Yes Lucy -- there REALLY is help for those souls who STILL want to use their Outlook Express eMail client under Windows 7.
I discovered this information on the WEB after switching to Windows 7 myself and experiencing the shock that "Big Brother Microsoft" was trying to foist another piece of their bloated "junkware" called "Windows Live" on me in the name of an eMail client.
I had been using Windows XP and Outlook Express, with which (BOTH of them) I had been VERY pleased. However, I purchased a new laptop that came with Windows 7, and Lo - to my regret - no Outlook Express. Further investigation revealed to me that it had been PERMANENTLY retired by MS with the advent of Windows Vista.
I searched the WEB for FREE eMail client replacements, and came across "Thunderbird" by Mozilla. This is a good FREE eMail client, but it lacked some of the familiar features - like HTML wallpaper and HTML signatures - which I had REALLY liked in OE. Like its brother "Firefox" (also by Mozilla), it proved to be a MASSIVE memory hog, consuming over 50 Mb of ram during usage (ALSO like Firefox, which can run over 100 Mb according to different forums). I also located another FREE client called "i.Scribe/InScribe" . However, this one is MORE lightweight than OE, lacking even more features.
I continued to scour the WEB trying to find out if there was ANY possible way to transfer or install OE on WIN 7, finding out primarily how misinformed (or just plain ignorant) MANY respondents to the question are on most of the forums discussing this question. Some said, "YES it would work", some said, "NO, it wont work", some confused the FREE OE with the PAID Outlook included in the MS Office Suite, others even offered a "standalone download of the OE files". One even claimed that, because so many people complained to MS about the loss of OE, they (MS) released a standalone version which could be installed on WIN 7 (NOT true - see next paragraph).
Bottom line is, or - The Buck Stops HERE - Outlook Express WILL NOT even install (IF you can get a standalone copy) on WIN 7, and if you try to copy the files from WIN XP, it will NOT launch !! How can I be sure -- because I tried both approaches !!
However, I said that there was GOOD NEWS. The good news is that a program called "Windows Mail" (NOT Windows Live Mail) that was included under Vista is STILL on your machine under WIN 7. WIN Mail looks and functions almost EXACTLY like OE did.
Now you are probably saying, "If it is on my machine -- WHERE is it. I haven't seen it nor can I find it now". You are correct. Not only did sneaky MS HIDE the program and its directory, but even if you DO find the files, the program will NOT execute. MS also crippled or disabled it !! You are probably saying to yourself, "How strange - why even include the files in WIN 7 if MS is going to go to SO much trouble to keep people from using it" ?? Well, your guess to THAT question is as good as mine.
The GOOD NEWS is that I also discovered a thread on the Windows 7 Forum with instructions detailing how to enable Windows Mail and make it usable.
The actual instruction follow, and you need to download a small file [ Click HERE ] in order to utilize them. The following tutorial is also included in the downloadable .zip file. The instructions are SUPER simple and it works like a charm. I am now the proud user of Windows Mail - THANK YOU Windows 7 Forum and the creator of the .zip file and tutorial !!!
Upon upgrading to Windows 8, I find that this "FIX" will no longer work, even though ALL of the needed files are STILL included within the system.
I did a "Google Search" and came up with a good alternative [ Here ] called "Foxmail". It has a clean, simple interface, and about the same functionality as did "Outlook Express". The downside is that the program comes from China and is focused for the Chinese user. However, if you will bear with a little inconvenience, this drawback can be overcome and you will be rewarded with a VERY usable email client.
After installing Foxmail, IMMEDIATELY (before launching the program), go to its install directory, to a subdirectory called 'Languages", and open the "Language.ini" file with notepad. Change the line "ActiveLang=Chinese" to "ActiveLang=English". DO NOT change anything else in this file !! When you now launch Foxmail, the interface should be in English. Good luck and Happy using.
|Administrator: Command Prompt||<<<<< Note the window title|
|C:\Windows\system32 >||<<<<< Note the current directory|
It is possible that your window Title is something different, possibly C:\Windows\Systems32. If your current directory is the same as shown above, then you probably have an elevated Command Prompt. Continue to the next step.
A User Command Prompt has a different title and places you in your own user folder. If you don't have an elevated Command Prompt as described above, then close the User Command Prompt and try again.
* You will not succeed in a User Command Prompt.
|Administrator: Command Prompt|
|C:\YourNameHere\Downloads\TutReWinMail >||<<<<< Note the current directory has changed|
|32 bit||Windows type this:||winmail32|
|||||||-- OR --|
|64 bit||Windows type this:||win64mail|
Note: The batch file clears the Command Prompt window and describes the process to the user. For each step of the process, the batch file notifies the user what it is about to do, waits for user input to continue, completes the step, and then notifies the user when it has completed the step
C:\Program Files\Windows Mail\Winmail.exe