There is a new cloud messages option for iCloud users. After Updating to macOS 10.13.5 and iOS 11.4 and checked all the boxes to get Message to sync across all devices and computers.

When you do so, you are alerted that your Keep Messages setting on your phone/pad has been changed to Forever.

Anyone know where those Messages can be found/accessed???

  • 1
    I've made a grammar / clarity edit. What I can't understand is that does "accessed" mean for you? Log in to iCloud.com and search the history? Open iOS app and tap and scroll back? Or do you mean programatic macOS scripting to access the data files? Basically - in terms of an action you take - what do you expect "found" to look like?
    – bmike
    Jun 2, 2018 at 13:01
  • 2
    Hi bmike. To rephrase my question: where do I go on either my iMac, iPhone, or iPad to access Messages that I have deleted but are allegedly stored Forever?
    – Penny11
    Jun 2, 2018 at 13:07
  • 1
    Aah - so are you looking to see if a message you manually deleted somehow is uploaded from another source? Basically - you're looking to recover data that you felt was lost?
    – bmike
    Jun 2, 2018 at 13:08
  • 1
    @Penny11 "Forever" and "deleted" are not incompatible with each other. "Forever" refers to how long messages will be kept without your action. "Deleted" is just what it sounds like. So if you do nothing, the message is always there. If you delete it, it's gone, on all devices. Jun 2, 2018 at 16:51

1 Answer 1


You scroll above the top of the message history. A spinning wheel will show while messages are downloaded from iCloud. You can repeat this to show more messages. There is not a separate view for Messages in iCloud — it's integrated with the Messages app here.

  • I shared grg's answer with three of my Mac-using colleagues and none of us could understand what that response means. Are you talking Messages on iOS or macOS?
    – Penny11
    Jun 3, 2018 at 0:52
  • @Penny11 either, you just scroll up and you see old messages
    – Ezekiel
    Mar 3, 2019 at 21:29

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .