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Welcome to our blog where you can find everything from tech-tips to keeping your data secure. Have any questions? We'd love to hear from you!

Spring Cleaning Your Outlook Inbox

Spring Cleaning Tips For Your Outlook Inbox

It's time for Spring cleaning! Are you getting close to reaching the limit of your mailbox storage quota or simply want to get rid of some clutter in your inbox but don't know where to start? Well, this is the guide for you! While there is no single "easy-button" method in storing your emails, the strategies used for cleaning up your mailbox effectively are much more generic and can be used for pretty much any storage method you use.

In addition to having that "cleaned up" feeling, there are also technical benefits to having a tidy mailbox such as faster loading of Outlook, less clutter in your Search results and quicker backup ups since the mailbox to backup is now smaller.

Step 1.) Do you know how big your Mailbox is?

Before starting with cleaning up, you'll first need to know how large your mailbox really is. Well you might ask, how do I find out how big my mailbox is? To get an overview of the total size of your mailbox and each individual folder you can open the Folder Size dialog:

  1. Open the Mailbox Cleanup dialog:
    • For Outlook 2007 and previous:
      Tools-> Mailbox Cleanup…
    • For Outlook 2010:
      File-> section Info-> button Cleanup Tools-> Mailbox Cleanup…
  2. Click the button: View Mailbox Size…
  3. In the window that is being displayed now, you’ll see an overview of your mailbox folders and their sizes.
    When connecting to Exchange, you'll see a Local Data and Server Data tab. Only look at the Local Data tab; cleanup changes you make will automatically take place on the server as well.
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Outlook Tips and Tricks to make your life easier

15 ways Outlook helps you get control of your email, calendar, contacts, and tasks.

1. Save face with Mailtips

Have you ever hit “Reply All” to an email when you didn’t mean to? Or sent important information to someone and never gotten a response, only to learn later their email address was invalid? Mailtips alertMicrosoft Exchange 2010 and MailTips, a new Microsoft Outlook 2010 feature, can help prevent embarrassing mistakes, save you time, and alleviate frustration.

Learn more: Turn on or off MailTips

2. Share your schedule

You can share your calendar with others on a Microsoft Exchange Server—with permission, of course. Or you can publish your default Outlook 2010 to the web, which can allow moreShare group people to view it. If you publish your calendar to the web, you don’t have to have an Exchange account, and anyone can see it, even if they don’t have an Exchange account, either.

Learn more: Introduction to calendar sharing

3. Stop repeating yourself

Do you do a lot of the same things over and over with emails? Like frequently move messages to a specific folder that you’ve set up? Or often forward messages to your team? Quicksteps galleryQuick Steps in Outlook 2010 can help by turning commands and procedures that you use most often into one click actions.

Learn more: Automate common or repetitive tasks with Quick Steps

4. Get in on the conversation—and manage it

At work you may often have conversations over email, where several people are weighing in on important issues. Have you ever missed someone’s response in one of these email conversations?Conversation Settings command Now you can see your email within the context of the conversation, with Conversation View. See the overall conversation, including your responses, find the most recent response, and easily figure out the message that is most important to you.

Learn more: View email messages by conversation

5. Get in on the conversation—and ignore it

Maybe you are no longer needed in an ongoing email conversation—or maybe the subject matter is no longer important to you. Whatever the reason, you can prevent additional responsesIgnore Conversation command from appearing in your inbox. The Ignore command moves the whole conversation and any future messages that arrive in the conversation to the Deleted Items folder.

Learn more: Ignore all email messages in a conversation


6. Let colleagues know when you aren’t around

If you’re going to be heading out on vacation or even just away for the day, you can let your colleagues know your schedule and when they can expect to hear from you again.Automatic Replies command Customize automatic responses to emails you receive whenever you are unavailable.

Learn more: Automatically reply to email messages with an Exchange account.

7. Protect what you send

It’s easy to communicate with pretty much anyone via email. But there are times when you don’t want email you send to be forwarded to others, or printed out, or copied.Permission command You can use Information Rights Management (IRM) to help prevent sensitive email from being read, printed, forwarded, or copied by unauthorized people.

Learn more: Introduction to IRM for email messages

8. Have it all in one place—and hear it, too

With Unified Messaging (UM), you can receive email, voice, and fax messages in your Outlook Inbox. If you have an Exchange Server 2010 account, you can get Voice Mail Preview, Voicemail email messagewhich delivers both a recording and text that’s been created from the voice recording using automatic speech recognition.

Learn more: Introduction to Microsoft Exchange Unified Messaging

9. Contact info is at your fingertips

Thanks to the Microsoft Outlook Global Address List (GAL), you no longer have to keep your contacts’ information stored on your computer--Find a Contact in the Address Bookwhere it takes up space and gets out of date before you can manually update it. The Global Address List (GAL) tracks it all for you: phone numbers, building location, email addresses, and more.

10. Make sure they get it

Need to make sure your boss reads an email that you send her? Want to get your team to vote on their favorite restaurant for your team outing? Tracking groupYou can add many different types of tracking to your email messages, including delivery and read receipts, voting buttons and follow-up actions.

Learn more: Add tracking to email messages

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Excel Tips and Tricks

Microsoft Excel Tips

Excel Tips 
Jump to a Cell
To the left of the formula bar, you’ll find a cell listing that changes to show you exactly which row and cell you’re working in. By clicking on this area, you can type in a specific column number and row name to jump directly to that cell.
Fix Hinky Numbers
Occasionally, Excel will erroneously store certain numbers (especially 0) as text. This can really become a hassle if you’re trying to manipulate information within cells that contain those numbers. To fix the same error across the board, insert a new column. Next, enter a “1” into any empty cell in the new column. From here, you can copy the “1” you just typed, copy it to your clipboard and choose the numbers from the range you are looking to fix. From the drop-down menu under Paste, choose Paste Special. You can now pick options like Multiple or Values.
Ensure Empty Cells
Likewise, Excel will sometimes neglect to properly clear a cell. That is, a cell that should be empty isn’t. Regardless of whether or not anything actually appears in the cell, it doesn’t register as empty, making it impossible to properly use commands and formulas within it. To fix this spreadsheet faux pas, select the affected cells all the way down to the final row. Click the Delete key, and you should be good to go.
Delete Blank Rows and Columns
Sometimes, you’ll find your table data separated by blank rows or columns. Luckily, cleaning up this problem is quick and easy. Simply select a column and hot F5. From there, you can choose Special and then Blanks. Once these blank cells are zeroed in on, you can go to the Home tab and choose Delete.
Show Formulas
If you’re dealing with a giant spreadsheet full of complicated formulas, it’s often imperative to take a look at not just your final values, but how you got there. Hitting CTRL and ~ simultaneously will change your spreadsheet to show the formulas within each section. Use the same combination to go back to viewing your values.
For the full original article click here.
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Microsoft Office Updates

Microsoft Office 2013


Microsoft Office has changed. It's not just that Office 2013 gets the Windows 8 treatment, with a touch-friendly interface and a sparser look, as well as new features in every application. Office is also going to the cloud, with subscription pricing, on-demand installation and automatic syncing of settings and documents you save in the cloud – if you want to pay for it that way.
As usual, there are multiple versions of Office 2013, but this time around the different editions are not just about whether you're using them at home or in a business or which applications are included.

You can download the Office programs temporarily on another PC if you're away from your usual PC (even if it already has another version of Office installed). So if you have a document on a USB drive or on SkyDrive that you need to edit on another PC, and using the Office Web Apps from SkyDrive doesn't provide of the features you need (like seeing revision marks in a tracked document you're collaborating on), you can use Office on Demand to get the full version of Word in just a few minutes.
You manage all this from the revamped and there's a link to your account there in the ribbon of all the Office applications. (To activate the Skype minutes you have to link your account to the Microsoft account you're using for Office 365, which can be done on the site.)

