Is Your Outlook 2003 Slow?

I came across a great tip regarding Outlook related to speed. I have found my Outlook 2003 gets slower and slower over time – to the point where it’s basically unusable. Slipstick has some pointers on what could be causing the problem.

And no, it can’t possibly be all of the plugins and utilities I’m using. ;-)

35 thoughts on “Is Your Outlook 2003 Slow?

  1. Chris Maddocks

    Good comment… I’ve been wanting to get rid of the Messenger tie-in for ages.

    I still say it’s your plugin collection, though!

  2. Pingback: J.P.C. - Jason Clarke » Blog Archive » Outlook 2003 Slowness Revisited

  3. cole garrett

    i was experiencing horrible response with outlook 2003 on a new computer with 2G RAM, etc, etc. – i did everything – eliminated the IM tie in, archived, compacted – nothing helped – then finally a dell rep said go to add/remove programs and remove the “outlook addin installer” program – BAM – outlook now flies like the wind.

  4. Alonso

    I’ve just bought this computer, it has been working quite well, originally it came with Windows Vista and the Office 2007 Trial. I unistalled the Trial and installed my own version of Office 2003 and the computer worked well.

    However, lately I’ve been experiencing a problem with Outlook 2003. It’s working really slow, when I send a message the program gets stuck for a couple of minutes and appears non-responsive. Also, when it sends and receives automaticly the whole program gets non-responsive to the point that I have to stop the application using the Task Manager. A similar problem also started happening suddenly with OneNote…

  5. Charles

    in outlook 2003 a client of mine notices that when he selects the drop down box to select a fold that contains pics to use for attachment in an email it takes forever for it to drop down. how do you speed that up

  6. john eastman

    5-21-07 My outlook has been slow for about two weeks. I dowloaded a windows update during that time…maybe that is the problem

  7. John

    Yeah, something happened in the latest windows update. Ive never had a problem with a slow outlook but now its crazy slow!!!

  8. Matt

    I agree it has slowed down noticeably in the last couple of weeks. If you look on process monitor its opening and closing 2 million registry keys that contain blacklisted domains (in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains). If you delete these the slowdown stops, but you might not be as protected against spam\phishing\whatever. In any case it would probably be smart to make a backup of that key before deleting all 2 million entries in it.

  9. Ryan

    For me it was the “Live!” add-on (for mapping locations) which lagged opening a dialog for between 10-30s, uninstalled using add/remove programs.

  10. Koby

    I believe it is all because of internal fragmentation within the PST. We are measuring fragmentatin of disks for some time now, and started doing it with Outlook. Please have a look, because we collect maps of the data distribution in order to calculate the fragmentation level, and you may help. http://www.disklace.com/a14outlook.htm tnx ‘ Koby.

  11. MindSpace

    Alonso, I am having the same problem as you. I have just noticed that Add/Remove programs lists 5 separate entries relating to Office 2007 Trial! – not just the one “Microsoft Office 2007…”. So I am going to try uninstalling these other four: – Activation Assistant for Microsoft Office 2007… – Business Contact Manager… – Microsoft Office 2007 Primary Interop Assemblies. – Microsoft Office Small Business Connectivity Component

  12. MindSpace

    Ok, I have confirmed that uninstalling these other 4 things fixes my problems. Emails will now send, and the weird error message on loadup is gone.

  13. MichaelH

    I had Outlook (Office) 2007 pre-installed on my Vaio laptop (trial copy) and I uninstalled it and installed Office 2003. I also was having very long send/receive times, and Outlook would also hang retrieving IMAP headers, expand lists of folders in an account, etc. I uninstalled the “2007 Microsoft Office 2007 Primary Interop Assemblies” and the long delay problems went away. It’s working much faster now.

  14. Wasila

    I disabled the link to Instant Msngs and it’s working much faster now.

  15. Wasila

    I disabled the link to Instant Msngr and it’s working much faster now.

  16. Kevan

    I seem to be experiencing EXACTLY the same symptoms as Alonso (May 9th, 2007). This nis incredibly frustrating as I am only experienciong the problem on my brand new (and faster) computer. Any pointers to a resolution to this?

