simple steps, you can prevent your iOS 17 device from getting rid of your messages without your say-so. Keep reading to discover how to keep your conversations intact.

You can also watch this video about how to stop automatically deleting text messages on iPhone for more on this topic.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Stop Automatically Deleting Messages on iPhone

Before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let’s clarify what we’re aiming for here. By following these steps, you’ll adjust the settings on your iPhone to ensure that your messages are never deleted automatically. This means they’ll stick around until you decide it’s time for them to go.

Step 1: Open the Settings App

Start by tapping on the Settings app on your iPhone home screen.

The Settings app is your gateway to making all sorts of adjustments to your iPhone, including how it handles your messages.

Step 2: Tap on ‘Messages’

Scroll down and find the option labeled ‘Messages’ then give it a tap.

This section of your settings is dedicated to all things related to your text messages and iMessages.

Step 3: Find the ‘Message History’ Section

Within the Messages settings, scroll until you see the ‘Message History’ section.

This section contains options that dictate how long your messages are stored on your device.

Step 4: Tap on ‘Keep Messages’

You’ll see ‘Keep Messages’ under the Message History section. Go ahead and tap on it.

By default, your iPhone might be set to keep messages for a certain period. This is where you can change that.

Step 5: Select ‘Forever’

You’ll be presented with three options: 30 Days, 1 Year, and Forever. Tap on ‘Forever’.

Choosing ‘Forever’ ensures that your messages won’t be automatically deleted after a certain time period. They’ll stay put until you delete them manually.

Once you’ve completed these steps, your iPhone will stop automatically deleting your messages. You’ll have full control over your message history and can delete messages on your own terms.

Tips for Managing Messages on iPhone

  • Regularly back up your iPhone to iCloud or your computer to ensure you don’t lose your messages if something goes wrong with your device.
  • If you’re running low on storage, consider manually deleting unimportant messages or attachments rather than setting them to auto-delete.
  • Take advantage of the ‘Auto-Delete Old Conversations’ feature if you want to clear out messages that are over a year old and save some space.
  • Use the ‘Filter Unknown Senders’ option to keep messages from unknown contacts separate from your main message list.
  • For extra privacy, turn on ‘iMessage’ encryption to keep your messages secure and make sure they can only be read by the intended recipient.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I change my mind and want to enable automatic deletion again?

Simply follow the steps above and select either ’30 Days’ or ‘1 Year’ instead of ‘Forever’ to have your messages automatically deleted after the chosen time period.

Will changing this setting affect my previous messages?

No, changing this setting will not affect messages that have already been deleted. It will only apply to messages received after the change is made.

Does stopping automatic deletion affect both SMS and iMessages?

Yes, the setting applies to both SMS text messages and iMessages. They will all be preserved unless manually deleted.

What happens if my iPhone storage gets full?

If your iPhone storage becomes full, you may need to manually manage your messages by deleting them or backing them up to an external source.

Can I recover messages that have already been auto-deleted?

Unfortunately, once messages have been automatically deleted, they cannot be recovered. It’s important to regularly back up your device to prevent loss of important data.


  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap on ‘Messages’.
  3. Find the ‘Message History’ section.
  4. Tap on ‘Keep Messages’.
  5. Select ‘Forever’.


Maintaining control over your message history on your iPhone is important. Whether it’s sentimental conversations, important information, or just not wanting to feel like your phone is making decisions for you, it’s essential to know how to stop automatically deleting messages on iPhone. With the simple steps outlined above, you can keep your messages around as long as you desire.

Remember, while it’s great to have all your messages at your fingertips, it’s equally important to manage your device’s storage wisely. Regularly review your messages, clear out the clutter, and back up the important stuff. And, if you ever need to, you can always reverse the process and set your messages to auto-delete after a certain period.

We hope this guide has been helpful in giving you control over your iPhone’s message history. Stay tuned for more iPhone tips and tricks that make your life easier and keep you in the driver’s seat of your digital world.

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