Following up on Outlook E-Mails in Org-Mode
The combination of Org-Mode and Remember-Mode helps me to organize my projects. One special task category is “WAIT”, if I have to wait for some input from somebody else or waiting for a delivery to arrive. An example is ordering a book at Amazon. As soon as I make the order, I generate a “WAIT” which would look like this
** WAIT [#C] [2014-09-16 Tu] Book on Modeling by Morgan
In this case, I ordered the book on September 9th and it has not a high priority. Once a week I check this category in a customized agenda view which sorts the WAITs according to their priority. If necessary, I take action (for example resending an E-Mail).
One nuisance is that I use Outlook for my E-Mails and Org-Mode for my tasks.If I send an E-Mail and are waiting for an answer, or if I receive an E-Mail with information on my order, I can’t generate a direct link between the E-Mail and the WAIT-task and I loose time looking for the original E-Mail.
I googled around and found the following solution by John Hilliard here (there is org-outlook, but I did not find a good explanation, how that works). He suggests to write a macro in Outlook that looks like this
'Adds a link to the currently selected message to the clipboard
Dim objMail As Outlook.MailItem
Dim doClipboard As New DataObject
'One and ONLY one message muse be selected
If Application.ActiveExplorer.Selection.Count <> 1 Then
MsgBox ("Select one and ONLY one message.")
Set objMail = Application.ActiveExplorer.Selection.Item(1)
doClipboard.SetText "[[outlook:" + objMail.EntryID + "][MESSAGE: " + objMail.Subject + " (" + objMail.SenderName + ")]]"
The macro gets the unique id for the email message and writes an Org Mode link to that message to the clip board.
Note that in order to write a macro, you have to activate the “Developer” tab in Outook,
which can be done by right-clicking on the tabs and choosing “Customizing the Ribbon”. After defining the macro, you can add it to the quick access toolbar (same procedure as adding the developer tab), and choose a nice icon
There might be an error, when running the macro, but you John nicely describes how to get rid of that one:
“When I first ran the macro, I actually got an error saying “Compile error: User-defined type not defined.” That was a little mysterious. In order to fix that error:
Click “Tools” then “References” in the menu.
Check “Microsoft Forms 2.0 Object Library” in the list of available references.
- This option wasn’t available to me at first so I clicked “Browse”
- Then I opened “c:\windows\system32\FM20.DLL”
Then I clicked “OK”
I finally added the code for opening Outlook in my .emacs file.
(defcustom org-outlook-location (w32-short-file-name “c:/Program Files/Microsoft Office 15/root/office15/OUTLOOK.exe”)
“* Microsoft Outlook 2013 location.”
Now, I can select a message, click on the macro symbol which copies the link, jump to Emacs (I have a script for that) and insert the link. The WAIIT-Task would look like this:
If I click on the Message-link, Outlook opens the message.
3 Replies to “Following up on Outlook E-Mails in Org-Mode”
Fabio, the Outlook executable has a recycle option which means that the same window is reused every time. Google it and it may help you solve your issue.
You want to jump to the directory in which the E-Mail resides and highlight the E-Mail? And why? Sorry for the late response.
Thanks for putting this together. This opens the email message in a new window. How would this need to be adapted if the email should be opened in the main Outlook window?
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