Avoid The New Outlook

The latest release of Microsoft Outlook, Version 1.2023.425.600 - Production, has left users grappling with a range of frustrating issues. From the inability to handle PST files to the loss of vital functionality, we advise caution before updating systems to this new version.

by | May 30, 2023 | Tech Insights

You and your employees may have noticed a new Outlook toggle button in the top right of your Outlook. Microsoft’s latest release, Outlook Version 1.2023.425.600 – Production (for those detail oriented people), has garnered attention due to its assortment of bugs and functional setbacks since its release. As users explore this new version, they encounter hurdles that transform once simple tasks into time-consuming endeavors. We advise caution in adopting this new version until the bugs are fixed and essential features are restored.

PST Incompatibility

One prominent issue with the new Outlook is its inability to mount or export PSTs. Attempting to open a .pst file leads to an unsupported file menu, effectively removing this functionality. It seems that .pst files are finally being forced out. This limitation proves frustrating, particularly for law firms heavily reliant on PST files for bulk email transportation between organizations.

Loss of Functionality

The new Outlook also suffers from a significant loss of functionality. Basic Outlook shortcuts, such as “Ctrl+R” for reply, “Alt+A” for reply all, and “Ctrl+Shift+P” for creating a new search folder, no longer work. The absence of the shortcut for creating new search folders is particularly problematic, as existing search folders can be removed upon switching to the new version. This means if you lose your search folders, you lose the ability to remake them. This hampers productivity and eliminates the convenience of frequently used searches.

Moreover, custom folders have also lost their functionality. Customer folders are often an invaluable tool for organizations where custom project folders are used. Organizations will use parameters to tag the folder then use folder views to sort the project folders. With the new outlook, this function is no longer available. This absence negatively impacts efficiency, as these features can be an important part of instilled processes and can assist in better organization and streamlined workflows.

Not User-Friendly

Initial impressions online suggest the new Outlook version also falls short in terms of user-friendliness. Simple tasks that were once completed quickly have now become tedious and confusing. Accessing features such as Calendar, Agenda, Tasks, Add Account, Custom Flags and Reminders, Quick Access Toolbar, and Quick Parts requires extra clicks and searching. Even locating the “File” button proves challenging. The lack of intuitive design and ease of use found in its predecessor frustrates users and makes them wonder if this is really an “upgrade.”

Transition Challenges

If all of this was not bad enough, switching to the new Outlook version can introduce additional challenges. Two notable challenges that users have experienced are:

Signatures: When switching to the new version, your signatures can be lost. You will have to make all your signatures again from scratch. It is important to note, if you decide to switch back to the previous version, your signatures will still be there.

Contacts: Contacts are also among the things that may not be transferred over when switching to the new version. Again, reverting back to the old version will give you back your contacts.

How to Block the new Outlook

If you want to remove the option to use the new Outlook, here is a step by step guide on how to hide the new Outlook toggle button. Warning: this involves going into the registry, and is something we do not recommend for most people. If you decide to follow this guide, make sure to follow each step carefully. If you do not feel comfortable doing this yourself, feel free to reach out to us for assistance as we would be happy to help. We can also help do this on each PC in your organization.

1.) Using the regedit command in the RUN dialog box or start search box, open the Registry Editor.

2.) Go to the following: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Outlook\Options\General

3.) Create a new DWORD with the name HideNewOutlookToggle in the right-side pane and set its value to 1 to hide it. (If you decide you want the button back, set this value to 0).

4.) Close the Registry Editor, restart Outlook, and enjoy a toggle button free Outlook!

A Upgrade or a Downgrade?

In its current state, the new Outlook version presents numerous obstacles and drawbacks. We strongly advise against adopting this version early on and recommend waiting for the inclusion of essential features and bug fixes that enhance its functionality. We recommend hiding the toggle button, but it is reassuring to know that reverting to the old version is as easy as clicking the toggle button.

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