1. Getting Started with Outlook


Get connected with Outlook. Learn how to associate Outlook with one or more email accounts.

To explore more Kubicle data literacy subjects, please refer to our full library.


Lesson Goal

 Setup Outlook with an email account.

What Is Microsoft Outlook?

Microsoft Outlook is a product of the Microsoft Office suite which also includes popular products such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

Outlook is a personal information manager meaning that it manages emails, contacts, calendars, tasks and many other elements. In this course we exclusively cover Outlook’s capacity for managing emails.

Desktop Outlook vs Outlook Live

There is often confusion over the differences between the desktop version of Outlook that comes with Microsoft Office and Outlook Live.

The desktop version can manage email accounts, but does not include an email account itself. Outlook Live, on the other hand, is a free online email service.

The desktop version of Outlook can manage email accounts from multiple providers such as Gmail and AOL, but it’s best suited for Outlook Live accounts. Outlook Live is easier to set up with the desktop version of Outlook and it offers more features.

Connecting Outlook to email accounts

When opening Outlook for the first time you’ll be prompted to connect to an email account. This lesson will just cover how to connect to Outlook Live accounts.

To start, type in the full email address. Proceed and then enter a password.

To add additional accounts navigate to File, Account Settings and Account Settings again in the dropdown.

In the Accounts window, click new and follow the same process as before.


In this course, we'll learn how to use Outlook to send and organize emails. In this first lesson, we'll set up Outlook with two email accounts. To start, we'll ask a very fundamental question.

What is Microsoft Outlook? Outlook is just one product within the Microsoft Office suite. Other very popular Microsoft Office components include Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

Outlook is a type of software known as a personal information manager. Outlook manages emails, but also handles contacts, calendars, tasks and many other elements. In this course, we'll focus exclusively on Outlook's email management functionality. It's important to note that Outlook can refer to Outlook Live or Outlook for desktop computers. Outlook Live, formerly known as Hotmail.com, is a web mail service.

An Office 365 subscription comes with an Outlook Live account, however a free Outlook Live account can be created without the need to purchase Microsoft Office. Outlook for desktop computers is an application that's packaged with Microsoft Office. It doesn't include an email service. Instead, it needs to be linked with a service such as Outlook Live or third party email providers such as Gmail or AOL. The desktop version maximizes customization, whereas Outlook Live is a more streamlined service. We'll be using the Outlook software with both business and personal email addresses. The business email is a part of a corporate mail system. In this case, we'll be connecting to an email account which is under an Office 365 Business Premium Plan.

Because this corporate plan is with Microsoft Office, it uses Outlook Live. The personal email is a simple, free Outlook Live account. Note that you can also connect to personal accounts from other web mail providers. With this in mind, let's connect to our email accounts. I recently started working for a small company called Fetch Cuisine, so I'll add this business address. This email address uses the business' domain instead of Outlook.com, but this is still an Outlook address. Businesses and organizations can use their own domain name in their email addresses even when they use Outlook Live as their email provider. To add this account, I'll navigate to the File menu and select Add Account. After a short wait, Outlook suggests I connect to my business email address.

I use this address to activate my Office license, so I simply need to click Connect.

I'll click OK through any dialog boxes and wait for the account to connect.

At this point, we'll look at how we can connect Outlook to additional email accounts. I want to be able to manage both my business email account and my personal account from Outlook. Note that some businesses don't allow you to connect to a business and personal account on the same computer. So be sure to check your company's policy before doing so.

I'll enter my personal address, which is an Outlook Live account, and click Next.

On the next screen, I'll enter the password again.

I'll then click Next to continue the connection process.

After another short wait, the email account is connected. We'll return to the main Outlook view where on the left we see a list of folders.

Note that there are two main folders, one for each of our accounts. These are called data files.

We'll learn more about data files and folders in a later lesson.

In the next lesson, we'll explore the Outlook interface.

Outlook Essentials
Sending and Organizing Emails


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