Outlook Switches

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Command line switches to launch Outlook.

These switches allow the technician to perform tasks on Outlook when it decides not to play nice. Going into SAFE mode is common but there other anomalies that pop up in Outlook like free-busy issues or emails that linger after deletion. All of the possible issues Outlook may have probably has a switch associated with it to allow you to fix it, (maybe).

Execute Outlook from the command prompt or Run window with the switch of your choice.

Outlook.exe is located in c:\program files\microsoft office\office12\:


Outlook.exe /nopreview -- Turns off reading pane

Outlook.exe /safe -- Safe mode

All Switch Description

/a Creates an item with the specified file as an attachment.

Example: "c:\program files\microsoft office\office12\outlook.exe" /a "c:\my documents\labels.doc"

If no item type is specified, IPM.Note is assumed. Cannot be used with message classes that are not based on Outlook.

/altvba otmfilename Opens the VBA program specified in otmfilename, rather than %appdata%\microsoft\outlook\vbaproject.otm.

/c messageclass Creates a new item of the specified message class (Outlook forms or any other valid MAPI form).

Examples: /c ipm.activity creates a Journal entry /c ipm.appointment creates an appointment /c ipm.contact creates a contact /c ipm.note creates an e-mail message /c ipm.stickynote creates a note /c ipm.task creates a task

/checkclient Prompts for the default manager of e-mail, news, and contacts.

/cleancategories Deletes any custom category names that you have created. Restores categories to the default names.

/cleanclientrules Starts Outlook and deletes client-based rules.

/cleandmrecords Deletes the logging records saved when a manager or a delegate declines a meeting.

/cleanfinders Resets all Search Folders in the Microsoft Exchange mailbox for only the first profile opened.

/cleanfreebusy Clears and regenerates free/busy information. This switch can be used only when you are able to connect to the server running Exchange.

/cleanprofile Removes invalid profile keys and re-creates default registry keys where applicable.

/cleanreminders Clears and regenerates reminders.

/cleanroamedprefs All previous roamed preferences are deleted and copied again from the local settings on the computer where this switch is used. This includes the roaming settings for reminders, free/busy grid, working hours, calendar publishing, and RSS rules.

/cleanrules Starts Outlook and deletes client-based and server-based rules.

/cleanserverrules Starts Outlook and deletes server-based rules.

/cleansharing Removes all RSS, Internet Calendar, and SharePoint subscriptions from Account Settings, but leaves all the previously downloaded content on your computer. This is useful if you are unable to delete one of these subscriptions within Office Outlook 2007.

/cleansniff Overrides the programmatic lockout that determines which of your computers (when running Outlook simultaneously) processes meeting items. The lockout process helps prevent duplicate reminder messages. This switch clears the lockout on the computer it is used, enabling Outlook to process meeting items.

/cleansubscriptions Deletes the subscription messages and properties for subscription features.

/cleanviews Restores default views. All custom views that you created are lost.

/embedding Used without command-line parameters for standard OLE co-create.

/f msgfilename Opens the specified message file (.msg) or Microsoft Office saved search (.oss).

/finder Opens the Advanced Find dialog box.

/firstrun Starts Outlook as if it were run for the first time.

/hol holfilename Opens the specified .hol file.

/ical icsfilename Opens the specified .ics file.

/importprf prffilename Starts Outlook and opens/imports the defined MAPI profile (*.prf). If Outlook is already open, queues the profile to be imported on the next clean start.

/launchtraininghelp assetid Opens a Help window with the Help topic specified in assetid displayed.

/m emailname Provides a way for the user to add an e-mail name to the item. Only works in conjunction with the /c command-line parameter.

Example: Outlook.exe /c ipm.note /m emailname

/nocustomize Starts Outlook without loading outcmd.dat (customized toolbars).

/noextensions Starts Outlook with extensions turned off, but listed in the Add-In Manager.

/nopreview Starts Outlook with the Reading Pane off.

/p msgfilename Prints the specified message (.msg).

/profile profilename Loads the specified profile. If your profile name contains a space, enclose the profile name in quotation marks (" ").

/profiles Opens the Choose Profile dialog box regardless of the Options setting on the Tools menu.

/recycle Starts Outlook by using an existing Outlook window, if one exists. Used in combination with /explorer or /folder.

/remigratecategories Starts Outlook and and initiates the following commands on the default mailbox:

Upgrades colored For Follow Up flags to Office Outlook 2007 color categories. Upgrades calendar labels to Office Outlook 2007 color categories. Adds all categories used on non-mail items into the Master Category List.

Note This is the same command as Upgrade to Color Categories in each Outlook mailbox properties dialog box. /resetfolders Restores missing folders at the default delivery location.

/resetfoldernames Resets default folder names (such as Inbox or Sent Items) to default names in the current Office user interface language.

For example, if you first connect to your mailbox in Outlook by using a Russian user interface, the Russian default folder names cannot be renamed. To change the default folder names to another language, such as Japanese or English, you can use this switch to reset the default folder names after you change the user interface language or install a different language version of Outlook.

/resetformregions Empties the form regions cache and reloads the form region definitions from the Windows registry.

/resetnavpane Clears and regenerates the Navigation Pane for the current profile.

/resetsearchcriteria Resets all Instant Search criteria so that the default set of criteria is shown in each module.

/resetsharedfolders Removes all shared folders from the Navigation Pane.

/resettodobar Clears and regenerates the To-Do Bar task list for the current profile. The To-Do Bar search folder is deleted and re-created.

/rpcdiag Opens Outlook and displays the remote procedure call (RPC) connection status dialog box.

/safe Starts Outlook without Microsoft Exchange Client Extensions (ECE), the Reading Pane, or toolbar customizations. Component Object Model (COM) add-ins are turned off.

/safe:1 Starts Outlook with the Reading Pane off.

/safe:3 Starts Outlook with Microsoft Exchange Client Extensions (ECE) turned off, but listed in the Add-In Manager. Component Object Model (COM) add-ins are turned off.

/safe:4 Starts Outlook without loading outcmd.dat (customized toolbars).

/select foldername Starts Outlook and opens the specified folder in a new window. For example, to open Outlook and display the default calendar, use: "c:\program files\microsoft office\office12\outlook.exe" /select outlook:calendar.

/share feed://URL/filename

/share stssync://URL

/share web://URL/filename Specifies a sharing URL to connect to Outlook. For example, use stssync://URL to connect a Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 list to Outlook.

/sniff Starts Outlook, forces a detection of new meeting requests in the Inbox, and then adds them to the calendar.

/t oftfilename Opens the specified .oft file.

/v vcffilename Opens the specified .vcf file.

/vcal vcsfilename Opens the specified .vcs file.

/x xnkfilename Opens the specified .xnk file.

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