Updated: 2008-11-21

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When 2007 Microsoft Office system is installed with Microsoft Office Word 2007, Outlook takes advantage of several features that provide a richer set of editing and reading commands than in earlier versions of Outlook. If you decide to install Office Outlook 2007 separately from Office Word 2007, you can still create and read e-mail messages but some functionality is reduced.

This article lists the functionality that is limited or removed in Office Outlook 2007 when it is installed without Office Word 2007.

In addition, a white paper is available that details the improved user experience in Office Outlook 2007 when creating and reading e-mail, calendar items contacts, and more. For more information, see Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 e-mail editor white paper (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=100175).

Features that are not available without Word 2007

When Office Outlook 2007 runs on a computer where Office Word 2007 is not installed, the following functional areas are affected.

Attachment Preview

Attachment preview in Office Outlook 2007 is not supported for Microsoft Office 2003 file types or earlier. To preview attachments in Office Outlook 2007, you must have an application installed that can preview the file type and uses the IPreviewHandler interfaces that were introduced with Office Outlook 2007 and Windows Vista. For example, to preview a Word file in Office Outlook 2007, you must have Office Word 2007 installed. This also applies to other Office file types regardless of the Office compatibility packs or viewers installed.


All auto-formatting behaviors, with the exception of hyperlinks, are disabled. This includes AutoIndent for tabs, AutoFormat of bullets and numbering, and so on.

Internet and network paths with hyperlinks are still automatically formatted as hyperlinks.


Autotext functionality and the new Building Blocks feature (Quick Parts) are disabled and removed from the user interface (UI).

Background spelling

The option to use F7 for spell checking is enabled, but there is no background spell checking (no red squiggles under misspelled words).

Synonym lookup

The Look Up option is removed from the right-click menu, so users cannot right-click a word and look up the synonym. Using standard look up by selecting Research from the Spelling drop-down list box (on the Message tab) still works.

On-Object UI

On-Object UI (OOUI) is disabled, including Smart Paste functionality.

Data binding and placeholders

Solutions that are enabled by using data binding and placeholders do not work. For example, you cannot create a signature that contains contact information that can be treated as a business card. Users can still use the insert business card feature of Outlook.

Grammar checker

Grammar checking is disabled.

Smart tags

Smart tag recognition and actions are disabled. Note that smart tags are disabled by default in the preview pane and read note in Outlook regardless, for security reasons.


There is limited table support. Tables cannot be created in Outlook but they can be copied and pasted into an e-mail message from another application. The following table functionality is provided:

  • Tables, rows, or columns can be selected.

  • A table can be deleted by selecting the table and pressing the Delete key, or by selecting the table anchor and using Table commands in the menu to delete the table. Rows and columns can be deleted as well.

  • Users can move the table as a whole, as well as drag rows or columns within the table.

Users cannot adjust row, column, cell, or table dimensions.

Save As

When Word is not installed, when the user clicks Save As, the file type drop-down list includes only the following formats:

  • Web Page (.htm) if the format of the message is HTML

  • RTF (.rtf) if the format of the message is RTF

  • Plain text (.txt)

If the user clicks Save in an e-mail message, the message is saved into the Drafts folder.

When Outlook is installed together with Word, the following set of file types is available:

Text only (.txt)

Outlook template (.oft)

Outlook message format (.msg)

Outlook message format - Unicode (.msg)

HTML (.htm) - if the format of the message is html

RTF (.rtf) - if the format of the message is rtf


In Office 2003, all Word file types are available when Word is used as the e-mail editor. If the Outlook e-mail editor is used, the shorter list of file types shown above is provided.

Find/Replace: Go To tab

The Go To tab in the Find/Replace dialog box is disabled.

Citation and bibliography

The Reference tab is disabled. Users cannot, for example, insert citations or a bibliography.

Header and footer

Users cannot insert headers or footers.

Review and comments

The Review and Comments tab is disabled.


Captions are disabled. Captions cannot be inserted for tables, pictures, or any other features.

Object Model

The Word object model (OM) is not accessible. This means that existing solutions might not work properly. However, even if Office Word 2007 is installed, existing solutions that worked with earlier versions might break.

New features for Word 2007

There are new features in Office Word 2007 that are targeted at improving the e-mail viewing experience, and these features are not available without Word 2007 installed. These features include:

  • Navigation via e-mail thread

  • Panning

  • Search hit highlighting

  • Electronic Business Cards

Other new features in Office Word 2007 that are not available without Word 2007 installed include:

  • Quick Formats

    All quick format functionality is disabled.

  • Office Style Sheet

    There is no way to leverage Office Style Sheets.

  • Drawing tools

    There is no entry point to the drawing tools.

  • Charts

    Chart UI is not available.

  • Diagram

  • Equations (represented only as images)

    Equations UI is disabled. They can be pasted into the file, but not edited or inserted in any other way.

See Also