HowTo Color Code your Emails, Calendar, Contacts or Tasks automatically with Conditional Formatting

Conditional Formatting buttonThe Conditional Formatting feature in Outlook allows you to get organized by automatically color coding your Emails, Calendar items, Contacts and Tasks without the need to apply a Color Category to it or move them to different folders.

The color coding isn’t just intended to emphasize certain emails but it can also be used to deemphasize certain emails such as newsletters or emails you are only a CC or BCC recipient of.

You may actually already know Conditional Formatting without realizing it as it is for instance also being used to:

  • Show unread emails in a blue and bold font.
  • Show expired emails and completed tasks in a grey and strikethrough font.
  • Show overdue emails and tasks in a red font.

The “Conditional Formatting” feature may look complex at first but creating color coding rules is actually fairly easy and quite powerful when used the right way.

This guide will help you on your way to get yourself familiar with the Conditional Formatting options with 8 color coding examples which might be useful to you as well.

Conditional Formatting usage in the Message List.
Conditional Formatting usage in the Message List.

Continue reading: Color Code your Emails, Calendar, Contacts or Tasks automatically with Conditional Formatting

News Outlook 2016 Security Update for January 2018

A Security Update has been released for Outlook 2016. It resolves the vulnerability mentioned in CVE-2018-0791, which could allow remote code execution via a specially crafted Office file.

Additional fixes in this update;

  • When you select multiple attachments and try to cancel one of the attachments, all the other attachments are cancelled.
  • Some attachments are not removed when you forward mails that contain inline images and you check the “Read all mails as Plain Text” check box.

View: Download information for KB4011626

Note: This update can be installed via Microsoft Update or the Update Now button when you are using Office 365 and updates Outlook to version 16.0.4639.1000 (msi-based installation) or 16.0.8730.2175 (Office 365 based installation) or 16.0.8431.2153 (Office 365 Semi-Annual Channel installation) or 16.0.8201.2217 (Deferred Channel).

News Outlook 2013 Security Update for January 2018

A Security Update has been released for Outlook 2013. It resolves the vulnerability mentioned in CVE-2018-0791, which could allow remote code execution via a specially crafted Office file.

Additional fixes in this update;

  • 3rd-party MAPI providers may be blocked despite being in the Outlook profile.
  • When you send an email message from Outlook.com to a recipient outside of Office 365, the recipient always gets a winmail.dat attachment in the message.

View: Download information for KB4011637

Note: This update can be installed via Microsoft Update or the Update Now button when you are using Office 365 and updates Outlook to version 15.0.4989.1000.

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News Outlook 2010 Security Update for January 2018

A Security Update has been released for Outlook 2010. It resolves the vulnerability mentioned in CVE-2018-0791, which could allow remote code execution via a specially crafted Office file.

Additionally, this update fixes an issue where 3rd-party MAPI providers may be blocked despite being in the Outlook profile.

View: Download information for KB4011273

Note: This update can be installed via Microsoft Update and updates Outlook to version 14.0.7192.5000.

News Exchange 2016 CU8

Cumulative Update 8 for Exchange 2016 is now available for direct download. It contains 6 documented new fixes or improvements, and all previously released fixes and security updates for Exchange 2016.

  • .NET Framework 4.7.1 is now supported.
  • KB4056329 Can’t access EWS from Outlook/OWA add-ins via makeEwsRequestAsync in Exchange Server 2016 and Exchange Server 2013
  • KB4054516 “Your request can’t” error when accessing an archive mailbox via OWA in Exchange Server 2016
  • KB4055953 The recipient scope setting doesn’t work for sibling domains in Exchange Server 2016
  • KB4055435 No MAPI network interface is found after you install Exchange Server 2016 CU7
  • KB4056609 Event ID 4999 and mailbox transport delivery service does not start after you install Exchange Server 2016 CU7
  • KB4045655 Description of the security update for Microsoft Exchange: December 12, 2017
  • KB4057248 Many Watson reports for StoragePermanentException in Exchange Server 2016

This release includes no new updates to the Active Directory Schema.

Download: Cumulative Update 8 for Exchange Server 2016 (KB4035145)
Download: Exchange Server 2016 CU8 UM Language Packs
View: Description of Cumulative Update 8 for Exchange Server 2016
View: Blog post of the Exchange Team about CU8 for Exchange Server 2016

News Exchange 2013 CU19

Cumulative Update 19 for Exchange 2013 is now available for direct download. It contains 6 documented new fixes or improvements, and all previously released fixes and security updates for Exchange 2013.

  • .NET Framework 4.7.1 is now supported.
  • KB4046316 MAPI over HTTP can’t remove client sessions timely if using OAuth and the resource has a master account in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB4046205 W3wp high CPU usage in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB4046182 Event ID 4999 or 1007 if diagnostics service crashes repeatedly in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB4056329 Can’t access EWS from Outlook/OWA add-ins via makeEwsRequestAsync in Exchange Server 2016 and Exchange Server 2013
  • KB4045655 Description of the security update for Microsoft Exchange: December 12, 2017

This release includes no new updates to the Active Directory Schema.

