Correct typing errors automatically
Windows Live Mail includes a function called Automatically correct common capitalization and spelling mistakes when you’re composing a mail message. It is enabled by ticking the box on the Spelling tab of the program options dialogue. This function will automatically correct common mistakes as you type, so that
aboutand so on. It will also convert
Chicago. Its basis is the old MS Word Auto-Correct List (ACL) that lists the most common typing errors with their correct forms.
Sadly, the function is buggy: with English selected as the input language, it only works for English (US). If you prefer Australian, British or Canadian spelling, auto-correction doesn’t work. You have the choice, then, of selecting US English as the language for checking spelling (so thatwill be flagged as wrong) and getting auto-correct as a bonus, or dispensing with auto-correct and having your spelling checked in your preferred flavour of English.
However, there is another undocumented feature in WLMail 2011/2012 that has not been implemented: Autoreplace. This is analogous to MS Word’s Autotext, which replaces a typed string with another pre-determined one. For example, if I type
wlminto a mail message, the program automatically substitutes
Windows Live Mailfor me. The only way of enabling this feature is by inserting appropriate entries into the registry. By combining these two features, then, we can simulate auto-correction in the non-US flavours of English.
Click here to download a file that will insert these registry entries for you. Once downloaded, double-click on the file to merge the entries into the registry. As always when editing the registry, set a system restore point first to reverse your actions if something goes wrong. Once the entries have been merged, reboot the computer, then launch WLMail and see whether auto-correction is working.
You can cancel an auto-correction as soon as it happens by pressing backspace or Ctrl-Z or clicking the Undo icon on the Quick Access Toolbar.
If you often make idiosyncratic typing errors, you can add entries to the .reg file to have them auto-corrected, too. Open the file using Notepad and make the entry on a new line below the existing entries, in the format
The same applies to autotext entries; if you’d like to be able to type
mvpand have it automatically change to
Minchinhampton Volunteer Partnership, then simply add a new line at the end of the .reg file reading
"mvp"="Minchinhampton Volunteer Partnership"
Grateful thanks to Peter.R who first spotted the Autoreplace feature in October 2010 and wrote about it in the newsgroup.