Students at the University of Idaho are assigned a Microsoft passport account and are assigned with a specially designated email account of the form firstname.lastname@example.org. Students can access their email from Microsoft’s email website by navigating to http://vandals.uidaho.edu.
The Outlook web client can be complicated and confusing at first glance, but it gives students a large number of possibilities with their email. Below are some of the more common questions and answers to help you make use of the email client.
General informationHow do I access my student email Help! I’ve forgotten my password An overview of the Outlook Web App How do I create a new message? What do all the icons at the top of the new message composition window mean? How do I create an email signature? How do I create an out of office/vacation message? How do I change the default text size of my message?
Working with attachmentsHow do I add attachments? How do I embed a picture in my message? How do I open an attachment? I can’t open an attachment in Google Chrome — why?
Getting organizedHow do I create a new folder? How do I create new sub folders? How do I move a message between folders? I moved a message but can’t remember where — how can I find it?
RulesWhat are rules and what I can do with them? Where can I see my current rules and create new ones? How do I create a new rule? How do I enable or disable a current rule?
Calendar and RemindersHow do I access my calendar? How do I change views on my calendar? How do I create a new appointment or reminder? How do I delete an appointment on my calendar? How do I invite people to my appointment/event? How do I share my calendar? Can I sync my Outlook calendar to my phone calendar?
TasksWhat are tasks? How do I create a new task? How do I open and change a task’s details? How do I delete a task? How do I mark a task as complete?
How do I access my student email?
Help – I don’t know my email address or my email password!
Your email address is of the form email@example.com. Student usernames are the first four letters of your last name followed by four random numbers (eg. jarb2938).
The email password is different from your NetID password and is tied to your Microsoft account. If you have never set the email password, it defaults to your student ID number (with the dash included; eg. 111-23436)
If you do not remember your email password, you will need to reset it by following this tutorial.
An overview of the Outlook Web App
The Microsoft Outlook web app for students, accessible from the website http://vandals.uidaho.edu, is split into three distinct sections — the menu, the email list, and the detailed email view.
The menu tile allows you to quickly and easily navigate between folders, as well as access the calendar, contact lists and tasks. You can create new folders to keep your inbox in check.
The email list tile holds a populated list of every email in the current folder you are selected on (from the menu). That is, if you select a subfolder, the email list tile will only show items in the subfolder. Upon log in, the email list tile defaults to listing the emails in your inbox folder.
The detailed email message view, the largest window, shows the email you have selected in full detail and includes buttons to reply, reply-all and forward. At the top right of the screen you will find a place to sign out, access your full Microsoft account and change options within the Outlook Web App.
How do I create and send a new message?
This will bring up a new message composition windows, where you can specify the recipients, subject and message content.
What do all the icons at the top of the new message composition window mean?
|Send||Sends the message to the recipients.|
|Saves the message in the Drafts folder but doesn’t send the message.|
|Attaches a file to the message.|
|Opens the Address Book to look up recipient names.|
|Checks the names of the message recipients in the Address Book or in your Contacts folder.|
|Sets the importance of the message to High.|
|Sets the importance of the message to Low.|
|Adds a signature at the end of the message.|
|Checks spelling in the text of the message.|
|Options||Displays the Message Options dialog box.|
|Message Format list||Sets the format of the message to HTML or Plain text.|
How do I create an email signature?
Open the options->see all options window and click the settings tab. This will bring up the mail settings, where you can enter an email signature of your choice, which will be automatically appended to all of your emails if you check the automatically include my signature on messages I send tick box.
How do I set up an out of office/vacation message?
Automatic replies (aka vacation messages) can be set up in Outlook Web App to automatically reply to any incoming emails with a premade message stating you are out of the office.
To create an automatic reply message, from the inbox open options->see all options and then click on the organize email link from the settings window. On here, click automatic replies and create your automatic outgoing message.
How do I change the default text size of my message?
By default, Outlook Web App sets the typed text size in newly-composed messages or replies to size 10. You can change the text size within the new message window itself, but it will default to 10 every time.
This default text size can be changed by navigating to options->see all options, then down to settings in the menu on the left and scrolling down to the subsection message format. From this subsection, you can change the font style, size and color.
This will set the default text size. Please note: the default option does not seem to work with Google Chrome — no matter what size is set, Chrome will default each new message to size 10. There is currently no work-around solution to this problem other than setting the font size on each new message and reply manually.
Working with attachments
How do I add an attachment to an email?
You can attach any kind of file that can be accessed from your computer or through your network to any item you create in your mailbox.
- In a message, calendar item, or contact, click the attach file icon on the toolbar.
- In the Attach Files dialog box, type the path of the file you want to attach, or click Browse to locate the file.
- If you use Browse, highlight the file you want to attach, and then click Open to add it to the attachments list.
- Click Attach, and the file name will appear in the Attach Files dialog box.
- To change the file you selected, click Browse, and then locate the file you want.
- To attach more than one file, click Choose more files in the Attach Files dialog box.
- To return to the item, click Attach to attach the selected files or click Cancel to return to the item without attaching the files.
How do I embed a picture in my message?
To add a picture to the body of a message, click Insert Picture on the message toolbar and search for the picture you want to add to your message. Double-click the picture to add it to your message.
You can change the size of the picture by clicking the handles at the edges and dragging them in or out.
How do I open an attachment?
When an item includes an attachment, a paper clip icon is shown next to the item in the list window.
When the item is opened or previewed, the name of the attached file appears in the item information. Some attachments, such as .txt files and .gif files, are opened directly by the Web browser.
- Click the attachment file name in the message heading information. You have the option to open the attachment using the appropriate application or save the attachment to disk.
- You can also use Open as Web Page to open the attachment using your Web browser.
I can’t open or download an attachment while using Google Chrome web browser — why?
Unfortunately, Google Chrome is not fully supported by the Outlook Web App. Please use a fully supported browser such as Firefox or Internet Explorer.
How do I create new folders?
Creating new folders can help you keep your inbox organized and avoid clutter. For instance, you can keep all emails for a particular class in a specific folder (eg. ENGL121). To create a folder, simply right-click (command-click on mac) on a the account name to bring up a menu, then click “create new folder” to create a new folder.
How do I create a sub-folder?
The process of creating a sub-folder is the same as to create a new folder. However, instead of right-clicking on the account name, click on the parent folder to bring up a menu. Select create a new folder… and a new subfolder will be created.
How do I move email messages between folders?
You can move email messages between folders you create in Outlook Web two ways. From the email list window, you can either left-click on a message and drag-and-drop it into a folder, or select the message and use the move menu at the top to select a destination folder for the email.
I moved a message and can’t remember where — how do I find it?
Message juggling folders can sometimes backfire and you may forget where a specific email is stored — not to worry. The Web App comes with powerful built-in search functionality that can scan your entire inbox and subfolders to find your lost message.
The basic search is simple — in the email list tile, type in the subject of the message, the contact it came from or any relevant information in the email body and the Web App does the dirty work, searching your folders for the offending email.
If a basic search does not produce the desired results, clicking the tick next to the search box will drop down an advanced search options tab that can be used to tailor the search.
The Outlook Web App allows you to set up automatic rules for incoming messages, re-routing them to keep your inbox in check. This section will assist you in setting up basic rules to help increase workflow.
What can I do with rules?
Email rules can be used to route incoming messages to specific places. For instance, you can create a special folder for a class you are taking and set up a rule to automatically route any emails from your professor to the folder instead of the inbox.
Where can I see my current rules and set new ones?
From your inbox, click options and then see all options from the dropdown menu. On the new window, click Organize E-mail and the inbox rules tab will come up. A list of your current rules will be shown.
How do I create a new rule?
From the inbox rules tab, simply click new… to open a new window with options on creating rules. Rules follow a simple if-then format — you select how the rule should identify the message (eg. if the sender is Joe…) and what Outlook should do (eg. then push the message to junk mail folder).
How do I enable/disable a rule?
From your inbox rules tab, simply click the tick box next to the rule to toggle it on and off. If the tick mark is shown, the rule is on and in effect. If there is no tick mark, the rule is currently disabled.
How do I delete a rule?
From your inbox rules tab, select the rule you wish to delete and then click the black X from the menu, next to details. (Third icon from the left).
Calendar and Reminders
How do I access my calendar in Outlook Web App?
You can access your calendar by logging in to you inbox from http://vandals.uidaho.edu and clicking the Calendar icon at the bottom-left of the page.
