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Weekly Computer Tip # 188
16 February 2007

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hide grouped messages (Microsoft Outlook)

I know, I know, there was no tip last week (thanks for noticing!) so apologies for those of you who schedule in time to test the tip (you do, don't you? ;-) Hope you used the extra time wisely like spending time organising your inbox in different colours as per the last tip; http://www.roem.co.uk/tip_187.html. (Apparently my messages now appear in 'teal' in some of your Outlook inboxes! ;-)

Speaking of Outlook ... this week's tip is the direct result of me unintentionally hitting a key on my keyboard. The left arrow key, as it happens. And I liked what I saw. So what happened? Well, the initial setup of your inbox in Outlook 2003 is arranged by date, shown in groups. So depending on how tidy you are you could see a group heading called Today, Yesterday, Last Week, Two Weeks Ago, Three Weeks Ago, Last Month and Older with lots (and lots?!) of messages underneath each group. You probably know you can expand or collapse the group headings to display or hide the messages they contain, using the small minus sign to the left of the heading which becomes a plus sign when you click it to "collapse" the group. And that's exactly what happened when I accidentally clicked the left arrow. So if you don't care about the previous days or weeks or months ...

Here's how:

  1. Select one of the messages in your (out of control?) Inbox or Sent Items folder.
  2. Click the left arrow. (Not the one on your numeric keypad if you have one!)
  3. Click the downward arrow to go to the next group.
  4. Click the left arrow. Etcetera.

You can click the right arrow to redisplay the messages. I personally like to keep today's messages open only, but you cannot fool anyone as it still shows the number of messages in the bottom left corner. ;-)

Until next week.

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February 2007