I have recently upgraded my computer to Office 2010 and I really like the programs especially Outlook. However when I set up Outlook 2010 on my laptop that was running Windows 7 I really ran into a crashing problem. When I say crashing problem, I don’t mean every now and then, but rather every time I opened the program and after about 3 seconds of use. With Microsoft pushing Windows 7 and Outlook being a Window 7 compatible product I was stymied as to why.
After much web research and trial and error on how to fix the problem, I found that many, many other people had experienced this same problem. There were prolific postings on forums asking for help and suggestions offered (which I tried nearly all).
Out of exasperation I tried this solution and it worked for me, so I wanted to mention it in a blog so that others may be able to benefit.
First for me the add-ons were not the problem. I still had crashes even after disabling all add-ons. What I found out was that Outlook 2010 wants to install your Outlook.pst file in your My Documents folder by default and really seems to have trouble if when you set up Outlook 2010 you let it find the .pst file in your old application data folder under local and then Microsoft then Outlook
location that Outlook 2007 uses by default. When I created a new .pst file in the My Documents folder, linked it to Outlook 2010 in the account settings I was golden. I have not experienced a crash since. Yes I had to reset up my mail account, import my calendar and contacts from my desktop, but I was finally able to use Outlook.
So if you are pulling your hair out over your Outlook 2010 installation, stop, take a deep breath and either create a new Outlook.pst file in the My Documents folder or move your Outlook.pst file there and you may have your problem fixed too!
This past week I bought a Motorola Droid X mobile phone. I wanted to have a portable office so I can go anywhere yet be working. Well, kinda of working. My biggest question was how to connect Outlook and my Outlook calendar with my new Droid phone. I have tested a few applications this week and wanted to share my experience with you.
Google Apps for Business
Actually I unloaded this application after I got it to work, but for larger offices this may be a very practical solution. With an Outlook plugin, you can see your email, calendar, and contacts on your mobile phone. Google works to sync your info to GMail and then your phone grabs it from there. With a $50 a year single user fee it is very practical. For me, I found the program however intrusive. It set up a second mail profile which after I unloaded it I was stuck with. The settings are complicated so don’t do set up on a weekend when there is no phone support.
CompanionLink for Outlook
I had hoped that this would be the perfect solution for me. One click syncing. I downloaded the free 14 day trial and had an endless look as the software tried to sync Outlook. I was willing to be patient for the first time sync but the menu did not give me an idea of what was happening, to me it appeared stuck. Price for this one is $39.99, but I unloaded it too.
Google Calendar Sync
Okay, now I am back to free. I was willing to pay, but just could not get everything to work properly. I set up a calendar with my GMail account, then I downloaded the calendar sync software. This was pretty easy. Allow several hours for all your appointments to appear in the calendar online which then your phone can grab. For me it took about two or three hours for the events to appear and in the meantime, I was sure it was not working. I recommend setting it up and then leaving it to work over night. In the morning all your appointments will be on both Outlook and your Droid.
The Rest of the Story
Okay so what did I do about mail and contact syncing? Well I set up my Droid to download my mail from my servers making sure that my desktop Outlook was set to leave a copy on the server. Then I manually loaded my cleaned up address book to GMail. It was cake to export a .csv file from Outlook and cake to load it to GMail. So now I am totally synced office to phone and phone to office.
If you are holding back from getting a smart phone due to the complication to figure out how to sync, learn from my trials and just start the easy way. Sometimes simple is best!