Customizing the Message Columns
default columns in Windows Mail tell you the basic information you need
for any message. More information is available, however. For example,
you might want to know the date and time the message was sent, the size
of the message, and to whom the message was sent. You can display these
items as columns in the message list. Here are the steps to follow to
customize the Windows Mail columns:
View, Columns. (You can also right-click any column header and then
click Columns.) Windows Mail displays the Columns dialog box, shown in Figure 2.
Figure 2. Use the Columns dialog box to customize the columns displayed in the message list.
To add a column, either activate its check box or select it and click Show.
To remove a column, either deactivate its check box or select it and click Hide.
change the order of the columns, select a column and then use the Move
Up and Move Down buttons to position the column where you want it.
(Columns listed top to bottom display from left to right in the message
To control the width of a column, select it and enter a new value in the The Selected Column Should Be X Pixels Wide text box.
Here are a few more column customization tricks:
To change the width of a displayed column, use your mouse to drag the right edge of the column’s header to the left or right.
To change the width of a displayed column to fit its widest entry, double-click the right edge of the column’s header.
To change the position of a column, use your mouse to drag the column’s header left or right.
Setting Read Options
help you work with your correspondence, Windows Mail has a number of
options related to reading messages. To view them, select Tools, Options
to open the Options dialog box, and display the Read tab, as shown in Figure 3.
Figure 3. Use the Read tab to set various properties related to reading messages.
Here’s a review of the controls in this tab:
|Mark Message Read After Displaying for X Second(s)||Deactivate
this check box to prevent Windows Mail from removing the boldfacing
while you’re reading a message. Alternatively, you can use the spin box
to adjust how long it takes Windows Mail to remove the bold (the maximum
is 60 seconds).|
Marking Messages as Read
You can also control the marking of read messages via the Edit menu using the following commands:
Mark as Read—
Turns off boldfacing for the current message or messages.
Alternatively, press Ctrl+Q or Ctrl+Enter, or right-click the message
and then click Mark as Read.
Mark as Unread—
Turns on boldfacing for the current message or messages. You can also
press Ctrl+Shift+Enter or right-click the message and then click Mark as
Mark Conversation as Read— Turns off boldfacing for all the messages in the conversation associated with the current message. (A conversation or thread
is a group of messages that have the same subject line, ignoring the
Re: and Fw: prefixes added to replies and forwards.) Alternatively,
press Ctrl+T. For this command to work, you have to group messages by
conversation by selecting the View, Current View, Group Messages by
Mark All Read— Turns off boldfacing on all messages in the current folder. You can also press Ctrl+Shift+A.
Note that you can ask
Windows Mail to display only unread messages by selecting the View,
Current View, Hide Read Messages command. Select View, Current View,
Show All Messages to return to the regular view.
|Automatically Expand Grouped Messages||When
you group messages by conversation (by selecting the View, Current
View, Group Messages By Conversation command), Windows Mail displays
only the first message in the group and includes a plus sign (+) to its
left. You have to click the plus sign to see the other messages in the
conversation. If you prefer to see all the messages in the conversation
automatically, activate this check box.|
|Automatically Download Message When Viewing in the Preview Pane||When
you’re working with a Web-based email account (such as Hotmail) or a
newsgroup, deactivate this check box to prevent Windows Mail from
downloading message text when the message header is selected. When
you’re ready to receive the text, press the spacebar.|
|Read All Messages in Plain Text||Activate
this check box to convert all HTML messages to plain text, which helps
to thwart web bugs and malicious scripts. |
|Show ToolTips in the Message List for Clipped Items||When
this check box is activated, Windows Mail displays clipped information
(such as a subject line that’s cut off at the end because the Subject
column is too narrow) in a ToolTip when you hover the mouse pointer over
|Highlight Watched Messages||Use
this list to specify the color that Windows Mail uses to display
messages marked as watched. To mark a message as watched, you must first
display the Watch/Ignore column . Then click inside the column beside
the message to add an eyeglasses icon to the column and to format the
message in the specified color.|
this button to display the Fonts dialog box, which displays a list of
the character sets installed on your computer. For each character set,
you can specify a proportional and fixed-width font, as well as a font
size and encoding. You can also specify which character set to use as
this button to display the International Read Settings dialog box.
Activate the Use Default Encoding for All Incoming Messages to apply the
encoding shown in the Default Encoding box to all your messages.|