Feb 18, 2006

Outlook Express signature with pictures

Ever wanted to have your logo and a slogan in your signature? You can do that easy with Microsoft Outlook, but it's a little more to do if you want to use one in Outlook Express. I thought of writing a tutorial on how to have a HTML signature in Outlook Express (including pictures).

1. This is a tutorial on how to add a signature that also has an image in it. In this example I included an image that was 68 in width and 62 in height. If you know what image you'll use, just see its properties for the dimensions, because we need those. Once you have that image you need to name it signature.gif (or .jpeg, .jpg, leave the extension intact, change only its name). Now, we need to create an HTML file, that we'll call signature.html. The code below shows you how to write it:

<img width=68 height=62 src="http://www.yourwebsite.com/signature.jpg">
<p><span style='font-size:14.0pt;font-family:Georgia; color:#F95407'>Your name</span>
<span style='font-size:10.5pt;font-family:Georgia; color:#006C55'>Your Company</span>
<em><span style='font-size:9.0pt;font-family:Georgia; color:#F95407'>Your Slogan</span></em></p>
<p><span style='font-size:11.0pt;font-family:Georgia; color:#F95407'>Your Phone</span></p>
<p><em><span style='font-size:9.0pt;font-family:Georgia; color:#006C55'>Your Tag line</span></em></p>

I'm not going to start detailing the HTML code, but the point is that you can just replace the width and height of the image with your own, the extension of that signature.jpg to whatever you have (gif for instance) and the text that starts with Your with the text that you want to appear in your signature. [Update] Since several people said the link has to be relative, make sure you upload your signature image to a hosting website (or your own) and include in the src="..." section the full link to your image - you can use sites like Flickr to host your image, and you can obtain the full link to it by right-clicking it and selecting Properties (there will be an Address section where you can copy the full URL from) - if you uploaded the signature.jpg image online and added its url to the html code above, ignore in step 2 the mention about signature.jpg. Now, this html file can be simply copied and pasted into Notepad, and then saved as signature.html (if you use advanced HTML editors, like Macromedia Dreamweaver, you probably know how to do that easily).

Now after we have these 2 files, signature.html and signature.jpg, we just need to make Outlook use them everytime the signature is created.

2. The 2 files need to be stored somewhere, thus the best thing to do is to create a Signature folder where you can put those. Open Windows Explorer (Start->Programs->Accessories->Windows Explorer), select your C:/ drive (might be called Local Disk (C:)) right click on the white area and select New->Folder just like you see below.

Create Signature folder

Name that folder Signature and press enter twice to open it.

Name signature

Once you’ve opened it, copy the two files that I attached, signature.html and signature.jpg to the Signature folder that you have created. If it worked correctly you should see the two files in the Signature folder, like you see below:

Paste signature files

3. Now we'll have to "tell" Outlook Express about this folder and the files. Open Outlook Express, select Tools and Options.

Tools Options

4. In the window that opened, click on the tab called Signatures. Then click on the New button and you’ll see a Signature #1 text appearing in the central window. You can rename it if you want and also if you want the signature to be attached to all emails from now on just check the option Add signatures to all outgoing messages. Then select File from the Edit signature field, just like you see below.

New signature

5. Now click on the Browse button and go to the Signature folder that we have created. Double click and open it. First you’ll not see any files, but in the field called Files of type press on the arrow and select the second option, HTML files. You should see one file, signature.html. Select it, press on Open.

Select signature

6. In the Outlook window you should see C:\Signature\signature.html file and press Apply and then OK.

Apply changes to signature

And that should do it. Test your new signature, go to Outlook and compose a new email - if everything is fine you'll see your signature at the bottom of the email. [DIGG this]