Control How Messages are Printed

Last reviewed on October 3, 2012   —  4 comments

Update for Outlook 2007: The Office 2007 SP2 update adds page range selection to the printer dialog.

Print options dialog in Outlook 2007 SP2 and upA common complaint is the inability to control which pages are printed. This is because Outlook’s printing options are severely lacking. While its bad in all areas of Outlook, many users notice it when attempting to print email messages.

In Outlook 2007 pre-SP2 and older, Outlook’s native printing engine does not support selecting which pages to print or limiting the printout to the first page. Outlook 2007 SP2 and up include print range options.

To select a print range, click the Print button in Outlook 2007. In Outlook 2010 and 2010, click Printer Options

Some users are reporting a script error (res://ieframe.dll/preview.js) printing email from Outlook 2003 after installing Internet Explorer 9.For more information and solutions, see Print Errors in Outlook 2003 with IE9 Installed

In Outlook 2003 and older versions HTML formatted messages use Internet Explorer’s printing engine, which offers more printing options. Outlook 2007 supports View in Browser, but it does not include the email header information. In either case, you have all the print capabilities available for web pages, including the printing of specific pages or the selected text.

The print order in Outlook may seem goofy, with some things printing in order, others out of order. This is due to the way Outlook handles HTML formatted messages and attachments. It renders the HTML in memory, which includes fetching content from the Internet. While the rendering process is working in memory, waiting on external content to download, Outlook moves on to the next item which may print before the HTML message or attachment. Many of the tools below can be used to control the print order.

Workarounds | Tools | More Information

Workarounds

If the following workarounds don’t meet your needs, try one of the Tools listed below.

  • Outlook 2003 and earlier: convert the message to HTML if it’s Rich Text or Plain Text. Do this using Edit, Edit Message, then Format, HTML. Print using the normal methods.
  • Outlook 2007: open the message in its own window, then click Other Actions, Edit Message, then on the Options tab, change to HTML. Go back to the Message tab, choose Other Actions, View in Browser then print from the browser.
  • Outlook 2010: open the message in its own window, then click Actions, Edit Message, then on the Options tab, change to HTML. Go back to the Message tab, choose Actions, View in Browser then print from the browser.
  • Outlook 2003 and older, with Word as the email editor: Click Forward then print the message. Close the message after printing. View in Browser is also supported in the older versions, if you prefer to use it.

    All versions: print to an electronic format, such as PDF, then print the PDF.

    Tools in the Spotlight

    Print On Demand

    Sperry Software's Print On Demand add-in for Outlook is being released for Outlook 2010. The add-in places convenient print buttons on the Outlook toolbar so that you can simply select the emails and/or attachments you want to print then click the Print Email, Print Attachments, or Print Both buttons. This new version now works with Outlook 2010, both 32-bit and 64-bit. Enter code WD9BHK53 during checkout.

    Print Tools for Outlook

    Print Tools for Outlook will help you automatically print incoming and outgoing messages with attachments (as well as messages and attachments separately). The plug-in automatically unpacks and prints packed .ZIP and .RAR attachments, and supports manual and automatic modes. Used with Microsoft Outlook rules, the Print Tools plug-in allows you to create a system that will automatically print messages and/or attached files. You can specify (or forbid) which file types will be printed or print an attachment separately from its message.

    Tools

    Advanced Email Printer

    Advanced Email Printer works with Microsoft Outlook to help you manage how messages are stored, displayed, organized and printed. Provides the ability to sort emails according to cases, store crucial evidence in a logical manner and print emails in either chronological order or reverse chronological order.

    Auto Print Add-In for Outlook

    Sperry Software's Auto Print Add-In for Outlook has support for Outlook 2010, both 32-bit and 64-bit. In addition, it now has the ability to print emails and/or attachments to any printer, not just the default printer. Margins, number of copies, print first page only - many new options are also now available, and Sperry Software now has fully functional 14-day trial versions on its entire product line.

    AutoPrint

    Need to print out incoming messages, with or without the attachments? The free add-in, AutoPrint for Outlook can help. It automatically prints messages on the default printer. You can chose to print the message text or the attachments, or both, and specify subject keywords and attachment types to exclude.

    Blueprint for Outlook

    Blueprint provides a suite of useful printing features. Use the Blueprint Quick buttons to perform repetitive or complex printing operations in a single click. Add Headers and Footers including Company Logo and Sensitivity Markings. Automatically print incoming / outgoing messages and attachments. Choose to only autoprint the first page. Choose to include/exclude specific attachment types in print jobs. Add print buttons to a separate Outlook toolbar for extra control. Available in Basic, Professional, and Enterprise versions.

    MP*Print

    MP*Print is a plug-in integrated into the Rules Wizard as a Custom Action used to automatically print email and/or attachments. Options include the ability to select the printer according to your own filters created with the Assistant, select different printers for the body of the message and for the attachments. Define the list of authorized extensions (for example .doc, .rtf, .txt, if you only want to print text files and Word files). MP*Print handles any attachment format if the application is available on the computer.

    OutlookPrinter

    Print your Outlook Emails the way you want. Outlook Printer allows you to customize the printing of your Outlook mails with an easy to use interface. Prints incoming e-mails automatically.

