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Smash your Toaster! Or, how to turn off notifications in Outlook 2007.

Posted: Thursday, May 14th, 2009 by Ted

Some people like toast – I do not.  Now, this is not to say I don’t like my bread warm, crispy, with a little butter.  I’m actually enjoying a piece (pictured below) as I write this post.  What I’m talking about are those pesky notifications that pop up when a new email message arrives.  IMG_2796In Outlook 2007, a little animated rectangle appears in the corner of the desktop (kindof like a piece of toast) with information about the sender, the subject line and if you’re quick about it, you can click on that to open the message or delete it.  This notification can even play a sound to catch my attention.

 

Here’s the rub: once I’m distracted by this shiny thing, whatever focus I had on the thing I was working on is lost.  There’s a cost to this distraction.  In order to return to the thing I was doing before the interruption I have to spend time refocusing.

 

Ok, enough opinion, here’s how to banish this particular distraction from your computer if you use Outlook 2007:

  • Click Tools > Options
  • This will open the Options dialog to the Preferences tab
  • Click the “E-mail Options” button.
  • Click the “Advanced E-mail Options” button
  • In the section labeled “When new items arrive in my Inbox”, Uncheck ALL of the checkboxes
  • Click the “OK” buttons to apply the change

While this doesn’t eliminate all distractions from your desktop, it’s a start.  What things to you do to minimize distractions when you’re working?


One Response to “Smash your Toaster! Or, how to turn off notifications in Outlook 2007.”

  1. ted says:

    You can also right-click on the Outlook icon in your taskbar (lower-right corner, by the clock) and un-check the box next to "Show New Mail Desktop Alert."

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