Tag Archives: Microsoft Outlook

Outlook.com Review: Features in Outlook Mail

Are you a Hotmail user? If so, you are so 1996! At least, that is what Microsoft would like you to think. Today, on the Outlook blog, Microsoft announced a modern approach to email called Outlook.com – “modern email designed for the next billion mailboxes”. Below is an introductory video that gives you a brief overview of the new concepts they incorporated in the new Outlook.com.

[Video Link]

 

All of this is pomp and circumstance of course, to get everyone excited about the fall line of Windows 8 related products. Microsoft figures a lot of people are used to using Outlook already and quite frankly, I agree. Now you have the ability to leverage an Outlook type client on the web. If you go to Outlook.com, you can login with your current Hotmail credentials or create a brand new Outlook.com address if you like.  See “How to Get Your Own Outlook.com Email Address” article for more details. Once you get logged in, you will notice the screen is a little different than the typical Hotmail setup. If you look at the picture below, you can see the inbox is very much dressed up like the up and coming Windows 8 Metro UI. The colors are vivid and the screen is really clean.

Outlook.Com

One nifty feature I like is the Quick Views. It is located in the bottom left corner of your Inbox. See the picture below for an example.

Quick View

If you click on the “Documents” quick view, then all of the emails in your mailbox that have documents attached will be filtered out so you can see them. They even thought of “Shipping Dates”. I thought that was pretty cool. You can even create your own custom views.

At the top of the Outlook.com window is an Outlook icon that has a downward pointing arrow to the right of it. This serves up a menu, pictured below, if you click it. Notice how much it looks like the Windows 8 icons you have been seeing in the Windows 8 developer preview and the Office 2013 Consumer preview.

menu

Basically, you are served up with 4 options. You can view your mail by clicking the “Mail’ icon. If you click the “People” icon, you get a list of your contacts. One big thing that they are pushing is how easily you can integrate Facebook with Outlook.com. If you click the “Calendar” icon, you will get the typical Outlook calendar. Lastly, clicking the SkyDrive icon takes you to your cloud based storage folder that you get by default for signing up with Outlook.com.

Below, you can see the “People” section of Outlook.com. This is basically your contacts folder, but it is extremely connected. Notice below that you can import contacts from Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, and more. Outlook.com has absolutely embraced social media.

People Tab

The calendar is very much like what you’re used to with the desktop version of Outlook. You will see in the picture below, that you manage several views, such as day, month, and year. You can also see a nice “to-do list”. However, did you notice that the calendar says “Hotmail” and “Windows Live” at the top? Looks like there are still a few bugs to work out.

Calendar

Below, you can see the Skydrive which is basically online storage. Highlighted in red, you can see that you are able to use online versions of Microsoft Office to create and edit documents right there in your Skydrive. By default you get 7GB of online storage for free.

Skydrive

Microsoft also produced a real quick walk-through video if you would like to take a couple of minutes to watch. It is quick, but really shows the new features well.

[Video Link]

I think that Microsoft is swinging for the fences with this new line of products. Honestly, I believe that they know this is possibly a do or die situation, as they can’t help but notice that they have lost a lot of market share to Google and Apple. My hope is that they will be able to come into the market with rightly designed products with the right price. If they don’t, I am not so sure they will be a significant contender 10 years from now. However, I am very encouraged by the thought and consideration that they are putting into some of these new roll outs. I guess time will tell.

How to Create a Custom Signature in Outlook 2010

Do you ever get emails from business associates that have really nice signatures at the bottom? They will often include a logo that will take you out to business’ website when you click it. You don’t have to be green with envy over these cool signatures. Creating a signature line in Outlook 2010 is extremely easy. In this post, I will show you how you can accomplish this in a few easy steps!

The first thing we need to do is click on the “File” tab in the upper left corner of Outlook. Once you are there, click the button labeled “Options”. See the arrow pointing in the picture below.

Options

When you click the “Options” button you will get a dialog box like the one pictured below. On the left side of the dialog box you need to click on the option that says “Mail”. Once you have clicked the “Mail” option, click the button on the right side of the page that says “Signatures”.

