When should I choose to create a mail app versus an add-in for Outlook?

Some of you may or may not be aware that alongside with the legacy COM-based Office client object models, Office 2013 supports a new apps for Office developer platform. This blog post is intended to help new and existing Office developers understand the main differences between the COM-based object models and the apps for Office…

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Customizing the Outlook experience of attaching files from a SharePoint document library

Do you use SharePoint and Outlook? I recently acquired an article and sample code from one of our Microsoft consultants, Ben Roscorla, to show how to create an Outlook add-in to support a functionally rich and yet visually consistent experience to attach SharePoint documents to an email message. The following is a summary of the…

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Creating a helper class in C# to access common Outlook item members

In Microsoft Outlook, items such as MailItem, ContactItem and AppointmentItem have similar properties and methods. For example, the Application, Attachments, Body, Categories, and Class properties, and Close, Copy, and Display methods are common to all Outlook item objects. The COM-based Outlook object model returns the generic Visual Basic Object instead of the exact item type for many…

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Finding your way around Office developer documentation

I’d like to share with those of you who are new to Office solutions development a few tips about using Office developer documentation. Where Like most Microsoft products, our most up-to-date Office developer documentation is published on MSDN Library. The most common ways to find content is to use a search engine or the Table…

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Outlook 2010 MAPI Reference has been updated!

The Outlook 2010 MAPI Reference has recently been updated on MSDN. The Nickname Cache topic is now in sync with my earlier blog post Programmatically Accessing the Nickname Cache in Outlook 2010. What’s New in This Edition lists the following updates: Using Microsoft Outlook 2010 and 64-bit MAPI requires more than the traditional 32-bit API for…

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Running Sample Outlook Add-in’s

A few customers have asked about how to run the time-reporting add-in that was published on MSDN as Creating a Simple Time-Reporting Tool Based on the Outlook 2010 Calendar, and discussed in the blog post Time-Reporting Tool now Available as an Outlook Add-in! In general, because the main reason for us to provide code samples is to demonstrate…

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Attaching a File or an Outlook Item to an Outlook Message

Attaching a file to a Microsoft Outlook mail item is one of the most popular customer actions in Outlook.   Naturally, many power users also ask how to do this programmatically. The Outlook object model provides the Attachment object, Attachments.Add method, and an Attachments property for each of the Outlook item objects (for example, mail, appointment, contact, meeting,…

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Importing Charts, Customizing the Ribbon, Starting Excel from Outlook

Often I see customers on forums asking how to display custom user interface in the Office Fluent ribbon under some specific conditions. For example, how to display a custom ribbon only for mail inspectors, or, how would one tell the inspector is in compose mode and not read mode. Browsing just the titles and summaries of…

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Programmatically Accessing the Nickname Cache in Outlook 2010

I recently chatted with our MAPI expert Stephen Griffin and would like to share what I learned about the Outlook nickname cache. The nickname cache is the list of recipient names that is displayed when you insert names in the To, Cc, or Bcc field in an Outlook email or meeting request. The nickname cache…

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