Should Your Business Upgrade to Microsoft Office 2013?

Upgrading to a new office productivity
suite in a business scenario is almost as major an undertaking as upgrading to
a new operating system. It costs a lot of money to obtain the necessary licenses,
particularly for larger networks and, sometimes, you will even have to retrain
your staff to use the new software. Due to the major considerations involved,
you will want to think carefully before deciding whether or not your company
should upgrade to the latest version of Microsoft Office. Once its paid for and installed, there’s no going back!

Microsoft Office Outlook in Windows 8
Upgrading to Office 2013 is a big step

Advantages of Upgrading

Microsoft Office 2013 provides a number of
improvements and new features, some of which are particularly relevant to the
business world. One of these is the integration of cloud computing features.
With more and more businesses moving over to cloud storage and other Web-based
services, this is often a deciding factor when it comes to upgrading to Office

In Office 2013, you can save and open
documents directly to Microsoft SkyDrive, Microsoft’s free online storage
facility. Another major new cloud computing feature is the synchronization of
things like personal settings and custom dictionaries. If your employees
regularly work on different computers or they take work home with them, then
these cloud computing features can be enormously beneficial.
The other major advantages, such as
improved touchscreen support and the new start screen, of Office 2013 are not
so relevant in the business world. Nonetheless, they are still welcome improvements.
Another feature worth noting, which may be of use in your business, is the
improved support for PDF documents which can now be edited within Word without
having to convert them first.

Disadvantages of Upgrading

While Office 2013 is definitely an
improvement over its predecessor, the same disadvantages apply as they do when
upgrading to any major software resource. To upgrade all of the computers in
even a small company to the latest version can cost hundreds or even thousands
of dollars and there is also the time and work involved in the deployment to
One of the major changes in Office 2013 is
the improved compatibility with touchscreen devices. This, however, is not
likely to effect the business world due to the fact that keyboard and mouse
input remain vastly superior when it comes to productivity. The new interface
may not be welcomed by everyone, particularly for those who subscribe to the
philosophy that, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Compatibility with older formats created by
earlier versions of the Microsoft Office suite can also be a little patchy at times.
PowerPoint 2013 logo

Is Your Business Ready to Upgrade?

Office 2013 is largely very similar to its
predecessor, so your staff are unlikely to need any additional training.
Productivity should certainly not be adversely effected due to staff not
finding the new software unfamiliar. However, it is also the fact that it is so
similar to Office 2010 both in terms of appearance and functionality that it
might not seem worth upgrading. If your business is happy with Office 2010,
then there is probably no need to upgrade at all, unless you find the
integration of cloud features important enough. If your business is still using
Office 2007 or earlier, then upgrading is a much better idea, particularly as support
for older products is becoming increasingly limited.

Viewing Pst Files Stored on Dropbox Cloud Service

Pst Viewer Pro is a flexible tool for viewing and searching Outlook email messages. The latest update includes the ability to open emails that are stored through the Dropbox email service.  Large PST files that are synched through Dropbox may be opened by Pst Viewer Pro.

To open a .pst file with Pst Viewer Pro from Dropbox, you would select the file from within the Explorer Tree folder view.  This is the the folder navigation structure that appears on the left side of your Pst Viewer Pro screen.

The navigation path would typically be Desktop > Computer > C:  > Users > {User Name} > Desktop > Dropbox

If a PST file is present in your Dropbox folder it will be visible in the file explorer. You can expand the pst file to show its structure. Click on a folder, and the emails in that folder will be shown in the maillist.   To see all emails in the pst file, click on the top folder of the pst file heirarchy.

Use Pst Viewer Pro to open a pst file stored on Dropbox cloud storage service.
Pst Viewer Pro lets you open pst files on Dropbox

This method also works for Google Drive, Skydrive and most other cloud services that replicate content from the cloud to your local drive.

Pst Viewer Pro is an advanced viewer for Outlook email content. It opens email container files that have the extensions of pst, ost, eml, mht or msg.  You can use Pst Viewer Pro to search email content, and convert it to useful formats like pdd, and many others.  You can download a 15 day free trial of Pst Viewer Pro and learn more from the product home page.

How To Bulk Extract Email File Attachments from Outlook .MSG files

Pst Viewer Pro is a useful Windows software tool for managing Outlook .pst and .msg files.  With Pst Viewer Pro you can view, search, convert, reply and forward to emails, and extract file attachments to a folder.

If you have hundreds or thousands of Outlook .msg files on your computer, it may be useful to save a copy of those files some place where they can be indexed and more easily accessed.

