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Home > Blog Articles > Office 365 Best Practices > How to Open a Shared Mailbox in Outlook
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A shared mailbox allows for a group of people to send an email under an individual alias. Shared mailboxes can be opened and used in Outlook. Normally, a shared mailbox will appear in the navigation panel once access is delegated. However, it may take Outlook a few minutes to open the mailbox. In this case, close Outlook and re-open it after a few minutes.

If the shared mailbox still does not appear, you will have to manually open the shared mailbox. In Outlook, there are two ways to manually open a shared mailbox:

  1. Open a Shared Mailbox using Open & Export—This option will allow you to view the shared mailbox. However, when sending mail from the shared mailbox, Outlook will always default to the main account. Furthermore, all sent and deleted items will appear in the respective folders of the main account.
  2. Open a Shared Mailbox by Adding an Email Account to Outlook—Unlike the Open & Export method, when sending mail from the shared mailbox, Outlook will default to the shared mailbox. Sent and deleted items will also appear in the respective folders in the shared mailbox.

This guide shows how manually to open a shared mailbox in Outlook using both methods.

Before You Start

The following instructions are for Outlook Desktop. If you are using the Outlook on the web, check out Opening Shared Mailboxes in Outlook on the Web.

Instructions

Open & Export Method

  1. Launch Outlook Desktop.
  2. Click File in the ribbon. You will be taken to the Outlook menu options. (See figure below.)
  3. Click Open & Export > Other User’s Folder. The Open Other User’s Folder Wizard will open. (See figure below.)
  4. Click Name. The Address Book/Select Name Window will open. (See figure below.)
  5. Search for the desired shared mailbox that is to be opened. In this example, the shared mailbox is called CiraShared.
  6. Click the name of the shared mailbox.
  7. Click OK.  You will return to Open Other User’s Folder Wizard.
  8. Click OK.  
    NOTE: The shared mailbox may not appear immediately after performing these instructions. Please close Outlook and launch it again after a few minutes.

Opening a Shared Mailbox by Adding an Email Account

  1. Launch Outlook Desktop.
  2. Click File in the ribbon. You will be taken to the Outlook menu options. (See figure below.)
  3. Click Account Settings > Account Settings. The Account Settings Window will appear. (See figure below.)
  4. Click the email that is associated with the desired shared mailbox.
  5. Click Change. The Microsoft Exchange Settings Window for the mailbox will open. (See figure below.)
  6. Click Advanced > Add. The Add Mailbox Window will open. (See figure below.)
  7. Type the email address of the desired shared mailbox.
  8. Click OK. You will return to the Microsoft Exchange Settings Window.
  9. Click Apply > OK.
  10. Click Next > Finish. The Account Settings Window will appear.
  11. Click Close.
    NOTE: The shared mailbox may not appear immediately after performing these instructions. Please close Outlook and launch it again after a few minutes.