Bypassing Focused Inbox

In Microsoft 365 and Outlook.com, Focused Inbox separates your inbox into two tabs – Focused and Other.

All the important emails are on Focused tab and other promotional/bulk/auto generated emails are on Other tab.

Outlook uses Artificial Intelligence to separate emails into Focused and Other tab.

We can control this setting from “Outlook on Web” or using “Microsoft 365” PowerShell.

  1. Disable Focused Inbox on Outlook on Web :-

Login Outlook on Web -> Mail -> Layout -> Don’t sort my messages.

2. Disable Focused Inbox on Outlook :-

Users’ can also move and adjust the Focused Inbox settings using Outlook.

In the View tab -> Click on “Show Focused Inbox”

3. To change settings for some emails :-

From your inbox, select the Focused or Other tab, and then right-click the message you want to move.

Move to Focused – If you want only the selected message moved.

Always Move to Focused – If you want all future messages from the sender to be delivered to the Focused tab.

4. To disable Focused Inbox using Microsoft 365 PowerShell :-

Connect Microsoft 365 PowerShell.

To view Focused Inbox Setting –

Get-FocusedInbox -Identity User@domain.com

To disable focused Inbox –

Set-FocusedInbox -Identity User@domain.com -FocusedInboxOn $false

To enable focused Inbox –

Set-FocusedInbox -Identity User@domain.com -FocusedInboxOn $true

5. Disable/Enable Focused Inbox at the organization level :-

To view the settings –

Get-OrganizationConfig | fl Focused*

To disable the Focused Inbox at organization level –

Set-OrganizationConfig -FocusedInboxOn $false

To enable the Focused Inbox at Organization level –

Set-OrganizationConfig -FocusedInboxOn $true

6. Force a email to show in Focused Inbox –

There may be a requirement sometime to show an important email in users’ Focused Inbox, like a HR, Payroll communication.

We can create a transport rule and force this using a header “X-MS-Exchange-Organization-BypassFocusedInbox”

Create using UI :-

Create using PowerShell –

New-TransportRule -Name "Bypass Focused Inbox" -From "Payroll@domain.com" -SetHeaderName "X-MS-Exchange-Organization-BypassFocusedInbox" -SetHeaderValue "true"

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