This article will answer a specific question that Rob sent to us in the comment of a post recently:

“I have about 500 Outlook .msg files stored on a USB drive. How can I extract all of the file attachments to a folder so I can open them easier?”

This task is well suited to PST Viewer Pro, a specialized email viewing software application for Microsoft Windows. The developers have even included a special export operation in the software specifically for this task. Here’s how to use PST Viewer Pro to extract email attachments from .msg files.

First, download a free trial and install Pst Viewer Pro.

Next, using the Explorer navigation, select the folder where your .msg files are stored so that Pst Viewer Pro can read them into it’s mail list.

Open MSG files with PST Viewer PRo

From the Export Manager, choose the export profile “Only Attachments.”  As the name implies, this profile will causes Pst Viewer Pro to extract only the email file attachments and save them to a folder your select. In other words, Pst Viewer Pro will go through each .msg file in your list, make a copy of file attachments within the .msg file, and then save that copy outside of the .msg file to the folder that you select.

Pst Viewer Pro will process all of the email you select, and can process virtually any quantity, from one to thousands of .msg files.

IPst Viewer Pro can also extract and save file attachments from email stored as .eml, .ost and .pst files.

For more information or to download a free trial, visit the Pst Viewer Pro product home page at

Tools to Export Outlook Email From PST Files

Today we’ll examine two Windows software products that can export email from your Microsoft Outlook .pst file and turn them into pdf files.

Microsoft Outlook remains the most widely used desktop email client in the world. For all of Outlook’s great capabilities, it’s not very useful for exporting email and converting it to a different format. For example, in Outlook 2010, the native export capabilities are limited to saving email to a text file, an Outlook template, or a single Outlook .msg, html or mht file.

Outlook's native ability to export email is limited.
Outlook’s native email export abilities are limited

While it is possible to export a small quantity of selected emails to text format, this quickly becomes a tedious chore. You can export a large quantity of emails to MSG format by selecting them in the mail list,  then dragging them out of the Outlook mail list and dropping them into a Windows folder. Yet exporting from Outlook to other formats are limited to a single file, and no control is provided  over the naming of the exported files.

Two products that can improve your experience with exporting Outlook email  are:  MessageExport add-in for Outlook, and PstViewer Pro.   These products are both similar in their functionality, but yet quite different in their approaches.  For example, while MessageExport works from inside Outlook, Pst Viewer Pro works independently of Outlook.

The product that is the best choice for you will likely come down to whether you prefer to work inside or outside of Outlook. Free trials are available for either product so you can try both before making a purchase decision.

MessageExport Add-in for Outlook

Using MessageExport is straightforward. Select the emails from the
Outlook mail list, choose the export format from the drop down list
(these are called Export Profiles), and click the Export button. 
MessageExport Outlook toolbar
MessageExport Outlook integration
select all messages in your Outlook mail list, just type control-A.
MessageExport add-in for Outlook export formats
Select the Export format profile from the Outlook toolbar

MessageExport is an add-in that is tightly integrated with Outlook. It expands Outlook’s capabilities to to bulk export email to the following formats:

CSV (Excel)

MessageExport is very strong with Outlook to PDF conversion. You can tell MessageExport how it should handle the email file attachments, such as embedding the attachments as separate files within the PDF document, extracting the attachments, or converting them into the PDF image.  There is also support for ISO 190005-1, the international standard for email archiving to PDF.

MessageExport includes a scheduling feature. You can use it to run any export profile on a recurring basis. The timer can be set to run based on the number of minutes, such as 5 minutes, 60 minutes, or 600 minutes.

Schedule email export and conversion operations from Outlook pst files with MessageExport
Schedule recurring Outlook email export operations

MessageExport gives you a lot of control over configuring the Outlook email export operations. All of the selections that you see in the drop down list are customizable in important ways, including the target folder for export, and how the resulting files should be named.

While exporting thousands of emails from Outlook, it may be desirable to apply a special naming plan to the resulting files. MessageExport has you covered, allowing you to create complex combinations of naming schemes with 28 different pieces of information from the email and connecting characters. For example, you could create a name that includes the sender’s email address, sent date, and time received down the he second.  There are virtually limitless combinations.

How to name exported Outlook email files.
Naming exported Microsoft Outlook email files

MesageExport is a useful add-in for Microsoft Outlook. If you need to expand Outlook’s ability to export email messages, or if you want to automate email export from Outlook to a particular format, then try MessageExport.

