It’s common to have recurring meetings in our Outlook calendars. If the unexpected happens, such as snow or disruption on the trains (not so unexpected), it can be useful to change one of the meeting occurrences to a virtual meeting or a hybrid meeting where some staff are present in the same room and others can dial-in.
Outlook doesn’t provide the option of changing a single occurrence to a Skype for Business meeting however so here’s how to solve it.
If you double-click a meeting entry in calendar and select ‘Just this one’ to edit only this occurrence (below)
You will not be offered the Skype Meeting command on the ribbon (below). Note we have the Teams Meeting option because we have the Teams app installed alongside Skype for Business; you may not see Teams. We’ll be blogging about Teams and it’s relationship to Skype for Business at a later date. Note the ribbon tab showing we are editing the Appointment Occurrence.
If we had chosen to edit the entire series, we will see the Skype Meeting option in the ribbon. Note the ribbon tab showing we are editing the Appointment Series.
Outlook is being helpful here because if you edit a single meeting in a series, it will break the recurrence. In this instance, that’s exactly what we want to do though.
To overcome this, we can add the Skype Meeting command to the meeting Quick Access Toolbar (QAT) by right-clicking the command and selecting Add to Quick Access Toolbar.
The next time we edit a single instance of a meeting, we can click the Skype Meeting icon on the QAT to add-in the virtual meeting options.
When we save the updated meeting, our calendar shows we have broken the recurrence with the icon in the bottom right of the meeting block. But at least our colleagues stuck in some rain-soaked train station can still dial-in and take part in the meeting.
Sending and receiving documents and files in the form of an attachment is something that we are all very familiar with. The recipient is required to double-click on the attachment to open it and then it can be saved off as required.
However, did you know that there is a different way to attach documents? That you can also send the contents of a document in the body of the email as opposed to an attached file? This can sometimes be really useful and can be done by simply adding a button to the Quick Access Toolbar in Word.
Open the Word document you would like to send
Click the drop-down arrow on the Quick Access toolbar
Select More Commands
Select Commands Not in the Ribbonfrom the Choose commands from drop-down menu
Scroll down and select Send to Mail Recipient
The Send to Mail recipient icon will now be on the Quick Access Toolbar.
Click Send to Mail Recipient
Email fields will show. Complete these as normal. The Word document will appear in the body as opposed to as an attachment.
Conditional Formatting in Outlook is a really useful tool that allows you to customise how different messages appear in your inbox message list based on criteria that you set.
By default, conditional formatting makes unread messages appear in bold but you can add your own customisations also. For example, you may want messages that are just sent to you and no one else appear larger in your message list, or you may want message that are sent to you from your manager to appear in a different colour so they stand out. Both of these things can be done by applying conditional formatting.
Setting up Conditional Formatting
From your inbox:
Click on the Viewtab
In the Current View group, click View Settings
Click Conditional Formatting
Click Addto create a conditional formatting rule
Let’s look at an example. I want to create a formatting rule for mail that is sent only to me. I have named by rule ‘Only Me’.
Put a tick in the ‘When I Am’ box and specify ‘the only person on to To line’
Select how you wish these messages to appear. As these are important I have changed the font style, made it purple and bigger so they really stand out.
When I switch back to my inbox, I can now see the conditional formatting has been applied to my message list.
Another example would be setting conditional formatting for mails that come in from a specific person.
To do this, repeat the above steps but when you click Condition, enter the name of the person in the From field. Click OKand then set the formatting options through Font.
There are lots of options within conditional formatting so its worth taking a look at trying out different options to make your important mails really stand out from the others.
Do you forever find yourself running the same search over and over again in Outlook? Maybe you frequently have to search for emails from your manager that contain attachments?
Outlook has a really useful search feature that you can use to find your emails but wouldn’t you rather be able to find what you are looking for in one click? Creating Outlook Search Folders for your frequently searched for email items is a great way to cut down on the amount of time you spend searching for emails.
Click the Foldertab
Click New Search Folder
You can choose to select the items you would like to search for from the default list presented, i.e. if I want to create a search for all emails from my manager, I would select ‘Mail from and to specific people’and then select my managers name by clicking ‘Choose‘.
However, if you would like to create a folder that searches using multiple criteria you will need to create a Custom Search.
Scroll down in the list and select Create a Custom Search Folder
Add a name for your search folder
You can select criteria for your search from any of the three tabs. In this example, I want a search folder that quickly searches for all emails from David that contain attachments.
A new folder will be created under Search Folders in your folder list. Click on the folder to run the search.
I think you will agree it is worth taking the time to setup some search folders in your Outlook as it will greatly reduce the amount of time you spend searching for emails.
I’ve just been sent an email with a PowerPoint template attached. All would be fine except this is the fourth version of the template file. I’m lucky that I don’t need to worry about storage limits in my inbox but I still don’t like multiple versions flying about and duplicated search results.
We all know we should put the file in a shared location and send a link to so we don’t need to worry about different people having different versions. But it’s never been easy.
Modern Attachments with Outlook Web App
If the file is on OneDrive for Business (we’re assuming you don’t put business files in OneDrive), I can easily attach them to an email and the sharing is done for me. I don’t need to go into the ODfB folder and share.
Below I have a document stored on my ODfB but shared with no-one.
In Outlook Web App (OWA), I compose my email in the normal way and insert attachment.
OneDrive for Business shows me recent files. This is a fairly new enhancement along with the ‘shared with me’ view. I select the file I want to attach.
The all-important question; do I want to attach this file and endure the pain of resending it every time something changes. Or do I want the simplicity of sharing the file via OneDrive?
Within the email, I can use the dropdown on each attachment to change the permissions from the default of edit.
And once I send the email, I can see that the share and permissions have been set for me automatically back in ODfB. Nice.
An upcoming feature of ODfB is expirations on shared links. That means I could share a file or folder for a week and the permissions will automatically revoke after that time. How this will surface in the attachment process, I don’t know.
Currently, this feature is only available via OWA but it will be included in the rich Outlook client sometime in 2015 (no timeline) and in the mobile Outlook apps for iOS and Android before July 2015.
If you’ve dealt with Microsoft Licensing, you’ll know there are lots of exceptions, gotchas, myths and riddles. We want to clear some of those up in our blog posts so number one is a good place to start. These all assume basic Microsoft licensing knowledge but if you need to top this up with some free training, look at our licensing courses or contact us.
Microsoft Exchange Server is licensed in a server and CAL (client access licence) model. The CALs can be per-user or per-device. These CALs provide the user or device rights to access the Exchange server but you need a client to read and send email, deal with calendar entries and so on. The obvious client is Outlook; part of the Office family of applications. In the past the Exchange CAL included an Outlook licence but this was no longer included after Exchange Server 2003 and since then, Outlook needs to be purchased separately.
Perhaps you don’t have Outlook? That’s ok because the Exchange CAL provides the rights to access e-mail, calendar, contacts and tasks through either Outlook Web App (OWA) or through a mobile device via Exchange ActiveSync.
Typically a user will access their mailbox from a number of devices. This is fine if you have deployed Exchange per-user CALs; the user can log into OWA from pretty much any internet connected device (hotel kiosks, airport lounge machines, home, work, internet cafés, etc.) and the user can synchronise to any supported mobile device.
If you have deployed per-device CALs then the user can only use OWA from licensed devices and can only synchronise from licensed mobile devices.
Hopefully you see the gotcha here. Exchange is brilliant at providing access anywhere, anytime and on any device but only if you licence per-user. For organisations that have per-device Exchange licensing, anywhere access becomes extremely restricted.