The new Outlook search in the title bar is disconnected from the content it searches

Steel Contributor

I appreciate the benefits of Microsoft Search in the Office apps but I'm getting feedback form multiple people that having the search in the title bar is unhelpful because they need to use the title bar for dragging the window around. In Outlook in particular, having the search box so far away from the content that you're searching is jarring. I understand the value of consistency, but I think that the utility of putting search with the content it searches overrides being consistent at all costs. Can we have an option to move the search box back down to the content in Outlook, and perhaps not to have it in title bars at all?

222 Replies
My 2p is that for someone who doesn't use every app maximised there's frequently very little title bar to drag without tripping over various bits that have been moved there now. I know who I am, so don't need that taking up a huge swathe of space and was happy with where search was.

It's going to completely mess up my way of working

@paulcopsey It's an ill-conceived design change, making it virtually impossible to grab some title bars to move the window now. There is an open UserVoice topic about this at:



@Mary Branscombe Vote here to fix the search in the title bar issue. It's really annoying as there is hardly any real estate now to grab and move the window. I've had to resort to Alt-Space M and use the arrow keys a few times now.


@lesterw100  Considering how many people has viewed (and commented) on this topic, it would probably already be an option to move the search box if everyone had voted on UserVoice. As the workaround for now is to toggle off "coming soon" it has not been implemented as default for all Update Channels and could possibly be adjusted.

@Mary BranscombeIt also seems that the search bar has pushed out the identifier which previously showed which email account a user was in (for those who have multiple accounts listed in their Outlook list).

@lesterw100 I just noticed that you can actually grab the search bar itself to move the window.  Just click and move in one motion.  Don't click the search bar and then click again to move.

@SpencerDCS Can you attach video clip of this happening please. It does not work on my system.

@DesCar1947Sorry, the video capture does not work. 


Left-click, hold, and move, do not let go of the mouse click.  The search bar must not be active for this to work.  It works in all Office products.

@Mary Branscombe Thanks Microsoft... another change that no one wanted - and it is explicitly less convenient than the previous UI.


The old search bar was quick and easy to access, and I didn't fill half your screen with its drop down menu, and it wasn't of garbage suggestions that I don't want or need, all before you start typing ANYTHING. The old ones drop down was small and simple.


Please don't force this down our throats. If you focus grouped this Microsoft you didn't do your due diligence, I doubt you survey existing Outlook users. Your crappy consulting firm likely focus grouped man-on-the-street type people... Who don't Outlook 2016 every single day.


This is another feature that I don't see anyone liking. People have adjusted to the ribbon that you forced years ago, but you still have to Google where thigns are anytime you use a function that your don't use regularly; the ribbon because completely non-intuitive (you could have lept the option to keep the menu bar, and you know this).


I dare say this search bar is a worse change than the ribbon.

@Adam Lein  Aint gonna happen. People begged and begged MS to leave the menu bar as an option you can turn on and off, instead of have to use the ribbon; where you literally have to go to google to find out where they have a hidden a function in it that you need (I still do to do this day, and I think most people have to to find something they don't use often). And that was over a decade ago.


Fortunately third party addin Classic Menus fixes that, but as a system admin my users wanted to throw their PC's out the Window when we upgraded to Ribbon-using Office versions.

They seem to be equally pissed about this search bar's terrible location. It completley breaks the flow of work. Not intuitive - and objectively clunky.

yes, PLEASE Microsoft give us an option to have search as we previously knew it - the new search option is BEYOND TERRIBLE as I'm finding it useless it doing what was easy just days ago. 

Microsoft PLEASE read as Mary is absolutely right. The new search feature is almost useless and has immediately causes huge loss of time just trying to find a note I sent 2 days ago. PLEASE FIX THIS ASAP - cannot overemphasize how bad this change is for us.
In Outlook, start by switching over to the “File” menu. On the sidebar that opens, click the “Options” command. In the Outlook Options window, on the left, switch to the “Search” category. On the right, in the “Results” section, choose the option that best suits your needs.
Irrelevant to the issue, but thanks for advising!

@Biagio Mazzucco Hello, this isn't just a reply to you but to all reading this. Depending on the Office version you can revert the search bar to it's previous location by toggling off Coming Soon.




I have noticed that it can be done in versions lower than 2004 (Build 12730.20236) which was released for the Monthly Channel April 29th. In the previous release for the Monthly Channel 2003 (Build 12624.20466) it can still be done.


If you cannot see the toggle 'Coming Soon' it's possible your admin has disabled it from appearing in the Outlook client using a group policy.


Still, I acknowledge it's a problem as I cannot revert the search bar using the latest release for the Monthly Channel and have since long voted at UserVoice for Outlook for Windows. I will do some tests on version 2004 (Build 12730.20236) as I just installed it on a VM (I don't really know what policies are on it). I will update this post if I find a solution.


*edit* according to this article the 'Coming Soon' toggle has previously been implemented and withdrawn from earlier releases (when Microsoft has received sufficient feedback regarding new features). Perhaps they will move it back, or at least make it an option

Is this toggle switch still available? I can't find it anywhere

@Carm465 As far as I understand the toggle 'Coming Soon' was implemented as a tool for Microsoft to collect feedback on future feature releases in the client, and at the same time allowing you to try the new experience at your convenience. When they received sufficient info it was withdrawn in the new version release (obviously as suggestions had already been handled). Then it was introduced as a feedback tool again. With this in mind, if seeing the toggle or not, I believe it's all about which version/build you're using or that your administrator has disabled it with a policy.

This has only just happened to me and very irritating it is too.  If you know a Microsoft developer personally, could you ask them how they would feel if someone broke into their office overnight, took some things from their desktop and hid them, moved a few other things to different places, swapped the drawers around in their desk, then redecorated in a slightly different colour. Because that is how I feel every time they do something like this. @Mary Branscombe