Microsoft KB Archive/248996

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Article ID: 248996

Article Last Modified on 11/21/2000


  • Microsoft Outlook 98 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q248996

NOTE: These procedures only apply if you have installed Outlook with the Internet Mail Only option. To determine your installation type, click About Microsoft Outlook on the Help menu. If you have the Internet Mail Only option installed, you see "Internet Mail Only".

For information about the differences between Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Outlook Express e-mail clients, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

257824 OL2000: Differences Between Outlook and Outlook Express


The Internet Mail Only installation option (IMO) of Outlook, unlike the Corporate or Workgroup option, does not have the Out of Office Assistant to automatically reply to messages when you are away from your computer. You can emulate this feature in IMO by creating an e-mail template and defining a rule in the Rules Wizard to auto-reply with the template.


Defining an Automatic Reply Template

  1. Open a new Outlook message formatted as plain text.
  2. Type whatever information you would like to appear in your reply message.
  3. On the File menu, click Save As.
  4. In the Save As dialog box, click to select the Outlook Template check box in the Save As Type list.
  5. Type a name for your reply template in the File Name box, and click Save.

Defining a Rule to Send an Automatic Reply

  1. On the Tools menu, click Rules Wizard.
  2. In the Rules Wizard dialog box, click New.
  3. Under Which type of rule do you want to create?, click Check messages when they arrive, and then click Next.
  4. Under Which condition(s) do you want to check?, click to select the Sent Only To Me check box, or any other criteria you want, and then click Next.
  5. Under What do you want to do with the message?, click to select the Reply using a specific template check box.
  6. Under Rule Description, click the underlined phrase, a specific template.
  7. In the Select A Reply Template dialog box, click the template you saved in step 5 of the previous set of instructions, and then click Open.
  8. Complete the Rule Wizard instructions, click Finish, and then click OK.

The Rules Wizard rule to "Reply using a specific template" is designed to send the reply only once to each sender, during a session. This prevents Outlook from sending repetitive replies to a sender from whom you receive multiple messages.

During a session, Outlook remembers the list of users to whom it has responded. Restarting Outlook deletes this list, resetting the rule to start again for each sender.

NOTE: Outlook must be running for the Rules Wizard to auto-reply. Additionally, it must be configured to periodically check for new messages and set to hang up when finished sending and receiving.

Additional query words: 98

Keywords: kbhowto KB248996