Where does Office/Outlook save an an attachemnt opened directly from an email?

Posted on 2009-04-28
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
Running Office 2007 Pro.  If you open an email in Outlook, then open an attached file directly from within the email and simply click on the "Save" icon in Word or Excel or whatever the attachment opens in, WHERE does it save the file to?  I have a couple of users who have opened attachments directly from within Outlook, made changes and then clicked "Save" but have no ide where the document saved to......Thanks in advance.
Question by:tenover
    LVL 5

    Accepted Solution


    Depending on the operating system, version of Outlook AND user logged in, the OLK temporary folder will be created in a different spot.

    To find where its been created, open the Windows registry using regedit32.exe and use the MAP below:
    Outlook 97      HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\8.0\Outlook\Security
    Outlook 98      HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\8.5\Outlook\Security
    Outlook 2000      HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\9.0\Outlook\Security
    Outlook 2002/XP      HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\10.0\Outlook\Security
    Outlook 2003      HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\Security
    Outlook 2007      HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\Security

    On my install, (Im running Windows Vista & Microsoft Office 2007) I found the OLK temp folder at:
    C:\users\MrGroove\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.Outlook\XLCYUT3R
    When you open file attachments that are considered safe, Outlook places these attachments in a subdirectory under the your Temporary Internet Files directory as an extra precaution. When Outlook first tries to use a temporary file, it examines the registry to determine whether or not the TEMP OLK folder has already been created. If yes, it uses the folder. If no, it creates a random folder then stores the path in the registry location mentioned above.

    For example:
    Lets say your running Windows XP and Outlook 2003. When you open your first attachment your computer will create the following sub-folder to temporary store the attachment:
    C:\Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\OLKxxx
    In this example, username is the user name that is used by the person who is currently logged on to the computer. xxx is a randomly generated sequence of letters and numbers.
    This information can be very useful and potentially dangerous. For instance, lets say you open an attachment, make a bunch of changes then forget to save it&. Chance are, you can probably find the OLK folder and recover the document (if you have autosave on).
    Now the bad news, lets say you open an attachment which contains sensitive or confidential information. While reading the document, Outlook unexpectedly closes. In this scenario, the attachment will remain in the Outlook Temporary folder indefinitely because Outlook cannot remove the temporary file while its open. Now lets say your PC is stolen&& Yup, all your documents are just sitting there for anyone to open. Believe me? Just go look. If youve been using your computer for any length of time I bet you will find 1-2 dozen files sitting there for anyone to open and read.

    hope the above explanation helps and you are able to locate the files saved by y
    LVL 97

    Expert Comment

    Hello tenover,

    The Outlook folder where attachment opens is the OLKxx folder.  This folder is difficult to access. Here is a way to access the folder and files

    In Vista, the Secure Temp folder is located at C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.Outlook\xxxxxxxx

    Outlook Temp Cleaner to find and clean OLK folder
    Batch file to clean OLK folder

    Hope this helps!

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