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Are outlook notes saved on a timer? Or do you have to close it to save it? Is there any other way to save it and keep it open? I'm always afraid that if I don't save it that I might potentially lose what I typed in.

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It is saved in the background, as the notes are saved automatically, per this link (applies to Office 2010 according to the page).

  1. Type the text of the note. The note saves automatically.

To answer your questions, the notes are saved frequently in the background. They will save if you keep them open or close them. I have tested this in Outlook 2016, and it will save whatever is typed, open or closed, and closing/re-opening the note has all of my changes that I've made.

I would suggest testing this functionality with a test note in whatever version of Outlook you are currently using.

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