You cannot set Outlook 2003 as the default e-mail client on a Windows Vista-based computer

Support for Office 2003 has ended

Microsoft ended support for Office 2003 on April 8, 2014. This change has affected your software updates and security options. Learn what this means for you and how to stay protected.

This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
You upgrade Windows XP to Windows Vista. When you start Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 for the first time, you are prompted to set Outlook as the default e-mail client. You click Yes to set Outlook as the default e-mail client. However, when you restart Outlook, you are again prompted to set Outlook as the default e-mail client.
After you upgrade Windows XP to Windows Vista, Outlook is no longer the default e-mail client. Windows Mail becomes the new default e-mail client during a Windows Vista upgrade.
To resolve this issue, use one of the following methods.

Method 1

  1. Make sure that Outlook is not running.
  2. Click Start, type %programfiles%\Microsoft Office\Office11 in the Start Search box, and then press ENTER.
  3. Locate and then right-click Outlook.exe, and then click Run as Administrator.
  4. Click Yes to set Outlook as the default e-mail client.
  5. Exit Outlook.

Method 2

Uninstall and then reinstall Office 2003. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
  2. Double-click Programs and Features.
  3. Select Office 2003, and then click Uninstall.
  4. Follow the instructions that appear on the screen to finish uninstalling the software.
  5. Install Office 2003 from the Office installation CD.
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: 945798 - Last Review: 01/16/2015 17:32:37 - Revision: 1.0

  • Microsoft Office Outlook 2003
  • kbnosurvey kbarchive kbtshoot kbexpertisebeginner kbprb KB945798