I'm experiencing a strange problem with Outlook 2019. When viewing a message it only shows the first line. On an HTML message, it stops at the first close paragraph tag. On a plaintext message, it stops at the first newline character. This is true if viewing a message in the reading pane as well as if double-clicking the message to open in its own window.

I have the preview pane set to show 3 lines and it does show more of the message so it seems like Outlook can see more of the message than it's rendering in the reading pane. If I use View Source, the underlying data seems fine and the whole message is there.

I've tried the following:

  • Deleting and re-creating the user's mail profile
  • Uninstalling & re-installing Office
  • Creating a new Windows account & connecting Outlook to a different Exchange account than the one that originally exhibited the problem
  • Checked for Windows updates
  • Checked for Office updates

Any ideas what might be causing this? I feel like I've tried everything obvious & I'm striking out on Google.

  • Make a new, test Windows user profile. Log into the new User profile (Account). Set up Outlook. Is it working? If so, the existing user profile is damaged and needs to be replaced.
    – John
    May 11, 2021 at 21:03
  • I am seeing this issue on one computer, but my laptop is working perfectly. See if a new user profile helps.
    – John
    May 11, 2021 at 21:14
  • Not yet enough points here to provide an answer, but today I've had two computers at a client with this issue. Solution was to go to Add and Remove Programs > find Office 365 > Click on advanced options > Select Repair to repair the installation. Opening Outlook after the repair restored the preview immediately. May 12, 2021 at 2:36
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    As I know, Microsoft team has recognized this issue, we could get more update from this twitter : twitter.com/MSFT365Status/status/1392208966231355392
    – Jade
    May 12, 2021 at 3:52

2 Answers 2


I was able to find a solution to this problem:

  1. Open an elevated command prompt (Administrator)

enter image description here

  1. Navigate to C:\Program Files\Common Files\microsoft shared\ClickToRun

  2. Run the following command:

    officec2rclient.exe /update user updatetoversion=16.0.13901.20462

enter image description here

The process takes about 10 minutes but then fixes the problem.

  • 8
    If anyone is wondering, the issue more than likely is unique to 2104 Build 13929.20372. Since this solution is short-lived, in that the issue will be patched within a few hours, you could instead roll back to 2104 Build 13929.20296. This solution rolls back Office 365 deployments, if you are running Office 2019 and/or Office 2016 you have to determine the appropriate build to use. Since Office 365, Office 2019, and Office 2016 all use the same update mechanic this solution can be applied (though slightly modified).
    – Ramhound
    May 11, 2021 at 23:38
  • 2
    If you are looking for build numbers for Office 2016 10373.20050 can be used while Office 2019 13929.20296 can be used. Since this issue was created today, and on May 11th an Office update was released for all three versions, there is probably a connection.
    – Ramhound
    May 11, 2021 at 23:42
  • @Ramhound I am having this issue with Version 2104 (Build 13929.20296) but only after applying today's Windows Updates (5/11/2021). It was fine before that and everything I have tried (updates, reinstalls, repairs) have not fixed it.
    – cusman
    May 12, 2021 at 0:46
  • @Ramhound I had this issue with both Version 2104 Build 13929.20296 and 13929.20372. The only solution for me is to rollback to 16.0.13901.20462 and to disable further auto updates until a newer build has this specific issue resolved. Your comment with link to build notes page very helpful in helping me understand my problem and temporary solution I need to use.
    – cusman
    May 12, 2021 at 1:00

This is a Microsoft Problem. I have been working on this an and on the Problem Machine I reverted Office 2016 (365) to the prior version.

There are now answers on the internet about this.

Run the following command string (do not navigate to the location and run; run from Win+R

This is for Office 2016 64-bit Desktop version. If you are using a different version, check for that version.

Win+r , then in the box to enter data paste this line:

"c:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft shared\ClicktoRun\OfficeC2RClient.exe" /update user updatetoversion=16.0.13901.20462 check and press enter

This is the prior version. Then go to Office Updates (any Office app), Updates and Disable Updates temporarily.

Please check your own version before running this. My problem computer is working fine now.

Followup: Wednesday May 12 after noon EST in North America. All fixed. So far as I can see, the Office 2016 up to date version number did not change.

  • "do not navigate to the location and run" - Curious, the other (more popular) answer suggests to do just that. What's the difference? Is there a reason to do one or the other?
    – MrWhite
    May 12, 2021 at 15:23
  • You need to use the command line method to be able to enter the complete parameters
    – John
    May 12, 2021 at 15:27
  • @John both methods have the complete parameters. MrWhite is asking why you specifically say to not navigate to the folder, e.g., >"C:\Program Files\blah.exe" versus >cd "C:\Program Files" >blah.exe May 12, 2021 at 18:50
  • It is possible that both methods work. The Microsoft source to change versions (today and back a couple of years for a similar issue) said to use the command line so I did. If the other way works also then by all means use that.
    – John
    May 12, 2021 at 18:57
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    For any one who may have turned Office Updates off, the issue is fixed, even through the version number did not change. My machines are both working now (I reverted, and today again updated my Desktop computer and it is working fine.
    – John
    May 12, 2021 at 21:43

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