My Blog

Outlook search – start "finding"

  • Seriously, stop looking for that old email you got from a customer or a friend by navigating through your outlook folders, use search!!!!

 I am a big fan of desktop search technologies, I use(d) vista for long time, now i am on Windows Server 2008 with desktop experience and search enabled. and this blog post is to introduce some outlook search tips that i use my self every day.

 first of all, i stoped trying to “organize” my mailbox by create so many folders and moving things by project and by sender. most people still do that in an attempt to make it easier to find that email later on. what i do is keep everything in one place (untill it’s too old to be useful then i move it to an archive file), and i use outlook search to find my way through the thousands of emails in my inbox.

 i rely heavily on email items attributes to find what i am looking for, so if i am looking for an email that was sent by me, i will use the search term “from:mutaz”, and so on.

 my top three search terms are:

  • from:name or email of author

  • to:name of email of recipient

  • isread:false/true

<update date=”4/12/2008″>

a new favorite search term:


works nicely if you use outlook categories in your inbox or even calendar or contacts


so if it is an email from simon (my PM now) regarding the project work we are doing for Adventure Works, my search term would propably be (from:simon “adventure works”), if i am looking for the email that he sent specifically to me which i did not read yet then the search term will become (from:simon to:mutaz “adventure works” isread:false).

 needs a little getting-used to, will save you lots of time trying to find your way around your outlook email. 

–  mutaz