Description of the new features in Outlook 2002

This article was previously published under Q287496
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This article provides an overview of the new features in Outlook 2002 in the following categories:
  • General
  • E-mail Messages
  • Calendar
  • Contacts/Address Books
  • Exchange Integration
  • Reliability, Data Recovery and Security
  • Installation
More information


  • Find Bar: Has a sleeker design than in previous versions of Outlook, and adds the ability to select which folders to search in. Click the Find button on the Standard toolbar to display the improved Find Bar.
  • Preview Pane: Updates to the Preview pane, and allows a you to click on a hyperlink, respond to meeting requests, access properties of an e-mail address, and the information bar details are displayed, if there are any available. To enable the Preview pane, click Preview Pane in the View menu.

E-mail Messages

  • AutoComplete Addressing: As an e-mail address, e-mail alias, or as an entered name, Outlook offers to complete the address, alias, or names, based on addresses, aliases, or names that e-mail messages that you have previously sent to. This is enabled by default, and you can disable it by clicking Options on the Tools menu, clicking E-mail Options on the Preferences tab, and then clicking Advanced E-mail Options.
  • Access Hotmail and other HTTP e-mail servers: Hotmail and HTTP account users can view their e-mail messages in Outlook. To configure a new HTTP e-mail account, click E-mail Accounts in the Tools menu, and then click Add a new e-mail account. Click Next, click HTTP, and then follow the instructions in the wizard.
  • Send Using Multiple Accounts: If you have more than one e-mail account, you can select on a per e-mail message basis, which account to use to send e-mail messages. After you create an e-mail message, click the Accounts box (next to the Send button) to select which account that you want to use. An Information Bar appears above the To field and reflects which account you selected to send the e-mail message. Explicit rules are built into Outlook to determine which account should be used as the default, (for example, when you reply to an e-mail message, Outlook uses the account the e-mail message was originally sent to), or you can assign a specific account for Outlook to use as the default.
  • Wordmail: Wordmail is now the default e-mail editor for Outlook e-mail messages. Significant improvements to Wordmail have been made in reliability, message size, and feature set. For example, when you use the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) e-mail format, Wordmail removes document specific tags that were previously included so that you can edit the e-mail message in Microsoft Word. This reduces the overall size of the e-mail message. Wordmail allows you to take advantage of a variety of new Word enhancements. See the Word Product Guide for more details. To verify that Word is your default e-mail editor, on the Tools menu, click Options, click the Mail Format tab, and verify that the Use Microsoft Word to edit e-mail messages check box is selected.
  • Smart Tags in Wordmail: With Word as the default e-mail editor, you can take advantage of the smart tags that are available in Word. A smart tag is a type of button that provides choices for enhancing the content and layout in Microsoft Office programs. Smart tag buttons appear when you perform certain tasks, such as pasting text or graphics, and display a list of options when clicked. See the Office XP and Word Product Guides for more detailed information.
  • Message Format in Wordmail: You can change between different e-mail formats on the fly and on a per e-mail message basis. Because you can switch between HTML, Microsoft Outlook Rich Text format, or plain text, you can easily format e-mail messages so that the recipient can have the best viewing experience. To create a new e-mail message by using Word as the default e-mail editor, use the Message Format box (located next to the Options button) to select the e-mail format that you want.
  • Mailbox Cleanup: You can quickly view the size of your mailbox, search for items by size or age, and then delete, move, or archive those items to clear up space. Additionally, if set by the Microsoft Exchange administrator, Exchange users can also be automatically notified when their mailbox size is close to its size limitation. Click Tools, and then click Mailbox Cleanup.
  • Text Auto Cleanup: Outlook can now automatically clean up plain text e-mail formatting that contains extra line breaks that can make an e-mail message difficult to read. Outlook automatically removes the extra line breaks when a you open an e-mail message, previews the e-mail message in the Preview pane, or prints the e-mail message. Outlook also includes an option to turn off this feature.
  • Hyperlinks in Subject Line: Outlook e-mail messages now recognize URL's that are placed in the Subject field. This allows you to browse to any Web site by using your default browser without having to copy the address first, and then type it in your Web browser's address field.
  • Auto-Select Message Encoding: Based on content, Outlook automatically detects the appropriate Internet mail encoding for outbound e-mail messages. This feature requires Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 or later.


  • Group Schedules: You can save multiple group calendars in Outlook for quick and easy access to their team or conference room schedules. With this single calendaring interface, you can view the free and busy times of a group, as well as easily e-mail or set up group appointments. With the Calendar selected, click the Schedules button, and then click New to create a new group schedule or open an existing one.
  • Outlook Free/Busy Sharing: Outlook now allows you to share Free/Busy information with others on the Internet for free. This feature allows you to schedule meetings with other Outlook users who do not share an Exchange Server.
  • Reminder Window: You now get a single reminder window for all appointments or task reminders. This allows you to easily dismiss, snooze, or open one or all of the reminders at once.
  • Calendar Coloring: You can identify important appointments with the new color-coded calendar. Each color has a label that you can customized. You can apply color to individual appointments, or they can automatically apply color if you create automatic formatting rules. While in Calendar, click the Calendar Coloring button on the toolbar, and then click either Edit Labels or Automatic Formatting.
  • Propose New Time: When you receive a meeting request, you now have the option to propose a new meeting time to the meeting organizer rather than just declining the request. Furthermore, if you have an Exchange Server, you can see the free and busy times of each attendee before submitting the new meeting time. When you open a new meeting request, click the Propose New Time button on the toolbar. For an appointment already on the Calendar, right-click the appointment title, and then click Propose New Time.
  • Lunar Calendar Support: Outlook now supports Lunar calendars. You can view Lunar calendar information in your calendar, and set up recurring appointments based on that calendar. First, enable one of the following languages that support the Lunar Calendar (with the Microsoft Office XP Language Settings): Arabic, Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Hebrew, Japanese, and Korean. On the Tools menu, click Options, click Calendar Options, and then click to select Enable Alternate Calendar.

