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  1. #1
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    Outlook components and Windows Contacts

    Windows 7
    MS Office Standard 2007/Outlook

    Can someone explain or point me to a website or other resource that will explain how Windows contacts (c:\users\username\contacts), Outlook Address Book and Outlook Contacts are related and work, or don’t work, together?

    According to Help, Outlook contacts are supposed to also be in the address book. Not the case. I have Contacts in the Contacts tab but my address book is empty. I have addresses that I can start typing into a new email TO: field and the picklist of names appears. Certain names that I start typing will be in the list but others that should are not. I right click on some email addresses and select add to contacts. Some of those now appear in the picklist but others I added do not, though they ARE in the contacts tab.

    Is there some reason why Windows needs Windows Contacts, Outlook Contacts and an Outlook address book? Why not one data set to meet all needs? Should I have contacts in my Windows Contacts folder? If so, how do I get them there? Same questions for the Outlook Address Book.

    My Windows contacts folder is empty (except for username.contact). My Outlook Address Book is empty. Only the Outlook Contacts Tab has any data.


  2. #2
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    If you use Outlook you can ignore Windows Contacts. Oultook Contacts may be included in the Outlook Address Book. You can check by clicking on Contacts then in the navigation pane right click the Contact folder and select Properties. On the Outlook Address Book tab "Show this folder as an e-mail Address Book" should be checked. You can have multiple accounts in Outlook that have contacts. You may not want all contacts in the address book. Also, the Address Book can have multiple sources for Contacts. If you have an Exchange account an organizational global address book can be in the address book.

    When you begin typing a name the list that pops up to select is usually called the nickname cache. That list is separate from your Contacts. See Nickname cache for more details. See Import .nk2 file into Outlook 2010.

    Joe

  3. #3
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    So, if I want some or all Contacts in the address book how is that done? Help says this:

    Note By default, the Outlook Address Book contains all the contacts in your main Outlook Contacts folder. If your organization has a Global Address List (GAL) these contacts are also included. (The GAL is part of the Microsoft Exchange system, more commonly used in business environments and rarely in personal or home e-mail accounts.) If you have created any additional contacts folders, these can also be included.

    Unfortunately that is not the case on my system. A clean install of Outlook, I copied data files back to C:\users\ . . . \Outlook. Selecting address book reveals it is empty.

    I assume the autocomplete list is stored in the .pst file because it was functional with some errors when I started my first few messages. For some reason though, some that I expected to be in the picklist were not. These WEARE in the list prior to the clean install. After right clicking and adding to address book on 2 of the 3 names that were not listed, they started working. The third I had to type in manually befor it would work.

    BOY! I wish they would bring back Outlook Express! That was so much simpler and easier to use.

  4. #4
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    Did you check the properties of your Outlook Contacts?

    Joe

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    Yes I did. The box has a checkmark. My address book is still empty.

    Also after reading the article at a link in your first reply the nickname list should NOT have been functional on the first use because I never did anything with the NK2 file referenced. I did not back it up or restore it during the clean install process. The OS clean install involved wiping the disk and using the factory recovery disc, not a normal install disc or upgrade disc and then using a retail install disc to install MS Office Standard 2007.

    I remember seeing, on the old install an option to set Outlook to check the address book (or Contacts, not sure which) for names/addresses when typing an email address in a new message. Unfortunately, since the invention of the ribbon I can never find the same setting twice. I don't think that was set as a default but it might be.

  6. #6
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    See if Contact information does not appear in address book helps.

    You also may want to run SCANPST to scan and repair your PST file. See Scan and repair Outlook data file.

    Joe

  7. #7
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    How do I install the Address Book Service? Why isn't it installed during installation? How do you create a .pst? It sounds simple but I bet it isn't so I'll ask: How do you drag and drop from one pst to another?
    I can live with this minor problem as it is, though I don't want to. I am not going to run scanpst unless I know for certain that no matter what it finds I can continue to use Outlook as it is with no more problems than I already have.

    I remember seeing, on the old install an option to set Outlook to check the address book (or Contacts, not sure which) for names/addresses when typing an email address in a new message. Do you know where that setting is? Yes, I mentioned that in my last message but it wasn't a question so you didn't answer. So now it is a question.

    If you don't answer any other of my questions I'll still be happy and grateful if you would please answer this one (or point me to someone who can):

    Why does Microsoft peddle Office as suitable for normal consumers (home/student) but make it so only an IT professional with advanced degrees and advanced technical training can configure and maintain it for simple home/student use?

