Xobni- Free Plugin Manager for Microsoft Outlook: Review

By Partho, Gaea News Network
Saturday, March 28, 2009

xobniThere are loads of emails that flock into your account everyday and leaves you with a hell in a handbasket. I always come across people who got stuck with Microsoft’s Outlook. Well, in Outlook when the number of contacts climb conversations gets intricate and it’s really tough to keep them up to date. I was looking for email productivity tools that could sort out such problems when I came across Xobni. Xobni is a free plug-in available in beta version for Microsoft Outlook. It allows you to organize search and navigate the emails. It adds a completely different set up to the email inbox.

Key Features

To begin with it is pretty simple to download and install this application. It supports Outlook 2003 or 2007 and you can run it on Windows XP and Vista. The first thing that Xobni does is to organize the emails automatically, placing them in the side bar.  Now let’s get on with the other key features.

Search Options

Xobni allows the user to search emails within Outlook faster. It makes the list of search results for a single keyword much quicker than Outlook and allows quick results.

Apart from email searches it can also preform

People Search: This enables searching the email by names

Contact Info Search: It offers information about the phone number, company name, and title of an any contact from the email signatures, message bodies, or even LinkedIn, Facebook, Hoovers, Skype, and Yahoo.

Yahoo! Mail Search: Searches into the Yahoo! mails from Outlook

Company Search: Type in the company email address in the search box and Xobni will get all the available details about it

Organize Attachments

With the Files Exchanged feature the user can get the documents in another email, without leaving the email he/she is working on.
Further, Xobni displays the attachments according to the version of the file. The top ones are the most recent version and the bottom one the original.

In case, there is a long list of profiles in the Xobni it can be filtered. Click on the small magnifying glass on the side and sort out the documents according to the name or document type. It is easy to save the file and any attachment can be tagged into a new message by dragging it from the sidebar.

Automatic address book: It contains the profile information of each person with whom the user communicates . Profile of the contact includes his/her emails, attachments, phone numbers, Skype IDs, pictures, company names and titles.

Request Phone Number:
This feature in Xobni generates an automated email requesting the phone number of a contact. If the phone number is send by the contact it is automatically added to the contacts profile.
Schedule meeting: Xobni assists in scheduling a meeting with a contact. It generates an email containing the users availability based on the user’s free and busy times indicated in the Outlook Calendar.

Shows Hidden associations

Xobni ranks the emails according o their volume and frequency of email interchanges with the contact. Moreover, it also explores the relationship between the contacts by analyzing the From, To, and CC sections of the users email.

Association with Social Networks

LinkedIn: Xobni integrates the Linkedin with the interactive features of Outlook.

Hoovers: Xobni displays company information from Hoovers right within Outlook. View your contact’s company description, address, sales figures and more alongside your email

Skype: Xobni with Skype allows the user to Send SMS, start chats, and place phone calls immediately

Facebook: Xobni equips Outlook with instant access to Facebook

The platform is what enables Xobni to graft a viewing pane into Outlook, something other plug-ins can’t do, and it’s the platform that gives Xobni access to all the message data that it uses without bogging down Outlook itself.


Although there are no major impediments but I must share some of its downsides. The prime limitation I find is that Xobni doesn’t work well all the configurations of Outlook. Again, if you are using a Satellite connection through a VPN to connect to the email Exchange server with Xobni installed the Outlook might go slow.

While using it I learn’t that Xobni is truly an indispensable tool for Outllook. It is fast and encloses pretty good features.  I would like to know if you have something more to add to my review.


October 10, 2009: 6:04 am

A small tool is Lookeen, if you search for one Jason?! It searchs really everywhere and this very fast too! The only downer is that it is not for free…because of that I didn´t want to work with it first, but after I tested the 14 days free version it convinced me and bought it! Beside this you only buy it once and have it forever!

You find it here: http:/www.lookeen.net

April 25, 2009: 2:06 pm

I was using xobni for a long time. But there are a lot of things that really got on my nerves. Xobni is huge, I prefer little toolbars which do not change the image of outlook completely. More than 4000 mails are a problem for xobni, it worked faster with 500 mails. The panel in which the search result will be displayed is too small for me. But most important. When I type in “store” xobni is not able too show me all my attachements with the word “store” in it. I decided to install a different search tool which is named lookeen and which does everything I expect from a search tool.

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