Update: Alex remembered the add-in I ment: QuoteFix. Due to incompatibility issues with nowadays Outlook versions the guys published a VBA script doing mostly the same as the older add-in. Alex did some fine tuning on their script and applied parts of my snippet. Try his gist to get the best of both (mine and QuoteFix). Works like a charm for me.
When using Outlook to send/receive emails you usually press the reply (or reply all, forward) button to send back an answer. This works like a charm if the email you want to reply to was sent in plain text and you have the “line indention with prefix” option enabled in the Outlook settings.
Thus commenting the received email is pretty easy. Obviously there is no option to configure Outlook to reply to a HTML/RichText message with a plain text email too. So replying to such formatted mails with the “line indention with prefix” option enabled looks like this:
If you now try to write inline comments it is IMHO really hard for the recipient to find those in your reply. One might say: you can convert the reply message to plain text. Yes you can! But this won’t convert the silly blue line into ‘>’ prefixes. So I was looking for an add-in to solve this problem. I thought there was one I used in earlier Outlook versions, but couldn’t find it anymore. After boongleing for an hour I decided to implement this using VBA. This is the result:
Enum AnswerType Forward = 0 Reply = 1 ReplyAll = 3 End Enum Function DisplayPlainTextMessage(msg As MailItem, addPrefix As Boolean) Dim prefix As String If addPrefix = True Then prefix = "> " msg.BodyFormat = olFormatPlain Dim lines() As String lines = Strings.Split(msg.body, vbCrLf) Dim newBody As String For i = 0 To UBound(lines) If Trim(lines(i)) = "--" Then GoTo Break newBody = newBody & prefix & Trim(lines(i)) & vbCrLf Next Break: msg.body = newBody msg.Display End Function Function SendAsPlainText(how As AnswerType) On Error GoTo ErrorHandler Dim msg As Outlook.MailItem Set msg = GetMailItem If msg Is Nothing Then MsgBox ("No message selected.") GoTo ProgramExit End If Select Case how Case AnswerType.Forward Call DisplayPlainTextMessage(msg.Forward, msg.BodyFormat <> olFormatPlain) Case AnswerType.Reply Call DisplayPlainTextMessage(msg.Reply, msg.BodyFormat <> olFormatPlain) Case AnswerType.ReplyAll Call DisplayPlainTextMessage(msg.ReplyAll, msg.BodyFormat <> olFormatPlain) End Select ProgramExit: Exit Function ErrorHandler: MsgBox Err.Number & " - " & Err.Description Resume ProgramExit End Function Sub ForwardAsPlainText() Call SendAsPlainText(AnswerType.Forward) End Sub Sub ReplyAsPlainText() Call SendAsPlainText(AnswerType.Reply) End Sub Sub ReplyAllAsPlainText() Call SendAsPlainText(AnswerType.ReplyAll) End Sub Function GetMailItem() As Outlook.MailItem On Error Resume Next Select Case TypeName(Application.ActiveWindow) Case "Explorer" If TypeName(ActiveExplorer.Selection.Item(1)) = "MailItem" Then Set GetMailItem = ActiveExplorer.Selection.Item(1) End If Case "Inspector" If TypeName(ActiveInspector.CurrentItem) = "MailItem" Then Set GetMailItem = ActiveInspector.CurrentItem End If End Select On Error GoTo 0 End Function
You can now modify your ribbon bar to add new buttons to the three subs ReplyAsPlainText, ReplyAllAsPlainText, ForwardAsPlainText: