Midnight bug - Outlook Today & reminders

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WiartonWillee

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I normally start Outlook in Outlook Today and leave Outlook Today open all the time with the standard 3-column style (Calendar, Tasks & Messages). At midnight, the calendar column automatically gets updated to reflect the new day - i.e. any appointment scheduled for the new day is now listed as "Today" (instead of "Tuesday" or whatever the new weekday is) and appointments which were scheduled for yesterday disappear from the Calendar list. However, the date & weekday displayed across the top of the Outlook Today pane are not updated accordingly; they remain wrong until I switch to a different pane (e.g. Notes) and back again. As a result, I have been fooled more than once into thinking today is Tuesday when in fact it's actually Wednesday (or Thursday or ...).

Another symptom of this midnight bug is that any reminder which has been "snoozed" for an interval (e.g. 4 hours) and isn't due to re-appear yet has its snooze interval reset to 5 minutes at midnight (i.e. when it re-appears it has a snooze interval of 5 minutes instead of 4 hours, which is a nuisance for anyone who tends to re-snooze reminders frequently). Note that reminders normally re-appear with whatever snooze interval the user selected previously, and any reminder which happens to be currently showing in a reminder window at midnight behaves correctly (i.e. it retains its snooze interval so it can be re-snoozed by simply hitting the "snooze" button).

I just upgraded to Office 2007. The same midnight bug was present in Outlook 2000, but there was an easy workaround for the Outlook Today symptom; the date could be corrected by simply hitting the Outlook Today button to refresh the display, so I got into the habit of doing so every morning. In Outlook 2007, however, hitting the Outlook Today button has no effect. Does anyone know of a fix for this annoying bug? Has it been fixed in Outlook 2010?

WW
 

WiartonWillee

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Hi, Diane. As always, your Outlook insight is greatly appreciated. No, unfortunately F5 does not have any effect. (Wish it did. I'd be happy to press F5 every morning if that were all it needed.)

BTW, the Outlook Today pane doesn't actually get updated right at midnight; I think maybe it happens when the next reminder event occurs (which seems reasonable). I watched it until well after midnight last night and there was no change, but when I checked this morning (after awakening the screen saver), the calendar and task lists had been updated but not the date; i.e.
(a) the task list contains a task, due yesterday, which was black yesterday but is red this morning,
(b) the calendar list contains an appointment which was listed as due "Thursday" but this morning it's listed as "Today", and
(c) Outlook Today still says it's Wednesday May 7 even though today is actually Thursday May 8. Moreover,
(d) The Reminders window contains four reminders which I snoozed for 4 hours at about 11pm last night, yet the Snooze interval for all four is now 5 minutes. (As you know, the snooze interval is preserved if you don't snooze the reminder thru midnight.)
Obviously (a) and (b) are as expected, but (c) and (d) are symptoms of a bug (or maybe two different bugs) in Outlook's handling of the nightly date/day change.

I've wasted hours trying to get Microsoft Support to address this issue, to no avail. You're the first person I've contacted who even acknowledges that this bug exists. Assuming you're right that it still hasn't been fixed, I won't waste any more money on Office upgrades. How could Microsoft allow such a glaringly obvious bug to go unfixed for 15 years?

Many thanks,

WW
 

Diane Poremsky

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Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
I'll take a look at d - weirdness with dates in a, b, and c are pretty much to be expected. Outlook doesn't autorefresh Outlook today until something happens (i thought only switching folders caused a refresh).

In all honesty, they won't do anything about a, b, or c even if it's a bug because Outlook today is depreciated. D has a chance, depending on the cause.
 

WiartonWillee

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Hi again, Diane. I'm a bit puzzled by your comments on a, b & c. I don't have a problem with a & b. Updating them at midnight would be ideal, but waiting for an event is acceptable. (I've done a lot of software development and I know that dynamic displays present challenges.) I'd be happy with a & b if c were fixed (i.e. updated at the same time as a & b), but I gather there's no hope for that.

Anyway, I'm glad to hear that you think there's hope for d to be fixed. Can you confirm that it's not fixed in Outlook 2010?

BTW, what do you mean when you say Outlook Today is deprecated? Is there an intrinsic security issue that everyone should know about? (Maybe I've been asleep at the switch, but MBSA doesn't flag it and I haven't seen anything from Microsoft about it being deprecated.)

Cheers,
WW
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
I need to check it in 2010/2013 - they made some changes to reminders (broke, then fixed things) so it might be fixed, it might not.

Outlook Today is a web page - calendar, tasks, and mail are added with activex control and while the controls will autofresh, the page itself does not autorefresh. This includes the today's date field.

Outlook today is not being updated, hasn't been since day 1. Won't be in the future - It was basically a cool feature they added, never to be touched again. In the early 2000's there were some alternate outlook today pages available (like from msnbc) but they are long gone. Some of the issues are security-related, but they went a difficerent direction in Outlook 2003 - they introduced the To-do Bar to replace it, so that the calendar and tasks are always on the screen, and changed outlook so it defaults to the inbox on startup. The only reason they haven't removed Outlook today yet is because some people use it and it's not hurting anything.
 
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