I asked my friends over on the Windows Twitter account what some of the questions are that they receive on a regular basis. One of the most common ones they are seeing fired at them lately from newcomers to the operating system is “How do I get my email on Windows 7?”
One of the key differences between Windows 7 and Windows XP and Vista is the lack of an email client. While past versions of Windows included Outlook Express or Windows Mail, depending on which operating system you upgraded from, Windows 7 lacks an email client as part of the install. You can, of course, use an online version of your mail client or even sign up for a free Gmail account. However, many of us still rely on our trusty desktop clients. What are you supposed to do in Windows 7 then?
If you want that desktop experience and liked Outlook Express in older versions of Windows, then you’ll likely enjoy Windows Live Mail. It’s a free download, but you will need to sign up for an account. When you complete your registration, you’ll have access to several different features and functions if you choose to use them:
Get 25 GB of free online storage on SkyDrive. Use it to save your files or share photos and videos.
Windows Live Photo Gallery can help you remove red eye, create amazing panoramas, and more.
Now you can stop emailing files to yourself. Keep docs, photos, and other files in sync across your PCs.
Hotmail to access your email anywhere you may be.
Windows Live Messenger helps you stay connected to friends.
Windows Live Mail helps you organize your life into one place on your computer. Add multiple accounts such as Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo! and more. You can browse your email, calendars and contacts when your Internet connection isn’t on.
I remember using Internet Mail and News – MSIMN. That’s how many years I’ve been around online. That’s the first graphical email client released by Microsoft and it may still be something you can launch from your machine.
I’m a big email user and admit that I prefer OS X. However, I will admit that Windows Live Mail is beautiful. The layout is clean and awesome. It’s slick… it’s good. I definitely recommend it.
My first experience with email was through the VMS MAIL application (in 1992). I graduated to ‘elm’ a few years later, then Eudora (briefly) before Internet Mail and News was released. Using Pegasus to help distribute emails independent of a listserv, I wound up sticking with MSIMN when it became Outlook Express. Then, it was on to Outlook 98 – and to Outlook 2000, until Outlook 2007 made a bearable upgrade (since Outlook XP and 2003 should be stricken from canon).
Now, I’m using an Exchange server in conjunction with Mail.app on OS X (with iCal and Address Book). The Internet mail client, itself, seems to be quite an upgrade from Outlook (in speed and in Internet-specific features).
I got dragged into a thread regarding the display of HTML in Eudora yesterday – an incompatibility I wrestled with for years and ultimately gave up on, much like Qualcomm has abandoned Eudora itself. I know it has a few diehard supporters, but… that’s not enough.
My statement was posted to a Eudora supporters list, and respondents were quick to defend their choice. No doubt, Eudora has tons of features – but it looks as though it was designed by a team of schizophrenic baboons. If you don’t care what your email client looks like, then I suppose Eudora is perfect?
What about you? What desktop email program (if any) are you using – and why?
http://live.pirillo.com/ – I have been using Outlook since it came out in 1998. Until recently, I wouldn’t have recommended using Thunderbird, but that has changed. Both are good clients, but it depends on what exactly you’re looking for, and your preferences are.
The first email client I ever used was VMS. After that came Elm (via Unix), Eudora, Pegasus, and finally Outlook Express. When Microsoft Outlook became available in 1998, I switched to that, and have used it ever since. I currently run Outlook 2007 on Microsoft Exchange 2003 .
racedude from our live chat channel asked me today which email client he should be using… Outlook or Mozilla Thunderbird. He says that he doesn’t use any of the features that come with Outlook, he just reads email with it. Until recently, I wouldn’t recommend Thunderbid, as it seemed to have been left behind while Firefox was developed further. However, Mozilla has recently begun updating Thunderbird, and it’s a pretty good email client now.
Both programs will do essentially the same thing. Take a look at the features and previews of each, and see which better fit your needs and lifestyle.
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Outlook is great. It’s great. So great, in fact, that someone just asked me to blog one of their greatest Outlook concerns. Not quite sure if anybody on the Outlook team gives a rip, but… here’s what Derek sent me earlier:
“When I put pictures into an Outlook HTML email, they are much less quality and significantly larger, even though Outlook reports that they are 100%. Images also seem to gain 300% more in file size (kb). Comparing them to the Image and Fax Viewer or other image editing software at 100%, Outlook inserts the image at 30% bigger. After doing some research, MS is using the Word Editor – which assumes images to be inserted at a DPI of 96, although most digital cameras go between 72 DPI (Mac’s standard) and somewhere around 200 DPI. Images inserted at 72 will be upsampled (using MS’s rather poor upsampling engine). Images larger than 96 dpi will appear smaller than the original image. To change the DPI (or PPI) value, you must open the picture with a non-Microsoft product, then resample the picture to the 96 DPI, just to have the image appear in the email appear correctly. Even some pictures with a DPI value of 96 will still be upsampled. This is a tremendous inconvenience for those doing email newsletters, and I can assure you novice users will not know why their images are changing in quality and size.”
I really wish Microsoft would issue an interim release of Outlook, much like they did with Outlook 98 (fixing with it countless bugs). This is just, kinda… irresponsible?
Stop the presses – I’ve finally moved from Outlook 2000 to Outlook 2007! Granted, I didn’t have much choice in the matter. The decision was reached after I tried using Outlook 2000 on Windows Vista – and that experience was painful, at best. Then again, my Windows Vista experience has been nothing short of “so-so” to this point (far too many ghosts in the machine).
I’m still getting used to Outlook’s haphazard UI, but at least most of the speed issues with it have disappeared. Search is only as good as the last time the index was updated, however – which is frustrating if a message has just arrived and I can’t find it again by keyword. I’ll miss Net Folders, too.
Despite leaping to the new version, my outlook on Outlook remains the same; Microsoft needs to overhaul their PIM. And don’t even get me going on the mess that’s Windows Mail – as opposed to the slightly-more usable Windows Live Mail Desktop. Thunderbird kicks their respective digital asses (though none of ’em are true personal information managers).