    PDF/XPS/DOC Document Exporter for Outlook 2007

    Document Exporter brings PDF, XPS and other widely used formats such as DOC, MHT and HTML to Outlook 2007 enabling you to save or simply attach your emails as PDF/XPS. You can batch convert multiple mail (or post) items to multiple file documents in a single-click. Additionally, you can merge and save multiple related mail (or post) items to a single file document. Whatever the technique you use, Document Exporter preserves all the inline/embedded images, hyperlinks in the generated documents.

    PF-PrintMerge

    Generate Adobe Acrobat files from Outlook and other database merges.

    Print Agent for Exchange

    Print Agent for Exchange - a solution for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003, which allows to automatically print out the necessary emails and attachments. The product consists of three components - a management console, transport agents, installed on the Exchange server, and one or more services that are directly processed printing. A practical system of rules, including conditions, actions and exceptions, allows to define criteria for printing of really necessary messages and attachments. Print Agent for Exchange can print both email messages and attached files (images, html, PDF, txt).

    Print Folder Messages

    Do you ever want to automatically print all messages in your Microsoft Outlook Inbox (or other folders)? Print Folder Messages 2.0 Appin will do exactly what it says! Compatible with Microsoft Outlook 2000-2013, 32-bit and 64-bit!

    Print Message 2.55

    Print Message is a MS Outlook add-in which can help you to print mails including attachments after emails arrive or are sent. Messages can be printed in plain, RTF or HTML format with an option to customize message header and include attachments info. Print Message has build-in support for printing HTML format. Graphics files are printed through 3rd party software, pdf files through acrobat reader, other formats are printed through applications associated to attachments type.

    Print4OL

    Print4OL is a Outlook COM-Addin for printing or showing single (memo style) or multiple (table style, report style, calendar style or label style) items in MS-Word, using Word Templates. Supported on Windows XP/Vista, Outlook and Word XP/2003/2007 with latest Service Pack.

    PrintPage1 for Microsoft Outlook

    Use PrintPage1 to print any email without all the previous exchanges of messages or disclaimers. It discards any messages that are appended at the bottom of the current message and that begin with From:. That means that even if the new message extends to two pages you get it all.

    Written by

    Diane Poremsky
    A Microsoft Outlook Most Valuable Professional (MVP) since 1999, Diane is the author of several books, including Outlook 2013 Absolute Beginners Book. She also created video training CDs and online training classes for Microsoft Outlook. You can find her helping people online in Outlook Forums as well as in the Microsoft Answers and TechNet forums.

    Please post long or more complicated questions at Outlookforums.

    4 responses to “Control How Messages are Printed”

    1. Jeremy Woodcock

      On my outlook email page the word 'actions' has disappeared so I cannot print how do I make the 'Action' word and drop down list return?

    2. Luc

      I've created a macro to print the selection. It's a bit dirty (involves creating a new word document using copy/paste), but it works like a charm. I'm not an expert on the object model of Outlook or Word, so if anyone can improve the internal workings of the script, please do so. I guess you could also add a default print all action in case no specific selection is made, but this script serves my need. I've created buttons for this macro on the ribbons. You can use it from the outlook explorer and from within an open e-mail item.

      Public Sub PrintSelection()
      Dim mbr As VbMsgBoxResult

      Dim objItem As Object
      Dim objInsp As Outlook.Inspector

      ' Add reference to Word library
      ' in VBA Editor, Tools, References
      Dim objWord As Word.Application
      Dim objDoc As Word.Document
      Dim objSel As Word.Selection
      On Error Resume Next

      Dim objWord2 As Word.Application
      Dim doc2 As Word.Document

      'Reference the current Outlook item
      Set objItem = Application.ActiveInspector.CurrentItem
      If objItem Is Nothing Then
      If Not Application.ActiveWindow Is Nothing Then
      If Application.ActiveWindow.Selection.Count = 1 Then Set objItem = Application.ActiveWindow.Selection(0)
      End If
      End If

      If Not objItem Is Nothing Then
      If objItem.Class = olMail Then
      Set objInsp = objItem.GetInspector
      If objInsp.EditorType = olEditorWord Then
      Set objDoc = objInsp.WordEditor
      Set objWord = objDoc.Application
      Set objSel = objWord.Selection

      If Trim(Replace(Replace(objSel.Text, vbCr, ""), vbLf, "")) = "" Then
      MsgBox "No Selection", vbOKOnly + vbCritical, "Print Selection"
      Else
      Set objWord2 = New Word.Application
      Set doc2 = objWord2.Documents.Add(, , , True)
      doc2.Activate

      mbr = MsgBox("Clear Clipboard?" & vbCrLf & vbCrLf & "With 'No', the selection will be printed free from formatting and images.", vbYesNoCancel, "Print Selection")
      Select Case mbr
      Case vbYes
      objSel.Copy
      objWord2.Selection.Paste
      Case vbNo
      doc2.Content.Text = objSel.Text
      Case vbCancel
      GoTo CleanUp
      End Select

      objWord2.PrintOut False

      Set doc2 = Nothing
      objWord2.Quit False
      End If
      End If
      End If
      End If

      CleanUp:
      Set objItem = Nothing
      Set objWord = Nothing
      Set objSel = Nothing
      Set objInsp = Nothing
      End Sub

    3. Mona Lott

      The inability to control which pages are printed, is one of the most important issues the users face. Thanks for sharing the wonderful content. Your Guideline will definitely help me.

    Leave a Reply

    If the Post Coment button disappears, press your Tab key.