MSG to PDF Converter

Outlook Msg to Pdf Conversion

PDF, the popular Portable Document Format, is a widely used file format for email archiving.  If you need to convert msg into pdf, you need a software package that renders the .msg messages accurately, converts or embeds email file attachments, and gracefully handle remotely hosted elements. It’s frustrating to embark on an converting thousands of msg files to pdf, only to find out at the end that the results are inconsistent or problematic.

Pst Viewer Pro software is much more than just a Outlook pst file viewer. It can also let you convert Outlook msg files.  In fact, Pst Viewer Pro is six viewers conveniently rolled in one. In addition to PST files, it can view, search and convert MHT, MSG, EML, OST, and Winmail.dat files.

Pst Viewer Pro will open and convert individual .msg files, and can be set as the default Windows software to manage msg files. This allows you to just click on and open the file.  It will also read and list a directory containing many thousands of Outlook msg files, and then let you convert those MSG files to PDF or other formats.

How to Convert Outlook Msg to Pdf
To convert email to PDF with Pst Viewer Pro, download a free trial of Pst Viewer Pro. In trial mode, Pst Viewer Pro allows the full conversion of up to 50 .msg emails at a time. This 50 file limit is removed after purchasing the software.

Pst Viewer Pro main menu. Select folder with MSG files before converting to PDF

When Pst Viewer starts, select the folder containing your Outlook msg files.  Pst Viewer Pro will quickly read in the email header information and display it in the email list.

You can perform search operations on your MSG files prior to exporting. To do this, click the “Search” icon, and enter in the criteria.  You can search msg files by date, subject, sender, a date range, etc.

Search MSG files prior to exporting to PDF

If you simply want to export all of the msg emails in your list, type CTRL-A to select all emails.

Next, click the Export button from the software toolbar.

Export button lets you convert MSG files to PDF

This will bring up the Export Manager. Choose the profile of conversion that you need.

PDF – attachments embedded. This will leave the MSG file attachments in their original state, embedding them inside the PDF document as separate files.  This is a nice way to do it, because the file can later be extracted from the PDF and edited or otherwise maniuplated.

PDF – attachments converted/included.  This profile will convert MSG file attachments into the PDF image.

PDF – attachments saved to disk.  Selecting this profile will convert the email to PDF, but any file attachments will be removed from the MSG file and saved to a location you specify.

Pst Viewer Pro also supports the conversion of multiple .msg emails into a single PDF file since version 4.7.

Below is a screen shot of an MSG to PDF file conversion using  Pst Viewer Pro. Any embedded or OLE objects are included in the conversion. Hyperlinks are active. Remotely hosted graphics or other elements are downloaded and embedded.

Msg file converted to PDF
Msg email converted to Pdf file

Although this article has focused on using Pst Viewer Pro’s user interface to convert .msg to .pdf, you can also use it from the command line in a batch file, passing a file name or directory parameter to Pst Viewer Pro. I’ll just mention it here; the full details are included in Pst Viewer Pro’s accompanying manual and help file.  Click here to read an article that describes the email command line conversion process for Pst Viewer Pro. Although the article focuses on Pst files, just substitute msg files and you’re on your way.

There are few if any Msg to PST conversion utilities that can match the quality and consistency of Pst Viewer Pro.  Six years of user vetting and exposure to complex MSG file situations have allowed Encryptomatic LLC to produce the premier tool for converting MSG files to PDF. Download a free trial, and we’re sure you’ll agree that Pst Viewer Pro is the right choice for your project.

How to Extract File Attachments from an Outlook PST File?

PstViewer Pro is a viewer for Outlook .pst files, but did you know it can also extract file attachments from thousands of emails stored in an Outlook .pst or .ost file, and save them to a folder on your hard drive?  This article will show you how.

First, you’ll need to download a trial of Pst Viewer Pro and install it on your Windows computer. After you do that, continue reading.

When we say “extract” file attachments from email, what we really mean is “make a copy of the file attachments and save them to your hard drive.” Pst Viewer Pro won’t delete the file attachments from the emails in your Outlook .pst file. Those files will still be attached to the emails, but at the end of the process you will also have a copy of those email file attachments in an accessible folder, where you can open and view them easily.

Pst Viewer viewing pane
Pst Viewer Email List

Start Pst Viewer Pro, and use the Search function to locate the email files that you want to extract.  For example, if you want to extract files from all emails in the Inbox, then click on “Inbox” in Pst Viewer Pro’s .pst folder navigation structure. It will look like this:

Outlook .pst folder structure
Pst Folder Structure

Next, after the emails have been listed, click on the email file list and type “Ctrl-A” to select all emails.

