back to article The end of classic Outlook for Windows is coming. Are you ready?

Analysts have warned that some enterprises have a mountain to climb ahead of Microsoft's planned phase-out of the classic Outlook for Windows. 2029 is the earliest cut-off date for support, but some key functionality is still missing from the veteran app's replacement. With its email, calendar, task, and contact functionality …

  1. AlanSh
    FAIL

    I need classic outlook

    I don't mind losing POP3, but I need access to the large number of PST files that I archive old mails to.

    I haven't tested the new version (I've seen it on another machine and didn't like it) but my existing system runs around 15 email accounts, all nicely segregated and visitble. I don't want something that looks like Outlook on Android.

    1. Snake Silver badge

      Re: I need classic outlook

      "I don't mind losing POP3...

      Well, I certainly do. With IMAP your client only 'reflects' the data that is on the server. Sounds OK...until that email server decides to change their terms of service. Say, only keeping old emails for 2 to 3 years or so, or even change / lower the storage space limits.

      POP3 downloads and keeps a permanent copy of the emails on your system. Not theirs.

      I usually use IMAP, but then every so often (irregularly, sometimes with large intervals) I use a POP3 client to truly download and archive my emails on my own system.

      I am NOT going to depend upon ANY service to [believe they'll] keep copies of my emails until the end of time / when *I* am ready to purge them.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge
        Pirate

        Re: I need classic outlook

        I don't see why you can't archive IMAP mail to a local folder/mailbox and then it doesn't matter who deletes the original mail or when it happens.

        As for lack of PST in the original post, the work around is to keep paying that subscription (see icon).

        1. Jakester

          Re: I need classic outlook

          Well, you can archive your e-mail messages locally using IMAP, unfortunately, the only way I have found to do it is download one e-mail at a time. You then have to manage them somehow.

          1. hquackenboss

            Re: I need classic outlook

            Here is one approach to backup emails in IMAP accounts or Exchange accounts:

            For each account, create a .pst file named for example, "Archive" and the numerals 2023. Locate that wherever you like, including on OneDrive or some other Cloud storage service.

            Use the folder view in the left hand pane.

            Make a copy at the folder level for all the mail, and, if it's an Exchange account, do the same for contacts and calendars from your active Outlook file. If you do it today, you will have some 2024 entries that you could then manually remove them, or leave 'em.

            If you want, you can delete those emails (I wouldn't delete the contacts or calendar), and if you don't change anything else, that .pst will be opened every time you open Outlook, and they will be searchable.

            If you have Outlook connected to those accounts on multiple computers, I would first make sure the item counts for each look right (sometimes sync isn't 100% the same among systems), then close Outlook, copy the .pst file to another computer, and open the file from within Outlook on that machine.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: I need classic outlook

              did you notice that the new improved Outlook doesn't support PST?

        2. ChrisBedford

          Re: I need classic outlook

          "I don't see why you can't archive IMAP mail to a local folder/mailbox and then it doesn't matter who deletes the original mail or when it happens." - That would be a PST file, though, wouldn't it? Which is also not supported (er, "yet")

          "As for lack of PST in the original post, the work around is to keep paying that subscription" - well unless you intended that remark sarcastically, that's naive.

          1. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Re: I need classic outlook

            You don't have to use the Outlook, Thunderbird can download from an IMAP account to a local mailbox if you don't want to sent up anything more fancy.

            I have been known to be sarcastic from time to time.

        3. Fred Goldstein

          Re: I need classic outlook

          An archive is outside of the regular flow of work, where you put old stuff. Local folders which POP3 is built for handle that much better.

          Theoretically IMAP can be used like POP; the actual protocol is a functional superset. However, nobody implements it that way. Outlook and Thunderbird treat it as a synchronized viewport on a corporate mail server, so the mail lives on the server and maybe you have a local copy. That doesn't work with ISPs. Nor with Yahoo, which now limits IMAP to seeing only the newest 10,000 messages, even though others can be seen via their webmail.

          Microsoft wants to encourage keeping mail on their server so they can datamine it for your private content.

        4. Donn Bly

          Re: I need classic outlook

          And just how do you intend to archive IMAP into a local folder, which is really a PST file and the new outlook has no PST support?

      2. SVD_NL Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: I need classic outlook

        POP3 is horrible. It simply doesn't work in any situation where you need to access your mail from multiple devices (which i reckon is at least 90% of users these days).

        Sure, you are reliant on your email provider with IMAP, but at least your email doesn't disappear from the server the moment you retrieve it.

        If you have so little trust in your email provider, you should switch providers.

        And for backups and archives you shouldn't rely on a single point of failure anyway. Set up journaling rules (auto-forwarding to an archive) or a similar method to store incoming and outgoing emails on a different server. There are better ways to achieve your goals here, because anything you do with POP3, you can do with IMAP too, with the added benefit of having an extra safeguard where emails remain on the server if things go wrong somehow.

        Using POP3 is just asking for your emails to be spectacularly wiped in a catastrophic event fueled by fear and regret, if you care about your email archive you should avoid it like the plague.

        I've seen people lose all of their data, and companies go out of business because of POP3. Don't use it, please don't.

        1. Mike 137 Silver badge

          Re: I need classic outlook

          Re: POP3 "at least your email doesn't disappear from the server the moment you retrieve it"

          It doesn't have to as POP3 has no hand in this -- it's down to settings on your email client, which either does or does not send a delete command after retrieving the email. It's perfectly possible to retrieve over POP3 and still leave all emails on the server if your email client allows this.

          1. Patched Out

            Re: I need classic outlook

            I concur. I use IMAP on all my household devices except for one PC where I use POP3 to get local copies of all email. I have it set to not delete emails that are pulled down, but do delete emails off the server if I move emails to Trash on the POP3 client. This way I can manage my email without having to access my ISP's terrible web-based email interface.

            I'll be looking at transitioning to Thunderbird for my home PC.

            1. Martin an gof Silver badge

              Re: I need classic outlook

              where I use POP3 to get local copies of all email

              Can you not get local copies with IMAP? My email clients use IMAP, and Kmail, certainly, has the option to keep local copies. It also has various synchronisation options so email sent from any device ends up in the server's Sent folder and email deleted on the server can, or can not, also delete the local copy. It's been a while since I used Thunderbird but I think it had similar facilities.

              K9mail on the phones can (in the interests of space) keep a configurable number of recent emails locally and only download attachments on demand (in the interests of data use).

              Local copies once made my wife in to a bit of an IT star, when a group she was involved with held a committee meeting at a venue with no WiFi and no mobile coverage. None of her colleagues could access the emailed minutes or agenda or other notes whereas Kmail had everything locally.

              Of course, they could have printed them out ahead of time...

              M.

            2. K999

              Re: I need classic outlook

              I do this too and already use Thunderbird to pull all email using POP3, leaving them on the servers. Deletes go through if deleted from Thunderbird. I then use FairEmail on phones / tablets, accessing using IMAP, but only keeping a month or so of email on the devices. It means I can manage newest stuff easily via IMAP, but I know I'm capturing all of them on my main server. I too am old, so Belt, braces and shoelaces. This setup works for me, but everyone needs to find what works for them.

            3. mobailey

              Re: I need classic outlook

              This is the way.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I need classic outlook

          > (which I reckon is at least 90% of users these days).

          Glad to be in that 10% who is happy to not have email on his phone. I POP3 out of habit. I only want to read email on my one device. Then end of day I can turn it off.

          > Sure, you are reliant on your email provider with IMAP, but at least your email doesn't disappear from the server the moment you retrieve it.

          IMAP means paying for more and more storage. POP3 means I automatically manage my mail storage and not pay someone to store decades of old emails. Handle my own backup thanks.

          And when that IMAP supplier goes bankrupt or puts up the bills? You have to pay or move everything... IMAP can still disappear. Only difference is now the user doesn't realise that deleting that email from his phone also destroyed his desktop copies... Don't blame the protocol for bad email habits.

          1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: I need classic outlook

            Glad to be in that 10% who is happy to not have email on his phone. .... I only want to read email on my one device.

            A different reason for the same conclusion: I don't want any work documents on my personal devices. Ever. Nor am I willing to give corporate IT any control over my personal devices, which is what I'd have to do if I wanted to have work materials on them.

        3. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Stop

          Re: I need classic outlook

          "POP3 is horrible. It simply doesn't work in any situation where you need to access your mail from multiple devices (which i reckon is at least 90% of users these days)."

          Then leave it ALONE - many of us prefer it. Like 3D Skeuomorphic vs 2D FLATSO. "The highway" is NOT an alternative the rest of us should be forced to accept.

          Note: I take advantage of the "leave mail on the server for NN days" feature in TBird and other PROPER mail clients.

        4. Snake Silver badge

          Re: POP3 is horrible

          Note that I personally don't give downvotes, but still note your ratios here. There's a reason for that.

          "Sure, you are reliant on your email provider with IMAP..."

          And THAT'S the huge issue. If you change providers (change ISP, for example), you lose your emails, don't you? With IMAP, unless you make a local repository and manually copy all your emails to those folders, you lose your emails, correct? If you downloaded with POP3 it is already done, or if you wish to sync with a POP3 client it is a single operation rather than manually selecting and copying possibly thousands of emails.

          "Using POP3 is just asking for your emails to be spectacularly wiped in a catastrophic event fueled by fear and regret, if you care about your email archive you should avoid it like the plague.

          I've seen people lose all of their data, and companies go out of business because of POP3."

          Data is data is data. If they lost their emails then they lost data in general - which means their backup plans / systems SUCK. If they lost their quarterly reports do you blame their lack of backup solutions or their HDD which finally failed after 6 years of continuous operation?? Everyone who is anyone in tech knows that backups are *your* responsibility. POP3 data is just another thing that is necessary to back up; if you didn't make a local IMAP repository copy, and the email server at your ISP dies and takes down all your saved emails with it, will you be just as happy as blaming IMAP for not saving those copies??

          I use IMAP across almost all my devices, except one. That's the POP3 client. It gets synced via POP3 occasionally and then I have permanent, local copies. It also serves the purpose (because I have it set that way) to purge all that old email flotsam that's accumulated, I don't need rapid access to 2 year-old emails, thank you very much, but I also don't want to risk them disappearing into the internet ether, either.

          1. Pomgolian
            Pint

            Re: POP3 is horrible

            And THAT'S the huge issue. If you change providers (change ISP, for example), you lose your emails, don't you? With IMAP, unless you make a local repository and manually copy all your emails to those folders, you lose your emails, correct?

