Tips to Manage Draft Email in Microsoft Outlook 2013

One of the new features in Microsoft Outlook 2013 helps to minimize excessive email windows being opened on your desktop.  When you reply to an email, instead of a window popping open, the reply is embedded in your main window.  A draft indicator appears to the left of the email (circled below), and you can type your reply directly in the reading pane (yellow highlight below).  This is called the ‘’”in-line compose method.”




If you like having an additional window, you can always click the Pop Out button (red arrow above) to go old school, but that is just one more click to have to remember, and it goes back to having an unmanageable amount of windows open.

I like to change the properties of my folders in the left pane to show the total number of items instead the default ‘unread’ number.  This is especially useful for the Drafts folder.


  1. Right-click on the Drafts folder in the left navigation pane
  2. Click on Properties from the pop-up menu
  3. Click on the ‘Show total number of items’ radio button and apply




Optionally, you can also choose to show the Drafts folder in your Favorites area (yellow highlighted area) by clicking ‘Show in Favorites’ in the same drop-down menu (#4 above).

Of course, if you just have to have your replies pop-out automatically –  Microsoft is usually pretty good about giving users the option to ‘do it the old-fashioned way’.  Click on the File tab, and then Options.  Scroll down to the Replies and Forwards section and mark the checkbox “Open replies and forwards in the new window.”


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