Macro to Filter Based on Latest Email

Watson

New Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 64 bit
Email Account
Exchange Server
Hi, I'm new to macros and VBA so this question may be very basic.

When catching up on emails in my inbox, I would like a way to filter through those which ask me to do something and not those that are meant for someone else copied on the email. Searching for emails where I am in the To: field doesn't work for this purpose because people sometimes include me in the To: field even when they are asking someone else to do something, and sometimes people leave me in the CC: field even when they are asking me to do something. The best way to filter the email would be to see if the email has my name in the body of the message.

However, the problem is that nearly every email contains the text from the previous emails on the chain, and my name appears either in the body of those emails, or in the email addresses listed in the To: field from the previous emails which now appear in the body of the new email. As far as I am aware, Outlook considers the prior emails on the chain as part of the body of the new email and there is no way to filter based on text in the last email alone.

One possible solution I thought of would be to search for my name but to tell Outlook to exclude from the search any hits that appear in the body after the words "From:" or "wrote:". This should work because even if my name is mentioned in prior emails on the chain, they would appear in the body of the new email after those words (since the older emails on the chain begin with From: or "[somebody] wrote:".

I believe there is no way to conduct such a search (and create such a rule/filter) using Outlook's search tools. Is this something that would be possible using a macro and then I could create a filter or smart folder for emails in my inbox matching this search rule?

Thanks!!
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
I have this script -
 

Watson

New Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 64 bit
Email Account
Exchange Server
Thanks for your reply, Diane. In my situation, the people that I work with don't pay much attention to whose name they put in the TO field or CC field, so I think I need a rule that will look at whether my name is actually mentioned in the body. The problem I have is that once I am on the chain, my name comes up as a recipient for the earlier emails which are now copied into the bottom of the most recent emails, and there is no way to limit a search to the most recent email when the chain appears at the bottom of each subsequent email. Am I misunderstanding your solution? Thanks again for taking the time to review my post!
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
It sounds like they need to use the @mention feature - you can filter for @mentions.

I don't know if there is a good way to filter for your name in the message body (besides @mentions) - while a macro could look in the new message part for your name, does it look for the full name, your email, or just your first name? I'd think most people don't say "Bob Watson, do this... " unless there are two Bob's in the chain. Then they might use just 'Watson, do this... ' They are unlikely to say "watson@domain.com, do this.... " But searching for just bob might be enough of a filter.

Reading just the new text requires you to look for the first "From:", get its position then search the text from 1 to position, for the keyword. If they don't use Outlook or an Outlook-style header, it won't work.


The macro in the 'Are you the only address in the To field?' script, creates a list of all addresses that are in the To field and checks it for your address - if your address is in the list, it does something - in this case moves it. It doesn't check the CC list - you can do that using a normal rule.
 

Watson

New Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 64 bit
Email Account
Exchange Server
Reading just the new text requires you to look for the first "From:", get its position then search the text from 1 to position, for the keyword. If they don't use Outlook or an Outlook-style header, it won't work.
Thanks! I think that they when emails ask for a response from a specific person, they call them out by first name only. Chains get really long though, so if they called me out earlier in the chain, emails responding to that message would get picked up as well. If only I could get people to use @mention.

Your above suggestion I think is perfect for what I'm looking for because my whole team uses Outlook. Is there a name for limiting a keyword search from the beginning of an email until a specific position in the body? I'm trying to understand enough to be able to learn more about this. Thanks!!
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
My method requires a run a script rule. Or a macro you run manually. It could set a category and could move message not meeting the condition to another folder.
 
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