Slow Outlook 2007: the comments keep coming

Comments to blogs are less visible than the blogs themselves, especially to feed subscribers, yet they can be equally or more interesting than the original entry. Since I blogged about Outlook 2007 performance problems, the comments have kept on coming. Here’s the latest:

I can only say that my Outlook 2003 was OK, but after upgrading to 2007 its just been insanely slow. I can barely write an email, Outlook will hang while I type. Unbelieveable that my ten human fingers are faster than a computer capable of doing millions of calculations per second … I am wasting 2+ hours daily waiting for Outlook.

Why do users care so much about Outlook? Maybe because it is where they live; email, contacts, appointments, everything is there.

 At least, it is where they live at the moment. Nobody can afford to waste 2 hours a day on slow software.

I realise that not every Outlook 2007 user is affected – just the ones with the largest mailboxes. These are the people who use Outlook most intensively. Microsoft should give this urgent attention.

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15 comments to Slow Outlook 2007: the comments keep coming

  • I found that Beta Outlook 2007 to be acceptable – maybe a might slower than 2003. Then I uninstalled the beta and installed new Office 2007 yesterday. Now Outlook is soooo slow. When an incoming email arrives the entire system is locked until it gets the email (10 seconds or so). It becomes very frustrating when typing in another application. Moving a single email from one folder to another also locks the system for 10 seconds or so.

    My system is 3GHz P4, with 1.5GB of memory, and fast DSL.

    Since Outlook 2003 & beta 2007 didn’t have these issues, looks like the release 2007 is a dog. Unfortunately, going back to the beta is not an option as they time-bombed as of 1-Feb. You also can’t mix 2007 and 2003 applications so you can’t go back to Outlook 2003 and keep the other Office apps that work fine.

    All other Office apps work great and no other apps have these slow performance issues. It’s almost as if they turned off multitasking when Outlook performs any action. The fact you can’t even type when Outlook is doing most functions indicates there is a major flaw in its design.

    Based on past experience, I don’t expect a fix anytime soon so we may have to move back to Office 2003 (I think SP1 is planned for 2008). It’s too bad, as it’s a nice package otherwise.

  • Callaway

    I’m finding the performance issues with outlook 2007 totally crippling to my machine. I have one exchange account and three pop accounts that are pulled into my one outlook client. Included in the pop accounts are the abuse@ account for my company as well as another account which recieves hourly reports on server performance. (Keep in mind that these reports are only a few kb each)

    Every single morning since installing Outlook 2007 it’s taken me no less than 2 hours for outlook to pull down and sort these emails. This is Monday morning so the amount I have to collect is of course higher, so I’m now in my third hour of outlook trying to just catch up.

    The best part is that while outlook is dragging thru it’s routines, it makes the rest of my machine unusable. I am unable to check any of the messages that it’s already pulled in, it takes 2+ minutes to pull up an IE window, and even longer to do anything else be it start an RDP session or even open task manager (which by the way shows me only using 10-20% of CPU and less than a quarter of the available memory).

    I find it amazing that the 2003 version was able to handle this same amount of messages and accounts every morning for years flawlessly while this “latest greatest” version seems to be just barely making it by. It’s so bad that I would almost rather bring up an entire second machine that just runs my outlook client so that I can continue my other work at least while it muddles its way thru.

  • Tim

    > I’m finding the performance issues with outlook 2007
    > totally crippling to my machine.

    I sympathise. You might like to check the tips listed at the end of this post:

    http://www.itwriting.com/blog/?p=54

    Another idea is Outlook Web Access – though do disable the indexing as well. This won’t retrieve the POP mail though.

    Tim

  • I have the same experience as Callaway. I am not using Exchange however, just several POP accounts and one HTTP. Its a shame that Outlook 2007 is so slow as the UI is nice. I guess it’s back to 2003.

  • Luis Gustavo Mendoza

    I went back to outlook 2003 and is giving me a headeache. is so slow that I can write faster with my hands.

  • Stephen Collins

    I’m running MS Office 2007 on a brand new DEll Inspiron (2.0 MHz CPU,2.0Gb RAM, Vista Home Premium)
    Outlook is so slow as to be virtually unusable and continually stops responding.
    I have AutoArchived everything over a week old, to little effect. Short of uninstalling + returning to Office 2003 – with problems synching with my PDA, is there any workaround ?
    Microsoft must be mad, after all the Beta testing (and all the hype)to release such nonsense on the market.

  • I’m thoroughly hacked off with Outlook 2007. Composing an email is a nightmare as the program does not seem to respond to keystrokes fast enough. I have the required 2GB of Ram on the machine as well. At 350 GBP Office is a rip off as far as I can tell. It’s back to XP and office 2003 for me

  • harry

    Since about May 2007 Outlook 2003 really got slow, hogging 100% memeory, etc. I rolled back various windows updates (KBs) to no avail. I searched the net and found a suggestion that IE 7 may be the fault. I uninstalled IE 7, going back to IE 6, and the problem was completely solved. So it seems slow Outlook has something to do with IE 7, and since the latter is part of Vista, etc., perhaps this is the whole problem also with Outlook 2007.

  • I emptied my Inbox and went from 4500 email to 200+. The letters I type now show up momentarily and OUTLOOK.EXE does not take up 50% CPU. I have a colleague with 17000 email in the Inbox and it works fine for her so no logic…

  • Clive

    I installed Office 2007 a few weeks ago and run it on a high spec Dell Inspiron using XP, everything is fine except Outlook. The problem I’ve had is that there is a delayed action to key strokes and text appears spasmodically in batches sometimes several seconds after hitting the keyboard. It’s been driving me crazy and I’ve taken to writing emails in Word and pasting the text into Outlook. My problem was solved yesterday after I deleted Dell Media Direct from my machine. This software came pre-installed and I’ve never used it, it’s that easy!

  • Ben M

    Clive …

    Thank You !!!! Had the same problem and have been trying for two weeks to get Outlook to repond to key strokes. Deleted Dell Media Direct (what did it do, anyway?) on an XPS M1210 and the problem is gone ! How did you ever figure that out? Thanks!

  • Matt B

    Thank You Clive!

    Removed Media Direct and it works great now! This was killing me…

  • Era Tesla

    One of the most common reason behind slow Outlook is excess use of memory. In this situartion its better to archive your very old data and create a new PST file. Size limit of PST file is limited in different 2 versions and if your Outlook crossed that limit then might be it leads to PST file corruption as well.