Outlook and Internet mail support

OK, so this might be a bit off-topic from my regular blog posts, but since I am working on the Internet mail experience for the next release of Outlook, I wanted to hear from some of you about your experiences using our Internet mail account types (POP and IMAP).

In Outlook 2007, we did some improvements to make these account types work better.  For example, in IMAP we now allow you to configure your Sent Items folder to actually live on the IMAP server instead of in a local PST file.

Back to the questions however:

  • How could we improve your experience using Outlook for Internet mail?
  • What do other clients do that you'd like to see Outlook do?
  • Do you use Outlook on more than one computer with your Internet accounts?

Of course, if you have other suggestions or comments you'd like to add about our Internet mail support, then you can add those to the comments as well.  I'll make sure to read them all and reply as approriate.

Comments (56)

  1. I don’t usually do this on weekends, but I found a lot going on in the past few days, so here’s a special

  2. Nektar says:

    I want one folder for all my accounts, i.e. one inbox and I want Outlook to be smart enough so as when I delete something or aulter one of its properties and that specific item belongs to an account which can have multiple off-line and on-line copies (e.g. imap, Exchange, etc), to be able to synchronize that item with the server. In other words I don’t want multiple inboxes and Sent Items for multiple accounts in order for some folders, e.g. pop accounts, not to have synchronyzation and others, e.g. IMAP, to have. The program should be smart enough and handle multiple types of items in the same folder. And I don’t want to to have to create mail rules. Finally I want the ability to have both the Inbox and Sent Items as one folder and be able to group by conversation. I also want Archived Items to be a group within the main mail folder, instead of having to create a separate folder.

  3. Hannes Engelbrecht says:

    If you’re talking about the *experience*, then the thing that’s most on top of my list, before any additional features are added, would be the horrible speed and lack of responsiveness when using IMAP.

    The only thing I can fault Office 2007 is that Outlook behaves like terribly when using IMAP on anything than (I guess) Microsoft’s super-fast network connections and PCs. When trying to navigate between synched folders, Outlook will freeze up the system for up to a minute for EACH folder.

    On a dial-up system, Outlook would be intolerable. Actually, worse than intolerable. On the 384k line I use, it’s merely abysmal.

    Although I love the app, and spend 70% of my time in it at work, at home I cannot bear even opening it for all the "Not Responding" whiteouts I get in Vista.

    When I read that the Office team made all kinds of IMAP improvements on Outlook since 2003, I was hoping the situation would improve, but it’s stayed exactly the same.

    In comparison, Mozilla Thunderbird and Opera’s M2 behave admirably.

  4. John Obeto says:

    I, for one, would like Outlook install to explicitly require the user to state where the default .PST should be installed, if Exchange is not detected.

    I have had users do a system reset and then start howling when the discovered the .pst was lost forever.

    Better search.

    With a nearly 1GB primary outlook store folder, I don’t have speed problems with later-day systems, only on older (2.4GHz Pentium-based) rigs.

  5. Simon Woolf says:

    How about enabling Outlook (mainly POP) to work with a proxy server?  It is the only internet services program I have that can not do this (My University forces me to access the internet through a proxy server; though they provide both http and SOCKS).

    At the moment, I’m forced to use a program called SOCKSCap that intercepts all traffic from Outlook and diverts it through the SOCKS proxy, but it’s a poor substitute for native support, and horribly unstable on Windows XP.

    I can’t believe I’m the only person in the position of having to use a proxy server.  Please, give us somewhere to configure a proxy (or better still, how about having Outlook automatically inherit Internet Explorer’s proxy settings?)

    Many thanks.

  6. Regan Chambers says:

    When email comes into Outlook 2007, everything else stops, in Outlook and anything else Microsoft. For example, I’m typing a sentence in an outgoing email. Nothing appears on that window until the emails have arrived. Someone recommended changing the update frequency – didn’t make any difference. Someone recommended checking anti-virus screening – didn’t and shouldn’t make a difference. How do I get this fixed? It’s very, very annoying!

  7. Pat Ward says:

    I use Exchange/Cached mode (OST file), and it is extremely annoying that it treats the POP mail as a different source (email server), even though it is the same mail database underneath.  A way to override this would be great.

  8. M. Anderson says:

    I use Outlook to monitor a couple of POP accounts on the weekend.  These POP accounts delivery to my main Exchange mailbox.  I then monitor these accounts/messages through my Exchange mailbox on my WM5 device.  I would host the POP accounts on the Exchange server, but that just isn’t an option.

    If the Outlook authentication for the POP account fails for any reason (e.g., network hiccup, ISP was temporarily down, etc…), the user ID and password dialog box displays and stays there until you manually press the cancel button from the console.  This is quite inconvenient as I have to then remote desktop into my workstation and clear the dialog.  

    I’d like to see an option to dismiss that dialog after a set number of seconds if the authentication fails (or some other elegant solution — whatever it may be).

  9. Murray says:

    My wife uses Outlook with 3 POP3 servers for her consulting business (her own personal account and two other consulting firms she consults with).  The number one problem she encounters is the POP authentication dialog.  It is quite common for one of the POP3 servers to fail (network issues normally) and then the id/password dialog appears.  Usually she is typing something else and this typing erases the password due to the focus switch.  She doesn’t know the passwords for some of the POP3 servers since they are random strings.  This dialog should only appear if authentication fails not if the connection fails.

  10. Ken Brown says:

    The IMAP functionality has improved in OL 2007 – much thanks for that! The Sent Items on the server as opposed to in the PST is a great improvement. I use one Exchange profile and two IMAP accounts and it all works rather nicely. One of my IMAP accounts is actually hosted on Exchange server and the only reason I use IMAP instead of MAPI is the "no 2 Exchange accounts at the same time" restriction, my biggest issue with Exchange bar none. Barring the removal of that, my #2 issue is that OL 2007 does not set the "from" account based on the currently active folder. If I am replying to an item in my Inbox that belongs to IMAP account "Foo", I want OL to recognize that I am sending from my "Foo" account, not my "Bar" account. How can a feature so basic not be present in OL when it’s in Thunderbird and other IMAP clients?

  11. alanboner says:

    Outlook 2007 crashes when it receives a mail with an invalid date header from a POP3 server.  This is a different behaviour from Outlook 2003, where it would simply create a new entry each time it retrieved the same such bogus timestamp.  In that case it also never marked the message as retrieved, but properly handled the message as a new message at each retrieval. It processed with my inbox rules for spam (my POP3 server flags it as spam with invalid date) and added the same message to my spam folder repeatedly until it is deleted from the server.  

    Although such headers are rare, and were a pain to deal with in Outlook 2003, at least there was a recovery mechanism and Outlook didn’t crash.  

    I now have a pst file from which I can not even delete a copy of such a message without crashing Outlook.


    Mon, 1 Jan 1601 09:34:00 +0800

    Sorry to use this forum to file a bug, but I’m no longer a developer and this blog was the first place I found that resembled a reasonable feedback mechanism.  Please forward as appropriate.  I am available to support resolution of this, but I won’t be following up otherwise.

  12. Adam Brock says:

    Hi Ryan,

    “Ignore thread” feature for those of us subscribed to a lot of listservs.  A lot of times there will be a thread I could careless about, and it would be nice to be able to mark the thread and have any replies automatically sent to the deleted items folder.

    Customizing (or more options on) the follow-up context menu (Today, Tomorrow, This Week, etc.).  Personally, I’d like to have a “next week” option on there, but could do without the “no date”.

    It would be nice if some fields could be auto-populated when you drag a message to the calendar or contacts icon.  Maybe parse some of the text for words like “fax”, “cell”, “mobile” and populate the appropriate fields.

    Sometimes I will have an item selected in the to-do bar, but a message in my inbox will also appear selected.  I’ve accidently deleted things from the to-do bar, thinking the message in my inbox was selected.  Perhaps a dialog box should appear when deleting things from the to-do bar?

    In Outlook 2003, you could use the Control+Shift+something to open a new item (ie. control + shift + a for appointment) from any outlook window.  In Outlook 2007, you are only able to use these shortcuts from the main Outlook window.  I’m guessing this has to do with using Word as the text editor for Outlook, since when I hit control+shift+a, it toggles the case of any selected text.  Is there a way to change this?

    I have been unable to find an easy way to setup a rule that would flag a message I send to certain individuals, but only flag (or categorize) the message after it has been sent.  I have been able to flag the message before it is sent, but then the message appears flagged in the recipients inbox.  There are a few individuals in my organization that are notorious for not responding to emails, therefore my idea with this is to remind myself a few weeks later that I need to prompt that individual for a reply.  I imagine there are other people who could make use of a feature like this.

    I’ve noticed if you open an email flagged for followup (from the to-do bar) and reply to the email, the original email is automatically closed.  Therefore, to flag the email complete you must return to the original email or mark it complete on the to-do bar.  It would be nice if the flag would automatically be marked complete, or if a dialog box would appear asking the user if they wanted to flag the previous email complete.  I know not every email is flagged to be replied to, but I’d imagine a lot are.

    When you right click an email in the to-do bar, you have to go to the follow-up sub menu to select “mark complete”, but when you do this for a task, “mark complete” is available on the context menu.  Could you make “mark complete” an option on the initial context menu?

    Thanks for opening yourself up to suggestions.  I think Outlook 2007 is a wonderful step for Microsoft, and I’m definitely more productive because of it.  Feel free to contact me if you’d like, 254.710.4550.

  13. Matt Jones says:

    Several issues:

    Hide Deleted Mesages: Is it too difficult to just put a check box for showing/hiding deleted messages? I mean, it’s difficult enought to have to figure out how to simply hide deleted messages AND keep a custom View type. You get EITHER IMAP view or Hide Deleted messages? Why should this be a different view type and not simply a check box in the options table?

    New Mail Notification: Why can IMAP accounts not get the new mail notification fadein/out message box? Why ONLY the default Inbox? You should be able to assign this PER inbox, and the notification should be display your IMAP account name with or w/out different colored backgrounds so you can easily see what email account in can into. (for those of us with special email accounts for SUPPORT or EMERGENCY type emails, that need a little bit more alert)

    Draft Storage: Draft folder storage should be any folder i want it to be, especially a subfolder of my IMAP (eg INBOX.draft).

    Send/Recieve: This simply kills my system when it’s syncing anything, new folders, large amounts of new mails, new RSS feeds from over the weekend. I think this should be a totally separate process/thread in the system. I just moved to 07 to test out it’s new and *improved* IMAP support. Went in there and told it to "get all message content, not just headers" and it’s sitting at 27% for 15 minutes already (58 minute estimation) and i cannot do anything else until it’s done.

    IDLE support: Needs to support IMAP "idle" commands. I will see how 07 does but with 03 it constantly got disconnected from the IMAP server.

    One thing to really try out: Setup an imap email account and use it as your main email account for several months. Use Thunderbird as your client, get use to how it works. Then go to Outlook for a week or 2. You’ll probably see a pretty big difference in behavior as well as speed/reliability for the IMAP server. That would give you a good real world judge as to what to focus on.

    Assign Junk mail folder: Why can’t you assign a Junk mail folder that is part of your IMAP folders (typically for false positives and such that they are universally in the same folder across any number of IMAP email clients)

    Subject/From Panel: (I’m not sure what you really call this panel, not the Reader panel, but the one with the flags/attachments/subject/from/etc… info)… how come it does a 2 line look (from/others on 1st line, subject on second line) when a certain pixel wide and automatically moves to 1 line mode if you resize it too big. I should be able to have a 2 line view no matter HOW wide i want that column (i thought i found a way to do this in BTR2, but cannot in the RTM)

    Overall speed: I ran a test and flagged a mailbox with 3111 read messages as UNREAD and then READ. Outlook took 5:15 (minutes) to flag as UNREAD and then 6:31 (minutes) to flag as READ, then 6 full seconds to then switch to the Inbox after performing this, and being able to read email in the inbox. Thunderbird (1.5.0) took 1 second to flag as UNREAD and 1 second to flag as READ and i switched to the inbox within 1 second and could start reading emails. Obviously they are doing something much better than Outlook is. I switched form my Inbox to my Sent mail folder and it took 10 seconds to just load that folder. That’s ridiculously too long.

    Junk Mail Flag: Why isn’t there a Junk mail flag. I can block the sender and the domain of a junk mail, and Outlook will try to filter out junk mails, but i cannot just click a button and have an email moved to the junk folder. I think a BAYESIAN learning system is very helpful and would be nice to put into OUTLOOK, but at least have a button for me to move stuff to junk enmass.

    Resend mail as new: Here’s a feature that i use quite a lot. Thunderbird, Kmail and Eudora all do this. If i send an email and accidentally leave off 1 or 2 contacts it’s not easy to RESEND that email without forwarding it. I don’t want to forward it, i want to resend it. Or if i leave OFF the attachment, or a crucial piece of info, why would i want to FORWARD or REPLY to this. There needs to be a quick key or button to resend the mail as if it were NEW. IE, all the recipeints back in the right To/Bcc/Cc listing no alteration to subject or body. Just send as if it wasn’t sent in the first place. Then i can add more contacts, attachments or comments and send again.

    You need to support forwarded email addresses as "alternate" addresses for me. I.e. i can get email sent to mjones@mydomain.com as well as mattjones@mydomain.com. However i have "mjones@mydomain.com" as MY email address. However when someone sends me an email via "mattjones@mydomain.com" and i hit REPLY ALL, it replies back to "mattjones@mydomain.com". I really don’t want a copy of that email, because i’m writting it! It will get put into my sent folder. So we should be able to indicate alternate email addresses that it needs to strip out of "replied to" emails.

    Reply to email at the bottom of the message? Is this feature even supported. Some of us like to reply at the bottom of emails

    "– " rule: Please support this understood rule (all other IMAP clients support it). In any email the any text following after the "– " and including that line are considered SIGNATURES, and should be displayed in an lighter grey color so as to not distract from the email body. Also when replying to an email, this info needs to get REMOVED from the email body. I hate emails that have 20 signatures in them going through all the replies.

    I hope this helps. Most of these features are already supported in Thunderbird/Eudora/Peagus/TheBat/ClawMail/Kmail/Pine(mostly) which i consider to be the best IMAP mail clients

  14. indiix2 says:

    UPDATE: I found the resolution to my problem:

    "Subject/From Panel: (I’m not sure what you really call this panel, not the Reader panel, but the one with the flags/attachments/subject/from/etc… info)… how come it does a 2 line look (from/others on 1st line, subject on second line) when a certain pixel wide and automatically moves to 1 line mode if you resize it too big. I should be able to have a 2 line view no matter HOW wide i want that column (i thought i found a way to do this in BTR2, but cannot in the RTM)"


    View -> Current View -> Customize -> Other Settings

    Uncheck "Use compact layout in widths smaller than x characters" and check "Always use compact layout"

  15. Karen says:

    "Resend mail as new:"

    Open the copy in your Sent Items folder and click "Other Actions > Resend this item"

  16. Frustrated says:

    Presently Outlook 2003 and 2007 slow to a CRAWL when checking POP3 mail.  Clean up the background work so Outlook remains snappy!

  17. Thorbjorn Sundboe says:

    I use OL 2003 with IMAP accounts. There are a number of shortcomings on how OL is handling IMAP that should be changed.

    – Save sent items on the IMAP server is the most wanted feature for me. I see that you have fixed this and that’s great news. Today I use rules to post sent items to the server, they frequently don’t work. In 2007, I would welcome functionality that handles saves of sent items to the server even if the client is not connected to the server, items could be cached locally and synced back one a connection is established.

    – The Junk Mail filter does not work with IMAP. I understand why and that it may be tricky, but would love to see a solution.

    – I use multiple IMAP accounts. I would like to have these viewed in one common inbox/sentmail as is possible with POP3.

    -When using multiple IMAP/POP accounts, it is so easy to forget to select the appropriate account you want to send this specific message from. I would like this to be handled differently, maybe already select before you do a compose (i.e. account-specific compose buttons or the likes).

  18. Peter J Fraser says:

    POP3S and Certificates. I am trying to use pop3s to speak to dovcot on an OpenBSD system. Outlook does not like the certificate (and I am quite willing to believe that something is wrong with it). The message is "The target principal name is incorrect". I can continue to use this certificate, and pop3 works fine, but there seems to be no way to suppress the "Internet Security Warning" that pops up about every 15 minutes. In the previous version of out look, you only had to acknowledge the "Internet Security Warning" once per session. Please note the certificate is self signed.

  19. Athena says:

    During a send/retreive session, switch from the default folder set to the IMAP inbox then click "X" to delete an item.  

    That’s guaranteed to lock things up here.

  20. Outlook Tips says:

    Do you use Outlook with a POP3 or IMAP account? Share your "Internet mail experience" with the man in…

  21. Mark Babb says:

    Outlook 2007 in Vista will not send more than 1 item at a time. What a pain! I literally have to close Outlook and then re-open to send another item. How can I fix this?

  22. Scott Bonacker says:

    It would be nice if it were easier to document profiles by printing them, and moving them to a place where they could be regularly backed up or easily pointed.

  23. rgregg says:

    Mark Babb, what kind of account are you using POP or IMAP?  Do you know which ISP your mail account is configured with?  There are some occasional server issues that can cause problems with mail, but I haven’t heard anyone else have issues with Outlook 2007 only sending one item at a time.

  24. robin.chappell says:

    I have a number of long standing points that I would like to see modified (I use XP):

    1. The ability to attach a contact to a specific email account (with the choice of either only send with this account or use other accounts if available)

    2. Better control of send/receive when not in the office: in the office I have Broadband and when travelling I either use WiFi or 3G and these cost much more to use than the home connection. I would like to be able to restrict downloads and/or account activity on the basis of which connection I am using

    3. Better control of duplicate downloads: I use pop3/smtp and Outlook easily downloads multiple duplicates, which if the "remove from server when deleted" deletes emails that should be kept.

    4. I’d like some of the add-ins provided by Sperry to be built in to Outlook (auto bcc, remove duplicates)

    5. I would like to have more control over the save as and the "Display as" field of the email address eg I would like a rule: First Name Second Name (Company)

    6. (Possibly a bit off-topic) the ability to sync sent emails with Pocket Outlook as I want to know what I have sent.

    7. I’d like the ability to send an email account configuration (with pop/smtp details) file to another Computer so I can import account details easily.

    8. Associated with the point 2. above I’d like to have more powerful scheduling for send and receive: eg night vs day, account level settings

  25. Larry Marks says:

    I use the AOL IMAP server so I can use OL 2003.

    Haven’t seen the OL 2007 interface yet–apologize if this has been covered.

    The Views in the IMAP folders could be a little friendlier–some more flexibility to arrange deleted.

  26. Geoff Cusick says:

    I used to use Eudora, which allowed selective deletion of messages from the (POP3) server.  I use my machine at home to check mail at work, leaving copies on the server; it would make handling Spam (in particular) much more efficient if I only had to handle it once.

  27. Gene says:

    Tracking results in Outlook 2007 now prints on a separate page and as such is virtually useless.  It was far better in Outlook 2003 where it was immediately below the subject line.

  28. Andy says:

    Please make Outlook more portable among computers. I tend to change my primary computer fairly often, and moving my setup, including Outlook, from one to the next is a pain. Thx.

  29. I’d like to second Adam’s request about an ability to better manage sent messages in a way to track those we’ve sent but have received no reply.

    His idea was to create a rule that would enable us to mark some messages sent to some people who we deem may be likely not to follow-up.

    What I’d prefer is simply a means to be prompted on all ougtoing messages (if we enable such an option) to ask us if we want to track the message.

    Then we just need a way to track those which have not been replied to. I realize this isn’t easy or it would have been done before. But if a way can be determined, it would be a great fature.

  30. Adam Brock says:

    Charlie (et al.), in case you were wondering how I’ve been tracking messages sent to individuals who typically don’t respond to emails:

    Create a rule that adds my email address to the CC line whenever I send an email to any of those individuals.

    Create a second rule that moves any emails sent from my email address and with my email address in the CC field to my sent items folder, and categorizes them as "pending response".

    Unfortunately, the problem with this is it creates two copies of the message in the sent items folder.  If I’m sending an attachment or lots of emails to the person, this really begins eating into my mailbox quota.  🙁

  31. Athena says:

    Also, why can’t I empty the Junk Mail folder in an IMAP store anymore?

  32. petervogl says:

    I will describe 2 scenarios where Outlook IMAP and PST is, unfortunately, a nightmare to use and to support: (i) users have a Windows domain in office, but log on to different machines. (ii) users have a Windows domain in office but need to access their Outlook data while being on travel with their notebook (online and offline).


    – To make pst files available offline, this can be done by putting them in the roaming profile of a user.

    – However, if the connection gets lost while the outlook file is being transmitted, the pst file is usually worth trash.

    – If a user logs off from computer A and logs on to computer B while his roaming profile with the pst file is not yet copied back to the server completely, a second pst file (copy of the first one) is being produced. Thus, the user may end up with a 4 GB instead of a 2 GB roaming profile…

    – Settings are stored in several different files and it is hard to find out which files need to be moved to roaming directories so that all settings remain intact.


    – Overall, terrible user experience with a slow mail provider and virtually impossible to maintain consisting settings for an average user for scenarios (ii).

    – The local cache file is not available to the user (like in Exchange caching mode). Thus, a user cannot access his previous mail when the mail server is not available even though the cache file does have all the information in it and can, in principle, be opened and looked at (only advisable for experts).

    – the settings are spread over even more files than with POP: there is the personal pst file that contains the contacts, for example. Settings, rules, nk2 information are stored in several different files. As a consequence, as soon as a user logs on to another machine where no cache file is present, most but not all settings are lost. Altogether, this produces an inconsistent and tedious user experience

    – the steps necessary to view the recipient rather than the sender for an IMAP-based Sent Items mail folder are too complicated and obscure

    – the steps necessary to open Outlook with the IMAP inbox rather than with the personal folder inbox are too complicated an obscure

    – it is possible to move an imap-file to a roaming or server-based location (even though it is nowhere documented), but it ruins the Send/Receive settings.

  33. Avinash says:

    I don’t know why it is happening but since when my mail server has been migrated to WorldClient, Outlook 2007 has stopped downloading e-mails whereas the SMTP is working fine.

    It shows ‘completed’ when testing the account from Tools > Options > … but not when Send/Recieve is clicked.

    Till date I’ve tried with disabling the Firewalls, uninstalling Anti-virus, creating another profile and uninstalling and reinstalling complete MSO2007! Yeah, one more, its working fine with Outlook Express!

    Any idea how can I solve this problem? Just seeking your help.

  34. jwatsonx says:

    I am having trouble finding any information on an issue I’m having with Outlook 2007 and IMAP accounts. It seems that maybe there is some type of limitation of how many imap connections you can have simultaneously? I have about 5 imap accounts at the same place and I can’t seem to keep them all online at the same time? 3 or 4 of them but not all. IS THERE some limitation in Outlook 2007 that is causing this. Maybe some criss cross of authentication between Outlook and the IMAP server? Is there some way to authenticate one at a time instead of simultaneously? Very strange and somewhat frustrating.


  35. Bob Gevonk says:

    I have a largish ie 6GB imap pst.  My c drive is slow, and I have a faster raid setup for e drive.  However, I have not been able to move the imap pst file, as Outlook automatically creates a new pst file if you try and move the old one, even using the control panel –> mail approach.  The slowness of outlook 2007 means that I am forced to use Thunderbird, as with the same amount of data even on the slow c drive, it is quite useable, whereas outlook can take minutes to change folders / check mail /etc.  I really like the UI, but the speed (on a Core 2 Duo 6600 with 2GB of RAM) makes it completely unworkable.

  36. li rongbao says:

    Dear sirs, ladies:

    I use Panasonic Fax machine to send/ receiver fax. We can get fax in tif file in my PC. but PanaSonic fax software do not support email service. When I get a fax in tif file in a certain folder, Pls tell me how to activate my outlook2000, to attach that tif file and send email to me ? then even on weekend, I am 200kms away from fax machine, I can still check email to see my fax. How to do it with my outlook2000 ?

    Thanks for your teaching.

    li rongbao

    if possible, Pls end email to rongbao999@gmail.com


  37. Stefan KZVB says:

    Hi, this is a bug report:

    There’s an Outlook 2007 group policy setting "L_HideJunkMailUI" which should hide Junk-E-Mail functionalities from the UI. It sets the registry key HKCUSoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftOffice12.0OutlookOptionsMailDisableAntiSpam to 1. But after activating the policy the Junk-E-Mail group is still visible in the ribbon. However when clicking on any of the icons in the group you’ll get an error message. We use Outlook 2007 RTM German with performance update on Win XP SP2.

  38. John says:

    IMAP IDLE is broken in Outlook 2007.  The logs show that it sends an IDLE command, then it deliberately sends the LOGOUT command.  On the next connect I see my authentication go back to the server again.  This is not what I expect to see.

    MAP: 01:23:00 [tx] 5h10 IDLE

    IMAP: 01:23:00 [db] OnNotify: asOld = 5, asNew = 5, ae = 3

    IMAP: 01:23:00 [rx] + entering idle mode

    IMAP: 01:23:49 [tx] Dropping connection, LOGOUT sent

    IMAP: 01:23:49 [db] Connection to ‘mail.xyz.com’ closed.

    I would like to see it behave more like FlexMail 2007 which is my PocketPC mail client.

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:33 S 7 IDLE

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 R + entering idle mode

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 Waiting for IDLE response

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 1

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 2

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 3

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 4

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:49:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 5

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 6

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:35 R :IDLEReceive:Step 7

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:35 IDLE waiting returned: hStatus = -2134900716

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:35 Timeout, reissuing IDLE

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:35 S DONE

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:36 R 7 OK IDLE completed

    1322793198 – 2007.4.21 3:52:36 S 8 IDLE

    Notice that I have the IDLE set for 3 minutes and after the timeout a new IDLE command is sent to the server.  Unless my cellular connection drops I only see my UID and PWD being sent to the server once during the time I have Flexmail running.

  39. Lazlo says:

    Whenever I copy text/plain messages from a .pst to an IMAP folder, Outlook tacks on an HTML version of the message.  Boy, what I would give for a way to disable that…

  40. Filip Moerman says:

    The most needed is speed improvements in imap.

    I have a few users who want to use outlook, but imap support is so slow that we have to use thunderbird instead. If imap would be good supported, then I would be able to migrate all my users to outlook.

    Indeed a good spam sollution as in thunderbird would be nice to.

  41. Silver says:

    Something is broken with my brand new Outlook 2007: as soon as I add an IMAP account Outlook can’t be started anymore again.


    – start OL without accounts defined: OK

    – add a POP account: works OK then exit

    – restart OL: OK

    – add a IMAP account: works OK then exit

    – restart OL: NOK, no chance. I have to remove the IMAP account in the "control panel => mail", then it works again.

  42. Pip_X says:

    I from poor country, spent almost all of my one month of wages to buy Office Standard OEM, just to find that Outlook does not support hotmail or windows mail live…

  43. rgregg says:

    Pip: You can download the Outlook Connector (http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=aa0ad3b0-e1a4-4990-a2be-dde78fed0709&DisplayLang=en) and use it to connect to your Hotmail account from Outlook.  However, currently you need a Hotmail premium account for this to work.

    We are working on a solution so that all Hotmail users can access their e-mail through Outlook, and it should be available soon.

  44. DaveS says:

    Other folders than simply "Sent" need to be allowed to live on the IMAP server like any other email client. (drafts, templates, etc.)

    Rules (or filtering) needs to work with IMAP folders.

    Shell integration: When sending an outlook email not launched through the client (for example right click on a word doc in the windows file explorer and "Send To->Mail Recipient") it goes into the Outlook sent mail folder instead of the configured IMAP sent folder.

    Same problem for the Salesforce.com Outlook Edition 3.0 plugin. Emails sent using the plugin go to the Outlook send mail instead of IMAP sent mail. Additionaly emails in the IMAP sent mail are not correctly identified to SF.com plugin as "sent" messages and therefor when attempting to associate and email with an account it searches the sender field (me) instead of the recipient. This works correctly if the email is in the Outlook sent mail folder.


  45. orayzio says:

    I work from home most of the time, at our main office some of the time, and at client sites some of the time. At home, I have broadband through Cox and, like many ISPs, they block access to my company’s SMTP server. So, if I’m working from home, all of my outgoing mail has to go through Cox’s SMTP server but if I’m at our company office or on the road, all the mail has to instead go through my company’s SMTP server.

    What I need is a way to configure multiple SMTP servers for a single POP3 account with either automatic detection based on how I’ve connected to the internet, or some way to switch SMTP servers on the fly. As a workaround, I’ve created two entries in my hosts file for "outgoingmail" with one pointing to the Cox IP address and the other to my company’s IP address and with one of them commented out. I can then edit the hosts file, moving the # sign from the beginning of one line to the other, when I travel and then close and re-open Outlook. It’s an ugly workaround though and I’d really like to see a better solution.

    A separate improvement I’d like to see is quick and easy access to the complete headers and complete text of the incoming emails. I use spamsource for this today.

  46. Paul S. says:

    I only use Outlook for POP3/SMTP purposes (and have since OL 2000), but I have a dozen POP3’s to manage and 0.5 TB of back-emails in 2 PST folders dating back to 1997, so I might be in a good position to comment on Internet Email support in Outlook.

    ** My main gripe is a simple one – I miss the import/export of IAF’s badly. The ability to back up and restore settings selectively (rules, junk filters, internet account settings etc) is fundamental to any program these days. Please, #1 wish – an easy and inbuilt route to do this.

    ** Better handling of the upload/download server connection process. On other POP3 clients, theres a server dialog window, where one can watch the dialog of client to server (ideal for diagnosing connection issues), there are options to manage items on the server (redownload, open headers, selectively get or delete), and if connection fails (as someone said above) you don’t get a request to enter user or password when it wasnt a user/password issue that failed.

    ** As mentioned above, multiple SMTP server options. Suppose I have 6 email accounts managed on POP3/SMTP on my laptop… and one SMTP for my ISP at home, one SMTP at my business partner’s home for *his* ISP, one at work where I use the company’s SMTP server… having SMTP settings held individually under each email account and each needing manually changing each time, really isn’t the best way to manage it.

    Mostly, look at what other Windows-based email clients (such as Sylpheed, ClawsMail and especially, The Bat) are doing.

    While Outlook has focussed on contact and time management and group organization, the basics – email management, have lagged badly. And yet, that’s a large part of what Outlook’s used for.

  47. Paul S. says:

    Separate from what I miss in Outlook, you also ask what other clients do. I’ve recently this week been looking at other x86 email clients, so this is what I’ve found as it relates to "the Outlook experience":

    ** First, Outlook is a big package. A lot of users will use some of its features but not others. A configuration wizard (usable at any time rather than just at 1st install) that asks what features and subfeatures will be used, and hides/disables those which won’t be used, would go a long way to simplifying Outlook in many cases. (And the config would obviously be changeable if the use of the program changed.)

    ** The filters are hopelessly limited. Look at something like "The Bat" for how email filters should work.

    ** Management of emails held on the server — again The Bat handles this * really * nicely. Its buried under "Message Dispatcher" but it’s well designed.

    ** Better handling of attachments, and more options on Data Export. For example… the Export function exports emails to Access, but although Access 2007 has an "attachment" data type for binary files, attachments help in Outlook are not exported. The Export function has no real options to choose what to export, either.

    ** Likewise there is no "attachment viewer" that allows one to review Windows-explorer-style the attachments in a PST file and delete some and move others to a separate folder with a link inserted in the original email to note that the attachment has been deleted or removed.

    ** With most of Office having moved to more open saved data standards, I think it’s also time that I’d like to see an option for Outlook to use new data store formats that’re more open too (JET or similar self-contained database???  XML???), or at least to import/export all its data and/or user settings to one.

    ** Settings and options are still quite scattered, often buried under buttons within "advanced" panels accessed by buttons shown within tabbed controls accessed within menus… this can probably be better managed.

    ** Views and view customization can probably be simplified.

    Hope these ideas help. Those (together with the previous post above) are the obvious ones to me, as an Outlook Internet Mail user.

  48. Eugene Humbert says:

    I’ve found Outlook 2007 to be a complete disaster, and I can’t find any way to fix it.  All of a a sudden, I can’t view the details of any of my 5 mail addresses.  I have all of them coming into one account on my Outlook, and for some reason, none of them display under tools > Accounts.  If I hit repair or delete, the same account shows as active every time.  I hit the up or down arrow, and it doesn’t change which account I’m working on.  I’ve got a problem with one, and I can’t even get to it!  I’ve googled, and not found anyone else having this problem.  I’ve searched Microsoft, and can’t find anything related to it.  Do I have to destroy everything and start over?  

  49. rgregg says:

    Eugene, could you use the EMail button at the top of my blog to contact me?  I’d like to get some more information about your setup.

  50. Paul S. says:

    (Small addendum – OL 2007 is noticably slower to respond than 2000. Sluggish.)

  51. Ian H says:

    I’ve also got the serious sluggishness when sending/receiving. O2007 takes 100% of processor resource and if you’re writing and email at the time justs stops completely until the send/receive has finished. It’s also noticeable in other apps too, but not fortunately to the same extent. There have been 100’s if not thousands of posts about this and it’s about time we had a fix. I’m seriously considering going back to O2003.

  52. Paul S. says:

    Bug report in OL2007 for you, with fix/workaround:

    My symptom was — POP/SMTP individually would send/receive but the full send/receive automation didn’t prrocess them, they sat on "processing" forever. Simultaneously a tray icon saying OL2007 was "synchronizing folders" came up and sat there forever.

    This has been reported by others; the fix/workaround is to go into folder properties and turn off "create outlook/exchange views". For example:


    (This thread references the same problem I had)


    (This reply posts the solution. It worked for me, too.)

    It looks like there may be a minor OL2007 Internet Mail lockup bug there. hence this post to draw it to your attention.

  53. All I can say is give an IMAP account the same feeling as a local PST folder. I mean, when you press delete move it to a specific folder.

    Rules doesn’t seem to work on IMAP folders.

    The only improvement I see since 2003 is the fact that you can now set your SENT folder.

    If you don’t understand what I mean just install Thunderbird from Mozilla and you will know.

    If you want my honest opinion; I never saw such a disappointing support for IMAP in a commercial product.

    In our company the only reason to still use outlook is the fact that our sales people use a plugin for a certain CRM application to archive their mail.

    But if even sales people (read: users) start to say that they prefer Thunderbird there must be something seriously wrong. And no I am not going to buy an expensive Exchange server.

    I am really looking forward to a better support for IMAP in Outlook or at least a plugin that makes folders and rules work like they should.

  54. Greg L. says:

    Bottom line is that to backup user data, totally rebuild a computer with a fresh OS, and then re-install programs and user data, there appears to be no method of saving the email account settings in Outlook.  Apparently at one time there were .iaf files which handled this?  How about bringing these back – or something better?

  55. James Miller says:

    Wish List for Outlook IMAP support:

    – Option to treat deleting mail the same as Exchange server (ie, mark it read, move it to deleted items folder), as opposed to just "marking for delete". Even Windows Mail does this. This is my current dealbreaker for using IMAP with Outlook.

    – Full support for Junk Mail filters/ Junk Mail folder management.


  56. Adam Brock says:

    One nice feature would be when opening a recurring appointment, to add a "open future occurrences" option.  A lot of people I work with will create recurring appointments with no start or stop date.  Eventually they’ll change the appointment, and this will usually modify the previous appointments as well.

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