Download: Cumulative Update 18 for Exchange Server 2013 (KB4022631)
Download: Exchange Server 2013 CU19 UM Language Packs
View: Description of Cumulative Update 19 for Exchange Server 2013
View: Blog post of the Exchange Team about CU19 for Exchange Server 2013

News Exchange 2010 SP3 Rollup 19

Update Rollup 19 for Exchange 2010 Service Pack 3 is now available for direct download. It contains 1 documented new fix and all previously released fixes and security updates for Exchange 2010 SP3. Note that mainstream support for Exchange 2010 has already ended.

  • KB4054456 EWS connections proxied from Exchange Server 2016 to 2010 can access all the Exchange 2010 mailboxes

View: Description of Update Rollup 19 for Exchange Server 2010
Download: Update Rollup 19 For Exchange 2010 SP3 (KB4035162)

Downloads Office Cheat Sheets for Outlook

The following downloads provide a quick overview of the basic functions in Outlook across all platforms.

Outlook for Windows

Outlook for Mac

Outlook on the Web (OWA)

Outlook for Android

Outlook for iOS

News Outlook 2007 Security Update for September 2017

A Security Update has been released for Outlook 2007 which contains a defense-in-depth update as mentioned in Security Advisory ADV170015. This is a general security update that is not specific to any current exploit.

View: Download information for KB4011086

Update September 19, 2017:
Due to UI language issues with this update, it has been replaced with KB401110. Uninstall KB4011086 before applying the new update.

Note: This update can be installed via Microsoft Update and updates Outlook to version 12.0.6776.5000.

News Attachments are blocked after applying June 2017 update – Fixes available now

After applying the June update for Outlook 2007, 2010, 2013 or Outlook 2016 (MSI) some attachments may be blocked from being opened. There are two issues here;

  • Attachments could get blocked as they are deemed “potentially unsafe attachments” even when they don’t have an unsafe file extension (like pdf, docx, xlsx).

    The blocked attachments are mentioned in the Infobar.
    The blocked attachments are mentioned in the Infobar.

    This issue applies to files that have two dots or an exclamation mark in front of their file extension;
    -test..txt
    -test!.txt

  • Attachments that are embedded (with the file icon shown in the message body) in an RTF formatted message, calendar item, contact item or task item can’t be opened. Trying to do so produces the error;
    • The program used to create this object is Outlook. That program is either not installed on your computer or it is not responding. To edit this object, install Outlook or ensure that any dialog boxes in Outlook are closed.

Error when trying to open an embedded attachment after applying the June 2017 update.
Error when trying to open an embedded attachment after applying the June 2017 update.

Update July 27: New fixes are now available for all versions
New updates have been released for all versions of Outlook which fixes these issues.

Current workarounds are;

  • For the first issue; Download the files via web mail. Exchange and Outlook.com users can use Outlook on the Web (OWA) for this, Gmail users can use the Gmail website, etc…
  • For the second issue, you can save the files to your Desktop (drag & drop also works) and open the files from there.
  • Uninstall the June update for your Outlook version. Please note that this is a security update, so uninstalling the update is only recommended when you know the risks and can’t use the other workarounds.

For further information and descriptions of other issues regarding these updates also see; Outlook known issues in the June 2017 security updates.

HowTo Imported IMAP folders are not visible or don’t show any content

IMAP Folders buttonWhen you’ve exported your IMAP mailbox or specific folders to a pst-file which you then later open in Outlook or import into an Exchange or Outlook.com mailbox, you may be shocked to see that these folders don’t contain anything.

Additionally, when you configure this mailbox on a smartphone or tablet as an Exchange ActiveSync account, these folders may not show at all.

Luckily, this can be fixed without any data loss but the process to do so via MFCMAPI is not for the faint of heart or when you have many folder to fix.

Therefor, this guide also contains a script which you can run to apply the fix for you. You can either fix a single folder, a folder and its subfolders or your entire mailbox at once.

Continue reading: Imported IMAP folders are not visible or don’t show any content

HowTo Downloading Outlook 2013 from Office 365 after March 1, 2017

Download Office buttonSupport for the Office 2013 versions of Office 365 has ended and are no longer being offered for download in the download sections of Office 365 Home and Office 365 for Business.

If you still have it installed, you will receive Security Updates until April 10, 2018.

Upgrading to Office 2016 is highly recommended and also already part of your Office 365 subscription. However, common reasons why you might still need Office/Outlook 2013 are;

When you still need to (re-)install Office 2013 as part of Office 365 for whatever reason, you can still download it by using a direct link or by using the Office 2013 Deployment Tool.

Continue reading: Downloading Outlook 2013 from Office 365 after March 1, 2017

HowTo Autodiscover: Some quick methods to get it working

Autodiscover.xml buttonThe Autodiscover service is a required service for Outlook-Exchange connectivity since Outlook 2007 and Exchange 2007 but for whatever reason, in some Exchange environments this still hasn’t been implemented correctly.

In some part, this was due to the fact that you could still get basic Outlook-Exchange connectivity by using some legacy Exchange 2003 RPC over HTTP dialog in Outlook. This (unsupported) method now no longer works in Outlook 2016 due to the removal of this legacy dialog since Outlook doesn’t support Exchange 2003 anymore since Outlook 2013.

Unfortunately, this leaves enthusiastic Outlook 2016 users disconnected when Autodiscover hasn’t been provisioned correctly by your company.

This guide contains some reasonably quick and easy and some less elegant methods for end-users but also for Exchange administrators to get your Outlook connected to Exchange again. All discussed solutions are fully supported configurations by Microsoft and do not require any changes to Exchange or the need for a new SSL Certificate.

Continue reading: Autodiscover: Some quick methods to get it working

FAQ New and Changed in Outlook 2016

Outlook 2016 buttonUpgrading to Outlook 2016 from Outlook 2013 is easy and you’d probably need very little time to adjust yourself to it. In fact, if it wasn’t for the new default “colorful” theme, you’d hardly notice the upgrade to Outlook 2016 at first sight.

This is actually part of the Office 365 strategy where major new features are also introduced during the main lifetime of the current version, as we saw with Office 2013. In the old strategy, these features were held back for the new version. Office 2016 will get the same treatment so future updates can introduce new features as well.

Until then, there are still plenty of new features in Outlook 2016 to use and discover.

Continue reading: New and Changed in Outlook 2016

HowTo Upgrading to Outlook 2016

Outlook 2016 iconPlanning to upgrade to Outlook 2016? This guide contains a lot of preparation and other information to get yourself ready to ensure a smooth transition

Aside from the preparation steps, this guide informs you about what to expect when you start Outlook 2016 for the first time after you upgraded and how to troubleshoot several issues you may encounter during or after the installation.

Continue reading: Upgrading to Outlook 2016

FAQ Windows 10 and Outlook

Windows 10 logoThinking about upgrading your computer to Windows 10 or are you using Outlook on a Windows 10 computer already? With the upgrade being free, it’s a great offer to jump into, but should you when you heavily rely on Outlook?

The upgrade process is actually quite streamlined and trouble free for most configurations, especially when upgrading from Windows 7 or Windows 8, but there are still a couple of attention points before you start.

This guide contains not only upgrade preparation and troubleshooting steps but also various tips about the changes that you could encounter involving Outlook after upgrading to Windows 10.

Continue reading: Windows 10 and Outlook

News Outlook can’t connect to Gmail: Password incorrect

Gmail buttonAs of July 15, 2014, you might have problems connecting to Gmail via Outlook and other mail clients such as Thunderbird and Mail apps on (older) smartphones. This is because Google turned off Basic Authentication by default for all new accounts and accounts which haven’t synced within the last 30 days and only lets you authenticate via the OAuth 2.0 standard.

As a result, you’ll get Send/Receive errors (0x800CCC0E) and could get prompted for your Gmail password again in Outlook and the login will fail even when you supply the correct password.

To solve this, you must re-enable Basic Authentication for Outlook in your Google Account Settings. This can be done via the “Allow less secure apps” page where you set it to “Enable”.

Another way to go would be to enable “2-Step Verification”. In that case, you can create a special “App Password” which you’ll then use within Outlook to logon to Gmail rather than with your regular password. This is the more secure approach and highly recommended. For step-by-step instructions to set this up see: Outlook and 2-Step Verification for Gmail accounts.

Native support for OAuth 2.0 in Outlook (2007, 2010 and 2013) is being worked on and hopefully released soon in an upcoming update (I’ll update the this post with the links to the updates once they become available).

View: New Security Measures Will Affect Older (non-OAuth 2.0) Applications
View: Google Account Security Settings – Allow less secure apps

News Outlook 2016 Update for December 2017

A Rollup Update has been released for Outlook 2016. This is a non-security update which contains 10 documented improvements and fixes.

Most notable fixes are:

  • An issue that causes Outlook to crash when you read an email in the preview pane.
  • The number of unread messages is displayed incorrectly and not updated expectedly in Outlook 2016.
  • Some appointments are saved incorrectly when you save an Outlook calendar as an iCalendar (.ics) file.
  • Third-party MAPI providers may be blocked despite they are in the Outlook profile.

View: Download information for KB4011570

Note: This update can be installed via Microsoft Update or the Update Now button when you are using Office 365 and updates Outlook to version 16.0.4627.1000 (msi-based installation) or 16.0.8625.2139 (Office 365 based installation).

News Outlook 2013 Update for December 2017

A Rollup Update has been released for Outlook 2013. This is a non-security update which contains 6 documented improvements and fixes.

Most notable fixes are:

  • Third-party MAPI providers may be blocked despite being in the Outlook profile.
  • You may experience Outlook crashes unexpectedly when you connect to Exchange Server in an online mode. 
  • This update addresses an issue that causes Outlook to crash when you read an email in the preview pane. 
  • This update adds support for the in-client store if you have a Black Forest deployment.

View: Download information for KB4011282

Note: This update can be installed via Microsoft Update or the Update Now button when you are using Office 365 and updates Outlook to version 15.0.4989.1000.