Enhance Message Content in Microsoft Outlook 2010

  • 6/29/2010

Changing Message Settings and Delivery Options

When you send a message, you can include visual indicators of the importance, sensitivity, or subject category of a message or other Outlook item, flag a message for follow-up, restrict other people from changing or forwarding message content, provide a simple feedback mechanism in the form of voting buttons, and specify message delivery options to fit your needs.


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In the received message, tags are displayed as text in the message header.

Common message settings and delivery options include:

  • Flags and reminders You can place an outgoing message on your task list, add an informational reminder to it, or set a reminder to appear at a certain time and date, for yourself and for message recipients.

  • Importance You can indicate the urgency of a message by setting its importance to High or Low. A corresponding banner appears in the message header and, if the Importance field is included in the view, an importance icon appears in the Inbox or other message folder.

  • Sensitivity You can indicate that a message should be kept private by setting its sensitivity to Confidential, Personal, or Private. No indicator appears in the message folder, but a banner appears in the message header to indicate a sensitivity level other than Normal. You can choose to include the sensitivity as one of the message attributes shown in the Inbox pane, but if you do, it replaces the message subject, which isn’t very helpful.

  • Security If you have a digital ID, you can digitally sign the message; or you can encrypt the contents of the message.

  • Voting options If you and your message recipients have Microsoft Exchange Server accounts, you can add voting buttons to your messages to enable recipients to quickly select from multiple-choice response options.

  • Tracking options You can track messages by requesting delivery receipts and read receipts. These receipts are messages automatically generated by the recipient’s e-mail server when it delivers the message to the recipient and when the recipient opens the message.

  • Delivery options You can have reply messages delivered to an e-mail address other than yours, specify a date and time for the message to be delivered and to expire, and set advanced attachment format and encoding options.

  • Categories You can assign a message to a color category that will be visible to the recipient if he or she views the message in Outlook.

The most commonly used options are available in the Tags group on the Message tab of the message window. You can access other options from the Properties dialog box, which you open by clicking the Tags dialog box launcher.


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The Properties dialog box.

You can limit the actions other people can take with messages they receive from you by restricting the message permissions. For example, you can prevent recipients from forwarding or printing the message, copying the message content, or changing the content when they forward or reply to the message. (Restrictions apply also to message attachments.) Within a message window, permission options are available both on the File tab and in the Permission group on the Options tab.