Hotmail Introduces New Email Aliases Features

Martin Brinkmann
Feb 4, 2011
Updated • Jan 10, 2015

Microsoft launched a new email alias feature for all users of the company's email service Hotmail recently. Email aliases are alternative on-the-fly email addresses that can be generated directly in Hotmail. Two different versions of email aliases are available.

The first available option is to add characters to the first part of the email address. A new alias is created instantly by adding the "+" character and a unique letter combination to the email address, for instance [email protected]. This is helpful for niche specific email conversations, especially since it is possible to store alias emails in their own folder in the Hotmail inbox.

The spam protection offered by this kind of alias system is negligible as it is possible to identify the real email address directly by cutting off the part before the + character.

To counter this a second option to create aliases was introduced. This time as an option to create "completely different email addresses that you can use to receive email into your primary account without anyone knowing what your primary email address is".

These aliases are basically independent Hotmail or Live email addresses that are then linked to the account. It goes without saying that only free email addresses can be selected as aliases.

Windows Live and Hotmail users can add up to five of these aliases to the Hotmail account per year, up to fifteen total.

Update: Note that the following link and information work on Microsoft's new email service as well.

New aliases can be created on the following page:

create a hotmail alias

You need to log in to Hotmail before you can create the new alias. The new email address is selected on the first screen which redirects automatically to the Hotmail inbox afterwards.

hotmail alias

Here it is then possible to select a folder or the inbox as the storage location for incoming emails for that email alias or have them go to the inbox instead.

Microsoft sends a confirmation mail to the main account address that details some of the options that aliases offer:

  • You can send email messages from this alias by clicking on your address (above the To line in the message you're writing) and selecting your alias from the list.
  • If you set up a separate inbox folder for your alias, messages sent to it will go to that folder. Otherwise, messages sent to your alias will just go to your regular inbox.
  • Remember, you can't sign in to Hotmail with your alias; you'll need to sign in with your regular Hotmail address

It is possible to remove aliases anytime from Hotmail. This may however have implications. Microsoft notes:

If you remove this email address, you won't be able to use it to receive Windows Live mail, invitations, notifications, and alerts, or to be found through people search.

Links to alias creation and removal pages do not seem to be accessible from within Hotmail at this point in time. It is likely that Microsoft will add those options to the accounts directly to make it easier for users to create and remove aliases.

The option to add unique email addresses as aliases to a Hotmail account takes aliases to the next level. The option could be very interesting for users who have maintained several email addresses just for that purpose. (via)

Update: It is possible to create Hotmail aliases right from within the inbox. This is done with a click on the options button right next to the inbox. It opens up with a click and displays two options.

hotmail email alias

The Create a Hotmail alias option leads directly to the screen linked above.

Update 2: The feature to create aliases directly is not available on

outlook alias

You can use the main link listed above to create aliases for the service, or do the following instead:

  1. While signed in to an account, do the following.
  2. Click on the preferences icon in the top right corner and select options from the context menu.
  3. Locate "create an alias" under managing your account and click on it.
  4. Select the desired email name and domain that you want to use and click on create an alias to create it.
  5. You are taken back to the inbox where you may want to disable "send new mail from this address by default" on the prompt that comes up.
  6. Then you can select whether you want mail to arrive in a new folder or an existing folder.
How to set up email aliases on and Hotmail
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How to set up email aliases on and Hotmail
The guide walks you through the steps of setting up email aliases on Microsoft's email services Hotmail and

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  1. JMGG said on January 19, 2012 at 8:25 am

    You said that Outlook isn’t your main email client, so which is your main one?

    1. BalaC said on January 19, 2012 at 9:42 am

      I think its thunderbird

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on January 19, 2012 at 10:15 am

      It is Mozilla Thunderbird.

  2. Salaam said on September 24, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Awesome! This actually solved my problem… what a stupid bug.

  3. Claud said on December 19, 2012 at 2:08 am

    If this is the same bug that I’ve encountered, there may be another fix: (1) hover over open Outlook item in Taskbar, cursor up to hover over Outlook window item, and right-click; (2) this should give you Restore / