Major New Outlook for Mac Version Is Rolling Out Soon

For those of you who use Outlook for Mac Desktop and have Office 365 subscriptions, a new version is coming soon.

The new version moves the Search box up to the top and adds more search filters, like what is happening in Windows desktop Outlook.

My Day is now a pane on the right, sort of like the To-Do Bar in Windows.

And apparently it’s got some major underlying architecture changes in that “it is powered by the Microsoft Cloud and connects using Microsoft sync technology.” The article linked below says it is “Built on the same Microsoft sync technology utilized by Outlook for iOS and Android and Windows Mail” and as a result “the new Outlook for Mac is faster and more reliable.”

Lot’s of other changes described in article below.

I haven’t seen it yet, but it is written up here:

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OneNote 2016 Support Expanded

Microsoft just made this very good announcement a few days ago (November 4):

“In 2018, we announced that Microsoft would end mainstream support for OneNote 2016 in October 2020. That is no longer the case. Although OneNote 2016 is not available on the Office install pages today, it is coming back.”

“Beginning March 10th, 2020, new installations of Office suite products will include OneNote 2016 by default.”

“In addition,, SCCM, and Intune will display OneNote 2016 as being included with Office by default.”

From: MC194800, Plan For Change, Published date: Nov 4, 2019

This announcement is important because OneNote 2016 is the only version of OneNote fully integrated with desktop Outlook. It’s also got a ton of important other features not present in the newer Windows Store (UWP) versions of OneNote.

I wrote about those concerns in this article from a year ago.

Plus, OneNote 2016 is the primary software in my One Minute Project Management Video Course, so this is good news for that reason too.

So I am glad to see Microsoft come to their senses on this. My hope is that they will also continue to develop it, perhaps releasing a OneNote 2019.

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Free Video Added to Outlook Inbox Ninja Course

We’ve just added another free video to the Outlook Inbox Ninja Video Course. It’s Video 3.8 Outlook’s New Search Box. It gives details of the significant changes Microsoft has made to the Outlook Search functionality in its latest Office 365 subscription monthly release.

To see that video, go here, and then scroll down to Video 3.8 where you can watch it free.

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Outlook Search Bar Moved to Top

If you are in the Office Insiders group (and so getting early peaks at new Outlook features), you may have noticed that in a recent Outlook update the Search bar has been moved to the top of the Windows Desktop Outlook window.

It’s not simply its position that has changed, though, it’s supposed to do faster searches and it does seem to do that. I know Microsoft has been working hard to overhaul the search engine used throughout Office and Windows, and this apparently is a next step.

Update: I’ve just created a free video about this new search box, see this post for more info.


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Option to Turn Off Flagged Mail Highlighting Added

In an Office 365 update I recently got, Microsoft has added in the Outlook Options, Mail tab, a way to turn off the Flagged Mail Highlighting feature that they added to Windows Outlook about 6 months ago. Just scroll to the very bottom of that tab.

When I originally announced that Flagged Mail Highlighting feature in my blog back then, I got more replies to that blog than almost any other I’ve ever written—all of them negative and wanting to know how to turn it off.

At that time there was no way to turn it off, but now there is.

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New Look for Microsoft To-Do Apps

Microsoft has just released new versions of many of its To-Do apps that have a very distinctive new look.

They have put a dark background around the entire list now (instead of just at the top). The task body remains white but now have rounded corners. Most notable is that the dark background shows between the tasks, making each task stand out a bit.

As far as I can tell, there is no functional difference. Though a few more controls are added at the right end of the new task line, as an alert reader pointed out in comments below.

I’ve seen this change appear in the Windows 10, iOS, and Android apps, but not in the web version yet.

Don’t forget I’ve got an 18-video course on how to use Microsoft To-Do with my simple 1MTD tasks system.

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Using Remember the Milk with MYN, Guest Post

The app called Remember the Milk (RTM) is one of the first-released and still best-known web-based to-do list apps out there. Years ago when I first looked at it, it lacked features needed to support MYN, so I dismissed it.

But an avid MYN user recently looked into it again and found that RTM has come a long way. He says it added a start date field and good sorting and filtering. So with some simple setting changes he says it can now be effectively used with MYN.

He said RTM also has a good email-forwarding method of converting emails to tasks. And he said that RTM’s smartphone apps also look good and can work with MYN.

At my request the reader wrote up some notes on how to configure RTM for MYN and sent them to me. When I have time I’ll try this out; but for now I am posting his raw notes below, unedited (and unconfirmed), in case you want to get going now. Hopefully, this is enough to get you started. If you try these out, let me know how it goes, okay?

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Outlook Processed Mail folder vs. Archive folder

As you probably know, I strongly recommend that you use a single folder for most of your Outlook email filing.

In my Outlook book (Total Workday Control Using Microsoft Outlook Ed 5), and in my MYN-Outlook Video Course, and in the Outlook Inbox Ninja Video Course, I suggested two alternate single folder approaches: Using the predefined Archive folder (available in all Desktop Outlook versions since late 2016). Or using the Processed Mail folder (good for all versions of desktop Outlook); the Processed Mail folder is simply a custom Outlook folder that you create yourself.

I normally say you can adopt one or the other (but not both by the way), and that they are roughly equivalent in advantages. I do get questions from readers asking which is better, however, and there are some key differences.

So, what follows is a write up detailing the pros and cons. I’ll do it from the perspective of the Archive folder. By the way, all of this is explained in my video classes, especially the Outlook Inbox Ninja course, for example in Video 1.4 (but also study all the Quick Step videos in section 1 there, and study the new lesson 8.5).

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Recent Microsoft Outlook Online Software Change: A Much Better To-Do Tasks Pane

If you use Outlook Online in a web browser, and your Exchange server is hosted at Microsoft, then you might see that an important change has been made in the last few weeks:  the optional To-Do Tasks Pane has been greatly improved.

First of all, not all Outlook Online users have access to that To-Do Tasks pane. But if you do, here are the changes made in the last few weeks:

  • That pane can now be swapped for a Calendar view.
  • You can now edit nearly all the task detail settings right in that pane. You no longer must launch a separate browser tab to edit most task details.
  • There is a new more generalized icon to open that pane.

All this is demonstrated in a new update I just made to Lesson 6 of my Microsoft To-Do video course at: Paid users go take a look (advance to the 5:30 minute point).

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MYN for Apple Users, Guest Post by Charles Olsen

This is a guest post from an avid user of MYN, Charles Olsen, who found a creative way to use the software Things on the Mac to implement the MYN tasks system. What follows is his well-written article (with me only adding links and emphasis).

While I found the processes of GTD to be helpful in improving my productivity, it wasn’t quite enough for me — something was missing. I found the missing pieces in the Urgency Zones of 1MTD and MYN, as well as the Defer-to-Do and Defer-to-Review processes. MYN really helped get my task lists under control.

The hardest part for me has been finding a software solution. I know it can be done on paper, but if anything happens to that paper, the information is lost. I want a software solution where the data is backed up. I also like a database with dated items that will bring Defer-to-Do and Defer-to-Review tasks to my attention on the appropriate date.

I don’t use Microsoft Exchange or Microsoft Outlook for Windows — or Windows, or anything Microsoft, at all. My primary computer is a MacBook, and I do a lot of work on an iPad Pro. I also want to be able to refer to my lists on my iPhone. I tried using the Toodledo MYN system, but I ran into some issues with Toodledo.

After trying several different apps, I finally found a software solution for people like myself who work entirely with Apple devices. Things 3, from Cultured Code, is an excellent tool for 1MTD, MYN, and 1MPM.

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