Office 365 Small Business Premium includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Access, Publisher and Lync. The annual $149.99 subscription lets you run them on up to five PCs or Macs at once (again, you can use Office on Demand to download Office to any PC you're using temporarily, and you get regular updates and new features).
You can host online meetings with audio and HD video conferencing in Lync and run a public website on SharePoint, plus you get Exchange with a 25GB mailbox for each user and SkyDrive Plus storage on SharePoint.
That gives you 10GB of secure cloud storage with an extra 500MB for each user, but you can choose how the storage is allocated between users and you can control how they use it – like forcing them to encrypt confidential documents.
Office 365 ProPlus (short for Professional Plus), is aimed at midsize businesses (10-250 employees) and includes the same desktop Office software as Small Business Premium. But it also has tools for business intelligence, consistency checking to Excel and automated deployment, as well as more options for the SharePoint, Lync and Exchange Online services.
Office 365 Enterprise has the full Office 2013 set of features in the desktop software and SharePoint, Lync and Exchange Online services, like archiving, legal hold, Data Loss Prevention and rights management to protect confidential information.


The Good

Office 2013 is about more than a new interface. From little touches such as animating calculations as they change to new tools that help you get the Excel chart that shows what's important in your data, from in-place replies in Outlook to change tracking and commenting in Word that doesn't make your document look like a battlefield, the desktop apps get worthy new features.
We like the new tools for designing presentations in PowerPoint. We like the new presenter tools even more. Whether you create presentations or just sit through them, PowerPoint 2013 should make your life better.
If you switch PCs often, you'll love the fast streaming install and seeing your recent documents on every PC. And we're looking forward to getting more new features through Office 365 instead of waiting three years for neat new features that you might want without paying for an upgrade (or spend the time updating every PC in the office).


The Bad

Sometimes cleaning up for the Windows 8 look means dumbing down. Advanced features such as Split View and Autocorrect are now harder to use, which is a step backwards not forwards, and strangely at odds with the clear and simple way other powerful features such as Pivot Charts are exposed.
The newer your PC and the higher your screen resolution the more you will like the new interface. If you have an older PC with a low resolution screen, you'll have to minimise more of the interface to see the same amount of your document.


Find the full article here.

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Be Sure to Secure Your Online Purchases!


Online Shopping

With the recent boom in online shopping, more and more people are choosing to shop from the comfort of their own homes during the holiday season. If you are planning on doing any online shopping, be sure to follow these guidelines to ensure you don't get scammed...or worse!

1. Always check for "HTTPS"

Not all webpages are equally secure. Before entering any personal or payment information, make sure to look up at your browser bar. The URL should start with HTTPS, not HTTP. That one letter on the end, S, is the difference between a secure site and an unsecured site.

A secondary thing to look for is the small lock icon in your address bar. This lock indicates that you have an SSL (secure sockets layer) connection. The icon is standard for most popular browsers, including Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari and Firefox.

On mobile devices, the address bar is tinier and easier to overlook. Do a little pinch-and-zoom to locate the S before sharing your payment information.

2. Watch your WiFi

Shopping from mobile devices means an increased chance you'll be on an unfamiliar WiFi network.

"Only window shop on public WiFi," recommends Derek Halliday, lead security product manager at Lookout, a mobile security company.

Avoid entering your credit card number or other private information when you're on an unsecured, public WiFi connection where people could snoop. Wait until you are back at home or work.

3. Beware of phishing, SMiShing and other scams

By now most people know to keep an eye out for phishing scams -- e-mails disguised as legitimate companies or organizations that ask for payment or password information. But every now and then, one comes along that looks incredibly convincing. To be safe, copy and paste all links into a fresh browser window instead of clicking on the hyperlink, check the originating email address and when in doubt, contact the company to verify the e-mail.

SMiShing (a lovely portmanteau of "SMS" and "Phishing") has taken off recently, catching people off-guard who don't expect to receive this type of spam as a text message. Earlier this year, scammers sent texts telling people they had won a $1,000 gift card from Walmart. The texts linked to a page that asked for credit card information to cover the cost of shipping the prize.

As a general rule, legitimate companies will never ask for your private information over email or text message, including payment information, usernames, passwords, mother's maiden name or social security number.


Get the full list of tips here (source)

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