Getting started with Outlook 2003: Frequently asked questions

Applies to
Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003

Compiled here are answers to questions that people ask most when using Outlook 2003 for the first time.

 Important    If your question is not in this list, ask your question online now to get help from the community of Microsoft Office users.

Frequently asked questions

New features

What are the new features in Outlook 2003?

The look of Outlook has changed. Can you guide me through the changes?

I notice that Outlook blocks certain kinds of attachments and has other security features I'm unfamiliar with. Can you explain these features?

E-mail accounts

I went through the setup wizard and followed the directions, but I'm still not getting my e-mail.

Can I view my AOL e-mail in Outlook?

Can I view my Yahoo! e-mail in Outlook?

Can I view my MSN Hotmail in Outlook?

I just bought a new computer, and I can't find my existing e-mail messages.

I upgraded from a previous version of Outlook and kept my e-mail, calendar, and contacts in a Personal Folders file (.pst). How can I use this .pst file?

Sending and receiving e-mail

Why can I receive e-mail but I can't send e-mail?

Why can I send e-mail but I can't receive e-mail? Or why do I have to click the Send/Receive button to get my e-mail?

Where is the Send button?

Error messages

I get a “Can’t contact LDAP Directory server (81)” error message. What should I do?

I get error messages when I click the Send button.

I get the following error message: "A system component, RPC, required by Outlook to connect to the e-mail server is not configured properly. For more information, contact your system administrator." What does this mean?

Why do I get an error message telling me I don't have the right version of Microsoft Word?

Outlook Express

I hear that Outlook is completely different from Outlook Express. How can I tell which one I'm using?

I previously used Outlook Express. Where is my existing e-mail and how do I view it in Outlook?

How can I get my Outlook Express address book contacts into Outlook?

Why does my e-mail still go to Outlook Express?

Additional questions

How do I add a signature to a message?

When I minimize Outlook, why doesn't the Outlook icon show on the taskbar like other programs that are running or show when I press ALT+TAB?

I keep getting the "Welcome to Microsoft Office Outlook 2003" message. How can I stop getting this?

What are the new features in Outlook 2003?

See the following: Introducing Microsoft Office Outlook 2003.

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The look of Outlook has changed. Can you guide me through the changes?

See the following: Exploring the new look of Outlook 2003.

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I notice that Outlook blocks certain kinds of attachments and has other security features I'm unfamiliar with. Can you explain these features?

If you are an end user, see the following: How Outlook helps to protect your computer from viruses.

If you are an IT administrator, see the following: Customizing Outlook 2003 to Help Prevent Viruses.

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I went through the setup wizard and followed the directions, but I'm still not getting my e-mail.

This problem usually occurs when your server name is typed incorrectly or your user name or password information is incorrect. See the following: Connect Outlook to your Internet e-mail account.

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Can I view my AOL e-mail in Outlook?

Yes. In April 2004, AOL introduced a way that its subscribers can access their AOL e-mail messages from other e-mail applications, including Outlook, anywhere Internet access is available. See the following: Use Outlook with AOL e-mail.

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Can I view my Yahoo! e-mail in Outlook?

Outlook supports SBC Yahoo! ISP POP3 accounts. See the following: Use Outlook with SBC Yahoo!.

Outlook also supports paid subscription Yahoo! Mail accounts that include POP3 access and mail forwarding. See the following: Use Outlook with Yahoo! Mail.

Free Web browser-based Yahoo! Mail accounts cannot be accessed in Outlook.

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Can I view my MSN Hotmail in Outlook?

Yes. See the following: Use Outlook with MSN and MSN Hotmail.

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I just bought a new computer, and I can't find my existing e-mail messages.

See the following: Reconnect your old Outlook data file.

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I upgraded from a previous version of Outlook and I kept my e-mail, calendar, and contacts in a Personal Folders file (.pst). How can I use this .pst file?

See the following: Reconnect your old Outlook data file.

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Why can I receive e-mail, but I can't send e-mail?

See the following: Troubleshoot: I can receive, but not send e-mail messages.

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Why can I send e-mail but I can't receive e-mail? Or why do I have to click the Send/Receive button to get my e-mail?

If you are not receiving new e-mail messages, see the following: Troubleshoot: I can send, but not receive e-mail messages.

For additional information about dial-up connections to your Internet service provider (ISP) (ISP: A business that provides access to the Internet for such things as electronic mail, chat rooms, or use of the World Wide Web. Some ISPs are multinational, offering access in many locations, while others are limited to a specific region.), see the following: How to configure Outlook to automatically dial your ISP.

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Where is the Send button?

You have not yet configured an e-mail account in Outlook. See the following: Troubleshoot: My Send button is missing.

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I get a “Can’t contact LDAP Directory server (81)” error message. What should I do?

See the following: You receive a "can't contact LDAP Directory server (81)" error message when you open the Address Book in Outlook.

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I get error messages when I click the Send button.

This problem is usually caused by incorrect account settings or a corrupted profile. See the following: Connect Outlook to your Internet e-mail account and Add a user profile.

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I get the following error message: "A system component, RPC, required by Outlook to connect to the e-mail server is not configured properly. For more information, contact your system administrator." What does this mean?

If you get this error message when you try to start Outlook 2003 and you have set up a Microsoft Exchange Server e-mail account, it usually means there are important registry values missing in the Microsoft Windows® Registry. See the following: You receive an error message when you start Outlook and you are using a Microsoft Exchange Server e-mail account.

 Note   This is a Microsoft Windows issue that will be addressed in a future service pack.

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Why do I get an error message telling me I don't have the right version of Microsoft Word?

Certain features in Outlook 2003 require Microsoft Office Word 2003. These include using Word as your e-mail editor and using Send to on the File menu in Microsoft Office programs. See also: Turn Word on or off as your e-mail editor or viewer.

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I hear that Outlook is completely different from Outlook Express. How can I tell which one I'm using?

See the following: Outlook versus Outlook Express.

I previously used Outlook Express. Where is my existing e-mail and how do I view it in Outlook?

See the following: Import your messages or account from Outlook Express to Outlook.

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How can I get my Outlook Express address book contacts into Outlook?

See the following: Copy Outlook Express address book contacts to Outlook.

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Why does my e-mail still go to Outlook Express?

Although you made Outlook the default program for e-mail, you still must remove the account information in Outlook Express.

ShowHow?

  1. Start Outlook Express.
  2. On the Tools menu, click Accounts.
  3. Click the Mail tab, and then click the account that you want to remove.
  4. Click Properties and write down all the account information that you see, in case you ever want to reconnect this account to Outlook Express.
  5. Click OK, and then click the account that you want to remove again.
  6. Click Remove, and then click Yes.
  7. Exit Outlook Express, and then start Outlook.

Also, you need to check your Outlook profile settings to make sure they are correct. See the following: Connect Outlook to your Internet e-mail account.

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How do I add a signature to a message?

See the following: Insert a signature in a message.

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When I minimize Outlook, why doesn't the Outlook icon show on the taskbar like other programs that are running or show when I press ALT+TAB?

  1. Locate the Outlook icon that appears in the notification area at the far right end of the taskbar.
  2. Right-click the icon, and then click Hide when minimized to clear the selection.

Outlook icon

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I keep getting the "Welcome to Microsoft Office Outlook 2003" message. How can I stop getting this?

See the following: Stop sending me the "Welcome to Microsoft Office Outlook 2003" message.

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Applies to:
Outlook 2003