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Select next unread message automatically

When I return after some free days, I handle all my unread mail starting at the bottom (as it is the message that I received first after I went away).

When I’m done with the email, I usually either delete it or move it to another folder. After this, Outlook automatically selects the email before it; which I’ve already read.

Can I make Outlook to move up the list of message and thus automatically select my next unread item instead of going down the list of received messages?

There is an option in Outlook to determine which mail gets selected after you move or delete the currently selected or open item;

  • Outlook 2007 and previous
    Tools-> Options…-> button E-mail Options…-> option: After moving or deleting an open item: open the previous item
  • Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013
    File-> Options-> section Mail-> option group: Other-> option: After moving or deleting an open item: open the previous item

After moving or deleting an open item: -open the previous item -open the next item -return to the current folder
Control which messages gets selected after moving or deleting the
current message.

Use the “Unread Mail” Search Folder or “Unread Messages Only” view

If you really want to focus on only your unread messages, you can set your view to “Unread Messages Only” or use/create the “Unread Mail” Search Folder.

This will filter out all your read messages so you will automatically go to the next unread message. You can change your sorting order by pressing the “Received” column.

Switch to the Unread Messages view
To switch your view to the Unread Messages in This Folder view use;

  • Outlook 2002 and previous
    View-> Current View-> Unread Messages in This Folder
  • Outlook 2003
    View-> Arrange By-> Current View-> Unread Messages in This Folder
  • Outlook 2007
    View-> Current View-> Unread Messages in This Folder
  • Outlook 2010
    View-> Change View-> Unread Messages in This Folder
  • Outlook 2013
    Under the Search field above your message list, click on “Unread”.

Creating the Unread Mail Search Folder
To create the Unread Mail Search Folder (available in Outlook 2003 or later only) use the keyboard shortcut CTRL+SHIFT+P or;

  • Outlook 2003 and Outlook 2007
    File-> New-> Search Folder…-> select: Unread Mail-> button OK
  • Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013
    Folder-> New Search Folder-> select: Unread Mail-> button OK

Creating a new Search Folder
Creating an Unread Mail Search Folder to quickly catch up
with newly received mail.



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