The UsefulTechnology Blog

Tips and Tactics for a Better Digital Life

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  • Blog Post: Saving emails without attachments

    Jeanie D asks: "Do you know of any method for saving an email without its attachment? Something simpler than my current work-around of Reply, address the reply to myself, send it, and save that "copy" (which loses the benefit of the "from" field)?" Saving emails without their attachments is not something...
  • Blog Post: Unblocking Blocked Attachments in Outlook

    Ever wondered why Outlook 2003 makes it so difficult to send and receive certain attachments? It's all for your own protection (especially you Dad!) but I've enclosed some handy tips here to help you get round Outlook's draconian settings! Which files get blocked? There's a long list of file types...
  • Blog Post: New Microsoft Exchange Server Analyzer Tools

    In case you haven't seen this yet: New Microsoft Exchange Server Analyzer Tools Now Available! Download the latest versions of the Microsoft Exchange Server Analyzer Tools and start to identify and help resolve potential configuration, performance, and disaster recovery problems in an Exchange Server...
  • Blog Post: Exchange 5.5 - the final fix

    Quirky! I just noticed that Microsoft ended up extending the support lifecycle for Exchange Server 5.5 to 10th January 2006 instead of ending it as planned on 31st December 2005. This was done to align the end of support life timings will the release of our Monthly Security Bulletin on the second Tuesday...
  • Blog Post: Add some hyperlink action to your emails

    Bloggers know how important it is to include relevant hyperlinks in their posts ;-) They can come in pretty handy in emails too. Instead of pasting a lengthy and ugly URL into an email you can add a hyperlink to any part of your email text. So, instead of this: The UsefulTechnology blog ( http...
  • Blog Post: Prevent people from hitting Reply to All

    Windows Rights Management Services provide some great features that control and restrict the way that information moves around and between organisations. But if you haven't got this cool technology you can still disable the most abused feature in Outlook: the dreaded Reply to All button! Next time...
  • Blog Post: See your Calendar in a different light

    Calendar out of control? Frustrated that the 28 hour day still hasn't been introduced? Wondering where all the time went? Well join the club and stop whingeing! I don't know how to put more time into every day, but I do know a handy way to make your calendar look a little less daunting. Download...
  • Blog Post: How to never miss a weekend party

    Eileen recently posted about the ALT+1, ALT+2 etc shortcuts you can use to change the number of days that your Outlook calendar shows. That's a neat shortcut. One of my favourite related tips is to head into Tools > Options and click Calendar Options where you can change the default days that show...
  • Blog Post: Changing the folder where Outlook saves attachments

    I've lost track of the number of times I have saved an attachment in an email then forgotten where I put it. But help is at hand. You can change the default folder where Outlook saves attachments by editing the registry*. Fire up the registry editor (Start > Run > regedit) then navigate to HKEY_CURRENT...
  • Blog Post: Coping with Email Overload: 20 ideas

    I was recently asked to share some thoughts on how organisations can help their employees cope with their email overload and become better email citizens. In response I compiled the '20 ideas' below as food for thought for messaging administrators and HR professionals. I've shared it here in the simple...
  • Blog Post: Slip into Slipstick

    Any power Microsoft Outlook or Microsoft Exchange Server users who haven't yet discovered www.slipstick.com are missing out, big time! Slipstick offers a world of advice and tips about how to get the most out of these applications. The coolest, and often weirdest, bit of the site has to be the Utilities...
  • Blog Post: The Mysterious World of Extend Mode in Word and Outlook

    The Extend Mode in Microsoft Word is an artefact of the early computing era before the mouse was invented (and the natural evolution of that gunky stuff that builds up on your mouse's bottom ). Few computer users make use of this feature today because they've learned how to scoot around their documents...
  • Blog Post: Replying to an email with modified attachments

    On a related subject to my previous post ( Saving emails without Attachments ) one other Microsoft Outlook attachment challenge I frequently come across is how best to respond to an email which asks me to review and make changes to an enclosed file. If you simply hit Reply (or Reply to All, as appropriate...
  • Blog Post: Black Belt Custom Views in Outlook 2003

    My last blog entry showed how you can use the Copy Folder Design feature to clone one folder view to another in Microsoft Outlook 2003. This is great if you only need to customise a couple of folders but this next black belt technique requires getting to grips with a well-hidden feature in Outlook called...
  • Blog Post: Now showing: Exchange Unplugged on IT's Showtime

    My regular reader will recall that back in late 2005 I was busy rushing around the country supporting the Exchange Tour Unplugged . If you weren't able to join one of our tour dates you can now view some of the highlights on the TechNet IT's Showtime website at http://www.microsoft.com/emea/itsshowtime...
  • Blog Post: New Microsoft Application Transporter 2006 for Lotus Domino

    Just released and shipping now: brand new free tools to help customers transfer data from Lotus Notes applications to Windows SharePoint Services. The new tools comprise the Application Transporter a new Application Analyzer and improved Exchange-Lotus Notes Mail Connector. Download at your leisure...
  • Blog Post: Stylish Printing from Outlook

    Are you one of those people who like to print out emails? Nothing wrong with that, of course, as long as you only print them out for good reasons and not because you're too bone-idle to read them from the screen! Here's how to get more out of printing from Outlook: While printing emails is sometimes...
  • Blog Post: The Joy of Finding Big Things (in Outlook 2007)

    My former boss, Bruce Lynn , asked me this weekend how he could locate all the large (>200kb) entries in his Outlook calendar so he could delete them to free up some space in his mailstore. He couldn't figure out how to do this but knew it must be easy. If you find your mailstore is running short...
  • Blog Post: Changing Meeting Attendees' Type

    That is, without doubt, the most boring and uninspiring title that I've ever come up with for a blog entry. Sorry. I just couldn't think of a better way of describing this fairly ordinary, but still rather useful, tip. As you may know, when inviting people to a meeting you can decide whether they...
  • Blog Post: Exchange Tour Unplugged Blog

    Over the next few weeks I'll be posting to the new TechNet Exchange Tour Unplugged blog at http://blogs.technet.com/technet_uk_-_exchange_tour/ while we weave our way around the UK. Tomorrow we'll be in Coventry, before a short trip to Manchester, a dive back south to Southampton and then back up to...
  • Blog Post: Yet more on disabling CTRL+Enter in Outlook

    In tribute to the insightful but sadly anonymous comment on my recent blog entry about disabling the CTRL+Enter shortcut ("u have way too much time on your hands if things like this bother you") , here is yet another solution to this minor annoyance ;-) One route is to add a macro to prompt you whenever...
  • Blog Post: Exchange Server 2003 SP2 just released

    Get it while it's hot: http://www.microsoft.com/exchange/downloads/2003/sp2/download.mspx
  • Blog Post: More on email signatures

    One other top tip that comes to mind for those of you who use Forms in conjunction with a Signature in emails. You may have noticed that Outlook moronically puts your email signature at the top of the form's content when you create a new email using Tools > Forms > Choose Forms. Of course, the...
  • Blog Post: The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid

    A friend sent me the following text recently. It highlights a few things for me. Firstly, it's definitely a good idea to have spell check turned on at all times and secondly, I can now see why it's so easy for spammers to side-step unsophisticated anti-spam filters and still ensure their invitation for...
  • Blog Post: Office 2003 SP2 just released!

    Service Pack 2 (SP2) for Microsoft Office 2003 is now available for download from Microsoft Update. You may even have received this update already if you subscribe to auto-updates. There are a bunch of enhancements that improve the security and reliability of Office 2003 and make SP2 well worth getting...