back to article Outlook's clingy 'reopen last session' prompt gets the boot

Microsoft has issued a patch to resolve an unwanted Outlook prompt that urges users to reopen items from a previous session. The "feature" is annoying since the option to turn it off is hidden in most editions of the perpetual version of Office. In other words, it cannot be deactivated. Microsoft rolled the feature out as an …

  1. Flak


    ... can someone not test software properly and think of the users?

    Another current annoyance is how Microsoft is trying to push the new version of Teams down users' throats.

    Until the 'New Teams' has the 'Contacts' view I am not interested. Even better, make a contacts view that you don't need to toggle with 'chats' and that shows more users on one page than the current version.

    Hope someone is listening. Anyone? Ideally from Microsoft?

    1. Alumoi Silver badge

      Re: Why...

      ... can someone not test software properly and think of the users?

      That's what the customers are for. Beta testing.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: Why...

        "Beta testing" implies someone looks at the results of the "tests".

        Microsoft's current development practice is to implement any feature that comes into their pretty little heads, no matter how idiotic or obnoxious, and foist it on users, often with one of those grating messages like "Hold on a moment – we're making Teams even better!". They're optimizing for punchability.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why...

          Indeed. They're definitely looking for a punch...

  2. Eecahmap

    When Outlook does reopen my windows, it gets them wrong, every time.

    Oh, the inbox is fine, but the calendar and to-do list pages aren't how I had them customized.

  3. Terry 6 Silver badge


    in this instance, however, the issue was nothing more than a feature enabled by default with no straightforward way of deactivation .....

    This thing that Microsoft has, "We like it so we'll stop you from turning it off" drive me nuts. And of course it's not just them. But Windows and Office are still the most prevalent bits of software for most users.

    OK, provide a "feature". Fine. Good. But that's not the same as forcing the users to use it.

    Removing control of how users operate their computer for no good reason is illogical and unreasonable. I don't mind making some things a bit difficult to find, to prevent ordinary users messing up a machine ( even though this should be controlled by a group policy in most cases) but changing something in the interface because someone thinks it's a nice idea and choosing to actively make it impossible to revert or avoid is unacceptable. I would not have minded the "Ribbon" in Office if they hadn't made it pretty impossible for me remove menus and organise others for my team to fit in with the kind of work they were doing. I don't mind a default start menu that is an alphabetical list of unidentifiable clutter as long as I can still sort it out into programmes by function so that I can find the bloody programme I want. I don't mind them defaulting to hiding user files in "documents and setting" buried inside Windows as long as I still can switch that to an actual files and documents folder on a (non OS) partition of my choice.

    And being fair, it isn't just Microsoft. WTF are the Thunderbird devs doing making it impossible to sort folders in 115? I want my emails in subject folders- and it does that beautifully. Why suddenly are they forcing us to keep those folders in alphabetical order- so that little used folders can't be placed at the bottom of the list and the most frequently used at the top. Not even third party add-ons can get past that, apparently

    This whole "Our way or go away" attitude is just so dumb.

  4. Jet Set Willy

    Is it just me...

    I like this feature. I mean, it's just a single popup you can say "no" to right? Hopefully it's not gone, just reduced to a setting with the default changed.

    I get so many queries for different directions all day so I leave the relevant email open so I can get back to it when I've finished the task(s) in hand. This could be days later so updates/crashed don't mess with my system. It's not the best system, but it's the one I employ.

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Is it just me...

      Also don’t really get why this is such an issue, get similar functionality with Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Word, Excel, etc.

      About the only potential irritation is if you have closed Outlook explicitly and cleanly, it pops up. However, perhaps it does need to be more like the other recovery options, so it allows normal entry in to Outlook and then give the option to recover.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: Is it just me...

        Every modal dialog is a user-interface smell. (I want to tell software what to do; I don't want it to force me to answer its questions.) Every additional prompt is an annoyance.

        For people who like the feature, fine, leave it there for them. For the rest of us, give us a way to turn the goddamned thing off.

    2. Martin Summers Silver badge

      Re: Is it just me...

      It's not just you. I leave the emails open, at the end of the day if they're not dealt with I close outlook and let it prompt me to open them all again when I start it up again.

      Like you say it's not perfect, but because the emails are not massively important I don't really care. It just works for me.

      I was actually worried this article was going to say they were removing the feature.

  5. FlamingDeath Silver badge

    Perpetual Office

    “Perpetual Office”, this sounds like a dystopian nightmare

    1. Martin Summers Silver badge

      Re: Perpetual Office

      Something most of us will be in until the day we die or relatively close to it once we've retired. Sadly real life rather than dystopian.

    2. A. Coatsworth Silver badge

      Re: Perpetual Office

      Came here to say the same thing.

      It has shades of Mr. Burns' "Don't forget: you are here forever"

    3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Perpetual Office

      I don't think you need the adjective "perpetual". Office is already a nightmare.

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Perpetual Office

        Office is already a nightmare.

        And now Outhouselook has stared putting an advert for Co-Pilot at the top of emails that come from any domain that's not ours..

        Annoying isn't the word for it - especially as we are already paying through the nose for Office 360365

        1. Terry 6 Silver badge

          Re: Perpetual Office

          This is one nastiness that MS aren't the only, or worst perpetrators of though.

          The industry is seemingly fixated on easy money. "We've sold it to them now we can sell them on with it" seems to be a kind of mantra.

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