Microsoft Outlook 2002 is a popular messaging program because it is relatively easy to use, has many handy messaging and calendar features, works well with Microsoft Exchange Server, and has excellent support for Internet standards-based e-mail. It also comes with Microsoft Office XP, making it a simple installation for many organizations.
This part of the chapter covers how to configure and customize Outlook and use it with Exchange Server, as well as how to set up and use Outlook's scheduling and e-mail processing features.
Security and Outlook
Microsoft Outlook was created to be a flexible and powerful messaging client. Unfortunately, all of this power combined with the design decisions made by the Outlook development team yielded results similar to putting a big bullseye on the forehead of the program. As such, it has become every virus writer's favorite target, and numerous worm viruses (such as the ILoveYou virus) have been written to exploit Outlook's security holes and people's social susceptibilities. Not surprisingly, Outlook has acquired something of a negative reputation as a result.
Fortunately, there are ways of dealing with these issues. The first thing Microsoft did was block users from opening potentially dangerous e-mail attachments (the primary method of virus infection). This was first implemented in the Outlook Security Update for Outlook 2000 and is integrated into Outlook 2002 (and customizable by Exchange Server administrators). Note that if users need to send attachments of a type that Outlook blocks (.EXE, .VBS, .BAT, etc.), users need to either zip the files (compress them in a .ZIP file) or find another means of sending the files (such as publishing on a file server).
The second way of protecting users from viruses is to install a third-party virus scanning program on the client (and keep it up-to-date), such as Norton AntiVirus, which actively scans incoming and outgoing e-mails.
Administrators can also install server-based virus scanning programs (if using Exchange server), and/or filter e-mail using a proxy server (such as Microsoft ISA Server).
When these solutions are applied, Outlook can be an appropriately secure e-mail client (although of course, terminal based e-mail clients are still more secure, although clunky and inappropriate for most users).
Even if you're familiar with earlier versions of Outlook, you should read this section because some configuration procedures have changed in Outlook 2002. Outlook 2002 and Outlook 2000 are quite similar and most procedures described here work for both versions. If Outlook 97 or Outlook 98 is deployed in your organization, you should upgrade for the increased speed and flexibility of newer versions.
Most companies include Outlook as a part of their Office XP installation, although it can be purchased separately (Exchange Server users should know that each Exchange Client Access License provides a license for Outlook). When you install Office, Outlook is installed by default.
Outlook 2002 does away with the separate Internet Only and Corporate Or Workgroups modes. In past versions, choosing one mode during installation dictated which message services you could access (most notably whether you could access an Exchange Server or not). With Outlook 2002, you can freely mix and match the type of messaging services you use, without having to reconfigure or reinstall the program.
The first time you run Outlook, you need to configure it for the current user by importing old messages and settings and/or setting up an e-mail account. To do so, follow these steps:
Figure 24-1. Setting up a new e-mail account.
If Outlook detects an existing e-mail program during installation, it asks if you want to import existing messages and account settings from the program. However, if the e-mail program isn't installed on the same computer on which you installed Outlook, or if the program isn't recognized by Outlook, you can still import data and settings after installation by using the following procedure:
Figure 24-2. The Import And Export wizard.
When importing data from other programs, create a new folder in your information store and import the data into that folder. Once the data is safely and accurately imported into Outlook, you can then move it to the appropriate folder with much less risk of overwriting or damaging existing messages, contacts, or other Outlook items.
There are a number of tasks to perform when managing e-mail accounts in Outlook 2002. These include adding or modifying e-mail accounts, or changing how Outlook checks for new messages on various e-mail accounts.
When you install Outlook, the Setup program helps you establish your primary message account, but you can easily establish additional accounts any time after Setup completes.
To set up additional accounts, follow these steps:
Figure 24-3. The E-Mail Accounts dialog box.
If you chose to import settings from another e-mail program or a previous version of Outlook that had multiple mail accounts configured, Outlook 2002 preserves these mail settings, usually obviating the need to configure additional accounts.
Figure 24-4. Choosing a type of e-mail account to add.
To add an Exchange Server account, you may have to close Outlook. Then double-click the Mail icon in Control Panel, click the E-Mail Accounts button, and proceed from step 2.
Figure 24-5. Entering account settings.
If creating a new Post Office Protocol (POP) based e-mail account, click Test Account Settings to send yourself a test message to verify the settings you entered.
To modify the properties of an existing e-mail account, use the following procedure:
Figure 24-6. Viewing e-mail accounts.
Outlook 2002 controls which e-mail accounts are checked for new messages using so-called Send/Receive groups. You can use Send/Receive groups to check groups of e-mail accounts on different schedules. For example, you might want to check your business e-mail every five minutes and your personal e-mail every three hours.
To set up or modify the properties of Send/Receive groups, use the following procedure:
Figure 24-7. Working with Send/Receive groups.
Figure 24-8. Choosing which accounts to include in a Send/Receive group.
By default, Outlook stores all of its local data in a single file called a personal folders file (Outlook.pst), unless you're using Outlook with Exchange Server. The personal folders file is stored by default in the following hidden folder: \Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft \Outlook\Outlook.pst.
If you use an Exchange Server e-mail account, your Outlook data will most likely be stored in your mailbox on the Exchange Server, although you can specify to deliver messages locally to your personal folders file instead.
The size of your Outlook personal folders file (Outlook.pst, the file that stores all Outlook data unless you're using an Exchange Server mailbox) cannot exceed 2 GB in size, or else you'll lose all of your data (Office XP Service Pack 1 and newer versions include a fix that warns users before this happens). To work around this, occasionally choose Mailbox Cleanup from the Tools menu and then use the resulting dialog box to delete unnecessary messages and archive infrequently used data. You can also create additional personal folders files in which to store Outlook items by choosing New-Outlook Data File from the File menu.
To control where messages are delivered and where your personal folders file is located, use the following procedure:
Figure 24-9. The Outlook Data Files dialog box.
Figure 24-10. Changing the location to which messages are delivered.
Some users may have more than one address book in Outlook. These address books can consist of one or more Contacts folders, an Exchange Server Global Address List, and/or one or more LDAP directories.
If the address books aren't set up optimally and users don't understand the differences between address books, there is bound to be trouble. The following sections help you understand how Outlook handles addressing, and how to set up Outlook to work with address books in a way that bests suits your users.
Address Books in Outlook The Contacts folder is the default address book in Outlook 2002 and the best one for all address information. It can contain just about any type of address information you'd like to store: e-mail, Exchange mailbox, postal address, telephone numbers, Web page addresses, and so on. It's also customizable and integrated extremely well into Outlook.
If you're connected to an Exchange server, you also have the Global Address List, a directory of mail accounts kept on the Exchange server. This address list is read-only by default, but users can add addresses from the Global Address List to the Contacts folder by right-clicking the address and choosing Add To Contacts from the shortcut menu.
You can also use a Personal Address Book (PAB) file to store addresses. This feature was retained primarily for backward compatibility with older Exchange and Windows Messaging clients, which use the PAB as the default address book. The Contacts folder has a nicer interface and is better integrated with Outlook, but the capability is there if your users have existing PAB files they want to use.
Because Outlook 2002 integrates the former Internet Only and Corporate/Workgroup modes, you can now manage multiple address books including PAB files regardless of whether you're using Outlook with an Exchange Server.
Configuring a Folder as an Address Book Outlook can use any folder in Outlook as an address book—you aren't limited to just one Contacts folder. This can come in handy if you want to keep personal contacts separate from business contacts, for example.
To create a new folder in which to store contacts and to make this folder available as an address book, follow these steps:
Figure 24-11. The Create New Folder dialog box.
If you can't access contacts in this new folder from the Select Recipients dialog box or from the Address Book window, right-click the folder, choose Properties from the shortcut menu, click the Outlook Address Book tab, and then select the Show This Folder As An E-Mail Address Book check box.
Configuring Address Book Handling Outlook lets you easily configure which address book to store personal addresses in, which address book to display when addressing messages, and the order in which Outlook checks the address books when searching for an addressee. In previous versions of Outlook, you could only do this if you used the Corporate Or Workgroup configuration. Fortunately, in Outlook 2002, you can change the way address books are handled, regardless of what type of e-mail accounts you use (no Exchange Server required).
To configure how Outlook handles address books, follow these steps:
Figure 24-12. The Addressing dialog box.
To change how addresses are sorted (for example, by last name or by first name), choose E-Mail Accounts from the Tools menu, select View Or Change Existing Directories, click Next, select Outlook Address Book, click Change, select the contacts folder you want and then choose either the First Last or File As option in the Show Names By section of the dialog box.
Adding LDAP Directories or PAB files If users access addresses routinely from a Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) directory, you can add the directory to the list of address books available in Outlook. Similarly, if a user has an existing PAB file that they'd like to use, you can set up Outlook to use the file as an additional address book.
Although you can set up Outlook to work with Internet directories such as Bigfoot (ldap.bigfoot.com), they are slow and generally don't work well in Outlook. Instead, set up Outlook to work only with local LDAP servers, such as the network's Active Directory service. Leave Internet LDAP directories for the Windows Search-For People tool or a Web browser.
To accomplish either of these tasks, use the following procedure:
Figure 24-13. Adding LDAP directory access to Outlook.
Now that you've handled the basic setup, you might want to change a number of Outlook settings for particular users. The following sections explain how to customize some key Outlook features such as the toolbars and personalized menus.
Outlook data files cannot exceed 2 GB in size, or you'll lose all your data. To prevent this from happening, occasionally choose Mailbox Cleanup from the Tools menu and then use the resulting dialog box to delete unnecessary messages and archive infrequently used data.
Outlook 2002, like most modern e-mail programs, sends messages in HTML format by default. This allows users to perform fancy formatting of their messages, add background pictures, and generally waste time and network bandwidth. Unless HTML is necessary, make plain text the default format for e-mails. Reserve HTML formatted messages for those messages that truly need special paragraph and font formatting. Plain text e-mails send faster, consume fewer resources, and are readable by all e-mail clients.
To change the default message format to plain text, use the following procedure:
Figure 24-14. Changing the default message format.
Outlook 2002 lets you customize your toolbars and turn off the Personalized Menus and Toolbars feature if a user doesn't like it. (The Personalized Menus and Toolbars feature of Office XP hides menu commands and toolbar buttons that are infrequently used.)
To do so, right-click the toolbar you want to customize and choose Customize from the shortcut menu. Then do any of the following tasks and click Close when you're finished:
You can make any toolbar button point to a Web page by right-clicking it while in the Customize mode, choosing Assign Hyperlink from the shortcut menu, choosing Open from the submenu, and then using the Assign Hyperlink dialog box to locate the Web page to which you want to link.
When you install Outlook, the program automatically becomes the default e-mail and newsreader program. To change the default e-mail program you use on the system to another program, follow these steps:
Figure 24-15. The Programs tab of the Properties dialog box.
If you change the default e-mail program from Outlook to another program, the next time you launch Outlook, you'll be asked whether you want to use Outlook as the default e-mail program. Click No.
Outlook uses forms for just about every bit of information you enter into the program. E-mail messages, calendar items, contacts, and notes are all forms. When you enter information in Outlook (other than in a Settings dialog box), you're entering it into a form. In most cases, Outlook's default forms work the best, but you might want to customize these forms for your company's own uses.
Customizing Outlook forms is fairly easy, but you can also get caught up in a lot of complexity if you feel like it (or if you stumble down the wrong alley). This section doesn't teach you all the details of Outlook 2002 form design, but it's enough to get you started.
More InfoFor more information on designing your own Outlook forms, we suggest you pick up a copy of Building Applications with Microsoft Outlook Version 2002 (Microsoft Press, 2001).
To create a basic form, follow these steps:
Figure 24-16. The Design mode view.
Tabs with parentheses around their names are hidden to users. The tabs become visible to users when you add fields to them.
Figure 24-17. The Value tab of the Properties dialog box.
Storing and Publishing Forms
You can save a custom Outlook form in a variety of ways. For instance, you can save the form as a template by using the Save As command. This creates a file that you can use in another program or attach to an e-mail message to send to someone else. Or you can save the form to a folder in the message store, which is good if you plan to simply attach the form to an e-mail or if you don't plan to share the form with others.
