Microsoft will release soon an Outlook E-mail Security Update that is supposed to fix worm viruses like the recent "Love Bug" that hit many corporations across the world. There is a catch, however, as some of the convenience and functionality of attachments in Outlook 98/2000 is going out the door.
Common attachments that are sent among users, such as .ZIP and .URL files will no longer be able to be executed within Outlook. At Security Level 2, the attachments can only be saved to disk within Outlook; the user will then have to manually run the attachment. At Security Level 1, they cannot be executed. Click here for a complete list of affected file extensions.
The "fix" becomes a nightmare for Palm OS users that synchronize with Outlook. The following is from Microsoft's Functionality Impacted page that lists some problems that will occur if you install the update:
"Palm, Windows CE devices (PDAs) have synchronization issues. These include:
Syncing with the Inbox displays a prompt and then fails. This is under investigation.
Synching with contacts/address book also displays a prompt, but should work."
This is the prompt that you can expect every time you HotSync from now on. No more pressing the HotSync button and going to get a cup of coffee. I also wonder if you will be able to dial in to HotSync anymore.
Does Outlook need to be fixed? Yes, but not at the expense of functionality. The least that Microsoft could do is allow me to specify what programs have authorization to use Outlook without any intervention from me. Post your comments in the Software section here.