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Have two e-mail addresses but don't want two separate inboxes in Outlook

Posted on 2011-09-21
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Last Modified: 2012-08-13
Hello,

I have two main email addresses and all of my email management is done through Outlook (2010).  

One of my email addresses is a Gmail account.  The other does not end in "@gmail.com" but is alsohandled by Gmail nonetheless.  (I'm not sure how the latter works exactly but that's how it was set up by the person who built the website for our company.)

For several years as I was using Office (2007), email messages sent to me using either address ended up in the same inbox in Outlook.  In fact, they were indistinguishable.

However, a few months ago, I got a new computer and after all of the software had been installed and files transferred from the old hard drive, I noticed that now there were two separate inboxes in Outlook, one for each e-mail address.  Furthermore, instead of all ending up in a single inbox, incoming e-mail messages end up in one or the other inbox depending on which address was used.

I'm not quite sure how that happened or why but I was hopeful that upgrading to Office (2010) recently would correct the problem.  Unfortunately it did not; there are still two separate inboxes.

Clarification:  in looking at the folders once again, I just noticed that it's not actually two inboxes.  Rather, the first item is the heading: Personal Folders.  When that is expanded, all of the regular folders appear (e.g. inbox, drafts, sent items, junk, etc.).  The second heading (which above I was calling the second inbox), has my second e-mail address as its title and also expands to show a second inbox, etc.

How can I merge everything so that again, I will only have a single set of folders with all incoming emails going to a single inbox, etc?
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Question by:Steve_Brady
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11 Comments
 
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Assisted Solution

by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 800 total points
ID: 36577510
Here is what I think has happened.

Unless you set up your accounts manually, and also take special steps, Outlook 2010 will set up a different PST file for each account. Look in your user folder for an Outlook folder and you should see these two PST files.

How to get around it. First, be careful.

Back up safely, securely and somewhere else ALL your PST files. You are going to delete them, so back them up. Make a record of your email account details. You are going to delete these as well.

Now go to Control Panel -> Mail (it is in the 32-bit section) and delete your Outlook Profiles. Close Outlook. Go to the Outlook folders above and delete the PST files (you backed them up).

Now open Outlook and create an account. Do it manually. In the screen after New Account, there is a setting to do it manually. Notice where the email account will go (default in Documents\Outlook). Keep that or change it, but know where it is. Once complete, make a new (second) account, do it manually, and point to the SAME PST file as created for the first account. Now all mail will go to one PST file.

Now you can import your mail from the saved PST files. Go carefully as there may be more that one folder of the same name and these you will want to combine.

Let us know if you need help. ... Thinkpads_User
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by:John Hurst
ID: 36577535
Steve - I should add that I have 5 or 6 email accounts all going to one Inbox (plus folders) in one PST file and using Outlook 2010. ... Thinkpads_User
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by:rbudj
ID: 36577646
You should be able to move the inbox folder of one account to the inbox folder of another account. When you are looking at Outlook 2010, on the Home tab there is a Quick Steps section. In this section is a Move to: ? option. You may find this useful for quick testing.
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Mohammed Rahman earned 1200 total points
ID: 36577722
Outlook 2010--file--account settings--account settings--it will launch the window below.
account settings
I have just one account. Howeverm your computer will have two. Gmail and Non-Gmail. As per your question, there are two mailboxes Personal Folders and second email address.

Depending on which one you want to keep and want all the mails to land that inbox, do the following.

I assume you want all the mails to move to the second email inbox. Highlight the account that needs to be merged (guess: gmail accout) and click on change folder, and select the second emails inbox.
 merge accounts
** If you would like to make it much simple, create a rule to force all emails go to one INBOX

Please ask questions if any :)

@thinkpads_user:
Steve may also need to configure the gmail accounts as POP3 (if they are not). What say?

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/17314/add-your-gmail-account-to-outlook-2010-using-pop/

Enable pop in gmail. Start manually configure the outlook by following "Manually Configure Outlook for Gmail"

While configuring the second account, select the radio button "existing outlook data file" and browse to the first account's PST and proceed further.


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by:Mohammed Rahman
ID: 36577727
** Its always good practice to take backup of PSTs before making major changes.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 36577743
>>> ** If you would like to make it much simple, create a rule to force all emails go to one INBOX

The method I outlined completely eliminates any need for rules. I don't really like rules and it is cleaner to have mail going to one PST file and therefore one set of folders. I have had Outlook 2010 working that way for about a year now (as long as it has been on the market). ... Thinkpads_User
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by:Mohammed Rahman
ID: 36577819
@thinkpads_user:

Would it be good for Steve to take backup and recreate accounts or take the "change folder" route ? You are using this since quite a long time, your suggestion would matter a lot.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 36577845
In my first post, I asked Steve to take backups.

I do not know the state of the mail files or how long this has been going on. If there is a lot of mail at stake, creating one new PST with multiple accounts as I described makes life easier in the long run.

I use Change Folder from time to time myself if bring mail in from my other machine, so I know it works. But getting the accounts clean at first is very helpful over the long haul.

... Thinkpads_User
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Author Closing Comment

by:Steve_Brady
ID: 36951845
Thanks
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by:John Hurst
ID: 36951896
Thanks. I was pleased to assist. ... Thinkpads_User
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Expert Comment

by:aahoskins
ID: 37523204
Is it possible to intermigle and Exchange email account and a non-Exchange, specifically POP, Inbox? I know the Exchange is kept in an OST file versus a PST.
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