You can also publish a form to a public folder (or a private folder), making it available to all users only when they're in the folder to which you saved the form. This is perfect for forms that you've customized for use with a particular public folder and really aren't applicable elsewhere, such as a form customized for reports or employee suggestions. Finally, you can publish the form in one of the two Outlook forms libraries. The forms libraries are as follows:
Now that you've configured Outlook and customized it the way you (or the user you're supporting) want it, the next several sections will help you integrate it with the company's Exchange Server infrastructure. Outlook 2002 is the best Exchange Server client on the market, and most companies that use Exchange Server for their intracompany e-mail will probably find themselves upgrading to Outlook 2002 at some point.
One way to change how Outlook works with Exchange is to set up Outlook to cache a copy of the Exchange folders locally, for offline use. You would usually do this for laptop users, but you could also do it for users with a slow or unreliable connection to their Exchange server (or for users with a slow and unreliable Exchange server). To set up the folders for offline access, follow these steps:
Figure 24-18. Selecting an Exchange Server account.
Figure 24-19. Advanced Properties for an Exchange Server account.
Figure 24-20. Setting up offline folder access for an Exchange Server account.
After you've set up the Exchange folders for offline access, synchronize with Exchange Server before going offline. To control which folders are synchronized at what interval, use the following procedure:
Figure 24-21. Selecting a Send/Receive group.
Figure 24-22. Modifying the synchronization settings for an Exchange Server account.
Outlook makes it easy to delegate the chore of managing e-mail, which is nice for those fortunate enough to have underlings to whom you can delegate tasks. Outlook lets you achieve this wondrous state of e-mail nirvana by allowing you to name one or more users as delegates with permission to access the Exchange folders and to send and receive messages for you.
To set up this capability, you need a mailbox on an Exchange server and the Exchange services set up on the system. However, you get the most bang for your delegated buck if you also set up your mail to be delivered to your Exchange mailbox instead of your personal folders file. Doing this gives you more granular control over which folders your delegate can access, and what kind of permissions your delegate has to each folder.
To assign control over your Outlook folders, follow these steps:
If the Delegates tab is unavailable, click the Other tab, click Advanced Options, click Add-In Manager, and make sure that the Delegate Access add-in is selected.
Figure 24-23. The Delegate Permissions dialog box.
Sorting Incoming Mail by Mail Account
Wouldn't it be nice if you could set up Outlook to deliver mail from different accounts to different locations—for example, to deliver Exchange mail and work Internet mail to your Exchange mailbox and to deliver personal mail to your personal folders file? Well, you can't.
However, you can get the same results by creating message rules to move messages sent to certain mail accounts to whatever folder you want. See the section entitled Creating Message Rules to Automatically Process Mail later in this chapter for more information.
Exchange folders, like folders on an NTFS volume, have their own permissions settings that you can use to maintain tighter security on the network. You can set a number of different permissions levels, listed in Table 24-1. To change the permissions settings for a folder, follow these steps:
Figure 24-24. The Permissions tab of the Properties dialog box.
Table 24-1. Exchange permissions roles
Can read, modify, and delete all items and files and create items and subfolders. Owners can change others' permissions for the folder.
Can read, modify, and delete all items and files and create items and subfolders.
Can read, modify, and delete all items and files.
Can create and read items and files, create subfolders, and modify and delete items and files they created.
Can create and read items and files and modify and delete items and files they created.
Can have read-only access to items and files.
Can create only items and files. All items not created by the user are hidden.
Cannot access the folder.
You can use Outlook in conjunction with Exchange Server public folders to create some remarkably easy-to-use and flexible workgroup messaging solutions. You can modify the default views for folders, create rules that process new posts, set up moderated folders, and use custom forms for posting to the folders.
To customize Exchange public folders, log on to the Exchange folders using an account that has administrative privileges and then follow the steps outlined in the next few sections.
Changing the Default View Although the default view is often the most appropriate view to use in public folders, sometimes a little change is in order. Although you can't create custom views and use them as the default view for all users of a public folder, you can group messages in several ways, kind of like a newsgroup, by following these steps:
Changing the Default Form for a Folder If Outlook's default form just doesn't fit the purpose of your Exchange public folders, change it to another form that's a better match. This is easy to do, but coming up with a customized form that works in the folder and suits your needs is a little more difficult.