How do I change views on the calendar?
How do I create a new appointment or reminder?
The group meeting windows has several options for you to choose from:
- You can schedule a multi-day even by modifying the start and end times.
- You can schedule an all-day event by ticking the box next to all day even option.
- You can schedule an event to repeat by clicking the repeat icon and entering the repeat parameters.
- You can set Outlook to remind you anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 weeks before the meeting.
- If you do not want this appointment to be shared, tick the box next to private. The appointment will show up on your calendar but will be hidden from anyone who you share your calendar with.
How do I invite people to my appointment/event?
As you are setting up the appointment, click the invite attendees button at the top of the screen to open up a to… field. Enter email addresses of invitees in this field and, once created, an invitation to the appointment will be sent out to their email.
How do I delete an appointment on my calendar?
To delete appointments, simply double-click on them from the calendar view. An appointment detail view will pop up. From here, click the Delete button to delete the appointment or press the delete key on your keyboard.
How do I share my calendar?
- In Outlook Web App, click Calendar in the Navigation Pane.
- Click Share in the Calendar toolbar.
- Click Share This Calendar.
- Enter the names of the people you want to share your calendar with on the To line, the way you would address a message.
- Under Share, click one of the following buttons to set how much information you want to share:
- Free/busy information Shares only free/busy information.
- Free/busy information including subject and location Shares free/busy information, as well as the subject and location of calendar items.
- All information Lets the recipient see your free/busy information, subject, location, and other calendar details.
- If you want to automatically request permission to view the recipient’s Calendar folder, select I want to request permission to view the recipient’s Calendarfolder.
- Add any information you want to the body of the request, as you would with any other message.
- Click Send to send your request.
Can I sync my Outlook calendar to my phone calendar?
Yes! Your Outlook account is designed to automatically sync with your mobile device. All you need to do is to add the account to your phone, and everything (email, calendar, tasks) gets synced over. Better still, changes you make on your phone will be reflected in your VandalMail account and vice versa!
What are tasks?
Tasks are similar to reminders, but are independent of the calendar. Tasks can be used to organize things that need to be done during a day, week, month or even year. Creating a task allows your to keep track of your workflow, prioritize and set reminders for important tasks.
You can access tasks by logging in to your VandalMail inbox through http://vandals.uidaho.edu and clicking the Tasks icon.
How do I create a new task?
- In Tasks, on the toolbar, click New.
- Enter a subject and any other properties that you want to include. Only a subject is required. All other values, for example, dates and reminders, are optional.
- If you want the task to recur, click Repetition. In the Repetition dialog box, under Repeat Pattern, set the repetition pattern for the task, and then click OK.
- Click Save and Close or press CTRL+S before closing the task form browser window.
How do I open and change a task’s details?
- In the Navigation Pane, click Tasks.
- Find the task you want to open and highlight it.
- Open the task by double-clicking it, highlighting it and pressing ENTER, or by highlighting it and clicking Edit on the toolbar.
You can also view a task by using the reading pane.
- If you make changes, click Save and Close or press CTRL+S before closing the task form browser window. To close the task without saving any changes, click Close on the task form browser window.
How do I delete a task?
- Find and highlight the task you want to delete in the Tasks list.
- Click Delete on the toolbar or press the DELETE key on the keyboard.
You can select adjacent tasks to delete by holding down the SHIFT key and clicking the first task, and then clicking the last task to select all tasks in between. You can select tasks that aren’t adjacent by holding down the CTRL key and clicking each task you want to select. After you make your selections, press DELETE on the keyboard to delete the tasks.
How do I mark a task as complete?
- In the Navigation Pane, click Tasks.
- Find the task you want to mark as complete. Select the check box next to the task or click Mark Complete on the toolbar to mark it complete. This sets the % complete value to 100 and the Status to Completed.
You can select multiple adjacent tasks to mark them as complete by holding down the SHIFT key and clicking the first task and then clicking the last task to select all tasks in between. To select multiple tasks that aren’t adjacent, hold down the CTRL key and click the tasks you want to select. After you select the tasks, click Mark Complete on the toolbar.
- You can also mark a task as partially complete by opening the task and entering any value form 0 to 100 in the % complete field.