Windows XP Help

Windows XP FAQ - Outlook Express (Email)

1. What is Outlook Express?

Outlook Express is a free E-mail program supplied with Windows XP. It is currently version 6. It supports standard E-mail protocols used by most Internet Service Providers (ISPs) such as POP3 (Post Office Protocol 3), IMAP and SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) and also can use Web based Email sites such as Hotmail and others. You can also read NewsGroup sites using Outlook Express, which are public forums on 1000s of topics including computing, religion, politics, tv, films, sci-fi, industry and so on.

2. Where is Outlook Express?

The outlook express program is stored in C:\Program Files\Outlook Express\msimn.exe. The address book program is called wab.exe.

3. How do I share my Email between different users on XP?

In Windows XP, each user has their own identity set up for Outlook Express in their private profile. To share email, the email files (.DBX) must be copied to a shared directory elsewhere for example, C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Shared Documents or another folder e.g D:\OutlookExpress. Then for each user, change the Store Folder (see Tools, Options, Maintenance) to point to this shared folder! To share the Address Book, copy the .wab file to a shared folder and use Regedit to search for <user>.wab to point to the new directory, do for each user.

4. How do I reinstall Outlook Express in Windows XP?

Search for Msoe50.inf in C:\Windows\Inf folder. Right click this file and select Install. Insert XP CD when prompted and browse
for the i386 folder for the files.

5. How do I get the Spell Checker to work with OE with Office 97 and Windows XP?

You need a Microsoft Office product for the Spell Checker to be enabled. If you have Office 97, search for the csapi3ti.dll file on your hard disk or copy it from your Office CD and copy it to OE's folder e.g. c:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Proof... You can get a third party spell checker from MajorGeek. or AutoSpell.

6. It says I have unread messages on the Welcome screen when I don't. How do I get rid of this feature?

You can either turn it off with Tweak UI, see Logon then Unread Mail and untick Show unread mail on Welcome screen.
Alternatively, you can use Regedit and browse to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\ CurrentVersion\UnreadMail and delete the entry.

7. I get attachments with my mail but I cannot access them?

This is a new security feature in OE which prevents you computer from being infected by viruses from program attachments. To be able to access or open your attachements, click on Tools, Options, Security and disable 'Do not allow attachments to be saved or opened that could potentially be a virus'.

8. Where are my mail messages stored?

By default, Windows XP will store them in a directory in c:\documents and settings\<username>\Application Data\Identities in DBX files. You can find out which folder they are in by opening OE, and selecting Tools, Options, Maintenance and click on Store Folder button. You can change the location of your mail from here as well.

9. Where is my Address Book stored?

Your list of Contacts and Groups are stored in a WAB file in c:\documents and settings\<username>\Application Data\Microsoft\Address Book.

10. I am unable to send or receive mail?

Check your account settings, in Tools, Accounts, Mail Properties and look under the Servers tab and make sure the incoming/outgoing servers are correct and the username and password are correct (supplied by your ISP). Sometimes the mail server may be down (check the ISP's web site for scheduled downtime periods). For AOL Users you must use AOL Mail!

11. How do I add another account to Outlook Express?

Select File, Identities, Add New Identity and enter a Name for new account and switch to new identity and then the New Account Wizard will appear to enter the new account details.
You can restore an account from a .IAF file, via Tools, Accounts, Mail and click on Import.

12. I have received some e-mail with pictures, but they are not displayed?

Select Tools, Options, Security and turn off Block images and other external content in HTML e-mail.

13. How do I backup my Email?

Your email is stored as DBX files and you just need to backup your entire Store folder (see Question 8). See InsideOE for more information on backing up email.
You can also backup Email account settings via Tools, Accounts, Mail and click on Export to save the settings to a .IAF file.

14. I have upgraded to another Email program from OE, how do I transfer my messages?

Outlook Express can be Exported to Microsoft Outlook or Exchange from within Outlook Express (See File, Export). For other email programs you need to check the Import facilities for that program.

15. Can I read my mail from a web browser?

You can read only new mail from a WebMail page provided by your Internet Provider, check their website for this facility.

16. How can I stop Spam from entering my Inbox?

Outlook Express has a simple Rules feature which can be used to delete obvious spam but to really deal with the problem, you need an AntiSpam program from a third party source such as SpamKiller from McAfee, Norton Internet Security (which contain Norton AntiSpam), MailWasher, ZoneLabs Spam Blocker and Spam Assassin.

17. Is there a new version of Outlook Express?

Yes, the latest mail client for Windows is called Windows Live Mail and you can upgrade Outlook Express to Live Mail from Microsoft Downloads. The client supports Contact, Calendar and Junk Mail filtering.

18. How do I found out what my Email password is?

If you have forgotten your password for your Email account, you can retreive it using a program called Mail PassView.

19. What other mail programs can I use?

There are a number of third party mail programs including Thunderbird, Opera Mail, Corel WordPerfect Mail, Microsoft Outlook and others.
Online email programs include, Google Mail and web mail pages provided by your ISP.