            Yeah, but no, but I've done this many times, and I usually point imapsync at both the old and new mailboxes and go to the pub. Probably beyond the realms of your average Joe schmo user but it is possible with very little pain, once the metric ton of Perl dependencies are installed.

            1. Gritzwally Philbin

              Re: POP3 is horrible

              ...once the metric ton of Perl dependencies are installed.

              Oh, that's something I wish I knew about some years back. Helped a friend who'd amassed well in excess of 20k mail messages in her email inbox - the product of running a small mailing list for decades - and was on a mail service that to the end, was accessible with Claris Emailer for Mac... classic.

              God, what a job it was.

            2. Dan 55 Silver badge

              Re: POP3 is horrible

              And THAT'S the huge issue. If you change providers (change ISP, for example), you lose your emails, don't you? With IMAP, unless you make a local repository and manually copy all your emails to those folders, you lose your emails, correct?

              If you wanted you could just drag e-mails from the old provider to the new one, as it's IMAP.

              1. Snake Silver badge

                Re: drag emails between providers

                How will that be accomplished if your IMAP provider is your ISP, and the reason you are losing the old IMAP service is that you are also switching ISP's??

                Just did this a few months ago.

                How are you supposed to drag emails from an ISP that you are no longer a customer of, and therefore your access is denied?

                1. Dan 55 Silver badge

                  Re: drag emails between providers

                  Either they give you a grace period or you pay for continued access for a while or you can't.

                  And if you can't you'd download to local before access is cut like you would with POP3.

                  Not seeing the insurmountable problem here.

                2. Bitbeisser

                  Re: drag emails between providers

                  The emails are still in your local IMAP folder(s), of your local email client. I am doing this all the time, both for myself and for clients...

            3. Updraft102

              Re: POP3 is horrible

              You can set Thunderbird to download all email locally for offline use with IMAP. There is no need to manually copy anything. Just get your mail like normal and it's all stored locally.

            4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

              Re: POP3 is horrible

              I've done a move painlessly between providers in the past: essentially you're just uploading a load of msgs to whatever format the server prefers. Depending on the volume of message and the size of your connection, this can take a while, but you can plan for it. Some providers also offer the option to migrate mail from the previous account, using the same mechanism but presumably faster.

              POP3 is the older and simpler protocol but I do prefer IMAP and I prefer anything over the Microsoft's proprietary shit: MAPI, ActiveSync and the rest of the crap!

          2. Bitbeisser

            Re: POP3 is horrible

            Sorry but your rant doesn't make much sense.

            No, you do not lose your data if you change ISPs. Or if you do not "manually copy your email". For the very reason that you claim that there is no problem with POP3: backup.

            You can back up your IMAP email folders of your mail client (PST in case of Outlook) just the same way you back up your POP3 email folders. Not one bit of difference.

            And if you are using email for work, it is more than likely that you have more than one device where you are receiving email. And I prefer to have access to all my relevant email, on any of my devices (desktop, laptop, tablet, phone), at any given time. I keep track of email with clients, both incoming and outgoing, and can always get back to any of the email exchanges, on any device, at any time.

            Yes, there is a danger that you accidentally delete an email that you find out you need later, and this has been synced with the IMAP server and from there to the other devices. Tough nuts, but that is where making proper backups comes into play.

            And most ISPs there days usually don't offer to keep email on the server for more than two weeks, so if you go on vacation, or are sick/in the hospital for 15 days, you will lose email that you can not download from the server anymore. WIth any decent IMAP server setup, this simply isn't a problem. Even if your devices didn't retrieve any of the email, it is still on the server. And can be retrieved from any device...

        5. Headley_Grange Silver badge

          Re: I need classic outlook

          "POP3 is horrible. It simply doesn't work "

          That's part of the problem, isn't it? Other people deciding what functionality is available to me based solely on their own workflow.

        6. ChrisBedford

          Re: I need classic outlook

          "POP3 is horrible. It simply doesn't work in any situation where you need to access your mail from multiple devices"

          Yes it is (horrible) but there are ways it does work with multiple devices (just tell your client software not to delete immediately on download)

          The problem with IMAP or any other sync-with-the-server type protocols is that your service has to support however large a mailbox you want to keep, and I have users for whom 50 GB falls under "getting started". Even a home user has no trouble getting up to 5 or 10 GB and many retail ISPs think that a 1 GB mailbox is generous (and they charge exorbitant monthly fees to even upgrade customers to that much. A few MB is not an unusual limit with some ISPs and one of them still, in 2024, doesn't support IMAP). Yes, I know, switch to Gmail or something but some people are a bit - er, how shall I put this - reluctant to change their email address.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: I need classic outlook

            If you've got more than 50GB of email, you should be running your own mail server anyway.

            Any business should have their own mail server, not be relying on an ISP to handle it. This 'cloud' (somebody else's computer) garbage has gotten out of hand.

            1. Snake Silver badge

              Re: running your own email server

              But that requires a permanent, static IP address, which is an extra upcharge usually attached to top-tier speed provisioning. Which not every business wants, or needs. Then add the server itself, plus the tech support to administer it.

              Of course you can always get a cloud instance to run your email server...but that doesn't solve any problems, now does it?

              1. I could be a dog really Bronze badge

                Re: running your own email server

                1) You don't NEED a static IP, there are dynamic DNS providers out there that will allow you to use a DNS name that tracks (typically with a few minutes lag) any IP changes.

                2) With a cloud VM instance, you have the option of simply moving that instance to another provider any time you want.

                2b) And if you're thinking "what if" the original cloud provider has just gone "poof" - either metaphorically with your VM, or literally (OVH ?) - you do have backups don't you ?

                1. Snake Silver badge

                  Re: running your own email server

                  Dynamic IP DNS still costs money. And email on dynamic IP has never been an acceptable idea

                  https://www.xeams.com/how-to-run-email-server-on-a-dynamic-ip.htm

                  So no, you shouldn't run your business email servers on a dynamic IP address.

          2. david 12 Silver badge

            Re: I need classic outlook

            The problem with IMAP or any other sync-with-the-server type protocols is that your service has to support however large a mailbox you want to keep,

            Yes, exactly the same problem with POP, and exactly the same solution: you can download and keep your email locally.

            I understand that POP is not exactly the same as IMAP: by default IMAP servers reflect what you have on your local client, and by default POP is one-way, ignoring your local copy. But the idea that IMAP servers must have the same mail as your local mail store is as ludicrous as the idea that POP server mailbox limits don't exist.

        7. Fred Goldstein

          Re: I need classic outlook

          It dawned on me why SVD_NL thinks POP deletes everything. Which btw POP2 did, back before 1986.

          The "free" Mail program that came with Windows 10 (I don't know about 11, I won't touch it as I have 10 almost stable) did not have the "leave mail on server" option at all. Download mail and it was gone from the server, period. No choice. Tottally awful design, junky program, but if that's your experience with POP3, then you will think it can't leave mail on server. There are many clients that can leave mail on server but leave it there forever. Good POP clients, even thunderbird (which was good before the v115 supernova explosion) offer "leave mail on server, delete after __ days". I use that to get mail on multiple machines.

      3. Grogan Silver badge

        Re: I need classic outlook

        I use POP3 mail too and I don't listen to any brow beating about why I shouldn't, or why I don't need it anymore. I'll have it for as long as source code can still compile, too. (I run my own mail... there will always be a pop3d to run on a linux server)

      4. Grumpy Rob
        Happy

        Re: I need classic outlook

        There's a security issue with IMAP/cloud provider. I know because a workmate a couple of years ago was hacked, first by a SIM swap on his phone. Then, because the hackers had done a bit of research they then went to his email and did the "Forgot Password" thing. Password reset via "his" phone, and they were in to his email. Being a good German he had a beautifully arranged folder hierarcy, with all his banking emails neatly stored in folders. So next was a "Forgot Password" on his bank login, and now they had access to his bank accounts. If he hadn't had all his email on the IMAP server he might have been a bit better off.

        And, as usual we get sweeping generalisations about which is better, IMAP or POP3 (and about wines, and blondes versus redheads.. but I digress). But being a really old IT guy the only truism is "you need good backups, because software and hardware fails". Whether that's your own backups for personal emails, or company wide backups for company emails.

        At least there's one thing you can rely on.. Microsoft will always change things ensure customer lock-in :)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I need classic outlook

          "If he hadn't had all his email on the IMAP server he might have been a bit better off."

          So you think the issue is IMAP, not using an email provider which relies on SMS 2FA which is widely regarded as insecure or a bank with apparently zero 2FA? Seriously?

          1. Snake Silver badge

            Re:2FA

            I guess your reading comprehension is a bit off today? He said the SIM card was cloned, meaning they had ACCESS to SMS 2FA requests as well.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

            2. Donn Bly

              Re: Re:2FA

              Exactly. He said that the SMS 2FA is regarded as insecure and that should be more to blame than IMAP. SMP 2FA is insecure because of things such as SIM cloning, which was admitted to have occurred in this case. Reading comprehension is a two-way street

        2. Andrew Scott

          Re: I need classic outlook

          microsoft products have evolved to be ransomeware.

          1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: I need classic outlook

            Hey, you leave Arthur Ransome out of this. If Nancy Blackett were here she'd give SatNad a good kicking over it. Or steal his parrot feathers, anyway.

      5. Ken Hagan Gold badge

        Re: I need classic outlook

        I run an IMAP server (dovecot) on a machine that I have locally. That's more portable than PST files, but you would need to spin up a Linux box, such as a RPi, to run it if you didn't already have one.

      6. david 12 Silver badge

        Re: I need classic outlook

        With IMAP your client only 'reflects' the data that is on the server.

        I can certainly understand not wanting to have the server "reflect" what is on your client -- you may have local storage limits or policies that affect your ability to keep permanent local copies.

        But if you have space, every so often you can use an IMAP client to truly download and archive your emails on your own system.

      7. Noram

        Re: I need classic outlook

        I'm still trying to find an email client that lets me import from windows mail, and keep the 20 years of pop3 emails from that.

        I like the ability to keep copies of my old emails, and access them even if offline or the ISP etc goes wrong.

        I've been using Outlook for a few months and loath it for my usage compared to Live Mail etc, for one thing it doesn't default to letting me see the email from all my accounts at once, instead I have to remember to go through a dozen different tabs.

