Tame your computer - search strategies

In her regular series for Cambridge Network members - now in its 15th year - software training expert Karen Roem offers handy tips to help you 'Tame your computer'. This week she explains how to refine your search by sender, date, attachment, subject and more - from one box (Microsoft Outlook).

Roem tip time logo

Last Friday, in the middle of running an Outlook webinar, I noticed my version of Outlook (Microsoft 365 version 2104 build 13929.20386 in case you are making notes ;) no longer has a This Week button to search by date (Today, Yesterday, This Week, Last Week, This Month, Last Month, This Year or Last Year).

After wasting about an hour on Google sifting through lots of unhelpful stuff I noticed the Advanced Search option ... a tiny drop-down arrow at the far end of the search box.

Search option ... a tiny drop-down arrow at the far end of the search box.


It opens a very intuitive dialogue box when you click on it. Simply use the TAB key to jump from field to field. And remember, when you get to Received you can keep your hands on the keyboard and type, for example, 1/5. No need to type the zeros or the year. And no need to click on the calendar button either.

Speaking of keeping your hands on the keyboard ... CTRL + E, TAB and ENTER can be used as an alternative to open the Advanced Search box. Okay, not intuitive, but you probably gather that's my new, preferred way.

Perhaps Microsoft will bring back the This Week button at some point, but in the meantime you might want to check out how you could use this option to narrow your search and find that needle in a haystack. Let me know what you think.

Related tips

* Unless stated otherwise this tip is written for Microsoft 365 desktop apps and Windows 10 users, but might also be useful in Office 2010, 2013 and 2016.

PS To help you put these tips into practice I have developed a series of 60-minute webinars, giving you the opportunity to see the hints, tips and time-saving shortcuts in action. Learn how to be a Clever Clogs for £24 only. And following requests, I’ve started scheduling some of my 60-minute webinars on Saturdays. Hope to see you there!

31 May 2021

Karen Roem offers software training and support through her company Roem Ltd.  Contact her by email (Karen@roem.co.uk) or visit her website at www.roem.co.uk

Looking for something specific?