As I have been beta testing Outlook 2010 now for a couple months, I can safely say it is going to be a solid platform and worth the upgrade from 2003 or 2007. The learning curve is high, due to the ribbon which despite having been created to save screen space seems to get larger with every version of Office. Yet the speed improvements and search capabilities really make this an upgrade to consider.
One quick tip I have for you as you work with the new Outlook.. you can easily add things to the “Quick Access Toolbar” and “Quick Steps” box. Both of these are areas that allow you more flexibility than the normal ribbon. I will cover the “Quick Steps” box in a future post as that is a world of its own. But for now let me show you one very easy example of how to make a complex process simple by using the QAT.
In the old days of Outlook 2003 (and even 2007) you could view the Internet Headers of an e-mail by just right-clicking the e-mail and selecting View Options. In the lower portion of the resulting pop-up you could see the Internet Headers (which for us techie types is a big deal because it shows what IP address/domain the message really came from.. even for non-techie’s it is a good idea to know how to view the Internet Headers because you can quickly spot phishing attempts or spam by comparing the headers to what the message is claiming). For Outlook 2010 Microsoft decided to hide this feature.. you have to first open the e-mail, go to the File BackStage area, hit Properties, and then you finally get that nifty little old-school Internet Headers box.
We can use the QAT to make that a one-click deal! Just right-click in an open space on the ribbon and select “Customize Quick Access Toolbar”. On the left make sure Quick Access Toolbar is highlighted. Select “All Commands” under “Choose commands from”. And pick “Message Options”. Hit Add. Then OK. Done! Now up on the top left of your screen next to your undo button you have a one-click button for viewing Internet Headers. Select any message (no need to even open it) and hit that button. There are the Internet Headers.. even faster than in the old days. Now that’s progress.
You can use this same process to add just about any command to the QAT.. and save yourself loads of time hunting for those options you frequently need.