Introduction to Microsoft Outlook 2003


Microsoft Outlook 2003 is part of the Microsoft Office. It is an information management application that helps the user to co-ordinate messages, calendar activities, contacts and tasks.

It comprises a mailbox, a calendar, a contact list, notes and a journal. Outlook is designed for both stand-alone computers and personal computer networks. If the user is connected to a network they can share their information with others.

Outlook comes with a transport application known as Exchange. A transport application enables the flow of information and must be installed to use Outlook’s e-mail feature.

E-mail is sent in and out of mailboxes in the same way as physical mail goes through a postal service. Mailboxes can be set up for individual users or for multiple users. All networked users with mail accounts can share information by using Outlook and a transport application such as Exchange.

To start Outlook using the Windows Start menu

  • Click on the Start button, point to Programs, following by Microsoft Office and click on Microsoft Office Outlook 2003.

  • Note: For Office previous version of Office - Click on the Start button, point to Programs and click on Microsoft Outlook.

  • Immediately you will see the screen shown below.

  • Microsoft Outlook 2003 screen


  • The Outlook window contains a number of standard features including the Menu bar, Standard toolbar and Web toolbar.


  • The Microsoft Outlook 2003 Environment

    The Outlook 2003 contains three major panes as shown here:

    Microsoft Outlook 2003 environment


    Navigation pane is located in the left side of the screen allow you to navigate between different folders.
    The folder pane located in the middle of the screen, you can select the folder that you wish to view.
    Reading Pane, which by default is on the right side of the screen. It is the place for you to view/read the content.

    The Navigation Pane

    The Navigation Pane is new in Outlook 2003, it replaces the Outlook bar. To view it, from the View menu, click Navigation Pane.
  • The Navigation Pane area holds the Mail, Calendar, Contacts, Tasks, Notes, Folder List, Shortcuts and Journal icons.
  • By right-clicking on any of the icons in the Navigation Pane, a pop-up menu will appear:

  • Outlook 2003 navigation pane


  • By selecting Navigation Pane Options will open the Navigation Pane Options dialog box as shown here:

  • Navigation pane options dialog box


  • Tick on the particular box will enable you to choose which buttons to show in the pane.
  • Using the Move Up and Move Down button you can change the order of the buttons.
  • When finish, click on the OK button.

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