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Search in Outlook 2016 for Mac

This article applies to: Outlook 2016 for Mac


Outlook 2016 for Mac provides searching at various levels of complexity. Here are two methods that many find useful.

Quick Search (one mail folder, but can be modified)

You can search for a particular message by clicking on the folder where the message is stored, then using the search bar in the upper-right corner of the Outlook window. This method searches only the folder you've selected. It does NOT include sub-folders of that folder (but see the bullets below).

  • While typing in the search box, you'll be offered the option of specifying where in the message to search (from, to, subject, etc.). If you do not select any of these specifics, Outlook will search all the basic headers, the subject, and the body of the message.
  • When the search results are displayed, a Search ribbon will appear, allowing you to further refine your results.

To return to a full view of all messages, click the X icon next to the search text box or click Close in the Search ribbon.

Advanced Find (multiple folders, more options)

Advanced Find offers more detailed options for locating items.

From the Edit menu, choose Find, then Advanced Find.

A Search row will appear at the top of your messages. Use the drop-down list to select a search criteria, then fill in the field or fields associated with that criteria.

To add additional criteria, click the plus sign at the right edge of the search row. Multiple criteria are treated as "and" statements, that is, a message will be displayed only if it matches ALL the criteria you've specified.

The icons on the Search ribbon allow you to further refine your results.

To return to a full view of all messages, click the X icon next to the search text box or click Close in the Search ribbon.

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