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Hello Office 2010 beta users! My name is Michael Affronti and I'm a Program Manager on the Outlook product team here in Redmond. We now have the opportunity to talk with all of you about Outlook 2010 and the amazing features we've been hard at work on over the last two years! Over the next couple months we'll be revealing a bunch of the changes and updates in Outlook 2010 right here on the Outlook Team Blog.
Let's start with your Inbox in Outlook 2010. For a long, long time your Inbox has been a lengthy, chronological list of all the emails you have received. We know that for many of our users, dealing with the sheer volume of email they send and receive each day is a daunting and sometimes impossible task. It's been up to you, the user, to wade through the thousands of messages you may have in your Inbox; deleting, filing, and reading individual emails, perhaps wondering if there might be a better way to do those core email triage tasks.
Enter the Conversations experience in Outlook 2010, an entirely new way to take control of your Inbox. You may have used conversation arrangements before in previous versions of Outlook or in other email clients, but in Outlook 2010 we have taken conversations to a whole new level by allowing all of your email to look, act, and function as smart groups of related messages.
All of your emails are now grouped into conversations based on the subject of the mail. A random sampling of internal Microsoft employees' Inboxes averages a 40% reduction in the number of items seen in the Inbox! All this is from simply grouping and hiding the older, redundant content of conversations. A single-click on a conversation item will show you the content of the latest email in the thread, enabling you to quickly read and triage an entire set of messages.
"Hey, what about the stuff I've sent in that conversation?!" We've got you covered! If you expand a conversation you'll get to see all of the older messages that make up that conversation, and you'll even see your Sent Items right inside the conversation – since the email messages you send in a conversation are just as important as those you receive:
If you're an email filer we'll also seamlessly show you items in the conversation you've filed in any other folder in your mailbox:
So no matter what your workflow is for storing and organizing your email, the new Conversations experience in Outlook 2010 always shows you the entire conversation every time, everywhere.
Who replied to who? Outlook 2010 makes it even easier to tell who replied to who inside of a conversation. Click on any individual message inside of a conversation to see a dotted line that shows which messages it replies to. This can be useful when a reply comes into a conversation that actually responded directly to an earlier message in the conversation, like Michael Affronti's message in the conversation below:
Speed up your triage by acting Conversationally. By grouping all the related emails in a conversation together into a single item, Outlook 2010 allows you to save time by easily deleting, moving, categorizing, or marking the entire conversation as read in one click. Once you categorize a conversation, Outlook 2010 will automatically categorize new items that arrive in that conversation! The time savings can be significant – in one internal test, Microsoft employees reduced 46% of the actions needed to triage their Inbox in the new Conversations experience, as compared to Outlook 2007's Date arrangement.
Reply and Reply All are smarter too, and will always reply to the latest message in the conversation. If you happen to open an older message in the conversation and hit Reply – say a flagged mail from the ToDo Bar, for example – Outlook 2010 has you covered with a new clickable warning will appear that allows you to instantly jump to the latest message in the conversation.
Ever have a distracting email flare up in your Inbox? The new Ignore button quickly and easily moves an entire conversation and any future items that arrive to your Deleted Items folder. Now you won't have to waste time deleting each new email in your co-workers' ongoing conversation about where to go to lunch today – that is, of course, if unless you're hungry.
Want to slim down your Inbox? Try the new Clean Up button and watch it move all the older, redundant messages in your conversation to the Deleted Items folder:
Clean Up always keeps the most recent message around, ensuring you have all the content in the conversation while allowing you to delete the redundant messages. This can be a very effective way to free up some much-needed space if you have a small mailbox quota. Clean Up is even smart enough to keep messages that have attachments, flags, or categories. Clean Up is available on an individual conversation or a whole folder, and can be customized to move the redundant content to any folder in your store. For example, you can move the cleaned-up messages to an archive or filed folder in your mailbox, making it the ultimate Monday morning triage tool.
We've spent the past couple years building you a great new experience for reading and triaging your email in Outlook 2010. Let's summarize what the new Conversations experience 2010 can do for you…
On behalf of the entire Outlook Conversations Feature team, we hope you enjoy the new Inbox experience in Outlook 2010!
Michael Affronti Outlook Program Manager
More info on Outlook conversation view:
Webinar: Unclutter your Outlook inboxGrouping emails by conversation in OutlookCES: Outlook 2010's Conversation View puts you back in action (video)Inbox sanity: Prioritize your email with Outlook conversation toolsHow Outlook 2010 cleans up after meUse Conversation Clean Up to eliminate redundant messagesTurn on or off Conversations arrangement in the message list
What happened to the "forms/user templates in file system" from 2007? My templates are just text so it really does not matter what formats them, I just can't find an option to use a template.
How about "Archive" button, which moves the item(s) to _same folder_ where old items of same conversion have been archived? I.e., autoselect the target folder based on earlier selection.
(If whole conversation is in inbox, prompt for folder and move all conversation's read items to the folder. If multiple folders have been used, move to previous folder (except to Sent))
I agree with mgm, a common subject does not make a conversation. I have emails with several different clients that have the same subject that is completely out of my control. Now I have several emails lumped into conversations that are not only unrelated, but it is mandatory that they remain separate so that I can follow-up properly and locate the emails I need on the days I KNOW I sent them. At this point, I can't even find emails I've sent yesterday because they've been lumped into a conversation. This is a HUGE problem for me as I am a one man show, and going through past emails one-by-one is very important to the way I conduct sales and follow-ups. Is there any way to turn off conversation grouping? Either I need to turn it off, or they need to be grouped by some other method that subject line.
How do I disable this new "you beaut" feature of Inbox, which has so far deleted e-mails I needed and refused to download and clear e-mails from my server? I REQUIRE e-mails to be chronological and my sever to be cleared... Do I have to return to 2007 to do that?
My Personal Folders Outlook 2010 Inbox has become disconnected from all email accounts and will not populate with any mail! No one seems to have an answer for me. Any ideas? (besides reinstalling. . .)
I'm having some problems with Outlook 2010 and not sure where to look. I'm new to this program and to Windows 7. For some reason, dates will not show up with the emails in my inbox. Please help!
Michael, I have my Outlook configured to download e-mail from my work server. It worked fine for a couple of weeks, but now when I try to open my inbox, it says "Outlook cannot display this view". I get notifications when I get e-mails, the Inbox (number) updates the number of unread messages corretcly (verified by webmail) and I have complete access to other folders. Any recommendations?
While I love this new feature of Conversation, I still face some problems with it. I'd appreciate if you can provide solutions to these.
1) Sometimes a conversation "misses" a mail (even though the subject is same). Once that happens, it becomes a nightmare to find the lost mail as it doesn't show in conversation and I need to search by subject to find it.
2) Sometimes new people join a thread and send mails with new subject. Outlook considers that as a separate conversation. To get around this I tried editing the mail myself and copying the subject from the original mail. However, this also doesn't work and strangely now, while the subject is new, the Title of the conversation is still the old subject!! I would have been great if Outlook would simply allow users to move items from one conversation to another just by changing the subject, any reasons why such a simply functionality was not implemented?
Great work with conversations. Up until recently Outlook included my Sent items in the conversation, but for some reason lately they aren't there. Is there some setting that I'm missing? Thanks!
Do archived messages show up in conversations?
My problem is that I have just installed Outlook 2010 and not a single email has arrived in my inbox, even though I have four unopened emails. Where are they?
When my new emails arrive, they are bolded/highlighted to show new email for approximately 1 minute before they automatically unbold themselves. I have missed several very important emails because of this. Can not seem to fix it. What is the fix for this? Help!!!
So what's the answer to the questions posted recently about the inbox not displaying the latest messages? For the last week I have not be able to see the latest messages unless I click Filter, then unread and then go to "all mail folders". I upgraded from Office 2003 to Office 2010 a year ago all my Inbox messages were displayed fine until recently.
I have unread emails in my inbox that won't open. This has never happened before. How do I resolve this issue?
Has your inbox problem been solved yet, and if so how?