      8. Smartypantz

        Re: I need classic outlook

        Not an issue if you run your own mail server. As you should! ;-)

    2. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: I need classic outlook

      "I haven't tested the new version (I've seen it on another machine and didn't like it)"

      I have tested it quite a bit, and it's as horrible as it looks. To the extent that I've blocked it on all our client machines as I don't want the users inadvertenty turning on the toggle to try it!

    3. Michael Strorm Silver badge

      Re: I need classic outlook

      > I don't mind losing POP3, but I need access to the large number of PST files that I archive old mails to.

      That's your problem, though, not MS's. As with Windows and everything else, this decision has nothing to do with what *you*- or the majority of other users- want or need, and everything to do with MS railroading you all down a particular path because it's in *their* perceived interest to do so.

      Unless you're a very large corporate customer, they don't give a toss about your personal needs.

    4. ldo

      Re: I need classic outlook

      My condolences.

      My advice is to get your email out of that proprietary format as soon as possible, and into something easier to work with, like plain text. I have emails going back decades, to the 1980s (before there was such a thing as “Outlook”), and the only reason I can still access it is because it’s in plain text files.

      For those worrying about email providers, the answer is: be your own email provider. This box I’m using right now pulls down email from various accounts via POP3, and then serves it up via an IMAP server to my GUI email client of choice. This makes it easy for me to access the same emails from a different machine, even using a different GUI client, without having to import/export anything.

      1. VicMortimer Silver badge

        Re: I need classic outlook

        Wouldn't it make more sense to have the mail sent to your server via SMTP instead of a POP kludge?

        1. I could be a dog really Bronze badge

          Re: I need classic outlook

          Yes it would, and then you can decide you own priorities and rules. For example, AFAIK there is no email provider out there that doesn't accept mail and then silently bin it - all the big guys do it as a matter of routine, and people thank them for doing it ! Seriously ? If your snail mail provider did that you'd be up in arms about it.

        2. ldo

          Re: have the mail sent to your server via SMTP

          That is true of one of my accounts, yes.

      2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: I need classic outlook

        My advice is to get your email out of that proprietary format as soon as possible, and into something easier to work with, like plain text.

        It's a beautiful dream, but Outlook's export mechanisms are rubbish (let's see — I have a choice of CSV or ... another PST?). And while plain text is fine for, well, plain text (assuming you can get it exported in Unicode, because Not Everything Is ASCII), it's not a ton of help when half a zillion of your interlocutors insist on using RTF. (Let's assume we can lump HTML, or The Thing That Microsoft Office Calls HTML Even Though It Really Isn't, in with "plain text".)

        And then there's the problem of attachments.

        And after that, there's the problem that Outlook actually stores a bunch of not-actually-email things, such as calendar items, task items, journal entries, contact-list information, and so on. Maybe the user needs to keep some of that stuff too. I have a ton of historical information in Outlook PST files which I occasionally have reason to refer to. It's important perhaps a few times a month — which is often enough to be quite important indeed. And, yes, you can represent those in plain text, but you'll want to know how they're going to be represented so you can find them later and do useful processing on them.

        Outlook's capabilities for organizing and retrieving information are moderately to severely terrible, but it does have them. Any export process is going to need to be able to duplicate those. Sure, if I have everything exported to, say, mbox format,1 I can happily grep and awk and whatnot all the day long. But that does rely on my knowing how those messages have been exported. And it probably involves doing some scripting to split mbox files up and that sort of thing.2

        So exporting all that historical Outlook data — mine goes back to 1996 (including, I am amused to note, "to do" items from at least as far back as 2002; must get on those soonish) — looks like a fairly major job.

        1And mbox is horrible too. It really only exists because BSD Mail was invented before BSD had a fragging filesystem, and disk space was a really scarce resource then, so small files were excessively expensive, and emails tended to be small because accurséd MIME hadn't been invented yet. Really each message should be its own file, and the collection should be organized using a hierarchy of directories; that's the whole damn point of a hierarchical filesystem. Putting multiple messages in a single file these days is just stupid.

        2Oh, I'm sure there are any number of open-source Perl and Python packages to split mbox files. Unfortunately, those would require either Perl or Python. I'd rather write my own stuff from scratch than use someone else's Perl or Python code.3

        3This.

  2. fnusnu

    It's garbage

    You can't even drag and drop an email on to the desktop...

    1. find users who cut cat tail

      Re: It's garbage

      What? You… What?

      Sorry, I would formulate a more coherent question but ‘drag and drop an email on to the desktop’ just does not parse.

      1. Nik 2

        Re: It's garbage

        Try it. Open Outlook, pick up an email with the mouse and drag it to the desktop. You'll see the behaviour the OP is referring to.

        I doubt I've don that more than once since I moved from Lotus Notes in 2003, but that's the point of this thread. Users use features in lots of different ways and those features are important to those users.

        I discovered yesterday that new Teams can't alert you when a user comes back online, which was occasionally very useful to me. Why it's not there is anybody's guess, but I suppose MS knows how much it was used. I don't care if I'm in a minority of one, it was a handy feature for me.

        1. katrinab Silver badge

          Re: It's garbage

          At work, they drag the emails into the correspondence folder for the relevant client, as their way of keeping them along side scanned paper correspondence and word documents that were printed and posted out.

        2. find users who cut cat tail

          Re: It's garbage

          > Try it. Open Outlook, pick up an email with the mouse and drag it to the desktop.

          The test does not start by running Outlook. I would have to get, install and set it up first. On a different machine. My desktops are set up so that they cannot even have any icons on them…

          Sorry, can't be bothered to do that.

          So, still does not parse. Thanks for the thumbs downs though.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: It's garbage

            I don't use Outlook myself, and I still understood what they meant. (And would certainly have done so after reading their explanation if I hadn't already).

            > Thanks for the thumbs downs though.

            Thanks for proving you're thick- both wilfully so, and otherwise- and have another on me!

          2. nobody who matters

            Re: It's garbage

            <"...Thanks for the thumbs downs though.........>

            No worries, the pleasure was all mine. Have another :)

          3. frankyunderwood123

            Re: It's garbage

            "Thanks for the thumbs downs though."

            No worries, have one from me, Mr. "Doesn't work on my machine"

        3. Chris 239

          Re: It's garbage

          Yep,same here. Was very handy to see when a colleague or direct report became available.

  3. captain veg Silver badge

    what Outlook?

    I gave up on it once I got EWS working in Evolution on Linux, and TypeApp on Android.

    -A.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: what Outlook?

      I've considered switching to some other client, but here people use Outlook for all sorts of things, and any sort of brokenness could prove hugely disruptive to getting actual work done. I hate Outlook, but I wouldn't much like working around mysterious process failures from not using Outlook either.

    2. adam 40 Silver badge
      Go

      Use Thunderbird Instead

      It's faster than Ourlook too!

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hmm, I use a small Windows VM with the inbuilt outlook to forward Microsoft non-standard "Modern Auth" to my standards compliant IMAP(s) Mutt client.

    (Similar to https://davmail.sourceforge.net/ but works).

    I am hoping they don't break too much (not that I plan to update to Windows 10+ any time soon).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      How? Sounds like something I want to do:-)

    2. in_for_the_fun

      No need for a Windows VM, you can script it if you are on a *nix box!

      See https://gitlab.com/judyf/getmail_ms_oauth2

  5. ComputerSays_noAbsolutelyNo Silver badge

    Rebranded Mail & Calendar

    Correct me if I'm wrong.

    The so-called new Outlook is a rebranding of the Mail & Calendar apps, which are somewhat terrible.

    If micros~1 were to offer businesses the bog-standard Outlook, maybe even with extenability, I guess a lot of companies would pay for it.

    Humans have their habits, and they absolutely do not want to change their habits.

    Especially in IT, with non tech-savvy users, breaking habits is really disruptive (disruptive in all negative meanings one can think of).

    But, what are we to expect from micros~1=?

    * messing with the start menu

    * ribbon menu instead of classical menu

    * shoving apps from micros~1 down the users' throats for all sorts of tasks, even when other apps were already set as default for these tasks

    * ... to be continued

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

      "The so-called new Outlook is a rebranding of the Mail & Calendar apps, which are somewhat terrible."

      It's more a case of it being the web version, spun out as a sort-of standalone* program

      It's absolute crap currently, anyway. Plenty of features missing. Want to pin the inbox of a shared mailbox to your favourites? Tough shit - you can't! Want to be able to save emails as .msg files? Tough again! Want to be able to search for specific text within an individual email? Forget it!

      *not really standalone as it runs on top of the Edge Webview runtime.

      1. Mike 137 Silver badge

        Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

        "not really standalone as it runs on top of the Edge Webview runtime"

        The browser is the new OS -- one more step towards the dumb terminal connecting to the M$ "mainframe" (for a regular fee, of course).

        1. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

          Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

          And of course once you're in the Micros~1 "mainframe" you're a cash cow for life. At least, that's their hope.

      2. Julian 8 Silver badge

        Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

        Is tnat still allowed in the EU if I decide not to have Edge on windows, surely I do not have Edge Webview either

        1. MatthewSt

          Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

          You can run it as a PWA in any other browser if you want, but if you get it from the store it will run in Edge Webview. Think of Webview as Electron. No one is going round and saying we should be able to run Electron apps with a different rendering engine.

          1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

            I'll say it. If I have to have stupid not-actually-a-browser-but-just-as-bad runtimes, I'd like to at least be able to choose among them.

            Dedicated PWA runtimes are a horrible idea to begin with, but locking an application into one of them just adds to the wrongness.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: missing features

        Will all be available as a $19.99/month/user subscription.

        MS has got to justify that $2T valuation somehow.

        Proudly MS free since 2016.

      4. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

        It's more a case of it being the web version, spun out as a sort-of standalone* program

        Ugh. OWA is even more loathsome than Outlook. And dedicated web runtime containers like WebView2 and Electron are horrible too — bloated and with a huge attack surface for no advantage.

      5. Ian Neal

        Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

        From memory, last time I looked at the new Outlook, favourites were listed per mailbox rather than all at the top like in the classic version and shared mailboxes appeared under groups.

    2. AMBxx Silver badge

      Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

      I'm not convinced it will happen. They tried to do the same with OneNote. They've now abandoned the new shiny version and gone back to the original.

      Similarly, they've introduced the replacement for VBA in Excel. It's crap and hard to run on multiple PCs due to the security (even though there's very little you can do with it). VBA will be around for a long time as it's the main thing stopping people quitting Excel for something free.

      1. TheRealRoland
        Unhappy

        Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

        I remember the multiple sessions with colleagues on helping them uninstall the OneNote 2016 'app' and finding and installing the actual proper OneNote 2016 application. Biggest easy-to-identify-which-version difference between the two was that in the 'app' version you can't email a OneNote page to the attendees.

      2. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

        Re: Rebranded Mail & Calendar

        "Similarly, they've introduced the replacement for VBA in Excel. It's crap and hard to run on multiple PCs due to the security"

        To be fair, that's what they seem to have been trying to do to VBA recently anyway. I know if they pull the plug on it at our place there will be howls of protest.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Confused

    Okay... am confused. So they are killing Outlook? The mail app in Office 365 is being removed?

    Like people note above, how will old archived email be accessed? That PST standard has been around a couple of decades.

    I am also confused about the replacement. Surely it is not the same Web app thing that is appearing on Win10\11 at the moment? A dumb web wrapper? So how does one read email on the computer when there is no internet connection?

    I can only start to imagine the confusion this is going to cause with my older clients. Why does Microsoft not understand that constant change is not good. I have businessmen on my books who are not going to have the time to re-learn yet another new toy.

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: Confused

      "I am also confused about the replacement. Surely it is not the same Web app thing that is appearing on Win10\11 at the moment? A dumb web wrapper? So how does one read email on the computer when there is no internet connection?"

      All your assumptions are correct - it is the web app thing which is replacing it.

      I think your confusion may be caused by starting from the assumption that MIcrosoft gives a flying fuck about what its users want or need. Abandon that assumption, and all becomes clearer! It's all going to be much better for MIcrosoft as it'll be mostly shared code with the web portal. And with a reduced feature-set, it'll be less work to maintain. As regards the users? They'll just have to put up with what Microsoft decides to give them!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Confused

        Don't worry, I had worked out long ago that M$ don't care about the users. Otherwise we would not see Win10 being killed off just to sell more PCs. Hard luck to those home users who don't need a powerful PC. Guess this will bump more onto tablets to check email.

        I know far too many businesses who rely on opening 10 different mailboxes all in the same window, and drag and drop emails between them.

        Too much of this is about selling cloud services.

        So how good are Linux mail clients, and can they handle Exchange mailboxes?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: So how good are Linux mail clients, and can they handle Exchange mailboxes?

          I think they usually can ... ... ... except when the admins refuse to let you connect with anything except outlook.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: So how good are Linux mail clients, and can they handle Exchange mailboxes?

            Admins who do that should have rusty needles slowly shoved under their toenails.

            As for me, I block Outsuck, users are only allowed to connect to mail servers I run with real email clients. The only ports allowed through the firewall are 993, 587, and 25.

        2. YetAnotherXyzzy

          Re: Confused

          "So how good are Linux mail clients, and can they handle Exchange mailboxes?"

          Evolution is intended to be a drop-in replacement for classic Outlook, including connecting with Exchange. Although Evolution on Linux is my day to day mail client and I am happy with it, I don't have personal experience with pointing it to an Exchange server, but doing that is supposed to work.

          1. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

            Re: Confused

            It's not bad.

            But M$ don't like it, so it gets rate-limited making requests to the O365 Exchange server. And demands sign-in way more than Oulook does.

        3. Alan Bourke

          Re: Confused

          Like all Linux equivalents of Microsoft Office desktop applications, they're a pile of shite. Sorry but they are. If they weren't, businesses would be using it.

        4. Ken Hagan Gold badge

          Re: Confused

          Thunderbird can talk to exchange using a paid-for add-in. I used to use it but then my Exchange stopped serving anything except trusted clients and that didn't include "thunderbird on a linux box outside the usual domain". A fair admin policy decision, but not a technical limitation. A friendly Exchange admin might even enable the IMAP support, in which case no add-in is required. Again, a policy decision rather than a technical limitation.

          Perhaps if MS really screw up Outlook, Exchange admins might be irritated in their own daily usage and be open to the idea of facilitating broader access.

    2. yetanotheraoc Silver badge

      Re: Confused

      "So how does one read email on the computer when there is no internet connection?"

      Now Microsoft is confused. Why would you want to read email without being served "relevant" ads or getting Copilot "help"?

      1. 43300 Silver badge

        Re: Confused

        And without the benevolent, all-seeing eye of MIcrosoft watching and collecting telemetry - all for your own good, of course!

    3. david1024

      Re: Confused

      Those are your problems. Lemme' say this simply:

      They-Don't-Care

      And TBH, they own the desktop and are acting like it. Fire them if you can, but you can't --and they know it.

      Mare charitible approach would be to say they need to reimplement the mail client sie to all the patching over the years and are letting the customers drive feature priority... But they are duplicating outlook's hodge-podge, wandering development... So it'll be coded just as bad. So meh. Less than 5% of us will be able to move from the crazy and MS will be making tons of subscriptions and not care anyway. Going to have to vault a VM running outlook to get the pst thing accessable--if you are lucky

  7. wolfetone Silver badge

    Microsoft's planned phase-out of the classic Outlook for Windows. 2029

    I have 5 years to retire before I have to deal with this.

    If that's not motivation to retire or move in to something else I don't know what is.

    1. DoctorNine

      Re: Microsoft's planned phase-out of the classic Outlook for Windows. 2029

      I'm sad that this is exactly my reaction. Another stupid Microsoft user interface misstep. To be honest, the only reason my office computer is a Windows machine, is the Office applications (purchased, not rented for subscription). And the main Office program I use is Outlook. If they hork that, there is no reason for me to keep a MS machine at all.

      Which honestly, I should have binned years ago anyway. I hope this makes business put down the syringe, and give up their MS addiction. It's ugly. And unnecessary.

      When I am retired, I can serenely avoid all the 'improvements' of AI intrusion, MS and Apple walled garden behavior, and simply use a nice Linux box to do what needs to be done.

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: Apple's walled garden

        You will be surprised at just how many apps work very well on MacOS without being downloaded via the App Store.

        As for Email, I've used Thunderbird since around the time of Windows Vista. When I raised the white flag and gave up Windows for my personal use, I moved the files to MacOS, setup the config and away I went.

        I don't use email on my phone. Yes, it is a PITA at times with all these stupid 2FA implimentations but that is a fact of life these days.

  8. UHA

    The new Outlook desktop preview is missing so many features, it's nowhere near ready for the prime time. But the new Outlook functionality does work well on the web - I will say that - but I want a proper desktop client with all that it entails (importing, exporting and archiving mail - plus I want email to be downloaded and kept in local backups) if you're going to keep it on the desktop and not some PWA. But even the web version does weird things by putting storage quotas in settings and other bizarre stuff - including inline or attached images. It's just horrible.

  9. Terry 6 Silver badge

    Microsoft

    They do seem to be pretty determined to control our data in their cloud. Whether that's a good thing for us or not.

    This written with a touch of bitterness. In a moment of madness I let OneDrive start to backup my files and folders. Then found that the process included creating a whole new folder on my PC with local copies of everything that was being backed up to the cloud- already in locations on my HDD- in it. Except that some settings had stopped pointing to and some things had completely ceased to even be in their original location. .After I aborted the backup and removed OneDrive from my PC I discovered that a lot of files had gone missing. Some were in their cloud- some had empty folders in their cloud but the files were missing. Luckily I had a backup that I could quickly restore files from. This is no better than ransomware.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Microsoft

      A co-worker discovered that after a Win10 update, all his (corporate) OneDrive files were gone - both locally and remotely! After a bit of digging, he eventually managed to recover some, but not even most. OneDrive is NOT a backup, nor is it a reliable place to put things. Sometimes they simply disappear without a trace, even when Preservation Hold Library is set to keep everything indefinitely!

      1. UHA

        Re: Microsoft

        Yes, I'm not taking any chances with OneDrive - or Exchange Online for that matter - and backing up that cloud .. to another cloud. I could potentially back up that cloud to another cloud and so on.

      2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: OneDrive files were gone

        sorta like Sharepoint.

        Now you see it, now you don't. All those saved URL's mean zip if the admin decides to 'do some filing re-org'.

        What a load of crap. MS should be ashamed of themselves.

    2. Marty McFly Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Microsoft

      This is completely different than ransomware!

      Ransomware sneaks in through the back door and extorts money from you for your data.

      Microsoft boldly walks through the front door and extorts money from you for your data.

      1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
        Alert

        Re: Microsoft

        through the front door and extorts money from you

        Sorta like the Mafia, Triads, [insert local protection racket]

    3. Wayland

      Re: Microsoft

      Microsoft backups have always been terrible. I'd never use a backup by Microsoft.

      1. psychonaut

        Re: Microsoft

        Microsoft specifically tell you to back up your own data if you use business 365. They specifically say that they do not back up your data. Use datto or sky kick or whatever from about 2 quid per month.

  10. FirstTangoInParis Bronze badge

    PST files are a must for enterprises, what with inbox limits and movement between mail systems. Losing COM is going to mean big trouble too.

    I also mourn the passing of the TAPI interface to allow SIP phones to do caller ID lookup. Yes I know it is still hanging on by its fingernails in 32-bit Outlook but guess that’ll be gone soon too. I’ve looked for some equivalent so I can set up a contacts server for a small office but drawn a blank thus far.

    1. SVD_NL Silver badge

      TAPI is getting a bit dated and unfortunately doesn't work very well anymore (probably mostly due to neglect from microsoft).

      I work with these applications quite a lot, and these days you're generally going to be limited by the functionality of your PBX or SIP server.

      They will need to support some form of webhook or API to communicate call status, and then you need to connect to an API, database or file to retrieve contact information.

      I personally use Bubble by RedCactus (it's a Dutch company). (Disclaimer: I also work for a reseller of this software)

      It works with a bunch of VoIP/SIP systems, and even more CRM systems (including custom API, database or CSV connectors).

      It's a pretty efficient piece of middleware.

      I see a TAPI listed under phone connectors in the software, but no documentation about it, so not sure how well that works.

      They list all compatible systems though, and you can ask for custom integrations too, pricing is very reasonable for that as well.

      I personally only know other products where the CRM integration is part of their softphone, so it can't be used seperately.

    2. rjsmall

      I'd actually say PST files are a must not for enterprises. From their introduction nearly 30 years ago they have been a dumping ground for messages that people "might need later" but in most cases were never looked at again. I dread to think how much storage space is wasted with these files.

      With modern e-mail storage capacity, archiving and records management PST files don't really have a place in the enterprise.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Old Bog and God, yes. I agree that most of this change is just typical MS being MS and making our lives harder, but PST need to go.

        They might work just fine for people with a modicum of technical skills, but for the typical end user with literal gigs of data over multiple PSTs they've carted around for a decade or more, they're a timebomb and a disaster.

        A rare instance where I don't actually care if it makes people's lives harder that they go the way of the dodo. PSTs are a nightmare to deal with. Good riddance.

      2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
        Coat

        say PST files are a must not for enterprises

        And political classes who don't want to leave evidence behind for regulators, public inquiries etc to find later

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Not sure why you're getting downvoted.

        The last time I did a mail system conversion I forced the users off of Outsuck. They were warned ahead of time that anything left in a PST file WOULD be deleted permanently. And then... bye bye. I didn't care if it was pics of the grandkids or that one email that would have been found in legal discovery in 5 years that would have cost somebody millions. It was all gone.

    3. Cliffwilliams44 Silver badge

      PST files are a compliance nightmare! This is why we banned them years ago. The only ones who use PST files in our organization are compliance officers who get them from discovery exports.

      If you allow PST files to be created on local computers, then in a discovery phase, if opposing council is made aware of them literally every personal computer can become discoverable. You also get into failure to follow your own retention policy. If you state your policy is emails are only retained for 5 years and one of your employees has a PST file with 10-year-old emails and that get revealed in court, then again, EVERY computer now becomes discoverable!

      PST are fine for personal use; in the enterprise they are a legal minefield!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        They're not fine for personal use either. They're data loss looking for a place to happen.

        Whereas corporate wants data deleted at the end of the retention policy, home users want to keep gramma's recipe for tuna whatsit upside down cake that she sent just before she died. And... oops, that PST is corrupt, gramma's recipe is gone.

    4. BrBill

      I wish I could say that I liked the PST files, it would have made my admin jobs much better for the last 20 years.

      But the PST file is so easy to corrupt, and just one misplaced byte can render the whole file unreadable. Users can and will have a 20-50 GB PST file that suddenly goes belly-up, and then you've got to find yourself a decorrupting tool and hope it works, or tell them that their mail is gone forever.

  11. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    FAIL

    "Microsoft has warned that those days will be coming to an end"

    Sure.

    Here's a warning to Microsoft : you do not dictate how millions of your customers work.

    You've already tried and failed before. I expect you will fail again, big time. Millions of companies have processes that depend on COM + Outlook. You pull that rug out from beneath them and you're looking for massive pain in the PR department, and, who knows ? That just might be the drop that pushes a fair portion to other solutions. Mail + COM is not entirely unfeasible in the Open Source area. there's going to be a lot of upheaval by 2029.

    You keep on acting as if you dictate the terms. You have erected this wall for no good reason. I'm looking forward to seeing you crashing head-first into it.

    1. abend0c4 Silver badge

      Re: "Microsoft has warned that those days will be coming to an end"

      It does seem rather more than merely ironic that in order to meets its "cross-platform" ambitions, Microsoft is having to dump the features and user-customisation that came from having a proprietary application on a proprietary platform. It says a lot about Microsoft's plans for Windows that the message to customers seems to be that Microsoft applications will be equally degraded on all platforms in future.

      1. yetanotheraoc Silver badge

        Re: "Microsoft has warned that those days will be coming to an end"

        Agree, upvoted. Came here to make the same comment. Once upon a time Bill Gates would shoot down some suggested "improvement" with the complaint "You're killing my business model!". Well, now it seems Microsoft has well and truly forgotten that business model -- enterprises are locked into Outlook for the features that only work on Windows, and they are locked into Windows for the same Outlook features. Take away those Outlook features, and oops, now your customers can seriously consider alternatives to both Outlook *and* Windows. The "cross-platform" gaffe shows they have really lost the plot.

        1. Terry 6 Silver badge

          Re: "Microsoft has warned that those days will be coming to an end"

          I agree. While I was locked into Outlook for my calendar ( and email) I was locked into Windows. Once TB had a decent (enough) calendar and sync (add-on) facility I was able to dump Outlook. And now I have a mix of 'nux and Windows machines. It's only Mrs 6 that keeps me on Windows for the main (desktop) PC. My laptop is on Zorin and my Lenovo Yoga convertible will get switched to Nux too at some point, too.

        2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          The "cross-platform" gaffe shows they have really lost the plot

          Do you think Microsoft would rather pay 100,000 developers to make Windows12 that you will pay $10 for an OEM license

          Or charge you $30/month to use Office 365 online from your Mac or Linux box?

        3. VicMortimer Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: "Microsoft has warned that those days will be coming to an end"

          You say that like it's a bad thing.

          Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. And yes, M$ is the enemy.

          1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

            Re: "Microsoft has warned that those days will be coming to an end"

            The problem with that is Microsoft have enough momentum to keep them going for decades yet, regardless of what mistakes they make. Sure, my grandkids may celebrate Microsoft's self-destruction (though honestly they're unlikely to recognize it when it happens, unless they decided to become IT-industry historians), but in the meantime those of us unfortunate enough to have to use Microsoft applications for work reasons will suffer with each new idiotic decision out of Redmond.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have seen the future - rent your software from MICROS - forever!

    "Some companies might want the new Outlook .. I believe Microsoft is going to use it to quickly shim in newer collaboration technologies

    For those who don't speak Micsoftezee, a shim is a wrapper around a 16 bit process to allow it to run in 32 bit space. (I can't wait to be corrected :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I have seen the future - rent your software from MICROS - forever!

      I assumed Shim was a typo. Didn't you mean to type a "t"?

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: I have seen the future - rent your software from MICROS - forever!

        No no no! He meant shiv.

  13. TheRealRoland
    Unhappy

    It's already here...

    Don't know during what version this was removed, but you no longer can copy/paste a meeting invite. The classic Outlook UI even shows a message telling you along those lines.

    Yes, i know about making meetings recurring. Not the same for me.

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: It's already here...

      The fact that they are pushing out a new one isn't going to stop them from continually fucking around with the existing one too!

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: It's already here...

        How do you think they're going to get people to willingly move to the new one? Fuck up the old one over a period of years and then they will have achieved the "feature parity" KPI.

  14. unbender

    New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

    The new version of outlook will only save replies in the Sent folder, so if you have any sort of folder based filing system when you reply to a message you have to then go to the Sent folder and move the reply you have just sent to the folder that the original message was in.

    This is a feature of the web based outlook and AIUI the mobile app which folks have been complaining about for eons, so far Microsoft have no plans to change this behaviour.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

      The is because the recommended way to run email is the two folder system: Inbox and Sent Items.

      Or that seems to be the way some of my clients do it... with a reliance on search to find anything.

      1. 43300 Silver badge

        Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

        And then ending up with tens of thousands of emails in their inbox, and if they can't work out the correct search terms for what they are looking for they've not got a hope in hell of finding anything!

        1. yetanotheraoc Silver badge

          Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

          Having observed people with tens of thousands of folders who also couldn't find anything, I eventually gave the "keep everything in the Inbox and Sent Items" method a try, and found it to be no worse than other methods. To organize I lean heavily on Categories and Flags (and occasionally editing a missing or nonsense Subject), keep everything in a flat (ungrouped) View, and "search" for things simply by sorting on Subject or Sender. One nice feature of this method is I can create a "report" of my email history by copy/pasting the View into a text file and then using awk to summarize it. Perfect for fleshing out the "what I accomplished this year" part of my performance review.

          That's at work. In my personal email I use folders.

          1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

            Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

            One of the problems is that a lot of the time, search does t work properly across all folders. It’s much better to leave everything in the inbox and flag things with categories.

            1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

              Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

              Outlook Search just doesn't work properly regardless - For example, search for a term and there is a very high chance that Outlook will just not show the most recent few items which exactly match the term and instead show old stuff that is less related to the search terms instead.

              1. Roopee Silver badge

                Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

                To be fair, I’ve known Thunderbird’s search be just as bad, though the newer versions seem fine.

              2. unbender
                FAIL

                Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

                Microsoft just don't understand the concept of search as part of the whole information management process. It's just as bad with SharePoint - it will search the content of documents when you just want to search titles and vice versa.

          2. Roopee Silver badge

            Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

            That is exactly how the original Opera built-in mail client worked. I used to use it, but apparently I was in a minority!

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

              Still use it... nothing can handle 30 mailboxes like Opera and its label system. I have to stay quiet about it as I support people who use Outlook.

              I like my ability to have multiple identities but one "unread" box to check. And thousands of rules to autofile everything.

              It is a pity Vivaldi mail still has not caught up with the features of the old Opera Mail.

            2. Roopee Silver badge
              WTF?

              Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

              I’d love to know why that one person downvoted my simple statement of fact!

          3. AJ MacLeod

            Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

            I use a sort of hybrid version too, after switching to notmuch as my mail store. I have Neomutt configured to treat "labels" as folders, which has the added bonus that messages which actually equally belong in two different folders can show up in more than one place - I just give the message two labels and it will show up in both.

            The quality of search using notmuch was revolutionary for me - I've always hated search for either being slow all the time (indexing stuff in the background) or very slow when I want to search (trawling through stuff in real time.) With notmuch it's instantaneous and I find it better than GMail's search (which has always been pretty decent, even if webmail is an abomination.)

        2. Snapper

          Re: New outlook doesn't keep replies in the same folder

          As most clients can't figure out anything larger than two I'd suggest it's the lesser of two Weevils.

  15. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

    Total confusion

    It really seems as if Microsoft is a set of disparate groups of people, some with designers, some without, whose job it is to just keep writing code, adding features and changing stuff. These groups/teams don't talk to each other. Ever.

    - We have two versions of Teams. There's Teams and there's Teams. One for business, one for personal. They look similar but don't work with each other. WHY?

    - We have Windows Mail, which presumably is a replacement for OutlooK Express, now being reskinned and called "outlook". Not to be confused with Outlook or outlook.com.

    - We have all manner of things just changing for the sheer fun of it. Like the file manager / Windows Explorer. You used to be able to just go to File --> New Window if you wanted two file explorers. Then it changed to the tried and hated 'ribbon menu' and there's a NEW button but you can't create a new window. You can create a new tab. OK, good but not useful when trying to drag a file between two folders.

    - We have onedrive, which usually stops syncing ALL its files just because it has a problem with ONE of them. There are sometimes two Onedrive apps as well.

    I'm just sick of it. The software is never refined: Micro~s.oft just remove a feature, and add another one. Just when you've learned how something works, it's replaced with something that looks slightly more modern but is entirely incapable of doing what you wanted in the first place. We are just a test bed.

    Micro~ft have a track record of making largely shit software and never fixing the feature set.

    1. Marty McFly Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Total confusion

      >"It really seems as if Microsoft is a set of disparate groups of people, some with designers, some without, whose job it is to just keep writing code, adding features and changing stuff. These groups/teams don't talk to each other. Ever.

      I suspect if they left stuff alone many of these groups would find themselves 'redundant'. Therefore there is a self-serving interest to continually muck with things. Break it so they can make a fix, both of which are worst than the original design.

      The problem is the original designers made it too good and there is little room for functionality improvement. The result is a failure to innovate.

      1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

        Re: Total confusion

        You've hit the nail on the head. It's just a self-serving forever-club. It makes them money. They *look* like they're innovating, but they're just rearranging furniture in a decrepit hotel.

        Now Apple software isn't perfect either, and they kill off things that we thought were OK, but they didn't. However, their software is consistently good. It just works. Rather than come up with 25 ways of doing the same thing, with 15 of them deprecated over time, they come up with 10 ways of doing things, which are consistent over the years. And when they make a big change which breaks things, well, they're the same as Microsoft but it's usually for the better, long term. Not perfect, but they appear to have a steering committee of some sort at least.

        1. VicMortimer Silver badge
          FAIL

          Re: Total confusion

          Counterpoint: System Settings

          It was bad enough when they kept rearranging System Preferences. But that piece of garbage is over the top bad.

    2. yetanotheraoc Silver badge

      Re: Total confusion

      "You can create a new tab. OK, good but not useful when trying to drag a file between two folders."

      Actually I don't know how to create a new tab! I could do it in Windows 10, but I just looked in Windows 11 and couldn't figure it out. Even Ctrl+T didn't work for me. Amazing, and not in a good way. Anyway to drag into a different tab you should be able to drag it onto the tab row, then hold it there until Windows Explorer opens the folder below, then finish dragging it into the folder and release. But being too much of an idiot to successfully open a new tab in Windows 11, I couldn't test that for you.

      Still working for now though is the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+N to create a new window. There were other ways I knew in Windows 10, like using a pinned taskbar button, but the taskbar is different, too. Another way to get a new window is by changing the Folder Options (in the ribbon it's under the "three dots" button), where you can check a box to always open a folder in a new window. Not my preference but you might want it.

      Not defending Microsoft here, just pointing out workarounds to help you get work done.

      1. dt545

        Re: Total confusion

        Other workarounds:

        Win + E opens a new Explorer window whether it's in focus or not.

        Shift + click on taskbar icon opens a new window for any app (I think!) that allows multiple windows.

    3. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: Total confusion

      "We have two versions of Teams. There's Teams and there's Teams. One for business, one for personal. They look similar but don't work with each other. WHY?"

      It appears* that fake-Teams and real-Teams are being merged so that from some time in late April as I recall it'll be the same client for work and personal accounts. As it always should have been, of course (not that I know of anyone who uses Teams for personal use, other than occasionally attending a presentation by an organisation). Fake-Teams has already disappeared from W11 - it was removed by the 23H2 annual update.

      *Source: the M365 portal notifications (I keep a close eye on these to try to stay on top of what they have fucked up / are planning to fuck up shortly)

    4. LateAgain

      Re: Total confusion

      Windows Mail was, last I looked, treated as an active sync device.

      So no old email. Forget keeping it all on your PC.

    5. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Total confusion

      It really seems as if Microsoft is a set of disparate groups of people, some with designers, some without, whose job it is to just keep writing code, adding features and changing stuff.

      Because it is. At every level.

      I know some old MS programmers. The stories they tell of the dept rivalry and silos will give you nightmares. But it explains everything wrong with MS.

      1. Terry 6 Silver badge

        Re: Total confusion

        Possibly not everything

    6. Tron Silver badge

      Re: Total confusion

      Agreed. I think we may all have to start simplifying our own use of tech and switching to hybrid (tech/paper), as the providers of our tech are not reliable, the tech is not resilient, and the TCO is just getting higher. You may prefer to be Linux based, but even Linux is a complicated mess of ever-changing distros that has lost the plot. Backing up stuff in plain text and the most generic file formats as you go may be the only solution. Facebook offer a 'download' option for everything, but do all of those whose software you rely on? Maybe that's something for the EU etc to demand.

      Perhaps that is the next killer app - recovering all of your data from various places, saving it in generic files and including a simple viewer.

    7. TheRealRoland
      Unhappy

      Re: Total confusion

      If you're up for some frustration - look into how MS Project, MS Project Online, and Planner are being positioned. Or however they call their products now.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    fine, change it

    Ok MS, fine, kill Outlook and move on to the new shiny, that's your call. Just please, don't name the new shiny "Outlook" or "Outlook NG" or any crap like that. Call it "Perspective" or "Standpoint" or something.

    Why? Because I wasted way too much time trying to determine if the web page I found was referring to "Skype" or "Skype for Business" or Office vs Office 365.

    You can do it... you pulled it off when IE was replaced with Edge.

    1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

      Re: fine, change it

      They're a one-trick pony

    2. Someone Else Silver badge

      Re: fine, change it

      Call it "Perspective" or "Standpoint" or something.

      "Standpipe"?

      1. psychonaut

        Re: fine, change it

        Customer conversation used to be

        So do you mean by outlook ....the email address, the website email or the outlook program. Now gotta add the other program called outlook which looks very similar bit is crap, and has a tiny word "new" written on the same icon as proper outlook

        Aaargh! Just call it something else ffs!

        Also, please stop asking me if I want to go back to the old teams app that was incapable of multiple accounts. I like what you have done, you did something good, stop trying to make me undo it!

    3. Michael Strorm Silver badge

      Re: fine, change it

      Microsoft's marketing and branding has been remarkably consistent in doing two remarkably irritating things, going back decades now:-

      * Rebranding the same product under numerous different names (e.g. Microsoft Passport AKA .NET Passport AKA Windows Live ID AKA Microsoft account)

      * Using the same branding or name for several different products (e.g. the aforementioned Outlook case).

      Or a mixture of both, for maximum confusion.

      Remember that this is the same company that introduced the "PlaysForSure" branding for music files, then later introduced the Zune which had its own format that didn't support "PlaysForSure", then badged both formats as "Certified for Windows Vista" so you couldn't know if they'd "Play For Sure" with your device.

      1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

        Re: fine, change it

        I vaguely remember playforsure. It destroyed hours of music I’d ripped off my CDs because they had some DestroyForSure™ DRM in it that didn’t survive me copying them to a new hard disk

        1. Michael Strorm Silver badge

          PlaysForCall

          A quick search confirms my memory that- on top of the fact it defaulted to WMA (which supported DRM) rather than MP3 (which didn't)- the "rip CD" option in Windows XP's media player had the "copy protect" (i.e. DRM) option checked by default. I assume that's what happened in your case.

          My Dad had the same problem with some ripped audio files after he reinstalled Windows. I'm sure I heard there was some way of stripping the copy protection, but there were only a few, so it was less hassle for him just to re-rip the CDs.

          One might imagine MS using the excuse that WMA was a more modern and efficient format than MP3, but I can't think of *any* similarly plausible reason why your average end-user might want DRM applied to their ripped audio by default when it offers no obvious benefit to them.

          I can definitely imagine that it might have suited MS though, or rather its you-scratch-my-back-and-I'll-scratch-yours pandering to the music industry.

          Which brings us back to MS doing things for reasons that benefit *them*, regardess of whether or not they're good for the end user.

    4. AJ MacLeod

      Re: fine, change it

      Maybe not the best example - sure, they replaced IE with Edge, which they then replaced with... Edge. But not Edge Edge, Chrome Edge.

  17. MJI Silver badge

    Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

    What I did when it was removed many Windows versions ago

    1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

      Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

      Yeah, TB is OK but it's just fraught with difficulty when in a corporate MS365 world.

      1. 43300 Silver badge

        Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

        I've tried to like Thunderbird, but always give up on it when I try it - no option for two or three-line entries for emails in the inbox is the biggest irritation, but the UI just looks so antiquated overall. I'm not a fan of change for the sake of it, but the GUI really does need a major update in this case.

        1. Someone Else Silver badge

          Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

          If your idea of a major GUI update is to "make it look like <insert name of favorite Micros~1 or Goooooogle abomination here>", then fucking no thank you, thank you!

          1. 43300 Silver badge

            Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

            As I said, three-line entries in the inbox is the main one - sender, subject and start of first line. Yes, Microsoft does this but so do plenty of others. The format used by Thunderbird is what was the norm twenty years ago.

            A new GUI could be optional for those who prefer the existing one, but GUI designs do move on and Thunderbird has gone for too long without a major update.

            1. Jotrav

              Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

              I want something that works, not something that is pretty. Thunderbird works for me, and the classic U/I is vastly superior to pretty.

              Three line entries in your inbox? Surely an invitation to malware infection by the fact of having to open the email body to read the first line. Yes, I do feel that Thunderbird could be improved, but I'll take what I have in preference to any 'modern' U/I.

            2. Adair Silver badge

              Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

              You may find the 'Cards' view of some help. Not sure if it's fully completed as planned yet:

              ---

              In this example we’ll show you the main Thunderbird window with “the Supernova look.” That’s when the Vertical layout is activated in Thunderbird 115, along with the new “Cards” view.

              Card view (one of the cards is highlighted in red, see #11), is a multi-line, non-column alternative view of the message list. Currently there is a two line “card” for each message in the Message List Pane (our plan is to eventually expand this to 3 or 4 customizable lines). The first line has the sender’s display name and time, and the second line displays the subject.

              ---

              IMAGE: https://blog.thunderbird.net/files/2023/07/115-cards-window.png

      2. Terry 6 Silver badge

        Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

        When I was using Outlook for work I relied on its message sorting, which is way more sophisticated than TB's. And I do miss that. It's the only thing I do miss.

    2. Michael Strorm Silver badge

      Re: Thunderbird is the replacement for Outlook Express

      That's true- and I replaced OE with Thunderbird myself- but we're talking about a replacement for the "full-fat" Outlook here, which is a significantly different and more complex kettle of fish than Outlook Express.

