Where is the Organizer?

Last reviewed on June 8, 2013

Previous versions of Outlook each offered an Organize pane which allowed users to quickly apply colors to messages from specific users.

This is Outlook 2007's Organize pane:

Organizer pane

The Organize pane was removed from Outlook 2010. Instead, users will need to create Conditional formatting rules in the view. While this is more work, especially for simple rules, I believe it will reduce confusion – many users had no idea that Organizer created Automatic formatting rules in the current view. When they changed views or moved items to other folders, the coloring was lost and they had no idea why. (Using the /Cleanviews switch will erase all custom views, including those created using Organize or Conditional formatting. )

Note: Automatic formatting was renamed Conditional formatting in Outlook 2010 to better reflect what the feature does.

Video Tutorial


Create Conditional Formatting Rules in a View

To create Conditional formatting rules, you need to open the Advanced View Settings dialog. There are several ways to get to this dialog in Outlook 2010, the easiest is to switch to the View tab, then click the View settings button.

Advanced View Settings

Now click the Conditional Formatting button, then click Add to create your formatting rules.

Conditional formatting rules

Conditional Formatting Tips

To format all messages from a domain, add the domain name to the From field on the General tab. When you use the From field on the Advanced tab, Outlook looks at the Display name field, not the email address field.

Create a conditional rule for all messages from a domain

Rules are tied together using the AND operator. A single rules From Mary OR To Mark is not possible unless you enable the QueryBuilder.

More Information

Using the QueryBuilder

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.

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