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#120: How can I retrieve a folder list from MS Outlook?

I want to post a few tips which are replated to MS Outlook application and interaction with it from Delphi. The procedure below allow to load a tree of available folders into TTreeView:

procedure TfrmMain.RetrieveOutlookFolders(tvFolders: TTreeView);

  procedure LoadFolder(ParentNode: TTreeNode; Folder: OleVariant);
    i: Integer;
    node: TTreeNode;
    for i := 1 to Folder.Count do
      node := tvFolders.Items.AddChild(ParentNode, Folder.Item[i].Name;

      LoadFolder(node, Folder.Item[i].Folders);

  outlook, NameSpace: OLEVariant;
  outlook := CreateOleObject('Outlook.Application');
  NameSpace := outlook.GetNameSpace('MAPI');

  LoadFolder(nil, NameSpace.Folders);

  outlook := UnAssigned;

A few comments:
1. the data in Outlook have the next structure: outlook application defines a MAPI's namespace which have a collection of folders. Each folder contains an items or sub-folders

2. this code load a full tree in TreeView. Of course, if you have a lot of pst-files with messages (active, archive, backup etc) and each of this pst-file have a large structure of folders, this code will work slowly. So as suggestion: you can rewrite a code and load the one level only. In this case code will work quickly and a list of sub-folders you'll receive in OnExpanding event of your TreeView

3. each folder of Outlook have an unique idenifier. You can save it somewhere (for example, in Data property of TTreeNode). Remember that this ID is long string value which you can receive as EntryID in loop of LoadFolder procedure: Folder.Item[i].EntryID

PS: if this topic is interested for you, I'll continue this serie of tips and shall show how to load the messages/contacts/tasks/etc from some folder or create a new item.

Published: May 25, 2001

See also
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ABA Picture Convert
Clarion Viewer
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Mail parser (ActiveX)
Viewer for MS Outlook Messages
Metafile Convert
ABA Document Convert

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