Outlook window positions explained

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Getting Outlook windows into the positions you want, and keeping them there, is one of those mysteries that Microsoft offers to us mere customers.    We’ll try to explain what’s going on but, alas, can’t guarantee any solid answers.

Most Outlook users have more than one window open at any time.  They use the right-click on a folder and choose ‘Open in New Window’ open that folder in another window.

With that trick you can open many Outlook windows – maybe one each for email, calendar and contacts plus another for an extra email account.

Saving Outlook window positions

Having all the Outlook windows open and in the positions you want (maybe across several monitors) you’d naturally like to save that configuration.   And that simple and natural desire is where Microsoft has let down its customers for the last 27 years.

The only way to save Outlook window positions is to shut down Outlook.  Part of the Outlook close down process is to save the window details (which are open and where).  When Outlook is re-started those Outlook windows will be restored to the locations at the last shut-down.

That sounds fine, but it’s not. The system only works in a perfect world where computers (and Outlook) is 100% reliable and people don’t have changing needs.

If Outlook doesn’t shut down normally (i.e. Outlook, Windows or the computer crashes) then the window positions will be lost.  When Outlook is re-started it will open one default window.

It’s been that way since Outlook was created back in 1997 and there’s no sign it’ll change despite over 25 years of complaints and feature requests.   The ability to save a Outlook windows configuration and restore it is waaay overdue.


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