Apr
21

How to verify and update all Outlook contacts at once

Today I would like to bring to your attention 4 Outlook plug-ins that will help you always keep your Outlook contacts up to date, easily add new contacts to the Contacts lists and journal all your contacts with a mouse click.

Actual Contacts for Outlook from MAPILab

Supports:

  • Microsoft Outlook 2000, 2002 (XP), 2003, 2007.
  • Microsoft Windows 2000, XP, 2003, Vista.

Download Actual Contacts for Outlook

This Outlook plug-in is purposed for validating and updating contacts in your Outlook address book, including user details and e-mail addresses. As to user details, it works like this: a specially generated mail is sent to specified addresses with an HTML form containing the recipients’ details. After receiving this form, your addressees can update or correct their details if they wish to. Validating e-mail addresses is done automatically, it does not require participation of a recipient and may pass unnoticed for account holders.

Actual Contacts for Outlook can also help you with such tasks as: conducting surveys, collecting additional information, and updating details in your Outlook contacts. Such a necessity often emerges as you establish and develop relationships with organizations and individuals.

If you have installed any third party tool at least once, you will not have any problems with the Actual Contacts for Outlook plug-in. The procedure is quite standard as in all other MAPILab plg-ins. The installer options are also standard: installation type (for the current use account or for all users), installation folder (default one, or specified by the user), and accepting the end-user license agreement.

Starting your Outlook, you will see a welcome wizard, which has become an indispensable part of MAPILab plug-ins.

To avoid any possible problems with finding the newly installed plug-in in Outlook, you are provided with the Program Location window.

Actual Contacts for Outlook: Program location window

So, starting Outlook, you will find the add-in toolbar in the Outlook toolbar area:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Add-in menu

Moreover, the menu is comfortably structured, which is very reasonable when we have such wealth of functions.

I suggest you looking at the Tools item first, since it contains all available settings. The first option is Add contacts. Using this option, you can make up a list of contacts that require updating. It should be noted that to add a contact, you needn’t have it in your Outlook address book. Say, you have just another incoming message. Naturally, at this stage, you have nothing to add to your address book, because you have no other details but for the email address. If the contact is already in your address book, you are likely to have already received some messages from this person. So, the plug-in’s wizard works taking into account this model. It asks you to specify folders that will be searched for e-mail addresses, names and any other contact details.

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Choose email folders

Retrieved information is structured, and you are presented with the list of contacts to choose from:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Select contacts

The result is placed into the Contacts folder. After that, you select a form which will be used to ask your recipients for missing details.

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Message template

The add-in has a few ready-made forms, but you can also create your own one using the Customize templates option.

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Template configuring window

It’s up to you to choose the number of fields and their names. You can either select from a large list of fields, or add you own ones. All these operations are absolutely transparent for you and require no more than a couple of clicks.

The Settings window allows you to set general parameters for checking contacts, access the log file, and set the option of updating contacts automatically and validating e-mail addresses.

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook:  Settings

Now let’s turn to the Update Contacts button:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Add-in menu

A click on this button opens the following wizard:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Contacts update wizard

At the first step you specify the folder that contains contact which require updating:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Choose contacts folders

In this window, you can filter contacts according to their update date, say contacts updated more than two days ago, and filter the contact fields to be updated. This will help you always have the most recent information in your Outlook contacts.

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Set a filter

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Select fields for filtering

After that the plug-in sends out the update forms.

The last toolbar option is Contact verifier:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Contacts verifier

As mentioned above, this button is purposed for checking the validity of email addresses. The process comes unnoticed for the user as well as for his / her contacts. The plug-in sends out a special request to a respondent’s e-mail server, receives and analyses the server response. You can verify any data from your Contacts folder, or check a given e-mail address only (Verify single email address option):

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Verify single email address

The last, but not the least comes Help. You can refer to the Help section even if you don’t have an Internet connection at the moment. All files are copied to your hard disk during plug-in installation.

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Help options

The add-ins menu is also added to the Outlook main menu which contains the same options:

MAPILab Actual Contacts for Outlook: Add-in menu

So, what can I say as a conclusion? A nice plug-in, easy-to-understand and pleasant to work with.

Add Contacts from MAPILab

Supports:

  • Microsoft Outlook 2000, 2002 (XP), 2003, 2007.
  • Microsoft Windows 2000, XP, 2003, Vista.

Download Add Contacts for Outlook

This plug-in also works with Outlook Contacts, but it is purposed for a different task. It complements the Actual Contacts for Outlook in some way. The Add Contacts add-in automates the process of adding e-mail addresses into the Outlook Contacts folder. At that, e-mail addresses are automatically checked for duplicates.

As soon as you reply to some message, or write an e-mail to a new recipient, this new e-mail address is automatically added to your Contacts. In doing that, if the addressee’s name is not explicitly mentioned, the add-in will try to retrieve it from the message body. Also, the Add Contacts allows using categories when working with given items or e-mail messages.

All operations described above can be easily performed with sent messages. The plug-in will just check a corresponding Outlook folder.

The main settings of the add-in are located in Outlook Options -> Add Contacts tab:

MAPILab Add Contacts: Options window

In this window, you can set the following options: type of messages to add contacts from (sent and replied), contacts folder location, category assignment for contacts and name searching options.

Advanced settings are available in the following window:

MAPILab Add Contacts: Assigning contact category

You may need this if the plug-in doesn’t find your recipient’s name in the message body.

Work folders are selected in the Contacts folder window.

MAPILab Add Contacts: Select folders

If the default folders do not suit you, you can browse and choose any other Source and Destination folders.

At this point the setting stage can be considered completed and we are just one step away from the result.

MAPILab Add Contacts: Start processing

A click on the Start Processing button starts the plug-in.

That’s it. The process in under way.

MAPILab Add Contacts: Scan progress

Thus, if you use Outlook as a working tool in your daily work, the Add Contacts plug-in will make your work much easier and will set your Outlook Address book in order.

Journal All Contacts from Sperry Software

Supports:

  • Microsoft Outlook 2000, 2002 (XP), 2003, 2007.
  • Microsoft Windows 2000, XP, 2003, Vista.

Journal All Contacts web-site

This plug-in is purposed for journaling all your Outlook contacts, without selecting each contact manually. Since a trial version is not available, we’ll have to be content with the vendor’s description only. As written on their web-site, this plug-in allows automatic journaling of all contacts in multiple Outlook folders with a click.

The main and only window of the plug-in has a typical for Sperry Software look:

Journal All Contacts: Main window

That’s all. Just journaling on and off and view.

Contacts Sort Order from Sperry Software

Supports:

  • Microsoft Outlook 2000, 2002 (XP), 2003, 2007.
  • Microsoft Windows 2000, XP, 2003, Vista.

Contacts Sort Order web-site

This plug-in is intended for changing the sort order of all your existing contacts in Outlook.
As you know, the sort order for Outlook contacts (and address book) can be of two types: first name, last name (which is the default) and last name, first name.

If you decide to change the sort order, it may set confusion into your contacts, because it works for new entries only. All your existing entries must be converted manually. If you are not fond of such a perspective, draw your attention to this plug-in.

Contacts Sort Order: Main add-in window

As shown in the screenshot above, you can sort contacts in one or several Outlook folders by different fields.

That’s all for now. In spite of the fact that those who regularly use Outlook cannot but use Outlook contacts, this niche proved to be not very popular among Outlook plug-in developers

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