Creating a Keyboard Shortcut for “Open New Main Window” on Outlook 2011 on OSX 10.9

This lesson shows you how to create a keyboard shortcut that will open a new main window on Outlook 2011 on OSX 10.9. Often, you will need to create a calendar appointment or review a calendar appointment while reading a related email thread in Outlook. It’s hard to do this conveniently in Outlook 2011 without opening a new main window. You can then switch that window to calendar view. This is not original to me; I’m just adding screenshots to the procedure recommended in an old Macworld OX X Hints article.

How do you open a new main window?


The command that you want is File>New>Open New Main Window

This will create a new window. Once that window is open, you can switch it to calendar view, either by clicking on the calendar icon, or by using the Cmd-1 keyboard shortcut.

Using two main windows side-by-side, one with email and one with a calendar view


This shows the result; with a mail window on the left and a calendar view on the right.

Assigning a shortcut key – Cmd-Option-Shift-N

  1. Start up System Preferences
  2. Click on Keyboard
  3. Click on Shortcuts (item 1)
  4. Click on App Shortcuts (item 2)
  5. Click on the “+” icon (item 3)

Assigning a shortcut key – Cmd-Option-Shift-N (Step 2)

  1. In the window that appears, enter “Microsoft” for Application. This part is a little bit tricky. On my computer Microsoft did not appear in the default scroll list. I had to scroll to the bottom and then click on “Other Application” and then drill down to Applications>Microsoft Office 2011>Microsoft
  2. For Menu Title, you must enter the exact menu title, which is “Open New Main Window”.
  3. For the keyboard shortcut, I used Cmd-Option-Shift-N, which was recommended by this article:
  4. Finally, click Add to save your new keyboard shortcut.

Confirming that keyboard shortcut was added


If you did everything correctly, your screen should look like the above.

Close System Preferences and return to Outlook 2011.

Try out your new key combination and verify that it opens a new main window.

By the way, Cmd-1 will always show the mail window, Cmd-2 will show the calendar window, and Cmd-3 will show the contacts window.


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