Mail Tab

You should now see a dialog that allows you to create a new signature. Take a moment to look at the picture below. Let’s explore some of the options available to us. Notice that you can have multiple signatures. In this example, I created the Techie Buzz signature by clicking the button labeled “New”. To the right of that signature you have the option to assign that signature to an account. Remember Outlook has the ability to handle multiple email accounts. It also gives you the ability to assign separate signatures to those accounts as well.

At the bottom of the window, you will notice a blank area. This is where you type the information you would like included in your signature. I decided to include my name, email address, and our company logo. To add a logo, you first need to have an image file saved on your computer. In the picture below, you will see highlighted in red the image button. Click this button.

Image

You will get the dialog box pictured below. Navigate to the folder on your computer that contains the image you want to include in your signature. Then click the picture and click the “Insert” button to insert it into your signature line.

Pic

Now that you have your logo inserted, you can add a hyperlink to it so that when someone clicks it, they are directed to your website. To do this, find the “Hyperlink” button highlighted in red in the picture below.

Signature Window

You will now see the following dialog box, pictured below. At the top you will see the “Text to display” box. What this means is when people put their mouse over the logo, they will get a little description. You can make this say pretty much anything you want. At the bottom of the window, you will see the “Address” box. Type the website address you want the link to go to, then click OK.

Hyperlink Window

Now that you have your information typed and your logo inserted, I would like to warn you about one more pitfall. By default, the font color is set to “Automatic”. Most of the time this will appear black. The problem however, is if you want your signature font to stay a consistent color, you have to set it because the “Automatic” setting will use the default font of any email you reply to. Have you ever noticed that sometimes when you hit reply on an email that your words are typed in blue? The same will happen to your signature unless you specify something other than “Automatic”. Picture below, I have highlighted my name and clicked the “Font Color” dropdown menu. This is where you need to go to set your signature’s color.

Font

Once you have followed all these steps, you need to specify on the right side of the window whether you want to use your new signature just for new messages or whether you want to include them in replies as well. Click “OK” at the bottom and you’re all set. When you open a new message to send to someone you will have a nice ready made signature at the bottom of your message. Good luck and if you have any questions about this tutorial feel free to comment.

Automatically Set Up Email Accounts in Outlook Express and Live Mail

It’s not a coincidence that I ran across this cool freeware app today. After reading about my advice to replace Outlook Express with Windows Live Mail, my friend Bob Constans sent me a tip about CodeTwo Outlook AutoConfig.

What is Outlook AutoConfig?

According to the author it’s …

a free tool that will automatically create your email account in Microsoft Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Mail and Windows Live Mail just by providing your email address.

That’s right, all you do is launch it, enter your email address, name and client.

Here’s what it looks like.

code2-autoconfig-outlook

Outlook AutoConfig will look up the email provider in it’s database and automatically configure your email client to use the correct settings. If it doesn’t work on your provider, you can contact the author to have your provider added to the database.

The next time you launch your email, you will be prompted to enter the password for the account.

autoconfig2

arrow-down-double-3 Download Outlook Autoconfig [Windows 7 / Vista / 2003 / XP / 2000]

Techie Buzz Verdict:

Manually adding accounts to an email client is one of the toughest tasks involved with email setup. Outlook AutoConfig can make it painless. Since it’s a stand-alone program, no installation is needed and it’s simple to use. I highly recommend it.

techiebuzzrecommendedsoftware1


Download Outlook Hotmail Connector Beta

Microsoft has just released version 14.0 of Outlook Connector. Outlook Connector is now know as Outlook Hotmail Connector and is compatible with Office 2003, Office 2007 and .

Outlook Hotmail Connector basically allows you to access your Windows Live Hotmail account in Outlook without having to use POP or IMAP. The new version includes better Junk filter settings, integrated send/receive, integrated connection status and rules support for secondary accounts.

You will find the download links below for your Outlook version and operating system type.

