2002 was the year when Windows XP and Office XP were released. Office XP was also called Office 2002 and Outlook 2002 was part of this release.
Outlook XP contained better email handling and many other improvements but no improvements in regards to email signature capabilities. The big things to be released and improved were still to come with Outlook 2003 that was released the year after.
Some improvements for the tech heads in 2002 were things like the “Exchange Server is currently busy” dialogue box, smart tag and mailbox cleanup tools and a variety of other nifty things. But sadly no improvements to email signature capabilities.
The “Exchange Server is currently busy” dialogue box was very handy because it prevented Outlook from crashing totally when there was something wrong, which there, in fact, was quite often.
The calendar coloring was also introduced and it was now possible to add multiple accounts so you could choose the email account to be sent from.
So all in all Outlook 2002 was as such a good upgrade before the major release of Outlook 2003.
Migrate to Exchange
More and more customers were migrating to Exchange from a Domino environment. It was quite clear that this was about Domino/Lotus Notes installs. Only stubborn IT guys who had been working with Lotus Notes for years still saw the light in this old platform and were clinging to the argument “Yeah it is the best because we can program our own flexible database”.
The Groupwise Email Client
Oh, by the way, Groupwise was still out there! It was a Novell program which was seen mostly in the USA and not so much in Europe at the time. Groupwise had a long life – it was released initially in 1986.
For the curious readers, here is the release note from Novell from 2003 and a screenshot of the Groupwise email 6.4 client (screenshot from the same page) – and yes, it looks much like Outlook except for the sliding panel on the left:
Oh and by the way here is the guide on how to insert an email signature into Groupwise written by Novell... Groupwise is still used out there.
Bonus information: The beautiful mobile phone Nokia 6310i was released in 2002. Here it is… btw it had no email signature capabilities and hence was, of course, a useless phone 😉