I have a number of accounts in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007, a folder for each and a rule which moves message for appropriate folder. Also it has to show a desktop notification.

But it doesn't!

I have enabled an option to showing notification for root incoming folder but 99.99% of my messages goes to sub-folders and absolutely quietly.


1 Answer 1


Found this info:

"It only works on the Inbox folder" By default the new New Mail Desktop Alert will only show when the mail is delivered to the Inbox (as the option says as well in Tools-> Options-> button E-mail Options-> button Advanced E-mail Options). This means that when you have a rule configured to move your mail to a different folder the Notification won’t show.

To workaround this you can add the action "display a Desktop Alert" to each and every rule. Besides the fact that it is very tiresome, the real downside of this is that when you are in an Exchange organization the rule will become a local rule so that it will only execute when Outlook is running. This means that when you have added extra actions to the rule, like forwarding it to another address, this action won’t be executed either.

A better solution it to create a generic rule with no conditions and just the action to display the Desktop Alert.

1.Tools-> Wizards and Alerts… (press OK if you get an HTTP warning) 
2.Button New Rule… 
3.Select "Start from a blank rule" and verify that "Check messages when they arrive" is selected 
4.Press Next to go to the Conditions screen 
5.Verify that no condition is selected and press Next 
6.A warning will pop-up stating that this rule will apply to all messages. Press "Yes" to indicate that that is correct 
7.Select the action "display a Desktop Alert" 
8.Press Finish to complete the rule 
9.If needed move the "display a Desktop Alert" rule all the way to the top 

Here: http://www.howto-outlook.com/howto/mailalert2003.htm#always_alert

Sounds like what you're running into.

  • 1
    Thanks for the tip! I will try to use it. Btw, each of my rule has enabled 'show desktop alert'. But it doesn't work. Also doesn't work 'Test alert' in Outlook settings. Why can it be?? Dec 31, 2009 at 0:10
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    If you're connecting to an Exchange server, then the Rules take on an extra layer of weirdness. There are 'local' rules, which only run in the copy of Outlook you set it up in (like say, making it 'ding' when mail comes in), and then are 'server' rules, which execute at the server, before you get to it via Outlook, and often before it hits your Inbox on the server itself (like Forwarding rules). So if a server-side rule affects the message before the local rule, then often the local rule doesn't have any affect. I hope that clears it up(?) :) Dec 31, 2009 at 0:43
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    And one global rule with notification helped. No desktop alert but sound alert takes place. So I'm very glad! Jan 3, 2010 at 8:57
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    Glad it helped :) Jan 7, 2010 at 6:19
  • 1
    Great. I was trying to find how to show the Desktop Alert to all messages. Leaving the condition blank did the trick :D Sep 16, 2011 at 3:15

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