More InfoFor some in-depth information on creating custom solutions with Outlook, see Programming Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Exchange (Microsoft Press, 2000).
To change the default form for the folder or to allow additional forms to be used in the folder, follow these steps:
Figure 24-25. The Forms Manager makes forms available in the folder.
Figure 24-26. The Forms tab of the Properties dialog box.
Applying Rules to Public Folders Outlook provides similar rule-making abilities for public folders as it does for its own folder store. (See the section entitled Creating Message Rules to Automatically Process Mail later in this chapter for information about rules for the mail folders.) Unlike the Outlook rules you apply to the local folder store, rules you create for public folders are processed on the Exchange server and apply to all users—an attribute that makes them particularly useful for keeping public folders tidy.
To create a rule to manage messages in a public folder to which you have Owner privileges, follow these steps:
Figure 24-27. The Administration tab of a public folder.
Figure 24-28. The Edit Rule dialog box.
Configuring Moderated Folders Moderated folders are an excellent way to make sure that only "approved" communications appear in a public folder that you maintain or set up. Moderated folders work by forwarding all incoming posts to another public folder or to one or more moderators for review. The moderators review the posts and then place approved posts into the moderated folder.
There are many reasons to set up a moderated folder, but it usually just boils down to improving the quality of the folder's content. Of course, someone's got to personally monitor and approve all posts to the folder, which can be a lot of work, so usually you want to set up a moderated folder only when a free-for-all public folder starts to decay into chaos.
To moderate an Exchange Server public folder over which you have Owner privileges, follow these steps:
Figure 24-29. The Moderated Folder dialog box.
The standard message that Outlook sends to users who post to a moderated folder is as follows: "Thank you for your submission. Please note that submissions to some folders or discussion groups are reviewed to determine whether they should be made publicly available. In these cases, there will be a delay before approved submissions can be viewed by others."
Scheduling is Outlook's other forte after messaging. Outlook 2002 has a useful and full-featured calendar, and has additional features such as the ability to send meeting requests, plan meetings for optimal times, and publish calendars to a Web page. This section briefly covers some of these features.
More InfoFor more in-depth information about Outlook 2002's scheduling features, pick up a copy of Microsoft Outlook Version 2002 Inside Out (Microsoft Press, 2001).
You can use Outlook's Meeting Request feature to schedule meetings easily. Outlook sends a special e-mail message that contains a form allowing the recipients to easily accept or reject the meeting request. The recipients can also save the meeting time to their calendars if they use a scheduling program compatible with the meeting request format you send.
By default, Outlook sends meeting requests in a format that is readable only to other Outlook users; however, you can choose to send the request in the iCalendar format, which is readable by Lotus Organizer 5.1 and any other program that supports the iCalendar standard.
To send a meeting request, follow these steps:
Figure 24-30. A new meeting request message.
To use free/busy information that a person or resource has published on the Internet, the URL of the contact's iCalendar file needs to be recorded in the contact item. This address should be stored in the Details tab, in the Internet Free/Busy Address box.
Outlook 2002 includes the Plan A Meeting tool, a handy tool that is also available in meeting requests in the Attendee Availability tab. This tool allows you to find a time when all required attendees and resources are available by checking free/busy information in Exchange or on the Internet in an iCalendar file. To use the tool to plan a meeting, follow these steps:
Figure 24-31. The Plan a Meeting tool.
If all attendees and resources have accounts on the Exchange Server, the Plan a Meeting Wizard works as expected. Attendees and resources that don't have accounts on Exchange Server need to have their free/busy information published on the Internet. To set up Internet free/busy information, see the next section.
Outlook's Plan a Meeting functionality works great, if everyone involved uses accounts on the company's Exchange Server. Outlook 98 introduced the ability to expand this functionality to include users who don't have an account on the Exchange Server, if they've published their free/busy information on the Internet.
Unfortunately, this functionality really didn't work in Outlook 98. It also didn't work well in Outlook 2000. Outlook 2002 finally provides working Internet free/busy functionality, but there are still a few kinks.
