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Always show the received day name of a message in the Message List

When looking at the received dates of the messages in the Message List, I see the first messages have a day and date specified. When I scroll further down my list of messages, only a date is shown.

How can I set Outlook to always display the name of the day that the message was received on in the Message List?

Message List buttonWhereas many of Outlook’s date display fields are determined by your Regional Settings in Windows, this date display format is actually determined by your view settings.

While you can modify the display format for the Message List, there are also alternatives available to see the name of the day the message was received without needing to modify anything.

Alternative: Expanded Message header in Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016

Message Header buttonBefore starting to make any changes, I wanted to highlight a feature of Outlook which already always displays the name of the day that the message was received on; The Message Header.

Granted, in most Outlook configurations this Message Header will show minimized and still only displays the received date as how it is being displayed in the Message List.

However, expanding the Message Header will reveal the name of the day, the date and the time when the message was received and it is only a click away; Clicking on the down arrow in the bottom right corner of the Message Header will expand the message header. Clicking on the up arrow will minimize it again.

The expanded Message Header will always display the name of the day, the date and the time the message was received.
The expanded Message Header will always display the name of the day, the date and the time the message was received.

Alternative: Tooltips in Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2010

Tooltip buttonIn Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2010, there is also a feature which doesn’t require you to modify anything; Tooltips.

To make a Tooltip of a message display, simply hover on it with your mouse. The day, date and time that the message has been received on will be displayed in the following format;
<Short day> <short date> <short time>

Example: Tue 3/2/2010 3:59PM

Full date in tooltip
These day/date/time display correspond with your Regional Settings.

Note: This method is not supported in Outlook 2013 and later.

Show the date in the Message List: Customize your view

Custom View buttonIf the above is not what you want and actually want a consistent date format in your Message List view, you can configure the column settings for the Received field. The method is the same for other fields that use date notations such a the Sent and Modified column.

  1. Open the View Settings dialog.
    • Outlook 2007 and previous
      View-> Arrange By-> Custom…
    • Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016
      View-> View Settings
  2. Button: Format Columns…
  3. On the left, select the name of the date field. In our case: Received
  4. Press the Best Fit drop down box and select the day/date/time format which you prefer.
  5. Press OK and then OK again to close the open dialogs.

Modifying the date format for a column
Modifying the date format of the Received column.

Extra Tip!

Tip! buttonIf you want to change the display for all your folders at once, you’ll have to modify your default Messages view. If you are using Outlook 2010 or later, you can apply your view to other mail folders via;

  • View-> Change View-> Apply Current View to Other Mail Folders…