Change Storage Location for Attachments in Outlook Express

Filed under: Outlook Express 

Outlook Express, as a standard e-mail client in Windows XP, allows you to receive e-mails with attachments. When you receive an e-mail with attachments in Outlook Express, the attachments can be saved to disk. The location where the e-mail attachments are stored in Outlook Express is fixed during the installation.

By default this might not be the most suitable location, since your system disk is used and using the same disk can impact performance (disk full errors or heavy fragmentation).

If you want to change the location where attachments are stored, you can. This is not possible from Outlook Express itself, but requires a registry change. Follow the steps below to change the storage location for attachments in Outlook Express:

  1. Start the Registry Editor. From the Windows Start menu, select Run. In the Run box, type regedit and click OK.
  2. In the Registry Editor, locate the following key:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\ CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders
  3. Right-click the Personal entry in this key, and select Modify in the popup menu.
  4. Change the path in the Edit String dialog box to the new location for the attachments, and click OK.
  5. Close the Registry Editor. Select Exit from the File menu.

Each user has a separate location for storing the attachments, but the location is linked to the %USERPROFILE% environment variable, so only one change to the registry is needed. Do realize that if you change this location to an absolute, fixed path, without the %USERPROFILE% environment variable, the attachments for all computer users will be stored at that location.

Changing the storage location for Outlook Express attachments this way allows for easier maintenance. If you need to make a backup of your attachments, just select the new storage path for the backup.


One Comment to “Change Storage Location for Attachments in Outlook Express”

  1. Congratulations. This post appears on the The 14th Carnival of Computer Help and Advice –

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