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Microsoft® Outlook® 2007 Bible by Peter G. Aitken

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Chapter 9. Processing Messages with Rules

IN THIS CHAPTER

  • Understanding email rules

  • Defining a new rule

  • Some rule examples

  • Managing email rules

Outlook lets you automate the handling of email messages with rules. A rule can do things such as moving messages from a specific person to a designated folder or deleting messages with certain words in the subject. Rules can also display alerts, play sounds, and move InfoPath forms and RSS feed items. Rules can help you save time and stay organized.

Understanding Email Rule Basics

Outlook email rules are all similar in that they specify a condition and an action. A rule can be defined to apply to email messages when they arrive, which is most common, and also to messages as you send them. The Rules Wizard, where you create rules, provides a set of partially defined rules for commonly needed actions—all you need to do is fill in the details. It also provides the capability to define a rule completely from scratch, a feature you'll use if one of the existing rule templates does not meet your needs.

Creating a New Rule

To create a new email rule, select Rules and Alerts from the Tools menu. Outlook displays the Rules and Alerts dialog box where you should select the E-mail Rules tab. If you have any rules already defined they will be listed here. You can work with existing rules as described later in this chapter. To create a new rule, click the New Rule button to display the Rules Wizard, as shown in Figure 9.1.

Figure 9.1. The first step in defining ...

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