    Kevan

  17. Dave

    I have a Dell xps and it has a brand new HDD (4 days old) new install of Vista Ultimate version with Office 2003. Outlook checked emails fast but if there is an email ina box even if its only 3k in size it sits there for about 30 seconds then it appears…. painfull slow… it sends emails fast no problems there… I am using program as Administrator …. any clues ??

  18. Phil

    Hi

    After spending a large amount of time on Outlook freezing when sending emails I finally also tracked the problem down to the following program not having been uninstalled when I uninstalled the Office 2007 software that came with the computer to replace it with Office 2003: MS Office 2007 Primary Interop Assemblies

  19. me

    Everyone has the problem but not one who has a solution, go figure

  20. timekeeper

    Mine was a plugin. I had been using Xobni for months without a problem. Outlook would take 30 seconds to send email all of a sudden. I disabled Xobni and it works fine now.

  21. Eric

    Hey – I just fixed my slow Outlook 2003. It was getting so that I had to wait for ages to open mail and calendar entries. I deleted outcmd.dat from the Outlook folder in User/documents and settings/Application Data/Microsoft. This was a 748,000 Kb file and seemed to be clogging up everything.

  22. Diana

    Fixed Outlook 2003 – many thanks to #2 Cole Garrett. I uninstalled Outlook Addin-Setup (that is how it appeared in my program list) and VOILA – both Outlook and emails now open quickly, are sent quickly. Much improved!!! Many thanks, Cole!!!!

  23. Devon

    I uninstalled the addin installer, which I didn’t intend to install, so I consider to be microsoft certified junkware. This didn’t solve the problem but I have no qualms about the uninstall. The Domain registry keys trick didn’t solve it, and spybot quickly replaced the 11,000 I deleted. For me, it was the Enable person names “smart” tag that was being quite idiotic and slowing down my outlook. Thank you for the suggestion.

  24. Kamil

    that below worked perfectly!! thanks you Eric


    Hey – I just fixed my slow Outlook 2003. It was getting so that I had to wait for ages to open mail and calendar entries. I deleted outcmd.dat from the Outlook folder in User/documents and settings/Application Data/Microsoft. This was a 748,000 Kb file and seemed to be clogging up everything.

  25. Santel

    I have just fixed my slow Outlook 2003 – after reading this site I looked for a recent update and found ‘Junk Email Filter’ I deleted this update and hey presto we are back to normal.

  26. Santel

    My Internet Explorer is way faster also. So check for a recent Microsoft update when things slow down.

  27. cdan

    Outlook 2003. When composing email everything locks up now and then like it’s trying to do something…takes 30-45sec or more to come back to life. Can’t find the installed programs some say they’ve removed…outcmd.dat, junk email installer etc. Anymore ideas?

  28. tcatch

    What worked for me is running the program in XP compatibility mode (I’m guessing Office 2003 programs are not made for Vista). To do this you: right-click on the program icon, select the ‘compatibility’ tab and check the box ‘run in compatibility mode’. Works much faster now.

  29. colar

    Maybe there are too many mails in your Outlook mailbox. You can try OutlookSlim to remove duplicate mails and speedup search speed.

    http://rxwave.blogspot.com OutlookSlim is a smart and easy to use tool which can find and remove duplicates of the same conversation topic mails. It will check your mail box and move duplicates to deleted mails so as to keep just one copy for each mail conversation topic. About 1/5 to 1/3 of your mails will be removed for the first time depends on how many mails in the same topic.

  30. dave

    This will fix almost all Outlook problems:

    Simply delete this file: OUTCMD.DAT

    It is usually found here: C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserName\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

  31. hellodarling

    “And no, it can’t possibly be all of the plugins and utilities I’m using. ;-)” I wouldn’t be so convinced of that, when I was looking for a third-party-search tool for Outlook I also installed xobni and I had the impression that because of the huge size of this program my Outlook needed more time to send/open etc. emails. My new search tool lookeen on the other hand doesn’t affect the speed of my Outlook but I would say in general that plug-ins and add-ons often slow down everything a little bit at least at a point when you have 3 or more of them.

  32. james jordan

    I might be a little confused; how exactly are you getting to this file? I’m using windows vista

    This will fix almost all Outlook problems:

    Simply delete this file: OUTCMD.DAT

    It is usually found here: C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserName\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

  33. Chip

    Removing the “outlook addin installer” program as suggested by Cole Garrett corrected the issue. Thanks for sharing Cole.

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