Monday, July 1, 2002

Folder expansion and extra line breaks: what’s changed in 2002?


By Diane Poremsky

One of the most frequently asked questions I get is from users who upgraded from the IMO (Internet Mail Only) mode of Outlook 2000 to Outlook 2002. They used rules to move messages to subfolders and Outlook 2000-IMO expanded the folder as new messages were moved to them, making it easy to see the folders containing new mail. When they upgraded to Outlook 2002, the folders no longer automatically expand. The question I'm asked most often is: "Is there is an option to re-enable expansion?" While there isn't an option that controls it, installing Office 2000 SP1 restores the capability. To find it, start by poking around at:

A new feature found only in Outlook 2002 is the ability to remove extra line breaks, and it causes a lot of confusion. Extra line breaks are removed by default and while this process does make some email easier to read, it makes other mail more difficult to read. It's easy to toggle the feature on and off for each message; just click on the line break text in the yellow Infobar. You can change the behavior for all mail. To do so, look in Tools | Options | Preferences tab | Email Options button. This brings up another common question for which the answer is no: the Infobar cannot be removed, no matter how useless you think it is. It can be hidden if you use the preview pane, by hiding header options (right click on the header and choose Header Information to toggle the header on and off).

Diane Poremsky is the president of CDOLive LLC and a Microsoft Outlook MVP. She's coauthor of Word 2002: The Complete Reference (Osborne, 2001) and Beginning Visual Basic 6 Application Development (for Wrox Press). For questions or suggestions for future columns, write her at