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Address Book\program files\outlook express\wab.exe

A database containing names, addresses, and other contact information, used by Outlook Express and other Windows applications

To Open

Start Programs Accessories Address Book

Start Search For People

Outlook Express Tools menu Address Book

Command Prompt wab


The main window in the Address Book is set up somewhat like Explorer, with a hierarchical view of folders in the left pane and a list of addresses contained in the currently selected folder in the right pane, as shown in Figure 4-7.

Figure 4-7. The Address Book lets you organize your contacts and is used primarily with Outlook and Outlook Express

To add a new entry to your address book, select New Contact from the File menu, or right-click an empty area of the right pane, and select New, and then New Contact. In the window that appears, type all the relevant information about this contact in the spaces provided. If you're setting up an entry simply for emailing, it's only necessary to enter the name and an email address. (Be sure to click the Add button after you've typed the email address but before you click OK.)


  • Contacts can be divided into folders, either to differentiate one user's contact list from another's or to organize contacts into categories. It's important to understand the distinction between folders and groups. A group is a single address book entry intended to contain multiple email addresses. For example, if you frequently find yourself sending messages to the same collection of people, create a group entry that lists all of those people. Specifying that group name as the single recipient of a message will send the message to all members of the group.

  • The Address Book is linked to the applications that use it in two different ways. First, you can open the address book, select a name, and then choose the appropriate program from the action list (accessible either through the Action button on the Toolbar, or through the Tools menu). Second, when it comes time to enter a contact in your communications program (such as the recipient in an email message), there's often a button that allows you to easily select an entry for the address book. Note that not all applications that use addresses are designed to work with the Address Book application; naturally, you can simply copy and paste information as needed with any application.

  • You can also access entries in your Address Book without opening the Address Book application. Select Search and then "For People" from the Start menu to look up a name (see Figure 4-8). Furthermore, you can use any of several online directories to obtain a new contact information. To configure the list of online directory services, open Address Book and select Accounts from the Tools menu. These services are typically free, sponsored by advertising, and based on information already made publicly available in phonebooks and other sources. Privacy advocates may wish to investigate their own inclusion in these lists and take appropriate actions, such as contacting these services to have personal information removed.

Figure 4-8. The Find People dialog lets you search your Address Book from the Start menu

  • Note that some viruses use your Address Book to duplicate themselves by sending harmful attachments to everyone in your contact list via Outlook Express. Aside from not opening email attachments without first scanning them with antivirus software, you can avoid this problem by using a different program for your email and contact list.

See Also

Microsoft NetMeeting, Outlook Express, Phone Dialer

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