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Contents of custom fields, do not always appear in search results (Outlook 2016) RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,

    We have developed an in house solution that uses custom fields. Lately we have observed that in Outlook 2016 (and I will skip a number of other issues we faced) if you search using the instant search field, the custom fields in the search results come up empty. If you search using the body field (added by the More button in the Search tab), the custom fields show up properly (containing data) in the search results. Now if you use the subject field to do the same, on an on premises Exchange 2016 CU8 server, the search results show the custom fields' data, if you do the same on an O365 mailbox, the custom fields show empty in the search results. As an icing on the cake, whilst on a search results page, if you switch from "Current mailbox" to "Subfolders" the custom fields show up properly (with having data in them). I guess the search results must be using a different View than the actual folder I am initiating the search in?

    Any ideas?


    • Edited by Vectivus Wednesday, August 8, 2018 1:56 PM Typos
    Wednesday, August 8, 2018 1:54 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

    Do you have cached Exchange mode turned on?

    Does this issue happen to all users?

    What do you mean by "uses custom field"? Adding custom column or using custom form?

    If possible, you could also provide some screenshots here so that we can help test this issue here.

    Regards,

    Perry


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    Thursday, August 9, 2018 2:59 AM
  • Hi,

    Any updates?

    Regards,

    Perry


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    Friday, August 10, 2018 7:09 AM
  • Hi Perry,

    We are in the process of upgrading to Outlook 2016 so I can't say if its happening to all users or not, I  can say that it is happening to both me and that specific user, same issue in two different environments (on premises vs O365). As for your questions now, we both are using cached Exchange mode and by "uses custom fields" I mean that we have developed an Outlook addin that is used to file email messages into a document management system. After the email is filed, information like who filed it, when and into which folder are stored into a custom field. The custom field/column is added to the users view so that they know not to file an already filed message. My issue is that in the search results, that field along with any other custom field is a part of our solution, are shown as empty. This confuses the user and also messes up any conditional formatting rules we have, again in the users' views. I have attached three scrheenshots. No1 shows the user's message list and two custom fields/columns that are filled by our software as described above. In screenshot No2 I am searching for a message using the words "Office mail sent", put into the instant search field. I know for sure that that specific message has values in its KWInfo and ReadBy columns, but in the search results, those columns appear as empty. In screenshot No3, I am searching for the same message but instead of using the instant search field, or the subjecct field (under More), I am using the Body field to look for a line of text in that specific message and as you can see, in that case the custom fields show with data.

    Friday, August 10, 2018 10:29 AM
  • Hi Perry,

    I received an email that you replied but I cannot see this reply here. Anyway, using the CustomFieldName: workaround to search is not of interest to me, as my issue is not searching for those fields, it's having conditional formatting using the values in those fields. So if those values are empty, my conditional formatting does not work. Also, I am very glad you were able to reproduce this, but allow me to say that having the same behavior across all the PCs you kindly used for testing does not make this by design.

    Thank you,

    Dimitris

    Monday, August 13, 2018 10:49 AM
  • Hi Dimitris,

    I'd like to add my test result here.

    My environment(Outlook 2016 1807 (Build 10325.20082) with Win 10). I add a custom column “TEST” via View Settings > Columns. 


    >> No1 shows the user's message list and two custom fields/columns that are filled by our software as described above.

    I can reproduce this issue here. Message isn’t returned when searching.


    >> I am using the Body field to look for a line of text in that specific message and as you can see, in that case the custom fields show with data.

    Do you mean add “Body” shown as following? After adding Body, I still cannot search for that message.


    I can also reproduce my situation on Outlook 2016 MSO (16.0.4266.1001) and Outlook 2013 MSO (15.0.4420.1017).

    For conditional formatting, we could add additional criteria under Advanced tab. This works on my side.

    Hope this is helpful to you.

    Regards,

    Perry


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    Tuesday, August 14, 2018 5:58 AM
  • Hi Perry and thank you for your efforts in testing this.

    Yes, by "Body" i mean the search field that looks into the message contents. As for conditional formatting, yes we can use custom fields in our conditional formatting rules as you show, the issue here is that in the cases where search results show the custom fields as empty, the conditional formatting rule does not (obviously) fire.

    So, if say I want emails colored bright red, whenever their Test column contains the word "guide" and search for them via instant search (where custom fields are shown empty), my conditional formatting rule will not fire and therefore the email will not be colored red.

    If I were to search for those messages using the "Body" field, the search results would show the custom fields WITH data and therefore my conditional formatting rule would fire and the email would be colored red.

    Thanks,
    Dimitris

    (re-posted this via the correct account)

    Tuesday, August 14, 2018 8:16 AM
  • Hi Dimitris,

    I've researched a lot and haven't found related official articles.

    As a workaround, you could search for those messages using the "Body" field.

    Thank you for your understanding and support.

    Regards,

    Perry


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    Friday, August 17, 2018 6:19 AM
  • Hi Perry and thank you for your efforts.

    Will you be escalating this anyhow, or should I do this?

    Thank you,

    Dimitris

    Friday, August 17, 2018 10:24 AM
  • Hi,

    If this issue is emergency and workaround don't work for you, I'd like to recommend you to to contact Microsoft and then open a paid ticket.

    Hope this is helpful to you.

    Regards,

    Perry


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    • Edited by Perry-Pan Tuesday, August 21, 2018 2:47 AM
    Monday, August 20, 2018 6:47 AM