Click the “Export” icon from the main toolbar. It’s the icon with the green arrow pointing at yellow paper.

.PST Viewer Export button

This will pop up the email export manager.  Choose “Only Attachments” from the list, as in this image, then click Start to begin the export process. You may be prompted to select a folder on your computer where the file will be stored.

How to export file attachments from an Outlook .pst file

Pst Viewer Pro will go to work copying your email file attachments from
emails to your folder. When it’s finished, you will have a very full
folder, with lots of files in it.

Pst Viewer Pro lets you customize any of the export profiles. An export profile is simply one of the named selections from the Export Manager drop down list. For example, “Only Attachments” is an export profile.

If you wish, you can customize “Only Attachments” by selecting it in the export manager and clicking the small “Edit” icon.  This will reveal the guts of the export profile.

Editing the .pst export profile
Export Profile for saving .PST file attachments

There are many settings you can change in any export profile. For example, you can tell Pst Viewer Pro to give a specific naming structure to the attachments it exports from the Outlook .pst.  You can select a specific destination folder that will always be used.

If you have any questions or comments, please talk to us in the comments section below.

If you are a Microsoft Outlook user and you want to extract file attachments from inside Outlook, consider MessageExport, an Outlook add-in that can perform many tasks similar to Pst Viewer Pro but from inside Outlook.

Editor’s Note: as of the version 4.7 release of Pst Viewer Pro, the export operations have been moved to the main toolbar to make the operation even easier. An updated version of this article based on the new user interface may be found here.

How to convert email to PDF

So you want to convert an email into a PDF file?  We’ll look at a couple of different ways that you can accomplish this goal.
Sometimes its nice to have a PDF copy of an email. PDF’s are easy to share. Just about anyone can open a PDF file, no matter which computer platform, tablet or mobile device they are using. PDF files are not tied to particular email client such as Microsoft Outlook and can be read with free PDF viewing software. More and more companies are choosing to PDF for email archiving.

An important question to consider when when planning to convert email to PDF is, “What do I want done with the email file attachments?”

If an email has no attachments, then there’s no problem.  But many emails do indeed contain file attachments attached to them (about 32%, according to experts). Some of them can be quite large. Since email attachments can be the most important part of an email message, handling them correctly during a pdf conversion process is also important.

Before we discuss specific solutions for converting an email into a PDF, let’s first consider the four ways we can choose to handle email file attachments:

1. Ignore them. Just convert the email message and totally ignore the file attachments. This works if we are only convert a few email messages to PDF, and we know they don’t have attachments, or if know that the attachments are not important.

2. Save them to disk. Convert the email message to PDF, and put the file attachments in a folder on your computer where you can find them later. Again, this is a good option when we’re only converting a small quantity of emails to PDF.

3. Embed the file attachments.  You could choose to convert the email to PDF, and then place the entire file attachment inside of the PDF file.  A PDF viewer like Adobe Reader will usually display a little paper clip icon when a file is embedded. Clicking the icon will reveal the name of the file.  The file could then be saved outside of the PDF file.  This is convenient for preserving the context of the email message and the original email file attachment.

Email File attachment embedded inside a .pst file
A file embedded inside of a PDF file.

4. Convert the email file attachments into the PDF image.
This option would print your email message to the PDF file, and then convert your file attachments into the PDF image.  This is a convenient mode of conversion, because it makes everything easily visible within the PDF file.

Ok, so how do I convert email to PDF?
Right, let’s get to the meat of the matter, shall we?

If you choose method 1, “ignore file attachments and just convert the email message to PDF,”  then life is simple.  Any free “Virtual PDF Printer,” should suffice. A Virtual PDF Printer will capture the print image of your email message and save it as a PDF file.  In Windows 7, your print output may look something like the picture below.  So basically you just open the email message, print it using your software’s print function, and select your virtual PDF printer as the destination.  Virtual PDF printers are a very handy tool, and they will print individual email messages as well as any other document on your computer. A free virtual PDF printer that has worked well for me is Bullzip PDF.

PDF Printer
Select a virtual PDF printer

PDF virtual printer
Tell the virtual PDF printer where to save the resulting .pdf file with your email.


I don’t want to ignore email file attachments in the PDF file. Now what I do?
If you simply can’t ignore email file attachments, or if you’re converting a large quantity of emails to PDF, then you’ll need some specialized software. Fortunately, there’s a couple of good options for you to consider.

