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Sharing personal folders
The publishing (sharing) of personal folders feature allows users to share their Outlook data with the people they work with on a day-to-day basis.

Nothing will change for you and you will have the same convenience working in Outlook as before. You don't have to change your habits and you can still work with your calendar, tasks, mail and contact list just as you did earlier. You can still use the reminders or synchronize data with portable devices like mobile phones or PDA. However, completely new capabilities arise now for you and your co-workers. When you have started sharing the selected folders, other users can create new appointments, deadlines and tasks directly in your personal folders. They will be able to view and add contacts to your contact base and will have access to your inbox and sent items folders.

Click to enlarge the picture
Fig.1. Users can share their personal folders with co-workers (Click to enlarge the image).

While you are still working on data in your personal folders, other users will see the folders you share in the public folder called Other users' folders. In this folder each user sharing his/her personal folders is given a separate branch containing all his/her shared folders (Fig.1).
Since by publishing your private data, you share it over the network, the management of access rights is of utmost importance. By default, when you start sharing your data, everyone in your network will only have the read access rights, but as the owner you can change those rights in any way you want.

The objects in the shared folders marked as Private will always remain invisible to other users. This way, even though you are sharing your personal folder, you can still restrict access to some personal data to all users.

Further you will find more information about:
Sharing your personal folder with other users
Opening shared personal folders of other users


Sharing your personal folder with other users

Read the shortened instructions

There are two ways in which you can share a personal folder with other users.

Method #1

To share a selected personal folder to other users, click on it with the right mouse button and select from the context menu "Share this folder..." (Fig. 2).

Outlook - Sharing a personal folder in the context menu.
Fig.2 Sharing a personal folder in the context menu.


After you select the folder to share, a dialog box containing a list in which access rights can be defined (Fig. 3). Give appropriate rights to users and click OK. By default all users have the right to read the folder - they cannot make any changes. More about managing access rights...

Outlook - Administration panel in which access rights to a folder are set for users.
Fig.3 Administration panel in which access rights to a folder are set for users.


Method #2

From the Outlook menu, select Public Folders | My shared folders from the Outlook menu or click My Shared Folders on the CodeTwo Public Folders toolbar. A dialog with a list of personal folders currently shared by you will appear (Fig.4). If you are sharing it for the first time, the list will be empty. (If you don't want to share a personal folder anymore, select it on the list and click the Stop sharing button.)

Outlook - The dialog with a list of shared personal folders.
Fig.4. The dialog box with a list of shared personal folders.

Click the Share button and choose a folder you want to share from the personal folders tree (Fig.5).

Outlook - Selecting a personal folder to share
Fig.5. Selecting a personal folder to share.

Confirm your selection by clicking OK and a box for access rights management of a shared folder will display (Fig.6). By default, each user has only the read access rights to your data. To define the rights for a new user, click the Add user button, enter the user's name (this will be a username you have used to log in to Windows) and click OK. The user will be added to the list. By checking or unchecking the appropriate rights you can now define what actions the user will be allowed to take upon the folder.

Outlook - Defining user access rights for a folder
Fig.6. Defining user access rights for a folder.

There's a user called Default on the user list. The rights assigned to that user are the default access rights to the folder for every user that is not added to the list.

If you want to remove a user from the list, select that user and click the Remove user button. The user will be removed from the list and from now on will have the default access rights to that folder.

Click OK to save the changes.

The table below describes the rights that can be granted to a user regarding a given folder:

The access right name Description
Read items User can read objects in the folder. If the user doesn't have this rights, he/she will see an empty folder.
Edit own items User can only edit the objects that have been created by himself/herself.
Edit all items User can edit all objects in the folder.
Delete own items User can only delete the objects that have been created by himself/herself.
Delete all items User can delete all objects in the folder. This right does not allow users to delete folders. In order to delete a folder, the "Folder owner" right is required.
Create items User can create new objects in the folder.
Create subfolders This right has no effect, because other users can't create subfolders in your shared personal folders.
Folder visible User can see the folder. If the user does not have this privilege, he/she can neither see the folder, nor any of its subfolders.
Folder owner Only the user who enjoys this right is allowed to delete a folder, change its name and define access rights to the folder for other users. The folder can have more than one owner, but among them there always has to be a user, who shares it.

Most access rights are independent from each other. For example, a user can have the "Create items" right, but not the "Read items" right. In this particular example, after creating an object, it will be visible for the time of the session and will disappear after restarting Outlook.

The interdependent access rights are the "Edit own items", "Edit all items", "Delete own items" and "Delete all items" rights. A user can't have the "Edit all items" right without having the "Edit own items" right simultaneously. The same applies to the deletion of objects.

The objects in the shared folders marked as Private will always remain invisible to other users independently from the rights they have. This way, even though you share your personal folders, you can still keep your personal data and nobody will have access to those resources.


Opening the shared personal folders of other users

Read the shortened instructions

To open a shared personal folder of another user, choose Public Folders | Other users' shared folders option from the Outlook menu or click Other users' shared folders in the CodeTwo Public Folders toolbar. A dialog box containing a list of already opened shared folders will display (Fig.7). If you haven't opened any folder yet, the list will be empty.

Outlook - The list of opened folders of other users
Fig.7. The list of opened folders of other users.

If you wish to open another shared folder, click the Open folder button. A list of all users sharing folders and the folders accessible to you will display (Fig.8).

Outlook - The list of all shared folders which can be opened
Fig.8. The list of all shared folders that can be opened.

Users sharing folders are identified by the domain or computer name (if there's no domain) and their Windows login name.

Choose the folder you want to open (Fig.9) and click OK. A dialog box with the folder name will display (Fig.9), which you may choose to change (the folder will be displayed under this name in your folder list). Click OK.

You can change the name by which the folder will be displayed
Fig.10. You can change the name by which the folder will be displayed.

The folder will appear on the list of opened folders (Fig.7) and in the C2PublicFolders branch in the Other users' folders (Fig.10) folder. You can go to that folder and see its contents. The actions you can take depend on the access rights that are granted to you by its owner.

After opening a personal folder of another user, it appears in a corresponding branch of the C2PublicFolders tree (Fig.10); it does not appear in your personal folders.

Outlook - Shared personal folders of other users are displayed in the C2PublicFolders branch and not in your personal folders
Fig.10. Shared personal folders of other users are displayed in the C2PublicFolders branch and not in your personal folders.

If you want to close the shared folder of another user, remove it from the C2PublicFolders tree or select it on the opened folders list (Fig.7) and click the Close folder button.