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When I click on any folder in Outlook 2010, I have a search box on the upper right that lets me search it if I desire, but when I click on Mailbox, the topmost folder, there is no search box.

How do I search through ALL the mail that I have in one fell swoop?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

This should be easy with the search tab up top (you must enable Windows Search first).

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After clicking on your mailbox, try the All Subfolders or All Outlook Items button in the search tab. The shortcut Ctrl + E should also allow you to search your mailbox. If it does not find anything it will offer to search all of your mail.

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I don't have a Search tab on my Outlook ribbon, do you have a custom one, or is there some special way to add it? I tried going to Customize Ribbon but there was no Search tab to choose. Ctrl+e doesn't work if Mailbox is selected (though it works for the other folders). – Lance Roberts Dec 14 '10 at 1:04
I've found that the Search tab only comes up when you click in the Search box or hit Ctrl+e, but it only enables the Refine category when you have enabled Windows Search (which really sucks). BUT having done this it still doesn't work with the Mailbox folder. – Lance Roberts Dec 21 '10 at 17:31
OK, I've found that once you've enabled the crappy Windows Search, and can use the Search tab, you can actually search in the Ctrl+e box, based on any folder, and then when it doesn't find anything, it will bring up a link to search All your Mail. If you can edit that all in, I'll accept your answer. – Lance Roberts Jan 6 '11 at 18:50
@Lance, even the crappy part? =) – John T Jan 6 '11 at 22:44
@John, yeh, you have to enable Windows Search to get the "from:" option. I just a few seconds ago found out how to get the old search, you have to click on the small dog (Search Companion) in Windows Search and it takes you to the old search. – Lance Roberts Jan 6 '11 at 22:59

In order to add this Search Tab, select the pointed drop down menu next to the undo button, topmost toolbar (the one with just the basic commands).

  • Select more commands
  • Select customise ribbon
  • Look for Choose commands from drop down
  • Select All tabs
  • Look for Search Tools
  • Click and Select the 'Search' with a + in front
  • Then click Add

You should have your Searc Ribbon. You should come right with this.


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