Outlook Hotmail Connector 14.0 for Outlook 2003, 2007 and 2010 32-bit

Outlook Hotmail Connector 14.0 for Outlook 2010 64-bit

Synchronize Google/Gmail Contacts With Outlook

I use both and on a day to day basis, making use of email, contacts and calendar to manage my day to day life. However, managing multiple calendar entries and contacts can be quite a hassle.

I use a software called Google Calendar Sync to keep Outlook and Google Calendar in sync, however I have been looking for find a suitable synchronization tool for contacts.

google_outlook_contacts_sync

Google Contacts Outlook Synchronizer is a handy that synchronizes the contacts between Outlook and your regular Gmail account. This app also supports contact synchronization for Google Apps account.

Once you install the software, choose the direction in which the synchronization should happen. You might want to choose a higher Synchronization interval, as you hardly keep editing contacts every 5 minutes, 6 to 12 hours interval should be good enough.

Download Google Contacts Outlook Synchronizer

[via]

Visual Voicemail Outlook Add-In Deciphers Caller Data

Many phone providers provide user with an option to get a email alert whenever a new voicemail message is left on your phone, however finding information about who exactly left a voicemail message is a bit hard.

If you receive your voicemail email alerts in a handy called Visual voicemail will come in pretty handy to decipher and view the caller data.

visual_voicemail_message_inbox

Visual Voicemail is an add-in for Microsoft Outlook 2007 that processes voicemail messages from Vonage, Comcast Digital Voice, YouMail, and many other voicemail systems, to provide key information about the caller using information from your Outlook Contacts.

The information displayed will not be displayed if the user does not exist in your address book, however it is still better than staring at the plain text messages you have been used to seeing.

Download Visual Voicemail Add-in [via Addictive Tips]

Outlook Connector For Office 2010

If you are already using the technical preview of or are going to use it in future, the older Outlook Connector will not work for you.

Outlook Connector is basically a that allows users to access their Windows Live Mail accounts in .

You can download the latest version of Outlook Connector using the links below.

[via Windows Club Forum]

Twitter Add-in For Microsoft Outlook

Quite sometime back we had told you about a add-in that would allow you to access you twitter account from Outlook.

The creators of the same softwares Techhit have now released a new add-in for Outlook called TwInbox with much more features than the earlier software.

Also Read: 12 Must Have Useful & Free Microsoft Outlook Add-ins

twitter_outlook_addin

TwInbox Features

  • Update your Twitter status directly from Outlook.
  • Receive your friend updates in Outlook.
  • Archive, manage, group and search your tweets the same way you manage your email.
  • Search, track keywords. TwInbox will automatically download ALL tweets matching the keywords you specify, even if you are not following the tweet sender. This feature is perfect for keeping up to date with the Twitter buzz on your name, brand, interests, etc.
  • Group tweets by sender, topic, etc using the Search feature.
  • Upload and post picture files and Outlook email attachments.
  • Assign custom folder and categories to new messages.
  • Use Outlook’s “Reply” and “ReplyAll” commands to send twitter direct messages and @replies.
  • Automatically sort new tweets into per-sender folders.
  • Shorten URLs with tinyurl.
  • See graphs of your Twitter usage statistics.
  • Tweets sent to you (@replies and direct) are marked with high importance, so you can see them at a glance.

Download TwInbox [via Cybernet News]

Disable Automatic Send/Receive of Email in Outlook

If you use Outlook, you might have noticed that it downloads and sends emails automatically after certain intervals, though that is definitely a good practice, many people may not want to send/receive emails automatically for several reasons.

Here are some simple steps that will stop the automatic send/receive of emails in both .

Disable Automatic Send/Receive In Microsoft Outlook

Step 1: Open Outlook and go to Tools > Options.

disable_automatic_sending_message_outlook

Step 2: Click on the Mail Setup tab, if you want to disable automatic sending of messages, just uncheck the box next to Send Immediately when connected, this will disable automatic sending of messages.

disable_automatic_send_receive_outlook

Step 3: Click on the Send/Receive button in the same tab, this will open a new options window. To disable automatic send/receive for your account group, just select the group from the list and uncheck the box next to Schedule an automatic send/receive every.

