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Microsoft Outlook Auto Reply Message Group Email

written by: Rita A.•edited by: Brian Nelson•updated: 6/30/2010

You can set up Microsoft Outlook 2010 to send an automatic response to some or all of the people who send you e-mail messages. This is very useful when you are going out of town or on vacation. It is just as easily turned off when you return.

  • slide 1 of 4

    Create an Automatic Reply Template

    Before you get started, you have to create an automatic reply template.

    Open Microsoft Outlook 2010 which is part of the Microsoft Office 2010 suite. Click on the Home tab and in the first group choose New Email to open a new email message.

    Outlook Home Button 

    Click the Format Text tab. In the second group on the tool bar click Plain Text.

    In the message area of the email, type the message that you want to send as your automatic reply.

    Click on the File tab and select Save As. Name the template what you want in the file name box. In the Save As Type box choose Outlook Template from the drop down menu. Click Save.

    Click on the File Tab and select Close. Choose No to save the message as it has already been saved in step 4.

    Now your template is finished you are ready to create a rule.

  • slide 2 of 4

    Create an Auto Reply Message Rule

    1. Click the Home tab. In the Move group under Move click Rules then select Manage Rules & Alerts from the drop down menu.
    2. A Rules and Alerts window will open. Click New Rule and the Rules Wizard window will open.
    3. Under "Start from a blank rule" select apply rules to messages that I receive and click Next.
    4. Under "Which condition(s) do you want to check?" Check the sent only to me check box. Select any other options you want and click Next.
    5. Under "What do you want to do with this message?" Check the reply using a specific template check box.
    6. The Select a Reply Template window will open. In the Look In field choose User Templates in File System from the drop down box and click Open.
    7. Select the template you created in the first section of this article, click Open then click Next.
    8. Click Next again. Under Step 1: Specify a name for this rule select a name for the auto-reply rule you just created. Click Finish.
  • slide 3 of 4

    Other Information

    The rule you just created will send an automatic reply one time to each sender during a single session. A single session is every time you start Microsoft Outlook until you close it out. This is set so the senders won’t get repetitive replies if they send you multiple messages. If you close Outlook and restart it then it will start over again with the rule you created.

  • slide 4 of 4

    Turn Off Auto Reply Message Rule

    You will need to turn off the auto message reply rule when you return. To turn off a rule that is sending automatic replies, do the following:

    1. Click the Home tab. In the Move group click Rules then Manage Rules & Alerts.
    2. Click the E-mail Rules tab. Under Rule, uncheck the check box for the rule you want to turn off

    If you need to use this rule again everything is already set up for you. You will just need to turn it back on exactly as above except this time choose turn on instead of turn off.