Pst Viewer Pro is Windows software for viewing email messages that are sourced as Outlook .pst or .msg files, .ost or .eml files. Pst Viewer Pro can export one message, or thousands of email messages. Using Pst Viewer Pro’s export manager, you can select the option for managing file attachments that best suites you:  save to disk, embed attachments as part of the PDF image (handles most popular document types) or save the files to disk.

Exporting .pst or .msg files to .pdf files with Pst Viewer Pro.
Save email as PDF files with Pst Viewer Pro

You can download a free trial of PST Viewer Pro software.

Add a PDF add-in to Microsoft Outlook
If you are a Microsoft Outlook user, then you should take a look at MessageExport.  MessageExport is an add-in for Outlook that lets you export your emails to PDF and other formats.  Because it’s an add-in, MessageExport is fully integrated to Outlook.

Adding Email to .PDF export to Outlook Email client.
MessageExport adds PDF and many other export formats to Microsoft Outlook

To use MessageExport, first highlight the messages you want to export. Next, choose the export format  (such as PDF – attachments convert).  Finally, click the blue “Export” button. MessageExport goes to work converting your Outlook email messages and file attachments into PDF files.

You can download a free 15 day trial of MessageExport.

Converting email messages to PDF can be very simple, or fairly complex, depending on how many emails you are exporting, and how you want to handle email file attachments. A virtual PDF printer can be very useful for converting a handful of emails to .pdf.  For more complicated email-to-pdf export operations, Pst Viewer Pro or the MessageExport add-in for Outlook may be a better fit.

How to search an Outlook .PST file that has not been indexed.

Perform a Quick Search of Outlook .PST Files with PST Viewer Pro software.
Searching .pst files for an important email can be done from within Microsoft Outlook. Outlook will return excellent search results if the .pst file has been indexed.

If the .pst file has not been indexed, Outlook may require several days to complete the process. Until the indexing is completed, any results returned in a search operation may be incomplete. 

What can you do if you do not have Microsoft Outlook on your computer, or if you need to search a .PST file that has not  been indexed?  For people in the litigation industry who are receiving .pst files as part of the discovery process that must be completed quickly, waiting days for Outlook to finishing indexing  a .pst file is not acceptable.

There are software applications that can perform an immediate search of Outlook .pst files.  PST Viewer Pro is a viewer that will allow you to search, print, view, and export email stored in Outlook .pst files.  Pst Viewer Pro does not depend on the presence of Microsoft Outlook, as some applications do, to be able to open .pst files.  After a brief enumerating period where it scans the messages in the pst file, Pst Viewer Pro can allow you to perform an immediate search on an entire .pst file, or just selected folders.

To begin the process, first download a 15 free trial of PST Viewer Pro and start it up. When the software loads, use the folder view on your left side to navigate to the folder where you .pst file resides.  Click on  the .PST file you wish to search.

Download a Free Trial of PST Viewer Pro

To tell Pst Viewer Pro that you want to search the entire .pst file, right click on it and choose “Switch to scan with subfolders.”  This will cause any search operation to begin at the top of the .pst file, and move through all recursive directories.

Screen shot of Outlook .pst file nested directory folder structure.
Pst Viewer Pro shows folder structure of Outlook .pst files.

There are two basic searches that can be performed with PST Viewer Pro: a quick search, and an advanced search.

To perform a quick search of the .pst file, type your search term into the search box on the upper right corner of PstViewer Pro. You will soon see any results matching your query displayed in the viewing window.

Search a .PST file quickly using PstViewer Pro’s quick search box.

PstViewer Pro can also perform an advanced search.  To enter the search menu, click the Search icon in main toolbar.

Advanced search Icon in PST Viewer Pro

You will now see a search window into which you can enter additional criteria for searching your Outlook .PST file.

PstViewer Pro search criteria window

There are various options you can specify to tell Pst Viewer Pro whether it should search subfolders.  Because Pst Viewer Pro also can search .msg and .eml files, you have the option to include those items in your search.  You can tell Pst Viewer Pro to match the case of the text, match whole words, or to search emails that fall between a stard date and an end date.

 To go even deeper into setting PST file search criteria, click the Advanced tab.

PstViewer Pro advanced search criteria window.

Advanced PST search criteria also lets you focus your search on specific email fields, such as From, Subject, email header, To, CC and message text.

If you find yourself having to perform a search on a Outlook .pst file, download PstViewer Pro and get started. The trial runs 14 days and is unrestricted, except that export operations are limited to 50 items at a time.  PstViewer Pro is $69.99. Click the link to buy.

Visit the PST Viewer Pro home page for more information.