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Configure automatic message encoding options in Outlook 2007

Office 2007

Updated: April 9, 2009

Applies To: Office Resource Kit

 

Topic Last Modified: 2009-04-03

Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 can automatically select an optimal encoding for outgoing e-mail messages. This feature increases the likelihood that when a user sends a message with Outlook, people receiving the message will see all the characters rendered properly, even if they run older e-mail programs.

NoteNote:
This topic is for Outlook administrators. To configure Outlook message encoding options on your computer, click Tools in the Outlook menu bar, then click Options. On the Mail Format tab, click International Options. Select the options that you prefer in the Encoding Options area, then click OK.

Automatic messaging encoding typically results in less configuration work for administrators and a better experience for users. However, you can instead establish a default encoding for outbound e-mail messages.

You can lock down the settings to customize message encoding by using the Outlook Group Policy template (Outlk12.adm). Or you can configure default settings by using the Office Customization Tool (OCT), in which case users can change the settings. The OCT settings are in corresponding locations on the Modify user settings page of the OCT.

The Outlook template and other ADM files can be downloaded from 2007 Office System Administrative Templates (ADM) on the Microsoft Download Center.

To customize message encoding options by using Group Policy

  1. In Group Policy, load the Office Outlook 2007 template (Outlk12.adm).

  2. To customize how results are displayed, under User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Microsoft Office Outlook 2007\Tools | Options\Mail Format\International Options, double-click the policy setting you want to set. For example, double-click Auto-select encoding for outgoing messages.

  3. Click Enabled. Where appropriate, choose an option provided on the Setting tab.

  4. Click OK.

The settings you can configure for message encoding are shown below:

 

Message encoding option Description

Auto-select encoding for outgoing messages

Enable the setting to disallow users from turning off automatic message encoding. Disable the setting to turn off automatic message encoding and disallow users from enabling the option.

Encoding for outgoing messages

In the drop-down list, choose a preferred encoding for outgoing messages.

Euro encoding for outgoing messages

Choose to ignore the euro character when automatic messaging encoding is enabled, or to convert the message to UTF-8 format.

The following sections include more information about automatic message encoding and message encoding options.

Outlook uses automatic message encoding by default, scanning the entire text of the outgoing message to determine a minimal popular encoding for the message. Outlook selects an encoding that is capable of representing all of the characters and that is optimized so the majority of the receiving e-mail programs can interpret and render the content properly.

With earlier versions of Outlook, users had to manually overwrite format encoding to choose the most appropriate encoding for an individual message. This is no longer necessary.

This table shows examples of how this encoding works.

 

If the message contains these characters: Outlook selects this encoding:

English (ASCII) text (A-Z, a-z)

US-ASCII

German (Latin 1) text (A-Z, a-z and Umlauts)

Western European (ISO)

Greek text (A-Z, a-z and Greek characters)

Greek (ISO)

Japanese text (A-Z, a-z, Hiragana, Katakana, Kanji)

Japanese (JIS)

Multilingual text (different scripts)

Unicode (UTF-8)

This works for users sending Internet mail through the POP/SMTP or IMAP transport, or for messages sent through Microsoft Exchange Server.

NoteNote:
To use the automatic message encoding feature, users sending the message must have Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 or later installed.

You can configure Outlook to use a default encoding for outbound e-mail messages. This encoding is used for all outbound messages if Auto-Select encoding is not enabled. This encoding is also used as the preferred encoding if the Auto-Select encoding algorithm finds multiple suitable encodings for the message.

By default, Outlook sets preferred encoding to a popular Internet encoding corresponding to the active Microsoft Windows code page of the user's computer. For example, Outlook specifies Western European (ISO) when it runs on Western European Latin1 Windows code page 1252.

Outlook supports the encodings listed in the table below when sending and receiving e-mail messages.

NoteNote:
For automatic encoding selection in Outlook to work properly, you must make sure that appropriate international support (NLS files and fonts) is installed on users' computers. For more information about enabling international support, see Preparing users' computers for international use.

By default, automatic encoding selection in Outlook considers for detection all encodings marked Yes in the table below.

 

Name Character set Code page Auto-select?

Arabic (ISO)

ISO-8859-6

28596

Arabic (Windows)

Windows-1256

1256

Yes

Baltic (ISO)

ISO-8859-4

23594

Baltic (Windows)

Windows-1257

1257

Yes

Central European (ISO)

ISO-8859-2

28592

Yes

Central European (Windows)

Windows-1250

1250

Chinese Simplified (GB2312)

GB2312

936

Chinese Simplified (HZ)

HZ-GB-2312

52936

Chinese Traditional (Big5)

Big5

950

Yes

Cyrillic (ISO)

ISO-8859-5

28595

Cyrillic (KOI8-R)

KOI8-R

20866

Yes

Cyrillic (KOI8-U)

KOI8-U

21866

Cyrillic (Windows)

Windows-1251

1251

Yes

Greek (ISO)

ISO-8859-7

28597

Yes

Greek (Windows)

Windows-1253

1253

Hebrew (ISO-Logical)

ISO-8859-8-I

38598

Hebrew (Windows)

Windows-1255

1255

Yes

Japanese (EUC)

EUC-JP

51932

Japanese (JIS)

ISO-2022-JP

50220

Yes

Japanese (JIS-Allow 1 byte Kana)

ISO-2022-JP

50221

Japanese (Shift-JIS)

Shift-JIS

932

Korean

KS_C_5601-1987

949

Yes

Korean (EUC)

EUC-KR

51949

Latin 3 (ISO)

ISO-8859-3

28593

Latin 9 (ISO)

ISO-8859-15

28605

Thai (Windows)

Windows-874

874

Yes

Turkish (ISO)

ISO-8859-9

28599

Yes

Turkish (Windows)

Windows-1254

1254

Unicode (UTF-7)

UTF-7

65000

Unicode (UTF-8)

UTF-8

65001

Yes

US-ASCII

US-ASCII

20127

Yes

Vietnamese (Windows)

Windows-1258

1258

Yes

Western European (ISO)

ISO-8859-1

28591

Yes

Western European (Windows)

Windows-1252

1252

This topic is included in the following downloadable book for easier reading and printing:

See the full list of available books at Office Resource Kit information.

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