With the automatic send/receive disable you will still have to download emails, just press the F9 key with the Outlook window in focus, whenever you want to manually send/receive email in Outlook.

Pin Outlook Calendar & Tasks To Your Desktop

If you remember we had told you about a utility that would allow you to put pin outlook to your desktop, however if you are only looking to view calendar events and tasks we came across another called DeskTask.

Also Read: 12 Must Have Outlook Add-ins

DeskTask connects to Microsoft Outlook and displays your calendar and task items on the desktop.

 

desktask

DeskTask Features

  • Your tasks will always be visible, saving precious time to launch or switch to Outlook.
  • Just minimize every window, and see what are the items due for today or tomorrow.
  • DeskTask displays the whole week so you can be prepared to organize your work.
  • Besides the calendar items, the Outlook to-do list (Folder Tasks) is also displayed.

DeskTask works with 2000 / XP / 2003 / 2007 on Windows XP, and .

Download DeskTask

View Sender’s Time Zone In Outlook

Quite sometime back had introduced a new feature called as Sender Time Zone, which allowed users to view the timezone of the email sender, a similar add-in is also available for .

After you have installed the Sender’s Time Zone add-in for Outlook, you will see the timezone of the sender in a information tab in the email, this will allow you to the time difference between your location and the location of the sender.

Continue reading View Sender’s Time Zone In Outlook

Outlook Thread compressor

There are several times when you have discussions through emails, if the conversation is interesting you may have several replies coming through, however there is a problem when this happens, the emails you receive as replies may contain the original conversation.

Most of the times the original conversation is of no use, and it would be good if you could remove them and save space.

Continue reading Outlook Thread compressor

How To Preview Zip Files, PDF Files or Additional Files in Outlook 2007?

2007 has a handy preview tool that will allow you to preview documents (Word, spreadsheets, PowerPoint) from within the mail message, however it lacks the inbuilt ability to preview several popular file formats such as zip files, files, programming source code files and so on.

Microsoft Outlook Zip File Preview

The lack of previewers for some of the most popular file types was something I could not live with long, with the help of two Outlook add-ins I can now preview Zip files, PDF files and many other file formats from within Outlook.

Continue reading How To Preview Zip Files, PDF Files or Additional Files in Outlook 2007?

How To Quickly Send Receive Emails For All Accounts In Outlook?

polls your email accounts after certain intervals to see if there are any new emails in your accounts, however if you want to do this manually you can use a to quickly poll all your email accounts, which will save you some time and efforts if you decided to do it using a mouse.

Outlook Send Recieve Groups Options

Using the F9 key, you can quickly do a send/receive on all your accounts. Outlook also allows users to definite which groups should be included while doing a send/receive all using the F9 key.

To change the settings for this option, use the shortcut key Ctrl + Alt + S, this should popup a new window, where you can change the group settings for send/receive all option.

Download Only Email Headers in Outlook

You can also use the same setting window to control whether emails are automatically fetched and how often they are fetched, if you are using a low bandwidth internet connection, you could save some bandwidth by clicking on the Edit button to edit the email group and change the settings to only download headers instead of full emails.

OutlookDeck Brings TweetDeck Interface To Outlook Search

We have been using for quite sometime now and love the interface quite a lot, on the other hand we feel that is the best tool for emails.

outlook_deck_search

OutlookDeck is a interesting new application that will allow you to view and search Outlook emails in a TweetDeckish interface.

You can view all emails, view your replies, or search your emails using OutlookDeck, it will create a new tab for each of your actions, so clicking on All Friends will create a new tab, every search will create a new tab and son on.

We find OutlookDeck a fun way of searching emails, and having been using TweetDeck for quite sometime now, we love the refreshing way in which we can search our emails.

Download OutlookDeck [via tweet from Scobleizer]