If you want a specific address list to be shown first when you open the address book or click the To button, you can select it in the Address Book options. You can also set the order Outlook searches your address books in this dialog.
In Outlook 2010 and newer, Outlook chooses the sending account based on the folders you are viewing and defaults to that data file's Contact folder. You can select any address source available.
Open the Address book dialog (Ctrl+Shift+B) then open it's Tools, Options dialog.
In Outlook 2010 and newer, select the address list to display first from the dropdown at the bottom of the dialog.
In Outlook 2007 and older, the option to set which address book is shown first when you click To is at the top. You can also select a contacts folder where your personal addresses are kept, and set the order auto-resolution searches your address books.
Control the Order of Address Books in the Show Names From List
Note: The following does not apply to modern versions of Outlook.
We're concerned in this case with the order in which address books are listed in the Address Book, under the Show Names from list, and which Contacts list is displayed first. If you are using Microsoft Exchange Server, you may see the Global Address List by default.
We're concerned in this case with the order in which address books are listed in the Address Book, under the Show Names from list. If you are using Microsoft Exchange Server, you may see the Global Address List, then Recipients lists taking up lots of room at the top, with the Contacts list(s) and Personal Address Book (if installed) at the very bottom.
The order of this list has no relation whatsoever to the order in which address lists are checked when recipient addresses are resolved. Instead, it is controlled strictly by the order in which services that include address books are installed in the profile. (Because this is a profile issue, it does not affect Outlook 98 or Outlook 2000 running in Internet Mail Only mode.)
For example, let's say you want address lists to appear in this order:
- Outlook Address Book and Contacts folder(s)
- Personal Address Book
- Exchange Server GAL and Recipients
One method would be to create a new profile, using the Manually configure services option to install services in this order -- Outlook Address Book, Personal Address Book, Microsoft Exchange Server.
The other method would be to remove the PAB and Exchange Server services from an existing profile, then add the PAB and Exchange Server services back into the profile, in that order.