Outlook for Mac 2011: How to Automatically Download Images

Posted October 30, 2010 by Rob Rogers in Apple Mac

As a default setting, Outlook never automatically downloads images from the internet. While this is a valid security measure, it means that you have to manually download them for each and every email message in your inbox that contains pictures. Here’s how to override this setting.

1. Open Outlook 2011.

2. Go to the Menu at the top of the screen, click Outlook and select Preferences.

3. In the E-mail section, select Reading.

4. Go to the Security section and select either the In all messages radio button, or if you want a little more security, select the In messages from my contacts radio button.

5. Close the Reading window.


About Rob Rogers

Once a prolific author here on Tech-Recipes, Rob has moved on to greener pastures.
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  • Manish230

    Thanks a lot

  • Herodoct

    Very helpful. How dumb is this: reading = the alphabet. Images = … preliterate societies? That’s where we are headed, at any rate!

  • Genghis

    shame you can’t add an exception (as in Outlook 2007) rather than adding it to contacts as a way of protecting from spam/trojans etc.

  • Ruben

    It would maybe be best if one could create/manage a list of trusted sites rather than use contacts for the middle ground…

  • Katie

    Thank you!

  • Vonster12

    This was really annoying me and your simple solution makes me feel quite the idiot that I couldn’t work it out myself! Thanks so much!

  • Yalsta

    The option was well hidden, thanks heaps.

  • Yalsta

    The option was well hidden, thanks heaps.

  • Jimmyjammy

    thanks for this

  • Kc113

    Thanks so much.  Had a heck of a time finding this!

  • Will

    THANK YOU!!!

  • Andrew

    This downloads them but I still have to use Preview to see them. Is there any way of displaying them directly in the body of the email where there are placeholders.

  • buzzwig

    As part of a workflow in my office, people send me image requests via email. I have Outlook Mac 2011, and the images have always appeared in the body of the message allowing me to verify I have the correct one. As of yesterday, they no longer appear as images. They are small, blue squares with question marks inside. The above instructions did not yield a fix. Any other ideas?

    • GatorMan

      I’m having the same problem, where the images used to come through and now I get the blue square with a “?” in the center.

  • Pieman69

    Thank you
    My problem is OK, with your help

  • Rob

    thank you

  • whiskey

    I prefer to have the images NOT download automatically, but to use the button in the messages if I choose to download for that particular message. Recently, the button only appears in some messages. How do i change it so that it appears in all of them?

  • francie

    That preference is already checked (Automatically download images from the internet) and I am still getting blue squares with question marks instead of images.

  • Writermike

    I have the same issues – blue squares, no images are downloaded with incoming emails, even though “download all images” is checked in Prefs. I’m sure things weren’t this bad when I first purhased Office 2011 Mac (i.e. when it was released). I’m running Snow Leopard with all latest Apple and M S updates. It’s a real pain as clients often email images for me to assess (I have a PR business). Help!

  • roux

    Do work for some emails, not for all. Others still not show images, no visible parameter to change in preferences, in the email, nor in main window.

  • AMy

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. Downloading each and every image was driving me CRAZY. Ah, I can breathe now. Bless you.

  • Bt


  • philparis

    Thank you, but it does not work for me on Outlook on OSX 10.7.5.
    No picture is showinh, no other place where to control images appearance.
    I am lost, for months now…