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What I think are rudimentary questions about Office 2013 contacts

Posted on 2015-01-18
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I think these are rudimentary... and I SHOULD know these, but don't.

Trying to help someone with a POP account and outlook 2013.

She is trying to make a mailing list  (choose that name from contacts / elsewhere and the email will go to all the people in that list).  Is that the same as a contact group, as they are calling it in outlook 2013?

She wasn't seeing any names.

Looking at her outlook, click on contacts and she has 2 'folders' on the far left?  Contacts and suggested contacts.

Contacts is totally empty.  Suggested contacts has hundreds of cards - each has just email addresses.

I think she just enters emails as she sends mail - that's how she's building contacts.  So each address goes into suggested contacts (only?).  is this the new version of the NK2 file?

And to get into contacts, the user would have to type a new card and the details?

So there's contacts and then there's 'address book'.  When making a contact group, there's an add members link that has 'from contacts' which has nothing in that list and 'from address book', which I did some googling and pointed the address book to the suggested contacts.  So when you choose address book, you DO get all the contacts.

Is this all working correctly?  

Now her type ahead when sending a new email is broken.  she could start typing an email address on the To line of a new email and it would suggest addresses (from the suggested contacts folder?'.  Not sure what I did but no suggestions come up?

So:

Is it normal that when she sends an email, the address is added to suggested contacts, not contacts?
Does 2013 use NK2 for autocomplete?  Or that suggested contacts folder?  How do I get suggested contacts back when on the To line and I start typing an address?
THis started from them not being able to build a contact group.  Should it be an issue like this?  Should the address book default to having suggested contacts also?
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David Johnson, CD, MVP earned 2000 total points
ID: 40556846
Office 2013 doesn't use nk2 files but an equivalent xml structure.
Does she want a mailing list or a distribution list?
A mailing list can use excel/sql/access data list and a template form and normally creates 1 message per user
A distribution list can use a BCC list, it is easier if she has actual contacts.  Perhaps you have to go into her suggested contacts open each one and add it to contacts or copy them to contacts and then create a distribution list. 1 message with several recipients.
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by:BeGentleWithMe-INeedHelp
ID: 40556931
she's looking to choose this single entry for the to (or bcc?) line and have the type email go to the dozens of names linked to that single entry.

Is that contact group, mailing list or distribution list? It's for a church. not marketing or similar.

First, I was mistaken - this is outlook 2010.  and 2nd, I was thinking the suggested contacts folder took the place of nk2 file?

If I type an address on the to line, it shows up in suggested contacts folder.  And then when I start typing that name again, it shows up as an autocomplete suggestion.

But that doesn't seem to be the case.  I created a new PST and imported everything from the old PST.  even though the suggested contacts has hundreds of entries, they don't show up in autocomplete.

I think I heard a quick way to rebuild the nk2 is put everyone in an email on the bcc line, then delete the email.  that rebuilds the NK2?

just did that - seems to work.  sound right?

And copying all the suggested contacts into the contacts folder?  I thought of that but that's a 1time thing?  Tomorrow they send an email to a new address, it automatically goes into suggested but not into contacts?
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Expert Comment

by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 40556944
create a distribution list also add a contact 'Undisclosed Recipients' with your email address this goes in the to: and the distribution list goes in the bcc:
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by:VB ITS
ID: 40557574
The Suggest Contacts list in Outlook 2010 is a one-hit wonder from Microsoft. Microsoft got rid of it in Outlook 2013 because they realized that everyone got annoyed with a billion contacts appearing on their mobile devices when synchronized with their email accounts.

To answer your questions:
First, I was mistaken - this is outlook 2010.  and 2nd, I was thinking the suggested contacts folder took the place of nk2 file?
No it doesn't. The Suggested Contacts list is a new feature in Outlook 2010 (as mentioned earlier) which was meant to help users locate people they have previously sent messages to. You can find out more about it here: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Automatically-add-contacts-for-everyone-that-you-send-an-email-message-5b94db41-0029-4aa9-b326-b2fc8a2c9d7e

NK2 files no longer exist starting from Outlook 2010. The AutoComplete cache is now stored as a hidden message in the message store (in this case it's the .PST file).

If I type an address on the to line, it shows up in suggested contacts folder.  And then when I start typing that name again, it shows up as an autocomplete suggestion.

But that doesn't seem to be the case.  I created a new PST and imported everything from the old PST.  even though the suggested contacts has hundreds of entries, they don't show up in autocomplete.
That's because the Suggested Contacts list and the AutoComplete cache are actually two separate things. Say for example you have upgraded from Outlook 2003, then 2007, and now 2010. You may have carried across your NK2 file from these previous versions of Outlook which would contain AutoComplete entries that go way back.

The Suggested Contacts list on the other hand will only create a contact for email addresses that you have never sent an email to before, but only if those emails were sent from Outlook 2010. It is not a substitute for your AutoComplete cache.

I think I heard a quick way to rebuild the nk2 is put everyone in an email on the bcc line, then delete the email.  that rebuilds the NK2?

just did that - seems to work.  sound right?
Yes and no. If you've only ever used Outlook 2010 then I'd say yes. If you've used previous versions of Outlook and upgraded to 2010 then no, you'll no doubt be missing a bunch of old AutoComplete entries created from the previous versions of Outlook.

And copying all the suggested contacts into the contacts folder?  I thought of that but that's a 1time thing?
Yep you can do this if you want. Just note that the contacts in the Suggested Contacts list will have very minimal info - most likely a name and email address and nothing else. Your client will have to manually edit each of these contacts to include phone numbers, addresses, company names. etc. if she desires. Seeing as her Contacts list was empty anyway, this shouldn't really pose a problem.

Tomorrow they send an email to a new address, it automatically goes into suggested but not into contacts?
Correct. Contacts need to be created manually by the user.

FYI you can easily create Contacts for emails sent to you by hovering the mouse cursor over the name of the sender in the To: field > click on the View more options for interacting with this person button > click Add to Outlook Contacts

This will then proceed to open the full Contact card where you can fill in all sorts of fields to your heart's content. The benefit of this is that you don't have to go through the laborious process of copying the contact over from the Suggested Contacts list each time you want to import a new contact into your Contacts list.
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