Dec. 27, 2013
Now that you know how to hide and show the To-Do Bar more easily in Outlook 2013 (while showing both tasks and appointments), here’s a feature change you’ll appreciate that came with a recent Office update: Microsoft added back in the ability to see more than one day’s worth of appointments in optional Calendar/Appointments section of the To-Do Bar (to see that section, go to View tab, To-Do Bar, select Calendar).
This is a feature that was present since Outlook 2007, but it was removed in the initial releases of Outlook 2013. That’s because Microsoft changed how appointments work in the To-Do Bar in Outlook 2013. I discuss this fully in the new Edition 4 of my Outlook book, but here’s a brief explanation.
In Outlook 2007 and 2010, the appointments you saw in the To-Do Bar always started with today, and then (vertical space allowing) future appointments were shown below that. In Outlook 2013 however, the appointments matched what date was clicked in the mini-calendar above it, and only that date. No appointments beyond that were shown.
Apparently users have screamed that they wanted to see more than that, like before, so the ability to scroll ahead is back (assuming you’ve got recent free Office updates). So now if you drag the boundary below the appointments section of the To-Do Bar down, you’ll see up to seven days’ worth of appointments. If you are not seeing that (still seeing just one day in Outlook 2013), do an Internet search on how to update Office in your Windows OS version (there are about 4 different ways to do that; too many to list here).
Calendar and Appointments Linkage
One other point. In case you’re wondering how to show only appointments and not the calendar in the To-Do-Bar in 2013, you can’t do that—you have to show both. That’s because the two are inextricably linked, since Outlook doesn’t know what appointments to show unless it knows what date is chosen in the calendar above it. I think that linkage is unfortunate because the mini-calendar takes up a lot of vertical space. I think a nifty feature change would be to allow users to show appointments without the calendar, and when that is done, the appointments default to starting today. I bet that 95% of us want to start with today anyway when showing the appointments section.