Category Archives: Outlook Tutorials

What’s New In Outlook 2010

Microsoft would have you believe that Outlook 2010 saves you time, is easier to use and gives you extra functionality. Is this true? Let’s find out.

Outlook Ribbon

Let’s summarise what’s new in Outlook 2010:

  • Look and feel – Outlook 2010 sports a new look and feel that is consistent with other programs in Office 2010. Whereas the ribbon in Outlook 2007 was a cut down version that integrated with command bars, in 2010 the ribbon is fully fledged. In case you don’t already know, the ribbon is Microsoft’s replacement to the old menu and toolbar system of navigating the program.
  • Backstage View – this is completely new and replaces the file menu of previous versions. Here you find commands that affect the whole application.
  • Conversation Management – this is a big change that pulls all messages related to a conversation into a single “thread”.
  • Calendar Preview – a new feature that shows a preview of a meeting in your inbox so that you can see conflicting appointments without having to open up the calendar.
  • Quick Steps – these are sequences of commands that are grouped together so that they can be initiated with one click of a mouse. For example, you might create a quick step that defines a set of criteria and actions to perform on any message that meets those criteria. These actions might include moving a message to a folder and setting the importance level (there are other actions that can be performed, too).
  • People Pane – the people pane is the visible part of the Outlook Social Connector that connects Outlook with social networking sites like LinkedIn and Twitter. It allows you to keep track of your social contacts from your inbox.
  • Mailtips – mailtips inform the user that they are about to send emails to groups or individuals outside of their organisation. These alerts are designed to help you avoid common, sometimes embarrassing, mistakes.

The problem with a What’s New In Outlook 2010 article is that if the author includes everything that’s changed, it becomes a gargantuan piece of wriring. There are many, many changes to this program but none are big enough to merit their own bullet point above. Only the more significant changes are listed there. However, there are also additional improvements in the areas of:

  • scheduling meetings
  • instant search
  • cleaning up conversations
  • auto-complete list suggestions
  • roaming signatures
  • attached picture resizing
  • spellchecking in more places
  • many more!

It’s all very well to list everything new in Outlook 2010, but the best way to discover the changes is to use the program. Why not work through the Outlook 2010 tutorials and see the changes for yourself?

Add A Signature To Outlook Emails

In Outlook 2010 you can add digital signatures and also standard signatures. This tutorial will focus on adding standard signatures. Outlook allows you to add standard signatures either manually or automatically. If you’re going to be adding the same signature to every email, then it makes sense to set up your signature so that it gets added automatically. This will save you time, cut down on typing errors and it will be one less thing to have to think about!

There is much flexibility too, as you can specify different signatures for new emails, replies and forwards. Also, your signature can include text and even images.

To create a signature click the File tab > Options > Mail > Signatures (it should be the third button down).

Add A Signature In Outlook 2010

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When the Signatures and Stationery window opens, make sure the Email Signature tab is active and then click New.

New Signature Window In Outlook 2010

In the New Signature window, type in the name of your new signature. Click OK. In the lower half of the window, you’ll see an editor that you can use to construct your signature. Position the cursor in the large text box and start typing the text you want to be added to every email you send.

Create A Signature In Outlook

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If you want to add an image, click on the Insert Image button to the right of the toolbar. You can then navigate to the location of your image and insert it. You can also insert a hyperlink in your signature. To do this, select the portion of text you want to become the link and then click on the Hyperlink button (next to the Insert Image button).

Insert An Image In Outlook

Insert A Hyperlink In Outlook

Type in the URL and click OK. What most people do is navigate to the URL they want to use as the link, highlight the URL in their browser’s address bar, copy it and then paste it here.

Many of the formatting options that are available when typing out the email message itself are available here for use in the signature.

When you’ve finished creating your signature, click OK. The new signature will appear in the list. You can create new signatures by repeating this process, and you can also edit existing signatures by selecting them and changing their details in the editor.

Assigning Signatures To Replies And Forwards

When creating your signature, you may have seen two drop down lists for:

  • New messages
  • Replies/forwards

If you have only one signature, don’t worry about these settings. However, you can create multiple signatures and then use these drop down lists to specify which signature should be used for new messages and which one should be used for replies and forwards.

Setting Up Microsoft Outlook 2010

Many people balk at the task of setting up Microsoft Outlook 2010 because it seems such a daunting task. It’s not really, so fear not! This tutorial will take you through the basics of setting up Outlook 2010, and you’ll discover just how easy it is.

After you’ve installed Office 2010, as soon as you start Outlook, you’ll getthe startup window that let’s you know that you’re in the process of setting the application up.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup

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Click Next.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup 2

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At this screen, you must decide whether you want to tell Outlook about an existing email account that you are currently using. You would normally select “yes” here, and that’s what we’re going to do.

Click Next.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup 3

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On this screen, things start getting interesting. Here, we add details about our email account. You need to type in the following:

  • Your name
  • Email address
  • Password

Once you’ve typed in those details, click Next.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup 4

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The next screen tells us that Outlook is configuring the email server settings. This involves trying to establish a connection with the email server and attempting to log on using the email account you specified on the previous screen. It should take only a few minutes.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup

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The next screen, although it highlights an error of sorts, is usually nothing to worry about. It tells us that a network connection was successfully established and that Outlook was able to log on to the email server, but it also tells us that an encrypted connection to the mail server wasn’t available. You don’t even need to know what this means! Just click Next.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup 6

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This time Outlook tries to log on using an unencrypted connection. Again, don’t worry about what that means, just keep your fingers crossed!

If all goes well, you should get the following screen:

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Setup 7

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The final window tells us that Outlook was able to connect, log on and send a test email to the account you specified.