      OE was only ever a simple mail/news app (*) which Thunderbird was more than suitable for replacing, but Outlook is a far larger beast that includes numerous corporate features and is integrated in many ways with MS's other technologies. For that reason, and as good as Thunderbird is, I don't think it would be as easy or obvious a replacement for Outlook in a large corporate setup.

      (*) Technically it wasn't even the cut-down version of Outlook its name might suggest, but a modified version of "Microsoft Internet Mail and News"

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A toxic combination of arrogance, incompetence, and stupidity. Classic Microsoft.

  19. Headley_Grange Silver badge

    "...such add-ins "are often unstable and don't work cross-platform....""

    Or, translated out of Marketese: "such add-ins only serve to highlight the shortcomings in the basic product and divert revenue from the MS Store."

    1. captain veg Silver badge

      Cross-platform

      I wonder what that might mean. Windows 11 and 12?

      -A.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And this is why

    I hate cloud. We use Office 365 and they keep pissing about with UI updates and moving shit. Currently they are trying to push the New Outlook. Every person that has accidently clicked it hates it. Microsoft are clearly still not listening to users.

    I really would love to retire as this cloud shit is getting on my nerves but sadly, I'll only be able to retired when I'm dead.

    1. BenDwire Silver badge

      Re: And this is why

      Microsoft are clearly still not listening to users

      I'm not sure that I can recall the last time they actually did...

      Like many others, I moved away from MS apps in the XP/Win7 days and moved over to Thunderbird, LibreOffice and other FOSS applications. When Win10 was foisted upon the world it was relatively trivial to move over to Linux and MacOS without having to relearn everything.

      I have a feeling the demise of Outlook will add some major impetus for users change in ways that MS might not be happy with.

      1. steviebuk Silver badge

        Re: And this is why

        When they used to do their focus groups, like they did for launching Windows 95 they weren't too bad. But, when you have the CTO of Azure, Mark Russinovich, who created the sysinternals tools (along with Bryce Cogswell), who used to do his Case of the Unexplained talks (he's sadly stopped) he would regularly poke fun at the Office team for how shit Office was, its error dialogue boxes and bug reporting (obviously in a nicer way that I've just written it). He worked INTERNALLY at Microsoft, was a Technical Fellow, used his own tools to diagnose a problem with Office and this was mentioned on one of his talks (I've watched all those Case of the Unexplained, they are amazing for troubleshooting). They still told him to log it as a ticket and they'd fix it at some point.

        It appears they haven't changed.

        1. Terry 6 Silver badge

          Re: And this is why

          Microsoft, as I've commented many times here, haven't even sorted out the bug with the recycle bin that stops user's selected icons from changing on full/empty unless you edit the registry and add ,0 to the icon paths.And that's been an issue for decades!

          1. Michael Strorm Silver badge

            Re: And this is why

            Well, look on the bright side- technically they'll be finally getting rid of that bug by killing off the Outlook app (i.e. throwing the bathwater out with the baby)!

    2. Abominator

      Re: And this is why

      There is a great thread online about the whole Microsoft UI eco system. How the developers now have no say and the designers are in control. But they all use Mac's but design unusable UI's that they never have to use.

      Windows 8, 10, 11. It's all fucked. Outlook is also fucked and they are coming for Word and heaven forbid Excel.

  21. Raphael

    I work with State and Local government departments. all of them have COM add-ins that copy emails into their Electronic Document Management systems.

    Even basic ones store these as a .msg file.

    This could run afoul with a LOT of laws around records management.

    1. captain veg Silver badge

      laws around records management

      Er, maybe it was a bad idea to base it on a proprietary (*.msg) file format?

      I hold no candles for Microsoft, but any legal problems are entirely yours, not theirs.

      -A.

      1. An_Old_Dog Silver badge
        Joke

        Re: laws around records management

        ^A^A^A^A

        Down with proprietary formats!

  22. aerogems Silver badge
    Boffin

    On the one hand... the classic Outlook codebase has got to be creaking loudly by now. It was created back in the innocent days of the interwebs and before Microsoft was forced to consider security implications. So, starting fresh, taking all those lessons learned over the decades, seems like a good thing.

    On the other hand... making the cutover before you have a lot of key functionality in place just seems stupid. Windows 11, as a whole, is fine, but the decision to use the incomplete 10X UI overhaul is just baffling. Here they are doubling down on this bizarre idea. I tried the new Outlook a couple months back, and ended up going back after a couple hours. I can deal with it looking different, I can learn new button placements... I haven't surrendered the higher functions of my brain. but it was lacking some things I needed at the time.

    On the other other hand, if it means we finally get a unified inbox, there's at least that.

    1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

      A lot of that is down to crass incompetence in the team managing the Outlook codebase. There is nothing whatsoever stopping them from improving the existing codenbase, there was never anything stopping them from implementing things in retarded ways other than themselves. As a result, we have the shit-show that is the current Microsoft Outlook, now featuring more and more obvious bugs to try and push users onto a half-arsed, even more buggy and less feature complete mess that is "new Outlook" (but don't worry, it's "modern").

      Microsoft only want to push their "modern", which in any real terms means "shite": no logging, no professional error handling, no accountability, no real usability... but "shiny". Also even more tied into whatever nonsense the marketing department want to try and foist onto users this week.

  23. Rockets

    It’s Like Outlook Web Access

    The new Outlook version is like using OWA on the desktop, sure it’s fine in a pinch but trying to use it long term is terrible, it’s nowhere near up to snuff compared the the version that’s being retired. They’ve got a long way to go on improving it before any one will accept the new version.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: It’s Like Outlook Web Access

      When was the last time MS cared about what customers accepted?

      Customers will accept it too, look at Teams.

      1. Abominator

        Re: It’s Like Outlook Web Access

        I thought nothing could be worse than Skype for Business. I liked Lync.

        Then teams fucking happened. With toy town giant text and if you paste in code, it turns it into fucking smily faces.

  24. Alan W. Rateliff, II

    COM add-ins not cross-platform?

    Microsoft's take was that such add-ins "are often unstable and don't work cross-platform."

    I must be missing something. What crossing of platforms does a COM add-in need? If the add-in works in Outlook 2019 or 2021 on Windows 11, and that is what you have in your environment, how much cross-platform does it need to be? And so what if developers have to make changes between versions of Office or Windows? That is what developers and vendors have to, and do, do. This feels to me like standard Microsoft: get developers using a particular interface, support it for years, then lock them out with new versions of the operating system or product which now duplicate functionality. "We're heading in this super cool new direction."

    The least Microsoft could say is, the interface we include to manage COM Add-ins is the same wonky interface we have had for two decades, it is difficult for general end-users to understand to make sure add-ins are not disabled, and we disable add-ins on a whim. Or even, there are security problems with the COM model that we cannot, for whatever reason, fix.

    As for web platforms saying the e-mail way of things is dead, I expect new technology to cast aspersions against incumbent technology, even if the reigning champion is proven, still widely used, and still widely liked. (Well, even if scammers, spammers, phishers, and fraudsters have put a huge dent in its reliability. You know, web services are not vulnerable to such things...)

  25. Munehaus

    The final straw?

    Microsoft must be getting close to the "find out" stage by now?

  26. mfwiniberg

    Thunderbird!

    I realise that enterprise users will have a different take on this, but as an avid user of Outlook since it first appeared, and despite experimenting with the likes of Scalix etc, I never found a real competitor.

    However, as MS continued to remove useful features, meaning using even more COM addins to get them back, and with the effort that was put into Thunderbird, I decided to give Thunderbird a try. It has progressed to the point now where, with just one extension, it does everything I used to use Outlook for and more. As a result I abandoned Outlook some 2 years ago, and haven't really missed it.

    I use TB with both google workspace, POP3 and Exchange accounts without problems.

    MS Mail etc were worse than the very earlist mail clients I ever used (and I've been around since before the internet existed!) Nothing I see here convinces me they are significantly improved.

    Just saying...

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    PST Data Needs A Solution

    Microsoft need to rollout a replacement for multiple large unwieldy and failing PST’s. Users can’t dump these. Today, they rely on poorly built third party PST software that concatenates PST files (poorly). A simple email to Text structure export filter that can be ingested into any database could be a solution.

  28. /\/\j17

    "Slack would insist that email's time has passed"

    Well they would, wouldn't they - but as a victim forced to use Slack I can say I'd MUCH rather be using Outlook.

    Slack's the communication equivalent of running into a room, shouting a message, then running out. Great if you're in the room at the time and hear it but if you weren't and it's stopped echoing your chances of knowing it happened are next to zero!

    I spend half my time having:

    "Didn't you see X, we posted it on Slack?"

    "Which channel?"

    "The Y channel."

    "We have a Y channel?!?"

    "HR" keep pulling this trick, changing rules/policies/processes and only informing people on Slack - but I have no idea what out "HR" department's actually called this week, if it's HR, People Operations, Human Capital Management - and even if I guess that it doesn't mean the same name's been used in the one of 10,000 channels they are currently using.

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: "Slack would insist that email's time has passed"

      Slack is better compared with Teams - to which the same issues which you mention also apply!

      1. Mark Ruit

        Re: "Slack would insist that email's time has passed"

        I always thought that Slack was a prime example of nominative determinism - as in "do anything to avoid working (properly)".

  29. DoctorPaul

    What is this Outlook of which you speak?

    Been using PCs since the early 80s, from BBC Micro via OS/2 to all versions of Windows up to Win10 (and I only moved there from Win7 a few weeks ago).

    Never in my life have I used Outlook, a statement that will remain true until my dying breath. I think that my first remote access to email was via a 300baud modem from my BBC to the university *nix box, then when personal email became a thing Eudora did me just fine for years before I finally moved to Thunderbird.

    That said, all my desktop email these days is done using the Roundcube web client and 3 quid a month to Mythic Beasts for hosting. Never, ever use the ISP provided email!

  30. BenMyers

    Stay calm about COM

    Regarding COM: What Microsoft giveth, Microsoft taketh away.

    1. captain veg Silver badge

      Re: Stay calm about COM

      Blessed be the moniker of the object.

      -A.

  31. Luiz Abdala
    Facepalm

    PST files were a curse and a blessing.

    2GB limits were a disaster to recover back in the day, but, back then "no more than 20MB on the server per user" was a common feature of Exchange.

    Having the option to manage that, offline, should exist on an full-blown installed app designed to handle e-mail. Period.

