How do I set-up Out-Of-Office response without using cPanel?

+2 votes
asked Mar 3, 2015 in Email Hosting by Karina

1 Answer

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Most mail client's allow you to set up an out of office response especially when you are using an Exchange account. Please find steps below:

How to turn on “Automatic Replies (Out of Office)” or the “Out of Office Assistant” on Microsoft Oulook. (For a Microsoft Exchange Account).

  • Click the File tab, and then click the Info tab in the menu.
  • Click Automatic Replies (Out of Office). [Note If you do not see this option, you are not using an Exchange account. Please go to this section]
  • In the Automatic Replies dialog box, select the Send Automatic Replies check box.
  • If you want to specify a set time and date range, select the Only send during this time range check box. Then set the Start time, and then set the End time.
  • In the Inside my organization tab, type the message that you want to send within your organization, and in the Outside my organization tab, type the message that you want to send outside your organization.
  • Click OK.
  • If you selected the “Only send during this time range” option in step 4, the Automatic Replies (Out of Office) feature will continue to run until the date and time set for the End Time in step 5 is reached.
  • Otherwise, the Automatic Replies (Out of Office) will continue to run until you repeat step 1 and select the “Do not send automatic replies” option.

How to turn on “Automatic Replies (Out of Office)” or the “Out of Office Assistant” on Microsoft Oulook. (For a non-Microsoft Exchange Account).

Creating an autoreply message template
1. First, we need to create a template with the out-of-office message that will be automatically sent to people who sent you an email. You do this in the usual way by clicking the New Email button on the Home tab.
2. Compose the text for your automatic reply. If it is intended for your personal account, it can be similar to what you see in the screenshot below. For business out of the office messages, you'll probably need something a bit more formal
3. When you have finished writing the message, save it by clicking File > Save As in the message window.
4. In the Save As dialog box, give a name to your auto reply template and choose to save it as Outlook Template (*.oft). After that click the Save button. (do not change the destination folder for this file, save it exactly to the location that Microsoft suggests, namely to the Microsoft > Templates folder.)

Setting up a vacation autoreply rule
1. Start creating a new rule like you usually do by clicking the New Rule button under Home tab > Rules > Manage Rules & Alerts.
2. Choose to "Start from a blank rule" and "Apply rules on messages I receive", and then click Next.
3. Specify the conditions you want to check. If you are setting an out of office auto-response for all incoming messages received from all your accounts, you don't need to check any items here. If you want automatic replies to be sent only for messages received from one of your accounts, or containing specific words in the subject or body, or received from specific people, then check the corresponding options in the upper part of the dialog under Step 1: Select condition(s) and then click underlined values under Step 2: Edit the rule description.
4. On the next step, you define what you want to do with the messages. Since we want to reply using a specific template, we choose exactly this option and then click a specific template under Step 2: Edit the rule description to choose the template we want.
5. In the "Select a Reply Template" dialog box, in the Look In box, choose User Templates in File System and select the template we created a few minutes ago (out-of-office-reply).
Click Open and this will bring you back to the Rules wizard where you click Next.
6. On this step, you are to set exceptions to your automated reply rule. This is not an obligatory step, and the common practice is to skip it and not to add any exceptions. However, if you don't want to send an out-of-office notice to some senders or to messages received from one of your accounts, you can check "except if from people or public group" or "except through the specified account", respectively. Or, you can choose from a handful of other exceptions available to you. (Note: Some people also choose not to auto reply to returned emails (if the subject contains "returned mail" or "undeliverable" etc.) in order not to create an infinite loop between two mail servers and not to clutter their inboxes with undelivered messages. But this is actually an extra precaution, because the "reply using a specific template" rule will send your auto-reply only once during a single session, i.e. until you restart your Outlook. And if you set an exception like that, an automated response won't be send to absolutely all emails containing the specified word or phrase in the subject line, e.g. "What do I do when I get a returned mail?".)
7. This is the final step where you specify a name for your auto-reply rule and review the rule's description. If everything is Okay, make sure the rule is turned on and click the Finish button to save the rule. That's all!

In a similar way you can set up several vacations auto-reply rules, e.g. with different text messages for your personal and work email accounts, or for messages received from certain people. For example, in a personal autoreply intended for your friends you can leave a phone number on which you can be reached; while in your business autoreply you can specify the email address of your assistant or a colleague that can handle the most urgent matters during your leave.

Important! Don't forget to turn off your autoreply rule when you return :) You can do this via Home tab > Rules > Manage Rules & Alerts. Also, it may be a good idea to create an Outlook task or to-do reminder that will remind you to turn off your out off office auto response rule.

answered Mar 3, 2015 by AfriDude (43,970 points)