News New version of OutlookTools released

A new version of OutlookTools has been released. OutlookTools 2.2 has been released to comply with the changes in Office 2007 Service Pack 2. It is still compatible with previous versions of Outlook as well of course.

OutlookTools is a support and advanced settings tool for Microsoft Office Outlook created by HowTo-Outlook. It gives you easy access to Outlook settings and data folders and allows you to change settings that are normally only possible through the registry.

Main Program Features

  • Easy access to Outlook settings and data folders
  • Easy access to troubleshooting tools
  • Start Outlook with a startup switch
  • Clear the Most Recently Used lists
  • Make the New Mail Alert stay up for longer than 30 seconds
  • Unblock attachments

And note that OutlookTools is completely free!

Download: OutlookTools 2.2


News Office 2007 Service Pack 2 released today

The wait is over; Office 2007 Service Pack 2 has been released today. After the KB articles for Office 2007 Service Pack 2 have been made public already earlier today, the download links for Service Pack 2 are now active as well.

When it comes to Outlook, Service Pack 2 is very similar to the February 2009 cumulative update which was very much focused on improving Outlook’s responsiveness and stability. Some other notable changes and fixes in Service Pack 2;

  • The option to select which pages you want to print is back.
  • Many fixes to meetings and reminders behavior.
  • “Change Calendar Time Zone” option is removed and now available as a separate download.
  • Outlook shutdown improvements (quicker and less likely to hang when still being used by an addin or external application).
  • Downloading from POP3 will download the newest messages first instead of the oldest.
  • RSS Feeds behave more reliable (sometimes they caused duplicates or stopped updating).
  • Improved reliability with SharePoint connections.

When you launch Outlook for the first time after installing Service Pack 2, you’ll get a dialog saying “Preparing Outlook for first use.” This could take a while depending on the size of your mailbox and the amount of items in it. This is because of some changes in the indexes of the pst-file to improve performance. Don’t worry, this is one time only and it won’t break compatibility with Outlook 2003 (or in case you are still using the ANSI format, it won’t break compatibility with Outlook XP/2002 or previous either).

Outlook will also show a new icon in the Notification Area if the outlook.exe process is still running when all Outlook windows are closed already;
Outlook running in background

In addition, this Service Pack is the first Office Service Pack that can be uninstalled without first completely uninstalling Office and then reinstalling it again. So if you find the need to uninstall it again for whatever reason, you can use this tool.

View: Description of 2007 Microsoft Office Suite Service Pack 2 (SP2) and of Microsoft Office Language Pack 2007 SP2
Download: 2007 Microsoft Office Suite Service Pack 2
Download: Microsoft Office Language Pack 2007 Service Pack 2
Download: 2007 Office Service Pack 2 Changes (Excel sheet)

News Klingon language support for Office 2007 added

I’m sorry to disappoint the Trekkies and other enthusiasts about this news but of course this was an April Fool’s joke. However, only very little picture editing had to be done to achieve these results. Most of it can be achieved already by modifying your font settings in Windows and Outlook. You can choose a font other than Klingon as well if you like ;-)

Office 2007 is localized in 37 languages and offers proofing tools for even more languages. A new language will be added to this collecting; Klingon.

For the ones not familiar with that language; Klingon is a fictional language spoken in the Star Trek series and movies with Lt. Worf probably being the most famous Klingon. The Klingon Language Institute (KLI) is an independent organization that supports the studying of the language for well over 15 years now. The Klingon language itself celebrates its 25 year anniversary this year since actual grammar was developed for it for the movie Star Trek III: The Search for Spock.

Support for it will be added as a Language Pack meaning that not only proofing support will be added but also the interface can be set to appear in Klingon. However, there are certain limitations to this since several sections of the interface rely on the language of Windows itself and its configured locale. You can see this for instance in the time notations (I used an English version of Windows XP with a Dutch locale on my test machine). Additionally, subjects and names cannot be written in Klingon as they are not included in the Unicode character set and to prevent potential encoding issues on mail servers. It is also funny to see that the product names (Microsoft Outlook/Exchange) are not translated either.

The Klingon Language Pack will come out together with the Office 2007 SP2 updates for the other language packs which are currently available already. Additional languages are expected as well.

Klingon mail Outlook window smallKlingon message windows small

Klingon is the first fictional language that will be supported in Office.
(Click on the pictures for a larger view)

Sperry Software
Use "BH93RF24" to get a discount when ordering!

News Exclusive Wintersale of Picture Attachments Wizard (50% discount)

For a limited time only, Collaborative Innovations is offering their Picture Attachments Wizard addin with a 50% discount when using the discount code; MSOUTLOOKINFO-WINTERSALE

This offer is valid until the end of the Winter (March 21).

Amongst others, the Picture Attachment Wizard addin will allow you to view picture attachments as thumbnails directly within the Outlook message or even view them all within a Slide Show. This takes away the need to open them one at a time.

Continue reading: Exclusive Wintersale of Picture Attachments Wizard (50% discount)

News Updated: Open Message in Internet Browser

Based on some feedback I’ve gotten, I’ve done a major revision on the code in the guide “Open Message in Internet Browser“. The result is an improved rendering of the message. For instance, web forms embedded in message are now working and the original layout is maintained. This is being achieved by a more direct approach of capturing the HTML of a message.

Sounds confusing? Well, since a picture says more than a 1000 words, I’ve also updated the guide with some examples. Sadly you cannot see it in the examples that the inserted animated gif-pictures are now working as well, but trust me; they do!

News Did you notice some downtime?

Well, I hope not! Today I changed the backend of my website, or in less technical terms; the stuff that keeps my website running ;-)

After years and years of managing separate htm-files, everything is now finally in a database and managed by a lot less template files. I’ve taken much care in making sure all the ‘old’ links still work and will continue to work since they are the ‘new’ links as well. However, there were a few links for which it wasn’t possible to transfer them but you should be automatically redirected for those. One of those links is for the RSS Feed of my website. If your RSS application is advanced enough, it will probably automatically update the subscription link and otherwise you’ll have to do it manually. If you come across some issues with my website, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Which reminds me; I have to update my About page! Last month I got my degree of “Master of Science in ICT in Business”. My thesis research was titled; “Bridging the gap between intra-organizational mobile collaboration scenarios and tools.”

I know things have been quiet on this website for a while but with the graduation and this backend change, I can finally focus again on the content part of this website. I’ve got a big list of ideas to write guides on but if you have some ideas too on things you want to see covered on this website you can contacts me.

I’ll also frequently post small tips and tricks on Outlook on my other Outlook website

See you soon! :-)

News Office 2003 Service Pack 3 Released!

Today Office 2003 SP3 got released. In true Office tradition you can expect this to be the final Service Pack that we’ll see for Office 2003 (but I’m sure we’ll see some additional Hotfixes though). You can download Service Pack 3 here or of course use Microsoft Update or Office Update.

I’ve also updated the guide on how to create an Office 2003 CD (or installation point) with Service Pack 3 slipstreamed into it.