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Windows 7: Outlook 2007 in 256 bit color mode

08 Feb 2012   #1

Win 7 pro x64
Outlook 2007 in 256 bit color mode

Trying remotely (teamviewer) to help a friend resolve a problem. Symptoms:
Outlook starts and takes the desktop to 256 color mode; once outlook is closed the desktop reverts to normal color. WOuld like to see Outlook open in normal color mode.
She's running Win 7 32 bit, no toolbars, no outlandish addons. Word opens fine. Everything else appears to operate properly.
Have uninstalled and re-installed Office 2007 Basic, plus updates, twice (less SP3 the second time).
Outlook Connector is installed and configured. No other emails are configured.
Outlook Properties show:
run in compatibility mode Windows XP (SP 3) < checked and greyed>
run in 256 colors <checked / greyed>
run in 640 x 480 resolution < checked / greyed >
run as administrator < checked and greyed >
obviously cannot directly change any of the values ...

outlook.exe /cleanprofile (which should reset the registry entries to default) returns "No profile found"

The other miscellaneous problem is that she cannot send or receive email - at this point, who cares? - but if I can find a resolution to the color mode it will be a concern.

I've spent the better part of 10 hours on line with her and see no resolution. Google tells me that it's a known problem but no definitive solution that I can find.

I consider myself a reasonably decent techy and I have to admit that I'm beating my head against the wall ... nothing we do seems to have any effect or make any sense. Suggestions .... anyone???

My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Feb 2012   #2

Windows 8.1 ; Windows 7 x86 (Dec2008-Jan2013)

Have you tried 5th step from this tutorial? Compatibility Mode
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Feb 2012   #3

Win 7 pro x64

If you'll notice, I've commented that the compatibility items are checked and greyed - meaning that at this level I'm unable to change them - unless we're talking about two different things here and it doesn't look it to me.
BTW, running the compatibility troubleshooter resulted in no changes.
Were this my machine, I'd immediately jump to Option 3 but it's not so I'll have to exercise considerable more caution, though at the moment I can't picture the scenario getting much worse.
Yep, I've seen this and tried what I could short of invading the registry directly.
Appreciate the comment. //al
My System SpecsSystem Spec

08 Feb 2012   #4

Windows 8.1 ; Windows 7 x86 (Dec2008-Jan2013)

I have perfectly noticed and understood what you have said.
In my post above I gave your direct link to 5th step of OPTION THREE, which has instructions in pictures for manual registry way.

Open Regedit as administrator, navigate to
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags\Layers
and delete everything related to outlook, if there is anything related at all.

Sorry, I do not understand your last sentence - you are saying that there is no record related to outlook in the above mentioned thread? Or you just do not want to deal with registry at all? If you are afraid of touching registry, you always can backup it all or just thread you are about to edit. Or I can make you a script, if the problem is indeed in that registry thread.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Feb 2012   #5

Win 7 pro x64

Sorry Neutron, my response probably shows just how frustrated I am with this.
I probably scrolled off of your point to see the remainder of the article - as I said, this has been frustrating!
The lady is an internet friend so I don't mind helping, but when things don't behave - in any fashion - as I would expect I'm not sure how much further to push her trust level.
She's out taking care of some personal business - I'll take a look at this when she gets back.
Have you ever reached a point where you wonder if you can do any good and sure don't want to mess up anything else? That's about where I am now ..... As I said, if this were my machine I jump right into the registry - I can always reformat but she's half a continent away and that gets a bit trickier.
Seriously, thanks for your time and not getting too offended - I'll let you know how it turns out when she gets back.

I caught her before she got out. The only entry there was runasadmin and deleting, obviously, had no effect. Any idea where the other registry entries are for outlook in win7x32???
<< going looking >>
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Feb 2012   #6

Windows 8.1 ; Windows 7 x86 (Dec2008-Jan2013)

By the way, as it says in that tutorial: Some programs may require you to restart the computer for this to be applied.
Have you had that computer restarted?

I also have a temporary workaround, but it is very "ugly" - running Outlook as a different user via script.

Also, another thing that I would try, navigate to original outlook.exe file in program files folder, CREATE A FILE SHORTCUT for it, and try to modify compatibility settings for this new shortcut.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Feb 2012   #7

Win 7 pro x64

She and I were both laughing at one point - she said he machine has been restarted more in the past two days than it had in the past year! Yeh, that restart to refresh (the registry and) things was on both our minds.

Items two and three bear consideration ... she's handicapped and tired this evening - she handles frustration worse than I do ... I'll look at both of them tomorrow.

She hasn't used Outlook, just wants to get her various email into one place rather than having to log into each one as she does now. We both know that they (all?) mostly will act as congregators but she'd still rather have it on her machine.

Again, thanks for you help and I"ll let you know tomorrow what happens. //al

I say she doesn't use outlook but there's both a pst and an ost out there so she must have at some point. Wonder when it wnet south - a question to ask .... hmmmmm.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2012   #8

Win 7 pro x64

Okay, created a new user, logged into that user - figured that would be quickest. No go.
Clarify for me "file shortcut", please. I created a shortcut directly from the Outlook.exe but it has the same compatibility restrictions as the original file.
It seems as if there's no way past the mode / resolution that has been set somehow!
I would have thought they would be in the registry at the entry you pointed me toward earlier. May bring up my other machine, set 256 color on Outlook on it and see if I an find it in the registry.
I'm at a complete loss .... have been for a while.
Appreciate your time //al
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2012   #9

Windows 8.1 ; Windows 7 x86 (Dec2008-Jan2013)

It is my habit: "file shortcut" oppose to "keyboard shortcut".

You can use Process Monitor to see what program is reading/writing to registry/file system.
Make sure to Create filter with conditions:

Process Name - is - OUTLOOK.EXE - then - Include -> Add

Or you could try something like this (I have used similar software, but can not remember the name. But those posted there seem to do the same thing).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Feb 2012   #10

Win 7 pro x64

The solution for this can from Mr Koop over on the MS Forums:
What happens when you click ‘Change settings for all users’ in the compatibility tab in Outlook properties?

Refer the steps below to disable the compatibility mode for Outlook and see if it helps:
Close Outlook > go to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12 > right click on outlook > click Properties > Compatibility tab > click ‘Change settings for all users’ at the bottom > under Compatibility mode, uncheck the box ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for’ > also uncheck the options under Settings > click Apply and OK.

-- to which I replied:
DAMN!!! Worked like a charm!
My thoughts on "Change settings for all users" was that it would set everyone to the setting I had on that property page so I hadn't even looked at it.
I've been beating my head against a wall that wasn't even there, thank you very much, I have one VERY happy friend and I learned something as well.

Sometimes I really feel -???- when the answer to a problem is so obvious and I'm overlooking the obvious!

Neutron, I really do appreciate your assistance; thank you much sir! //al
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Outlook 2007 in 256 bit color mode

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