Tip

Improve your Microsoft Outlook email folder file system

Manually sorting email into Microsoft Outlook email folders is a tiresome task. You can use rules to relieve some of the burden, but moving messages by hand is still necessary in many instances. SpeedFiler is

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a third-party add-in tool written specifically to help users manage manual message filing by improving the feature limitations of Outlook's interface.

The "Move To:" dropdown list in Microsoft Outlook only has a memory of the last 10 folders used, which limits heavy Outlook users who tend to utliize the email client as a multi-tiered and complex file-folder system. In addition, mail-sorting rules don't always work properly and can be a nuisance to manage.

The SpeedFiler utility offers several features that help simplify Microsoft Outlook email and file-folder management, including:

 

  • File-in toolbar integration
  • A folder-search function
  • Outgoing message classification

SpeedFiler integrates a new "File In" toolbar into Microsoft Outlook, letting users access more recently used folders than the "Move To" dropdown menu allows. It also lets you find a folder by simply typing its name, which often is much faster than drilling down through the folder hierarchy.

The folder-search function intelligently locates folders that are filed several levels down in the hierarchy, and represents them so that it's clear where they're located in the entire hierarchy. For example, if you have multiple folders with the same name (or part of the same name), the folder-search function makes it easier to distinguish them from one another.

More Microsoft Outlook resources:
Automatically move Microsoft Outlook sent items to a specified folder

 

Managing Microsoft Outlook search folder functionality

 

The Microsoft Outlook Toolbox

 

Microsoft Outlook Reference Center

 

 Likewise, you can also jump directly to a folder by simply typing its name.

The SpeedFiler tool also lets users classify an outgoing message in a given folder after it has been sent, instead of moving it to the catch-all "Sent Items" folder. Using this function, all messages with a given subject, including any replies that have been written, can be grouped together without having to resort to searching. While searching is faster in Microsoft Outlook when indexed search is available, it still isn't as convenient as being able to look in the correct folder in the first place.

A free 30-day trial version of SpeedFiler is available; the full version is U.S. $24.95 for a single seat.

About the author: Serdar Yegulalp is editor of Windows Insight, a newsletter devoted to hints, tips, tricks, news and goodies for all flavors of Windows users.

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This was first published in November 2007

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