How to stop Outlook 2007 & Windows Mail from asking for a password in Vista

September 17, 2008

How to stop Outlook 2007 & Windows Mail from asking for a password in Vista There’s long been a complaint from Vista users in regards to always having to enter an email password when sending or receiving messages in Outlook 2007 and Windows Mail.  While the problem exists in Windows XP as well, it seems to be easier to remedy with a quick settings-change in Outlook, but the same fix in Vista doesn’t always work.

When using POP3 and IMAP-based email accounts, checking the box next to "remember password" when setting up the account credentials should always do the trick.  The only problem is that many find that even when the box is checked, you still have to enter your password every time you open Outlook or Windows Mail, receive messages, as well as send messages- which can become a very irritating flaw.  The problem seems to be more prevalent when connecting to an Exchange account for some reason as well.

While there is a fix for this flaw, it’s not for the faint of heart being that it deals with modifying system generated files.  If this scares you, it might not be worth it, but it’s easily reversible if done correctly.  Here’s what you need to do:

First, close down Outlook and/or Windows Mail.  Open up Windows Explorer, and paste the following line into the address bar:

%userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Protect

This should bring up a single folder with a long name with several numbers and dashes.  To fix the problem, you simply have to rename this folder to something else.  According to the How-To-Geek’s tutorial on this, it’s recommended that you simply add "-old" to the end of the folder name to change it (without quotations of course).  This way, if something goes wrong, or it simply doesn’t work, you can take the "-old" off and everything should revert back to normal.

Leave this folder open, minimize it, and re-open Outlook or Windows Mail.  Re-type your password, be sure to check the box "remember my password," and click OK.  Hopefully, if everything went ok, you shouldn’t have to enter your password ever again.  Once Outlook or Windows Mail is up and running, bring up the Windows Explorer window again and make sure there’s another folder created like the one before (this is in addition to the one you just changed).

Hopefully this has solved your problem, though sometimes it doesn’t.  In that case, delete the new folder, and re-name the old folder back to its original name by removing the "-old" from the end of it.  This is, to my knowledge, the only fix for this flaw thus far, though hopefully a formal fix will come along shortly.

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