A simple Microsoft® Outlook 2010 add-in that prevents ‘Reply to All’
If you work in an organization with a sizeable number of employees, you will agree when we say that the ‘Reply to All’ is not always a very convenient option, especially for the recipients. How many times have you been irritated by a mail with several people in the CC list, just because each recipient chose to ‘Reply to All’ and not ‘Reply’? Imagine reply mails flooding your inbox when actually the original mail never demanded you to take action; you were simply in the CC list so that you could be in the loop of things. Alas, you are not the sole complainant, there are several others as well. To put an end to this ‘frustrating’ experience, Microsoft has designed a utility, an add-in for Microsoft Outlook 2010. Users using this version of e-mail application can easily download this add-in and avoid committing minor e-mail errors.
What is the Microsoft Outlook 2010 add-in?
Designed by Microsoft Research, this particular add-in enables the sender of a message to prevent the recipients of the mail from opting to ‘Reply to All’. All that the sender has to do is set a flag on the particular mail and it will be done. A user can comfortably have this add-in installed by downloading it from Microsoft Research.
How does the Microsoft Outlook 2010 add-in work?
After you have successfully downloaded the add-in, you will notice two buttons in your Microsoft Outlook 2010 Ribbon bar. The first button allows you to enable the ‘No Reply All’ facility while the second one allows you to enable the ‘No Forward’ facility. By having both these facilities turned on, you can at least ensure that the recipient(s) does not accidentally click on the ‘Reply All’ button and thereby send unnecessary mails to all and also use up valuable e-mail bandwidth.
Tip: This wonderful utility however comes with a flaw. A recipient may choose to disable the functionality and go ahead and ‘Reply to All’ or may copy the contents of the mail on to a fresh note and still send it. Nonetheless, it is still a handy add-in for all Microsoft Outlook 2010 users as it puts a check on all accidental replies. It also takes care of minor e-mail errors such as a missing subject line or missing attachment from a file that is supposed to have one.
Image by Ed Yourdon