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Rearrange Outlook Express

Posted By On August 4, 2006 @ 2:07 PM In E-Mail Help | Comments Disabled

Rearrange Outlook Express

Are you tired of unwanted extra line breaks and double line spacing in plain text e-mails when you use Outlook Express?! Maybe you often find your outgoing messages having extra line breaks in each even line (as in the screenshot below). You must be curious to know how it happened, right? I know I get very frustrated with all of that and I would love to just turn it all around. Rearrange it, if you will. Well, that’s what we’re going to work on today, so let’s get started!

The cause of this is that Outlook Express automatically wraps the text of outgoing messages. Basically, if you’re working with either the plain text or HTML settings and if there’s more than 72 characters per line, the extra line breaks will automatically appear.

Well, here’s a method you can use to solve this awful dilemma.

Automatically Wrap Text at 72 Characters Per Line (This is only a one time setting):

1. Open Outlook Express.
2. Go to Tools, Options and click on the Send tab.
3. In there, look for the Plain Text Settings button (or HTML Settings button, depending on what you’re working with) and click on that.

4. In the Plain Text Settings window:

  • Select the MIME option .
  • Encode text using: Choose None from the list.
  • Automatically wrap text at: Change to 72 characters when sending.
  • Click OK.

Or in the HTML Settings window:

  • In the MIME message format, encode text using: Choose None from the list.
  • Automatically wrap text at: Change to 72 characters when sending.
  • Click OK.

5. To quit from Options window, click OK.

Create New Message Using Outlook Express:

1. Press Ctrl + N (or click Write Message button) and then type in your e-mail address.

2. In the Subject box, type “sample message with 72 characters per line” then press the Tab key to move the cursor to the body of the message.

3. Now, type your sample message. Make it about two to three paragraphs and at least three lines in each paragraph.

4. Send the message by pressing Alt + S or click the Send button.

5. Check the message in Outbox folder.

  • In Outbox folder, select the e-mail subject “sample message with 72 characters per line.”
  • Once chosen, press Enter.

Now, the first problem is solved.

If you prefer to compose your longer e-mails in MS Word first, another similar case occurs when transferring the e-mail from Word to Outlook Express. So, let’s take a look at what we can do to fix that predicament.

As a user with a non-English native language, I need to make sure my spelling and grammar are okay every time I compose a longer e-mail. So, I just turn on the automatic spelling and grammar check feature in Word (it’s only a one time setting) in order to have my words and sentences checked while I type. I think this way is much easier than checking the message after it has been completely finished.

However, if you compose an e-mail using MS Word first, you are not able to copy it directly to Outlook Express in a plain text format. If you do, it will cause double line spacing at the end of each paragraph (as shown in the screenshot below). I’ve tried to copy directly from MS Word to OE in HTML format and it’s fine, so do keep that in mind.

You’re probably asking, “While composing, can I still use MS Word first and then send in plain text format without causing double line spacing”? You bet you can! The only thing you have to do is copy your messages from MS Word to Notepad and then to Outlook Express.

Here’s how you do it:

1. Open MS Word.

  • Type your sample message. Make it about two to three paragraphs and at least three lines in each paragraph. Or, you can also use your old documents in MS Word, then Save as: sample_message.doc. It’s up to you.
  • In the MS Word, highlight it all by pressing Ctrl + A (or go to Edit, Select All). Then copy your sample_message.doc by pressing Ctrl + C (or go to Edit, Copy).

2. Open Notepad.

There are several ways to open it up, but choose what is best for you. The easiest is probably just finding it under your Start menu. (Start, All Programs, Accessories, Notepad).

3. Paste your sample_message.doc to Notepad.

  • Press Ctrl + V or go to Edit, Paste.
  • To save the file, go to File, Save and type sample_message.txt, then hit Enter.

4. Copy your sample_message.txt from Notepad to Outlook Express.

  • In the Notepad, press Ctrl + A (or go to Edit, Select All), then press Ctrl + C (or go to Edit, Copy).
  • On the Taskbar, click Outlook Express button.
  • Create a new message by pressing Ctrl + N (or click Create Mail button), then type your e-mail address.
  • In the Subject box, type “sample message MS Word – Notepad – OE.”
  • Press the Tab key, then Ctrl + V or go to Edit, Paste.
  • Send the message by pressing Alt + S or click the Send button.

5. Check the message in Outbox folder.

  • Using the arrow keys, select the e-mail subject of “sample message MS Word – Notepad – OE.”
  • Once chosen, press Enter.

Now you can send your message and it will be trouble free!

My suggestion is to share all of the above information with the people you exchange e-mails with on a regular basis. If they send e-mails in a regular format, you won’t have to deal with irregular ones anymore! Isn’t it a win-win situation?!

~ Sujanti Djuanda


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