Tame your computer - message magic


Software training expert Karen Roem offers handy tips to help you 'Tame your computer' in her weekly series for Cambridge Network members. This week she describes how to hide grouped messages (Microsoft Outlook*) ...

This week's tip is the direct result of me unintentionally hitting a key on my keyboard. The left arrow key, as it happens. And I liked what I saw.

So what happened? Well, the initial setup of your inbox in Outlook 2003 is arranged by date, shown in groups. So depending on how tidy you are you could see a group heading called Today, Yesterday, Last Week, Two Weeks Ago, Three Weeks Ago, Last Month and Older with lots (and lots?!) of messages underneath each group.

You probably know you can expand or collapse the group headings to display or hide the messages they contain, using the small minus sign to the left of the heading which becomes a plus sign when you click it to "collapse" the group. And that's exactly what happened when I  accidentally clicked the left arrow. So if you don't care about the previous  days or weeks or months ...

Here's how:

1. Select one of the messages in your (out of control?) Inbox or Sent Items
2. Click the left arrow. (Not the one on your numeric keypad if you have
3. Click the downward arrow to go to the next group.
4. Click the left arrow. Etcetera.

You can click the right arrow to redisplay the messages. I personally like to keep today's messages open only, but you cannot fool anyone as it still  shows the number of messages in the bottom left corner. ;-)

* Unless stated otherwise, these tips were written for Microsoft Office 2003.
Most of what is covered however will also apply to earlier versions.

12 July 2007

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 http://www.roem.co.uk


Karen Roem
Microsoft Office-ionado

Roem Ltd – software training and support