  8. #8
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    Did you read the support KB article? The first step in the Resolution section is "Install the Outlook Address Book Service". Normally it is installed automatically. Sometimes things don't work as intended as you've found out.

    If you are creating a new PST file you can have Outlook do that by going to Tools | Account Settings | Data Files (tab) and clicking the Add button.

    If you open another data file (i.e. PST file) within Outlook, you just go to the folder in the newly opened file select the items or subfolders you with to move and drag to the destination folder.

    I don't know where the setting is that you mention.

    Outlook has always been a very fully featured tool that is much more than just email. Outlook is primarily intended for business user but is suitable for consumers. It is more complex than some require. Microsoft offers a free consumer email client called Windows Live Mail. It is part of the Windows Live Essentials. See Windows Live Essentials for more information and a download link. NOTE: If you do not have any of WLE installed you'll have the opportunity to choose which of the WLE components to install.

    Joe

  9. #9
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    Yes, I read it. Until I got to this part:

    Step 2: Mark your contact folder for use with your address book

    1. On the File menu, point to Folder, and then click Properties for your folder name.
    2. On the Outlook Address Book tab, click to select the Show this folder as an e-mail address book check box, type a descriptive name, and then click OK.
    (copied from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/287563)

    When I click File>Folder the properties option is for what ever email folder was last selected. If I choose that anyway there is no Outlook Address Book tab to select. Obviously the your folder name refers to something else or the File menu referred to is not the File menu in the Outlook Menu toolbar.

    Note: In step 1 different sections were marked for 2002/2003, 2007 and 2010 versions. In Step 2 there was no indication of applicability to 2002/2003 or 2007. There IS a section marked for 2010 though so I assume that the first section was for all versions before 2010.

    From what I've read about dragging and dropping between pst files it sounds as if IMAP folders are in use instead POP3 folder. If I create a second pst I assume it will appear in the Nav Pane just like an IMAP folder would with multiple IMAP accounts. I took a chance and did it. Thats exactly what it did. Now I have to go back and re-read previous messages to see why I wanted a second pst.

    Thanks for your attempt to help with this but this is getting so complicated and confusing that I can't even think straight now. I can't find the reason why I would want a second pst file and I am not going to worry about it or go looking any deeper. I don't care anymore. Dealing with the problem I have is far easier and less frustrating than dealing with the fix. I have found that to be typical in Microsoft products in general and Office particularly.

    If Windows Mail, or any other email client could perform functions that I need (or have addons/extensions that could) I would have changed years ago. Its too bad that everything Microsoft does anymore is getting so complicated. Outlook Express was such an easy and simple email program I have no idea why they had to make it "better" and rename it to Windows Mail. I tried using Thunderbird for a while but it wasn't any better than Outlook. When I tried to switch back to Outlook I could not import my messages and other account information into Outlook. I guess MS really wanted me to stay with Thunderbird but I persisted and finally jury-rigged a way to get my address book and messages into Outlook. I have already dumped the rest of Office (except for Word since it is the editor for Outlook) in favor of Works and OpenOffice. And the way things are going it is likely I will end up switching to a MacBook or an iPad to complete my escape from Microsoft. Unless MS decides to resurrect MS-DOS (wishful thinking, I know).
    Last edited by recklessmaverick; 2011-05-10 at 14:50. Reason: correct typos

  10. #10
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    Why both Contacts and Address Book?

    I'll add my two cents worth on Outlook Contacts & Address Book. As a retired university professor (over 50 years), I've used MS Office & Outlook since day one. In fact, probably many thousands of student papers, drafts and full PhD dissertations are stored in pst folders as attachments/documents as well as personal business. When a pst file gets full and sluggish, I create another one with the former serving as a call-up reference. I'm now on pst number 6. Like a writer above, I never have understood the relationship between Contacts and Address Book--never have tried as they seem somewhat redundant and sometimes in competition with each other. I use Contacts all of the time (N = 578) and have long forgotten Address Book, I have all the reference material I need in Contacts, including reference notes and brief records. If I want to do mailing labels, Word works well and Access can be a blessing if you take time to set it up correctly. I don't need an answer because I'm very happy with Outlook and Contacts; however, I present the questions: Why make things more complicated than needed--I'm happy with Contacts where I have addresses, phone numbers, references, and notes? Why not a single source to find people, places, and things? Incidentally, I'm using Windows 7 Pro and MS Office Pro 2010.

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