Zoom the Text of Outlook 2007 Items

Outlook 2007 gives you the ability to zoom in or out on the body text of e-mail messages, calendar entries, tasks, and contacts. If you’ve ever had trouble reading stuff in Outlook because the text is too small, you’re going to love this. The Zoom command is quick and easy to use, and the benefits of being able to zoom will be clear to anyone who has spent a day squinting at the display trying to read their mail. Learning to use Zoom will only take a few minutes, and could save you some eyestrain.

But as always, there are a few things to be aware of when you use it.

When you start using Zoom yourself, you will quickly find that text and images in the body of a message, contact, etc. will zoom in and out, but the menus, toolbars, and the like don’t change. Only the part of the item where a user can enter significant amounts of text and images is zoomable. This means that the body of a message, calendar entry, or task is zoomable, and a contact’s notes field. Nothing else changes when you zoom in or out. (But keep reading because there are things you can do to make menus and the like more readable)

Here’s what else you should know before you use Zoom:

  • The item has to be in its own window. Zoom doesn’t work in the Reading Pane.
  • If you want to zoom in on the body of a message, you point the mouse at a spot in the message body and click the mouse button to activate the Zoom command. If Zoom isn’t available for the area the cursor is in right now, the Zoom menu option is dimmed.
  • The Zoom command appears in the Other Actions menu for messages, while it is in the Zoom group of the Format Text tab of the Ribbon for other Outlook items.

Zoom is an easy way to change the size of text and images in Outlook areas that are zoomable. While you can’t zoom things like column headings and menus, there is a way to modify these. And the changes stick from session to session. But it takes a lot of time and is somewhat complex. So a good compromise that improves readability without too much work is to use the Zoom command wherever possible, and live with the small headings and so on.

If you want to know how to adjust menus and other Outlook interface elements, go to http://www.living-with-outlook.com/change-fonts.html.

To learn more about using Outlook 2007’s Zoom command, visit http://www.living-with-outlook.com/zoom.html

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