Although the iCalendar file format (the underlying technology for the Internet Free/Busy feature) is an open standard, it isn't well defined, which causes some interoperability problems. Also, only Microsoft Outlook version 2002 and later can use Microsoft's Internet Free/Busy servers. Because of these factors, standardize on Outlook 2002 if this feature is important in your company.
The next two sections show you how to configure Outlook 2002 to work with Microsoft's Internet Free/Busy servers as well as how to use your own publishing location for free/busy information.
Using the Microsoft Office Internet Free/Busy Service To set up Internet free/busy information in Outlook 2002 using the Microsoft Office Internet Free/Busy Service, use the following steps:
Figure 24-32. Setting up Internet Free/Busy Information publishing.
Configure Microsoft Passport with the e-mail address you want to use with Outlook and the Internet Free/Busy feature. To do so, click the Member Services link at the bottom of the sign-in window and then click the Visit The Edit Profile Page or similarly named link.
Figure 24-33. Authorizing access to the free/busy information.
Using Your Own Publishing Location To set up Internet free/busy information in Outlook 2002 using a Web server of your choice (necessary for interoperability with any scheduling client other than Outlook 2002), use the following steps:
Figure 24-34. Setting up Internet free/busy information publishing.
Outlook includes the ability to save the calendar as a Web page—one of the quickest ways to publish a user's or group's schedule to an intranet or to the Internet. To save the calendar as a Web page, follow these steps:
Figure 24-35. The Save As Web Page dialog box.
Outlook makes dealing with e-mail easier and more secure. You can set up rules to automatically process messages and create filters to handle junk mail and adult-content messages. You can also send encrypted or digitally signed messages. The following sections show you how.
If you post messages on Internet newsgroups using a real e-mail name, perhaps you know the joy of receiving lots of junk mail and so-called adult messages. Fortunately, Outlook can help you deal with this—and not by abandoning your e-mail address, picking a new one, and keeping it a secret (although this is a surefire way to reduce the hassle).
Outlook has filters for junk mail and adult messages that allow you to color—or move to another folder—messages that contain certain keywords such as "order now" or "adults only." To turn on these filters, follow these steps:
Figure 24-36. Using junk e-mail and adult-content filters.
Junk e-mail filters and adult-content filters work by looking for messages with certain keywords in them. Occasionally, they grab legitimate messages. Therefore, you might want to set up the rules to move messages to a Junk Mail folder that you periodically review. You might also want to use the Rules Wizard to copy the rule, and then modify it by adding a list of exceptions to the rule so that key messages aren't accidentally deleted.
Outlook contains an extremely useful tool called the Rules Wizard that allows you to create client-side rules or server-side rules (when used with an Exchange server) that process e-mail for you. If you're using Outlook with an Exchange server, you can also use the Out Of Office Assistant command on the Tools menu to create a special server-side rule that can handle and respond to mail received while you're out of the office. To use this feature, follow these steps:
Figure 24-37. Using the Rules Wizard to create and manage rules for processing e-mail.
Outlook allows you to increase the security of e-mail messages by using a digital ID to digitally sign and optionally encrypt e-mail messages. Digitally signing e-mail allows message recipients to verify that the message came from you and not someone trying to impersonate you. Encryption allows you to encode messages so that e-mail can't be read by anyone other than the intended recipient, even if the message is intercepted.
To use secure e-mail in Outlook, you need to obtain a digital ID from a certificate authority such as VeriSign or from the Key Management Server on the Exchange Server network. To obtain a digital ID, choose Options from the Tools menu, click the Security tab, and then click Get A Digital ID. Once you have a digital ID, follow these steps to set up Outlook for secure e-mail:
Figure 24-38. The Change Security Settings dialog box.
Don't use Exchange Server security for all secure messages unless the Exchange Server ID is S/MIME-compatible, because secure e-mail to Internet-mail-based recipients might not be readable (if encrypted) or the signature might be unrecognizable (if signed).
Encrypt or sign sensitive messages when you send them, instead of encrypting or signing all messages. This reduces needless configuration for recipients who might not use mail programs that support encrypted or signed messages.