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French dictionary instead of English for spell check – Outlook Express problem

French dictionary instead of English for spell check - Outlook Express problem

French dictionary for spell check instead of English in Outlook Express? Mon dieu! There are two ways to solve this Outlook Express problem. The simpler way suggested for the not-so-tech-savvy is to install a third party English dictionary and the second is to install Proofing Tools from older programs. But before I give the solution, do you want to know why this came about?

Why has Outlook Express (suddenly) started using French for spell check instead of English?

If you were conscious enough to spot, this Outlook Express problem started after you installed a later version of the Microsoft Office software – probably Office 2007. The new software suite also installs spell check dictionaries that replace the older ones.

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However, the newer versions of the dictionaries are not compatible with Outlook Express. Thus, when you start your email program, since it cannot use the new English dictionary, it picks up the French one. FYI, dictionaries of three languages are replaced – English, Spanish and German – so all such users will be affected.

Install third party English dictionary

FYI, Microsoft is aware of this problem and they too recommend installing a third party English dictionary. This is the simpler solution and can quickly be implemented. All you need to do is to download and install an English dictionary for spell check that will replace the French one. The Spell Checker for O.E. 2.1 is an excellent free English dictionary that can be used with the email program – download it from Snapfiles.

Reinstall Proofing tools from older version of Office or other application

I suppose, the technically correct approach to get back English spell check on Outlook Express is to reinstall it from the Office 2003 CD or programs such as FrontPage, Publisher etc. The older English dictionary is available in Proofing Tools and is compatible with the email program. Insert the Office 2003 installation CD and choose the custom install option.

Uncheck all programs (we don’t want these because we use the new ones, right?) and make sure the last option under the program list is selected. On the next screen, find the “Office Shared Features” and locate the English dictionary under the Proofing Tools. Start Outlook Express once again.

Either of the two methods should get back the spell check in English in Outlook Express. Rejoice!

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