Monday, 8 June 2009

taming a non-existent Outlook Express

A quick Google search tells me that I'm not the only person experiencing this problem. For some unknown reason, every time I boot Windows XP I get the following pop-up:

"To free up disk space, Outlook Express can compact messages. This may take some up to a few minutes"

What the heck? I don't even have Outlook Express installed on my's usually one of the first things I remove after installing Office. Now, I just click cancel, go on my way, and I'm good until the next reboot. However, some users report seeing this pop-up every few minutes. What a nuisance!

Turns out that this friendly little bugger appears after installing Windows Search. Windows Search is a great little tool for indexing your email - I highly recommend it. However, by default it also indexes Outlook Express...even if it's not installed on your machine. In order to index, Search has to run the program. Apparently OE keeps a counter and prompts the user to compact messages after 100 runs of the program (the counter exists even though the program does not...go figure).

Steps to solve:

  1. Right-click on Windows Search in the system tray (magnifying class in the bottom-right corner)
  2. Select "Windows Search Options"
  3. Click "Modify" and un-check Outlook Express
This will stop Search from indexing (and running) OE. BUT, since the counter has already opened 100 times, it must be reset or the pop-ups will continue:
  1. Start > Run > "regedit"
  2. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Identities\{GUID}\Software\Microsoft\Outlook Express\5.0
  3. Open "Compact Check Count"
  4. Change value to zero
  5. Reboot


Alex said...

Some days ago I had a talk with my brother and he told me about his problems. As he said all of them emails were deleted. I advised for him a next utility - repair a dbx file. It solved his problems for seconds and absolutely free as he told me yesterday. He thanked me...

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