Is there a way to open a sent attachment from its original location instead of from the set email

Posted on 2006-05-03
Last Modified: 2010-04-08
My client used to use eudora.  In Eudora when you attach a file to an email, the sent mail folder retains a pointer to the original location of the file (as oppossed to inserting the file in the email like outlook does).  So if the file was c:\docs\client1\topicb\file.doc, and he went into the sent folder of eudora and clicked on the attachment, he would open up the file from its original location c:\docs\client1\topicb\file.doc and not an inserted copy of the file in the email.

Because he has many documents and clients, for him to have to look at the file name, then do a search, then open the file is not acceptable to him.  He wants to be able to open the file and get it from the location that he saved it from.  One reason is he may have made changes to the original document, and the email has the old version.  Also he finds it easier to track his files by client email & date.

Is there a way in outlook 2003 for him to go to his sent folder, open an email and click on the attachment and open the file from its saved location and not from the email.  He wants to go back to eudora, but I have set up an SBS 2003 server with exchange, and I would like to have everyone in the office using the same software.



Question by:lpii
    LVL 76

    Expert Comment

    by:David Lee
    Greetings, lpii.

    > Is there a way in outlook 2003 for him to go to his sent folder, open
    > an email and click on the attachment and open the file from its saved
    > location and not from the email

    No.  I don't use Eudora, but what you describe seems like a strange way of doing business.  What happens if the file isn't in the original location anymore?  And how would you look to see what you actually sent as opposed to what the document looks like now?  


    Author Comment

    The user doesn't change the location of the files, they stay in the clients directory.  His documents are fluid, and doesn't need to know what was sent because he originates the documents and continues to make changes on them.  He likes the idea that he can go to the client file in his email by date and subject and look at the sent items and pull up the docoment whithout having to remember where the document is.

    He basically wants a pointer system (that eudora uses) to the original file.

    Any other suggestions.


    LVL 76

    Expert Comment

    by:David Lee
    I can see several options.

    1.  Store the files on a web server that the client has access to and send a link to them instead of actually sending the files.
    2.  Create a macro or find a third-party tool that will check sent items for attachments and replace them with a link to the item.  I've written this sort of thing myself and seen commercial tools that do this.  Typically they save the attachments to a folder and and replace them with links.
    3.  Create a macro or find a third-party tool that will check items as they are sent for a list of attachments.  The tool would read the list of attachments, attach the files listed, and send the message.  The sent item would contain both the list of attachments, which could appear as links, and the actual attachments themselves.  This could be used in combination with another bit of code that'd strip the attachments leaving just the links.

    Outlook isn't designed to handle attachments in this way, so any solution is going to be a bit clumsy.  If you want to look for third-party offerings that do this sort of thing, then is an excellent source.

    Author Comment

    One way to solve this is by using a link file

    Copy the file first (ctrl-c)
    Select the body of the new email
    Paste Special
    Check - Paste Link
    Click on OK

    The attachment will state 'Shortcut to <file name>'

    You will now have an embeded file with a link to the original file in your Sent Items Folder.  The recipient will now have the file and you have a pointer to the original file

    You can also use
    Insert Object
    Create From File
    Check off Link to File

    But this method actually inserts the contents of the file into the body of the email




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