Following on from the previous posting, I’ve been wondering what else to do with Outlook.
One thing that’s I’ve meant to sort out for a long time is managing email attachments (Word documents, PDFs, etc). My outlook.pst file is not far short of half a gigabyte, and presumably this is largely due to lots and lots of message attachments. Nearly all of these will have been Saved As, but almost never Removed. It’s annoying that there isn’t a Detach operation that does both.
So what I’d like is an Attachments Manager. Yes, there are some out there, but it’s more fun to roll your own, and learn something in the process.
One issue to decide is whether we want the saving/removal to be done automatically, on receipt of the message, or manually initiated as a housekeeping task (or both). I think I’ll start with the latter, as it gives an opportunity to check an incoming message.
We’ll want to scope the messages being processed, for example by:
- Folder (e.g. Inbox, Saved, all folders)
- Date (e.g. older than)
- File types for the attachments (e.g. only MS Office, PDFs)
- Message title (or content)
- Message sender.
We’ll also need to specify target folders for the saved files.
It would be good to maintain a link from the message to the saved file. I’m thinking this can just be a file:/// URL. We get a sort of back-link just by searching for the filename (I use the Lookout search facility).
Given that we want a degree of flexibility in setting up the processing parameters, a front-end user-form would be good. I can see this turning into a bit of a mini-project…