Friday, February 20, 2009

Outlook 2007 -- a mess

I've been happily checking emails in outlook 2003 and then I got outlook 2007.

Before I jump into the bigger ones, let me introduce you to some moderate issues. As soon as you open outlook 2007 for the first time, you will be taken aback -- yes the UI seems totally changed; believe me I was first impressed that it was enriched. But not for so long. Just when I click on new mail, I was shocked. The new mail dialog is totally totally (yes I typed it twice) changed. The toolbar is awful with large icons and all the usual stuff in new and different places; it's going to be a treasure-hunt for you even if you are an expert in outlook 2003. I spent at least 10 minutes to figure out how to enable digital signing of my emails. That apart, the title bar of any of the window (this applies to every product in MS office 2007) do not respect the windows's (OS's) theme settings. They show up in their own color and even worse, the active window's title bar color looks sooo dull that you would think that the outlook window is not active even on clicking on it.

After all those livable issues, there are issues that I'm not able to stand. Outlook 2007 is unacceptably ridiculously slow when it comes to dealing with PST mail files (specially when they are large -- mine is about 2GB). Outlook 2003 was perfectly fine dealing with PSTs of this size. To give you a number, my outlook 2007 takes around 30 minutes to download just 50 mails each of size less than 100KB (totalling to max 5MB) on a Intel Core 2 Duo 2.53GHz laptop with 2GB RAM running over a 1 Gbps network. And over the 30 minutes that it takes to finish, my hard disk is being thrashed almost continously (incase you thought, my hard disk is perfectly defragmented). My only guess is that Outlook 2007 is trying to do some kind of indexing on the incoming emails which is just going overboard because of the mail file size being 2GB or more. I could not find any option to disable that new "feature" to help me here. I managed to find a MS patch for Outlook 2007 that is supposed to fix this problem (to some extent at least) but no use -- my outlook 2007 still shucks!

Well, there are some work-arounds like minimizing the size of the PST file by backing up or archiving emails (I once started archiving and had to cancel it after 20-30minutes because I could see no progress except for the harddisk being continually thrashed). But I'm not here to do work arounds for migrating to a suppose-to-be better product at least by its version.

I'm at a point where I cannot probably turn back to outlook 2003, because I believe the new outlook would have considerably "worked" on the mailfile that the older one would fail to load. I can only see one thing happening: just like any other issues we face with the MS products, I will just get used to it one day!

1 comment:

  1. Do you know a very nice application Advanced Outlook Repair. It is a powerful tool to recover messages, folders and other objects from corrupt or damaged Microsoft Outlook PST files.