Contacts/Address Book

  • MSN Messenger Integration: When you open an e-mail message (or views it in the Preview pane), you can identify whether that person is online by the status that is displayed in the Information Bar. You can then immediately initiate an MSN Messenger session with that person in Outlook.
  • Display As Name Field: Contacts now include a Display As field for e-mail names. The name that you type in the Display As field appears in the To field when you compose a new e-mail message, instead of the actual address.
  • Address Book Column Headings: Column headings are now resizable in width. This feature allows you to reveal or conceal columns to show only the information that you find useful for address book entry look up information.
  • Contact Address Book: The Contact Address book makes use of the contact's Display Name. (In Address Book, select an Outlook Address Book enabled folder, i.e. a Contacts folder). With this column, you can look up contact entries more efficiently, especially with multiple entries for the same contact name. To use this, On the Tools menu, click Address Book.

Exchange Integration

  • Synchronization Improvements: Outlook is now easier to set up for use in an offline mode with a single command, and all protocols (Internet Mail Access Protocol (IMAP), Post Office Protocol 3 (POP3), and MAPI) can be synchronized at once. Different accounts can also be synchronized in different ways, depending on whether you are offline or online. You can also select what information from the e-mail item (the header only or the entire e-mail message)is synchronized. A new Progress Reporting feature notifies you of the progress of the synchronization. Additionally, you can choose to selectively cancel different account synchronizations.
  • Cancel Request to Server: You can cancel a request for Outlook to connect to an Exchange Server if the network connection is disconnected. This allows Outlook 2002 to be more resilient to network or server disruptions, and allows you to continue working.
  • Exchange Server Connection Improvements: A connection to Exchange Server is more efficient in Outlook 2002, which results in the faster download of e-mail messages. This happens because of a decreased number of "round trips" that data must travel, as well as less data being transferred over the connection, than with previous versions of Outlook. The connection to the directory is also more resilient, meaning that if the connection to the Global catalog server is disrupted for any reason, Outlook asks for a referral to another directory server, and connects to that server seamlessly.

Reliability, Data Recovery, and Security

  • Outlook Virus Enhancements: Outlook now helps you and organizations safeguard against malicious viruses by blocking e-mail attachments that are associated with unsafe files. Outlook also prevents programs from gaining programmatic access to your address book or from send e-mail messages on the your behalf. You are notified and given the option of continuing or halting the action. This prevents propagation and the spreading or e-mail viruses to others. Additionally, Outlook gives administrators options to customize these settings to meet organizational needs.
  • Document Recovery: Wordmail provides you with the option to save your current files at the time an error occurs in the program. As a result, you spend less time re-creating e-mail messages.
  • Application Error Reporting: Outlook allows you to automatically report any errors that occur directly to Microsoft or to their corporate IT department. This gives Microsoft, or organizations, the data needed to further diagnose and correct these errors, and provide you with direct access to workarounds or established information concerning the error.
  • Application Recovery: You can choose to shut down a non-responding program while at the same time initiating recovery of Wordmail messages, and reporting the issue to Microsoft or their corporate IT department. This provides a safer method for shutting down a program that is not responding. To do this, click Start, point to Programs, click Microsoft Office Tools, and then click Microsoft Office Application Recovery.


  • Integrated Corporate or Workgroup and Internet Mail Only Modes: Outlook is no longer divided into separate Internet and Exchange modes. The new E-Mail Accounts wizard allows you to create several e-mail account types such as HTTP, POP3, IMAP, and Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP), and others in one profile. Multiple profiles are still supported. Additionally, Outlook provides you with the option of selecting which account is your default e-mail account.
  • E-mail Configuration: A new e-mail account interface allows you to easily add or change e-mail accounts, directories, or address books. To do this, on the Toolsmenu, click E-mail Accounts.
  • Outlook Customization via the Custom Installation Wizard (CIW): As part of the Custom Installation Wizard, administrators can create, modify, and replace profiles as necessary without having to use multiple utilities. Administrators can also configure an Exchange Server connection, remove outdated information services, customize Outlook default settings, or choose a variety of other options for setting up Outlook for a single user or a group of users. The Custom Installation Wizard is found in the Office XP Resource Kit.
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Note This is a "FAST PUBLISH" article created directly from within the Microsoft support organization. The information contained herein is provided as-is in response to emerging issues. As a result of the speed in making it available, the materials may include typographical errors and may be revised at any time without notice. See Terms of Use for other considerations.

Article ID: 287496 - Last Review: 10/24/2013 05:45:00 - Revision: 2.0

  • Microsoft Outlook 2002 Standard Edition
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