How to populate Autocomplete name list to the new Outlook profile? Print

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Outlook maintains a "nickname" list that is used by both the automatic name checking and the AutoComplete features. The nickname list is automatically compiled as you address email messages. Sometimes you may want to use the existing nickname list in the new Outlook profile. You may need this in the following situations:

  • You re-create the existing profile. You delete the old profile and create a new one with another profile name on the same machine for the same mailbox.
  • You are configuring Outlook for the same mailbox on another machine and you would like to use nickname list created on the first computer.
  • You are upgrading YOUR COMPANY Exchange account. Usually this is migration to the newer Exchange server version.

Do not use nickname list created in Outlook profile for another mailbox or mailbox from the remote Exchange server (not YOUR COMPANY server).

Important: You must exit Outlook before starting the following procedure. The names will be included in AutoComplete when you restart Outlook.

On the computer with the saved AutoComplete names, find Autocompletion file (.NK2 file). This file may be hidden, so please make sure you are searching among hidden files and folders as well. For detailed instructions please see the article 1127. Then use one of the options below.

Option #1

If the new profile with another name was created for the same mailbox on the same machine, you should see two .NK2 files in the search results. One is for the old profile and one for the new one.

For example, you have two profiles on the computer, one profile name is "Exchange 2007" (old profile), the other profile name is "Exchange 2010" (new profile). You should see two files: "Exchange 2007.nk2" and "Exchange 2010.nk2".

First, rename .NK2 file for the new account to something different. After that rename .NK2 file for the old profile with the name of the new Outlook profile. In the above example, to use Autocomplete of the Exchange 2007 account, you may rename "Exchange 2010.nk2" to "Exchange 2010_retired.nk2". After that rename "Exchange 2007.nk2" to "Exchange 2010.nk2".

After this is done, Outlook should read AutoComplete entries from the old (renamed) list.

Option #2

In case you reinstall the system or configure Outlook profile for the same mailbox on another machine, copy .NK2 file with the name that matches Exchange profile to the removable media or another location available from the new computer.

Tip You can attach the file to an e-mail message and send the message to yourself. On the new computer, open the attachment in Outlook, and then save it to the correct location.

To find the correct location for the file on the new computer, search for .NK2 file on the new computer, then open the folder containing .NK2 file for the new Outlook profile. If the Outlook user profile name is different on the computer where you are moving the .nk2 file, you must rename the file with the same Outlook user profile name after you copy it to the correct folder.

For example, if you move Exchange.nk2 from the original computer with an Outlook user profile name of "Exchange", and you copy the Exchange.nk2 file to the new computer, you must rename it with the Outlook profile name being used on the new computer.

When prompted about replacing the existing file, click Yes.

Open Outlook to view changes.

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