Reinstate "Open" button on mail item right-click context menu.

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Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Hello again!

I am pleased to note that queries posted here in 2011 about Outlook's failure to display in message lists the email addresses of recipients is, these days, being addressed through some VB code. So, there was some point to it.

I have just moved from Outlook 2007 to Outlook 2013 and was astonished to note that you can no longer open an email in its own window other than by double-clicking it in the list or using the keyboard (Ctrl+O). A right click provides everything and anything but the one thing the user needs: "Open" - this available throughout Windows' operating systems, but absent in the newer Outlooks.

Does anyone know WHY this extraordinary piece of unhelpful streamlining was allowed to venture forth unchecked? That little button cost nothing and hardly cluttered the right-click menu. Its removal must have something to do with fashion, not average day-to-day use of a mail programme.

I say this because some users find double-clicking very awkward (whatever the mouse settings). A right click then a left click is a lot easier for someone, for example, with arthritic hands, than an unnatural, jerky movement with one finger. Yet, people who avoid double-clicking are now forced to use it in Outlook.

Further, customising Outlook's mail item right-click menu seems essentially to be prohibited other than through use of various types of code which are incomprehensible to the person who just uses Outlook, and maybe uses it extensively, rather than works under it bonnet.

So, may they - Microsoft - put that "Open" button back. It's in the programme anyway, as - completely illogically - it becomes available if you select more than one item. So, you can use "Open" to open up three or four emails, but you cannot use it to open one.

As I have said, this must have to do with modernity, Microsoft trying to be "cool", stripping out old things when there's an ostensibly quicker, slicker way. The road to ruin, that, forgetting your roots and customer Joe Soap.


William Lambton,

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
I'm guessing their CEIP data showed it wasn't used much and they figured there were enough other ways to open a message in a new window. Enter, Ctrl+O, double click or add the Open command to the ribbon. It's definitely needed to open multiple messages - enter and double click won't work.

Correct, the right click context menu is not customizable by the average user.
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