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Developer Issues When Upgrading Solutions to Outlook 2007

Office 2007

This topic lists the issues that you should be aware of before you upgrade existing solutions to Microsoft Office Outlook 2007.

Collaboration Data Objects (CDO)

Collaboration Data Objects (CDO) 1.21 is available only as a Web download in Outlook 2007. Any existing version of CDO 1.21 will be removed when you upgrade from a previous version of Office. The absence of CDO will break solutions that have a dependency on this component.

Public Folders

Public folders are optional on Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 servers. If you upgrade to Exchange 2007 and Office Outlook 2007 and choose not to deploy public folders on Exchange 2007, any solution using public folders will fail. In addition, since the Organizational Forms Library is dependent on public folders, you will also have to migrate custom forms published in the Organizational Forms Library to a Personal Forms Library.

Custom Themes

Attempting to theme Outlook by providing a manifest for Outlook.exe may cause Outlook to hang. This problem might appear because Office Outlook 2007 automatically provides visual styles (also known as Windows XP themes) for custom user interfaces such as property pages. If you built the property page with Windows common controls, certain controls may not display correctly. You must place check boxes and option buttons that are inside a frame control in a PictureBox control.

Customizing Inspector Command Bars

Customizations to Inspector command bars implemented by add-in or VBScript code behind forms will appear on the Add-ins tab of the Ribbon in the customized Inspector. Custom commands on the Add-ins tab might not be discoverable by the users of your solution. To have your custom commands appear on the Ribbon, you must implement IRibbonExtensiblity in an Outlook add-in; for more information on IRibbonExtensiblity, see the Office Developer Reference. You cannot customize the Ribbon using VBScript code behind forms.

HTML Editor

Because Inspector.HTMLEditor is being deprecated, if you use the returned object in your solution, that property will always return Null (Nothing in Visual Basic). You should modify your code to use Inspector.WordEditor.

MAPIFolder Object

Previous versions of Outlook supported the MAPIFolder object. This object has been deprecated in Office Outlook 2007. While existing solutions that access this object can still run, you should use the Folder object in the future. The Folder object has almost the same members of MAPIFolder, plus some new ones, including BeforeFolderMove, BeforeItemMove, GetCalendarExporter, GetStorage, GetTable, PropertyAccessor, Store, and UserDefinedProperties.

One-off Outlook 97-2003 Forms

In previous versions of Outlook, it was possible to distribute a custom form over the Internet as a one-off form without having to publish it and distribute it in a public folder or Organizational Forms Library. To do this, you would enable the Send form definition with item option on the Properties tab in the Forms Designer. This results in Outlook sending the form as part of an underlying Transport Neutral Encapsulation Format (TNEF) attachment. While some Internet-based servers strip the TNEF portion of the messages, most servers today support it and Outlook users can receive and use the custom form. However, Office Outlook 2007 no longer supports one-off forms sent as TNEF attachments. When Office Outlook 2007 converts incoming Internet messages from MIME to MAPI format, it ignores the custom form. If you are customizing forms, you should consider using form regions and distributing custom forms with add-ins.


Previous versions of Outlook allowed developers to assign a password to a custom form to protect the form from being opened in the Forms Designer without the password. However, this password feature was originally designed to be only a detriment for a typical end user and does not meet today's standards for passwords. In addition, these passwords can be retrieved through the Outlook object model. Subsequently, Office Outlook 2007 no longer supports custom form passwords. This is the new behavior in Office Outlook 2007:

  • The Properties tab in the Forms Designer no longer has the Protect form design and Set Password functionality.
  • Office Outlook 2007 will no longer prompt you for a password even if the form has been assigned a password in an earlier version of Outlook.
  • Publishing a password-protected form in Office Outlook 2007 will remove the password support for that form.
  • The FormDescription.Password property in the object model has been deprecated.