Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2007 use only Word as the email editor

Applies to: Microsoft Office Outlook 2007Microsoft Outlook 2010


Microsoft Office Outlook 2010 and Office Outlook 2007 use only Microsoft Office Word as the email editor.

More Information

Earlier versions of Outlook use two rendering engines. Windows Internet Explorer is used for reading email messages, and Word is used for composing and editing email messages. If you forward or reply to an HTML email message, earlier versions of Outlook first use the Internet Explorer rendering engine to view the email message. Then, Outlook uses the Word composition rendering engine to reply to the email message. Because multiple rendering engines are used, the message that the recipient receives may be displayed differently from the message that you sent.

Outlook 2010 uses Word 2010 for both the rendering engine and the composition engine. Similarly, Outlook 2007 uses Word 2007 for both rendering and composition. This symmetry provides a uniform experience between the sender and the recipient. Additionally, the Word 2010 and Word 2007 rendering engines represent improvements over the rendering engines in earlier versions of Word. These improvements include improved support for HTML and cascading style sheets (CSS) standards.  

Frequently asked questions

Q1: Does using Word as the email editor make it more difficult for Web designers to create HTML email messages?

A1: The Word rendering engine does not support some HTML and CSS attributes. For more information about HTML and CSS standards, visit the following Microsoft websites: Q2: Does Microsoft use the same standards in Outlook and Internet Explorer?

A2: No. Internet Explorer was not intended to be used an editing tool. Therefore, Microsoft decided to use Word to read and to author content in Outlook.

Q3: Are there any plans to add support for the other HTML and CSS standards to the Word rendering engine?

A3: Microsoft is continually examining HTML and CSS support in Word, in response to customer feedback.

For a corporate response that explains the business decision to use Word as the exclusive editor for Outlook, visit the following Outlook Team blog site: