Outlook Express
April 18, 2004 10:37 AM   Subscribe

Outlook Express must DIE !

As you can tell , i'm not too please with OE at the moment , i downloaded a patch for it which then resulted in me losing my addresses and the complete inability to use it as an outgoing mail program.

I've been told i must reinstall XP pro entirely to fix this.

I'd rather not , i'd rather post here and see if people can suggest an alternative to outlook express that i can install on my computer without a complete bloomin reboot.

honestly , i'll use anything .
posted by sgt.serenity to Computers & Internet (37 answers total)
I've been pretty happy with Mozilla's Thunderbird. It's very customizable, has built-in spam filters, and is much more stable for me than OE ever was.
posted by kickerofelves at 10:54 AM on April 18, 2004

I use eudora, and am happy with it--it has a small ad box, and that's it.
posted by amberglow at 10:59 AM on April 18, 2004

I checked out The Bat as an alternative some time ago, and it did a good job of importing all my OE mail and addresses.
posted by scarabic at 11:01 AM on April 18, 2004

I use the full version of Outlook, which works wonders better than Outlook Express. It always amazed me that Microsoft even called that mess "Outlook", which I think gives an Outlook a bad name.
posted by benjh at 11:23 AM on April 18, 2004

I second Eudora, which I've been using on different operating systems since 1995. There is a free light version, and for the full version you can choose between paying for it or viewing ads (as mentioned above by amberglow).

I also like the mail client of Opera (free with ads or paid without, educational discount available).
posted by amf at 11:36 AM on April 18, 2004

I second The Bat. I've been using it for years and years, and it handles my 30K+ messages without slowdowns or memory hogging.
posted by Jairus at 11:53 AM on April 18, 2004

I third The Bat. Great app.
posted by Succa at 11:59 AM on April 18, 2004

Thunderbird is an excellent mail client. Also you might try Mahogany. Then of course there's Pegasus Mail if you use POP instead of IMAP for your mail.
posted by estey at 12:01 PM on April 18, 2004

I third the recommendation for Eudora, which I too have been using since 1995.
posted by sueinnyc at 12:02 PM on April 18, 2004

Another vote for The Bat but note that it aint a freebie (it is quite cheap though). While it isn't quite as glossy as OE it does everything better and with much less fuss, plus a few things OE doesn't do (blocking remote images, filtering messages before they're downloaded)
posted by dodgygeezer at 12:07 PM on April 18, 2004

Another vote for Thunderbird

1. Spam filtering is GREAT
2. Esthetically pleasing
3. More stable than IE
4. You are helping to "stick it" to "the man"

1. The error messages are not very helpful (I have had to go into OE and try to replicate the same problem in order to find out what Thunderbird was trying to tell me)
2. The filter system for sorting mail into different folders and such is, I don't think, as robust as OE.
posted by Hildago at 12:21 PM on April 18, 2004

[Another vote for Thunderbird.]
posted by thebabelfish at 12:27 PM on April 18, 2004

I find Thunderbird to be too slow, it's a resource hog. Slow to load, slow to do anything. I use with PopFile.
posted by skwm at 12:29 PM on April 18, 2004

i'm happy with tbird
posted by muckster at 12:30 PM on April 18, 2004

Yet another vote for Thunderbird. It does just what I want it to do -- no more, no less.
posted by NsJen at 12:54 PM on April 18, 2004

I've seen Thunderbird in action, and if I wasn't happy with Eudora already, I'd have no problem switching.

There's no reason to stick with Outlook, and if you've lost your addresses already and have to re-log them all in, you might as well switch now.
posted by chicobangs at 12:58 PM on April 18, 2004

Thunderbird is wonderful and the latest releases are *very* stable and much faster than they used to be. It's got features in it that I simply couldn't do without now (and I was using Outlook rather than OE). It's fast, easy to use, and you can skin it to your heart's content. Of course, you'll be using Firefox already, so I have no need to introduce you to the wonderful work of the Mozilla Foundation, right?

Seriously, you need any help switching to Thunderbird, just let me know.
posted by humuhumu at 1:17 PM on April 18, 2004

Anybody figure out how to get Thunderbird to connect to a MS exchange server yet?
posted by monju_bosatsu at 1:53 PM on April 18, 2004

The same way you connect any piece of standards-based software to it: You don't.

Or rather, you set up your Exchange server to do POP or IMAP, and go from there.
posted by majick at 2:43 PM on April 18, 2004

pine. It's simple, fast, easy, unobtrusive, the same as on your unix box, and it's too bleedin' dumb and simple to be infected by almost all worms.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 2:45 PM on April 18, 2004

Another long time Eudora user here (though I'm on the Mac). Great program, kind of ugly... but I have no intention of leaving it. :)
posted by litlnemo at 3:49 PM on April 18, 2004

I use the full version of Outlook, which works wonders better than Outlook Express.

Wow. We must be living in opposite universes.
posted by scarabic at 4:02 PM on April 18, 2004

I tried Thunderbird about 5 months ago and really, really wanted to switch to it...until after about a week it started randomly losing emails from my in box and other stored emails. The Bat seemed a bit klunky to me. YMMV. I am still with OE for the moment, under protest.
posted by rushmc at 5:26 PM on April 18, 2004

The subject of choosing a mail reader seems to come up every so often on Ask and the answers tend to be the same:

Thunderbird's good, but big, and not the best choice for slow or old hardware. On anything passably decent, there's not much reason to go with something else.

Some of us prefer character cell interfaces, and we tend to clump into two groups: Those of us who use Mutt, and people who like pine. I'd rather use Elm than pine, but that's just me. There is a Win32 port of Mutt that seems to be slightly out of date but usable. There's some kind of mail reader built in to EMACS, but I wouldn't touch that with a ten foot pole made from the carcasses of a thousand nested parentheses.

People who don't have heavy mail needs or are running on feebler hardware tend to offer up Eudora and The Bat. I think The Bat is a bit more industrial-strength, but both are fairly bare-bones as features go. There's a lot to be said for a mail reader that isn't a huge singing and dancing piece of software.

Opera's mail capabilities (along with Mozilla's) are pretty fair. Browser/Mailer suites give me hives, so I wouldn't use them, but they really aren't bad at all.

Outlook non-Express is pretty decent with the most recent version. The "2000" version is OK, and the previous rev is unspeakably bad. Any or all of them are likely to cost too much money (or require sucking down a really huge ISO from your favorite file sharing app) to be worth the price of admission.
posted by majick at 5:34 PM on April 18, 2004

search your hard disk for *.wab files. those are the windows address book. it's unlikely it was erased, what's probably happened is it's lost track of it and has initialized a new one in a new directory (historically, and depending on OS ver, i've seen OE puts it's files in various places in both the \windows dir or under \documents and settings\%user%\application data\microsoft\outlook express - and i've seen it change this in midstream due to applying updates. if you locate more than one *.wab file, the biggest probably contains your missing addresses. rename it what the other is, drag a copy to where the other is located, and restart OE.
posted by quonsar at 6:16 PM on April 18, 2004

I use Thunderbird on all the PCs I touch, and I couldn't be happier.
posted by bshort at 9:09 PM on April 18, 2004

If you get a high volume of email, or if individual correspondents are very important to you, then switch to full strength Outlook, then add Nelson. It's the best thing since sliced bread, and it's the only reason to use Outlook.
posted by gd779 at 9:20 PM on April 18, 2004

Historically, there was a fantastic reason for going with OE: for a long time it was the only Windows mail client that gracefully handled sending as any of the account names that fed your inbox. You may want to read your law firm mail and your leather queen mail all in one place, but that doesn't mean you want to answer to both of those from just one of those addresses.
posted by NortonDC at 9:36 PM on April 18, 2004

Norton - How would one consolidate accounts like that in other clients? Thanks to this thread, I've fallen in love with The Bat but I wish it has the drop down capability that OE does for choosing what email to send from.
posted by amandaudoff at 9:59 PM on April 18, 2004

If you go with old school Netscape mail, like Pine, it's too stupid to even recognise/be recognised by most email viruses. Pine is great for a quick read, but I never figured out how to do attachments, and I have never heard anything bad about Eudora.
posted by jb at 10:35 PM on April 18, 2004

amandaudoff: It does! Click view, and then put checks next to From and Reply-To. Use the dropdowns to select the account you want to send from.
posted by Jairus at 11:50 PM on April 18, 2004

Eudora, piece of cake to import all your OE archives
posted by Pericles at 6:12 AM on April 19, 2004

Pine is great.

Select the "Attachments" field and press ^T to select an attachment, BTW. :-)
posted by shepd at 11:03 AM on April 19, 2004

Or just hit v-for-view, scroll down to the attachment with yer arrow keys, and hit the mighty ENTER key.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:39 AM on April 19, 2004

I throw my support behind Eudora.
I've used it for about 8 years now and I love it.
posted by grum@work at 12:47 PM on April 19, 2004

I'm not sure if my Eudora use is light-weight nor not (typically 350 messages/day) but it seems to handle a fair bit of mail expeditiously. I absolutely have to have multiple 'personalities' to send mail from, and robust, but simple, filtering. So ya, I offer it up.
posted by cairnish at 2:50 PM on April 19, 2004

I am a known apologist for using Pine to quickly handle large quantities of mail and Eudora to later download those quantities (and for composing more complicated mail). Eudora actively prevents you from doing something stupid; Eudora engineers invented the format=flowed spec used even in Hotmail; and Eudora is oldskool, which may or may not be a plus.

I got my esteemed colleague using Eudora for Windows, and we both hate the interface. The Mac version merely has a lot of windows. I am aware, though, that Windows users in general have no clue whatsoever how to use mail, so if you're contemplating getting rid of Outlook, you've already established you're of a higher echelon.
posted by joeclark at 4:44 PM on April 21, 2004

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