How to reinstate Contact Linking in Outlook 2013

For Outlook 2007 and 2010 there is an Option > Contacts > Linking > Show contacts linked to the current item

This has been removed in Outlook 2013, apparently because they have a new feature of Links when you are on People and the current view is People and then look at details. I don’t use that but and tend to use the List view which does not have the links. Also I have historic links, so wanted to reinstate links. Thanks to:

Which I found via

So steps copied from first of these are:

  1. Regedit
  2. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\15.0\Outlook\Preferences
  3. Add DWORD: ShowContactFieldObsolete
  4. Set to 1

That page also referred to a Group Policy registry setting. I did not have that on my machine, did not create it and found that the links were there anyway

To remove:

Set to 0, or remove the Key



MS Word 2013 ActiveDocument.MailMerge.OpenDataSource not available for reading on opening a document

A new PC has MS Office 2013 when the system still uses Office 2003 templates and vba code.


Don’t have actual text to hand, but something like:

“MailMerge.OpenDataSource is not available for reading”



Programmatically change the view on open:

Private Sub Document_Open()
Me.ActiveWindow.View.Type = wdNormalView
End Sub


Found solution on web. Following was not the page, but similar




Outlook Expand Group fails. Cannot perform the requested operation.


Outlook Expand Group fails. Cannot perform the requested operation. The command selected is not valid for this recipient. The Operation failed.


Outlook > Contacts > Open Group > Update Now

One or more members of this contact group cannot be found…



[Microsoft][ODBC Driver Manger] Data source name not found and no default driver specified


Have an old Excel file that connects to a database list using Microsoft Query. An existing user was moved to a new Windows 7 machine and then got this error.

[Microsoft][ODBC Driver Manger] Data source name not found and no default driver specified


Tried various things. In the end.

In Administrative Tools > ODBC > Drivers on his machine SQLNCLI was missing.
I did not want to install this old version, so initially changed the connection string to “SQL Server Native Client 10.0” but “SQLNCLI10” may work

Location of Word Startup Macros .dot file

For Word 2003 on Server 2008 I was having an issue whereby the <MyMacrosFile>.dot was not loading on Startup of Word. This was because I had put the file in the Templates location of Server 2008 not the Startup location.


In Word 2003 Tools > Options > File Locations

The length is limited, so select Startup and press Modify button to see full directory. Put the <MyMacrosFile>.dot file in here.

Seems unnecessary to have a blog entry, but this has caused me some minor lost time, as I while the file was in Templates, I was able to then load it, but this was a little time consuming.

How do I hide a table in Word using VB or VBA


MyTable.Range.Font.Hidden = True


With ActiveDocument.Tables(1).Range.Font
.Hidden = Not .Hidden
End With

Be careful there are options in word to show/print hidden items.
In Word 2003 see Tools > Options > Print > Section “Include with Document” for option “Hidden Text”

Also Show/Hide mark up will show the table for developers.


Spreadsheets (Excel) compared to Database

Triangle of Solution

Based on number of times used:

  1. 1-5 use a piece of paper
  2. 5-20 use a spreadsheet
  3. 20+ use a database

 Spreadsheets Disadvantages

  1. Data should be stored once and only once. Using spreadsheets often creates multiple out of date files
  2. VLookup is far inferior to SQL links
  3. Some problems are very difficult to solve in comparison with similar solution in database transact sql
  4. Limited or no programmatic power dependent on developer
  5. Out of systems – suggests refactor not found
  6. Out of security control
  7. Unable to unit test
  8. Unstructured data
  9. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing
  10. Spreadsheets exported from a database – just adds another step – NOT combine, reduce, eliminate

 Spreadsheet Advantages

  1. More people can prepare them
  2. Users can demonstrate requirements by attempting to build what they want . Form of tracer bullet
  3. Possibly more print control
    1. offset by users knowledge of how to use Context Menu in grids
    2. why are they printing anyway – why not two screens – are they avoiding IT – find it easier to work with paper

Spreadsheets Interesting

  1. For users showing advanced spreadsheet skills. Could promote move to SQL Express of other. Or MS Access using ODBC. Or Reporting.
  2. Could direct them to request views for plugging in

Real-life Examples

  1. Model in Database exported to Spreadsheet
    • Created a model.
    • User downloaded to spreadsheet and then edits some data.
    • Model is blind to changes.
    • Also Model then changed in database and spreadsheet is out of date.
    • Also spreadsheet is not used for a few days so data in it becomes a little out of date.
  2. User wants to export to excel – to print out a stock driven demand. This is a step that was removed before in order to save time.

Windows XP icons all hi-lighted AND Office 2003 loses color

My NVidia Control Panel was set for dual monitors. However one was detached, so it seemed to have switched it to Main monitor name + TV.
Changed back to single monitor and both of the above problems disappeared

Other sites have different answers for the Windows XP icons all hi-lighted. This was not the issue in my case.

How to Open a Process and Send Keys to that Process ( e.g. MS Word )

Following works fine opens document, ctrl + g = go to in word, book mark “StockControl”

Dim process1 As New Process
process1.StartInfo.FileName = String.Concat(My.Settings.DocumentationDirectory, My.Settings.HelpWordFile)
'Dim hwnd = process.MainWindowHandle

Microsoft Office Excel: “Change startup workbook” and “Create Templates”

Save As > Book.xltx
Change type to Template >
Save in C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\XLSTART