    Sure, yeah, these days everybody has gobs of gigabytes on their servers, but people must have the option to forego online repositories altogether.

    God I hated to manage those, but there were no better options.

    So does everything else. Every single feature you use, or don't use, should remain available to those who use them.

  32. Inachu

    Rinse wash repeat.

    Take away what was once free and then cook it new code then reintroduce as new paid version.

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Other way round here - Outlook has never been free up until now (it was part of an Office purchase / subscription). The new version does appear to be free though (in that you can use it without an Office license / subscription, and it pops up be defualt on the latest W11 release). Clearly, the telemetry they can get from it makes it worthwhile to provide it free and try to push everyone into using it!

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The real irony is why all of this is happening

    I don't know if you have spotted this, but Microsoft is executing the EXACT vision that Netscape had all those years ago when the Internet acquired the whole URL idea - the browser as your desktop.

    That's why you have all the functionality changes and it's also the reason why the new version of Outlook is so much faster - it hangs off the web end of Exchange.

    Who knows, maybe once they have transitioned everyone to the browser world they'll abandon Windows as they don't need it anymore - all their customers are then locked in to Cloud and browser (and thus generously share EVERYTHING with Microsoft as MS doesn't even have to spy on local machines anymore, it's already on their computers).

    And that, gents and ladies, provides then the near completion of the Total Information Awareness strategy.

    And you thought they dropped it..

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: The real irony is why all of this is happening

      They need some sort of OS on local devices even if they move most things to web apps, and they are going to want to keep control of that to maximise telemetry collection!

  34. Updraft102

    I'm ready!

    My half century of not using Outlook is finally paying off. (Well, to be fair, it has been paying off to not have MS involved with email from the start.)

  35. localzuk Silver badge

    PST files

    When we do a discovery export, 365/Exchange spits out a PST file. So, unless MS are going to rewrite that or provide some other way to access PST files, classic Outlook is a necessity.

    1. bazza Silver badge

      Re: PST files

      This is an aspect of corporate email that most do not appreciate. Email can be a substantive record admissible in court. However to be admissible the record needs securing. A way of doing that is as you have said, export a PST.

      The file can be archived onto media, and the person doing so / looking after the media can easily attest in court that the PST file is a complete unaltered contemporaneous record, unaltered since. The media can even be put in an evidence bag and sealed.

      You can't do that with email stuck in a server. In fact, the email are probably not admissible at all, as it's likely difficult for anyone to swear that the server content "now" is a complete record of how content was "then".

      An unviable alternative is to print everything.

      1. An_Old_Dog Silver badge

        Re: PST files [Printing Out Emails]

        Oh, gods, the solicitors would love that. Think of the fees they'd rack up going through all that paper. "Manna from Microsoft!"

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: PST files

        Given how much time Microsoft have spent in court over the decades I'd say that has a certain self-serving feel to it, almost as if they're up to something..

  36. Tubz Silver badge

    Sadly using it and it's the biggest pile of dog poo ever to have been rolled out by Microdicks !

  37. Adam Trickett
    Linux

    I don't like Outlook but compared with new Outlook its amazing

    I've been forced to use Outlook for decades and I have a hate-hate relationship with it. However I have tried new Outlook a couple of times at work but I couldn't get on with it at all, and went back to classic Outlook.

    For me the biggest problems were the very-very poor performance, I've got mailboxes with lots of emails in them, and it was utterly terrible when switching from folder to folder.

    The second issue was that the GUI change to web behaviour so the click behaviour is wrong. and you need to relearn what left and right click do, which was just painful - after too many times of hitting the wrong button I gave up and switched back.

    Outlook isn't great, and has been my least favourite email client for years, but now it has been supplanted by new Outlook which is actually far worse - something I didn't think was possible.

    I also have to use corporate Gmail, which isn't exactly that good either, but it's still a lot better than new Outlook.

    I will actually miss Outlook, which surprises me...!

  38. DXMage

    "Baby's first email client by Playskool"

    New interface is garbage. I have had a few of my users test drive the new interface and it was met with universal dislike to put it lightly. From the favorites scrolling up off screen to popups not showing up, settings being scattered and hidden away or removed or functions like PDFs being no longer viewable from in outlook and such just isn't what they want. I have to say that I'm not a fan of the new interface at all it seems more like they are trying to dumb it down to be like "Baby's first email client by Playskool"

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Look Out!

    We can always use Locust® Notes™

    1. captain veg Silver badge

      Re: Look Out!

      Some time, a long time ago, my employer adopted Lotus notes for email.

      To be fair, there were a handful of other Notes apps deployed, but mostly it was for email.

      As an email system it sucked hugely. But not totally.

      Years later a management change meant a migration (back) to Exchange. In consequence we had to use Outlook.

      As an email client Outlook sucks worse, much worse. It suck totally.

      Being worse than Notes is some kind of achievement, I suppose.

      -A.

      1. bpfh
        Windows

        Re: Look Out!

        Lotus notes was a group collaboration tool that had an email extension. Outlook was an email tool that had group collaboration extension.

        Unfortunately the groupware extensions for outlook were clunky outside of public folders and the email extension for notes was clunky, but that was its main "killer app" use, forgetting the background power it used to have.

        I liked notes - easy way to get server managed CRUD database apps to end users with local offline replication.

        Email sucked though as it was not HTML compatible and it's html to rich text conversion consistently broke the layout.

        Notes was the big tool box IBM sold you when you only needed a Philips screwdriver.

        Outlook was the Philips screwdriver that you never knew had 10 bits and 5 sockets hidden in the handle.

        1. Mr Dogshit
          Headmaster

          Re: Look Out!

          Phillips

        2. captain veg Silver badge

          Re: Look Out!

          > [Lotus Notes e]mail sucked though as it was not HTML compatible

          Outlook neither. I guess you are too young to remember the e-turd named winmail.dat.

          It's been a chequered history. Outlook to this day would really prefer that you use Microsoft RTF to HTML, but this has been buried by marketing imperative. Instead everyone else is forced to use an undocumented and utterly non-standard dialect of HTML if they want the output rendered sensibly in Outlook. There was a time when it basically embedded a really ancient version of IE, but they ditched that as it became unsustainably difficult to keep tolerably less than totally insecure. So then they switched to the rendering engine from... Microsoft Word. Oh yes. No idea what they use now. I lost interest.

          -A.

    2. An_Old_Dog Silver badge

      Re: Look Out!

      I've always felt I'd missed out on something by never having had the chance to use Notes, as I'd read it was quite concepturally-advanced. At work I'd been using Novell Groupwise -- it's like riding a 10-speed bike -- and later, using Outlook and OWA -- it's like using one foot to push yourself on a bike whose chain has broken and fallen off.

  40. Abominator

    They have been destroying it for the last 4 years. The latest version is an unstable hunk of shit.

    I seriously want to use a different mail client at work but there is nothing as we are locking into the donkey balls that is Office 365.

    1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

      The latest moronic obvious bug that Microsoft have introduced is to break the "a newer response to this email is available" type functionality.

      How? When composing an email, for example a reply, the email is saved to drafts periodically. This is good and very helpful for when Outlook crashes and burns, such as it does more and more now. What is not good is that when composing the email and then coming back to it a little later, a banner is now shown stating that there is a newer response in the email thread. What is this newer response? The fucking saved copy in your own draft folder of course.

      Incompetence knows no bounds in Microsoft, but it's there as Microsoft deliberately introduce such moronic new bugs just to push people to use something new and "modern" (the new catch-all for "shit").

  41. TVC

    Interesting discussion - thank you.

    I only use POP3 for my 6 email addresses. On my main PC I download everything and set the classic Outlook client to delete it fron the server after 14 days and unless it's junk keep it locally, forever. I back up my PST files to a remote NAS box.

    I also download emails to my android phone using Samsung Mail every 15 mins and only keep live ones.

    I have email pop3 clients on a couple of other machines and download emails to them when I need to. I can go back xx days

    So I have virtually nothing left on my ISPs system. And local copies of everything on my LAN.

    My wife has her own POP3 email address on my domain and uses her own POP3 client to keep her stuff separate and reasonably private.

    I also use MyPhoneExplorer to sync my classic outlook contacts and calendar with my Android phone and vice versa.

  42. Simon R. Bone

    Guaranteed Email Storage Profits?!

    A friend of mine's uncle has a legal storage business - it's very profitable because law firms store boxes of case files with him and these need to be kept for decades - so his business only grows and grows - I see MS removing POP3 access WHILST selling one of the main email space providers via Ms365 AND selling the main corporate email client that using IMAP keeps emails with the email space provider as a very similar and lucrative business model for them - surely the competition regulator should look into this?!

    1. 43300 Silver badge

      Re: Guaranteed Email Storage Profits?!

      And don't forget the add-on profit from backing all that email up too! Even if a third-party backup service is used (which it generally is), this still often uses Azure Files for the repositories.

  43. bpfh
    Windows

    Bit the bullet on Mac

    Missing notes, which were great for quick references, but over the year, Outlook has been slowly going back to Outlook Express (or Windows mail for those who are too young to remember it).

    Yes, I'm old and I still think Outlook 2000 was peak outlook...

  44. Watashi

    Omfg

    The future is no email? The real future is that MS (and others) will remove all line-of-sight access between standard users and their data, do away with all local DBAs and sysadmins, lock everything inside rented, cloud-based black boxes and then charge organisations access to their own data through very expensive AI subscriptions. They will also use that data to train their AIs for free and will own all the processes their customers develop to manage data and steal it to sell to other customers.

    Fucking great.

  45. jimjamz

    No more Classic Outlook to turn to

    If anyone was thinking about reverting to an older version of Outlook such as 2010, 2013 or 2016, forget it.

    Microsoft have shifted to OAuth2, which these apps do not support. It's created quite a shit-storm on Microsoft Answers:

    https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/outlook_com/forum/all/outlook-2016-doesnt-accept-password-or-app/b806e4e8-28fd-4b5b-8be2-2b03cf39b938?page=73

  46. navarac Silver badge

    Toy Company

    Have I missed that Microsoft seems to have been taken over by a certain toy company (Fishy Dice)? With all due respect to FP, it seems that all of Microsoft's products are being dumbed down to cater for the illiterate youth who should not be let near a computing device larger than a phone sized black glass slab.

  47. Strummer

    When did it become acceptable that a "New improved version" is worse than what we had before?!! Come on Microsoft, when you make a perfectly functional product, leave it alone.

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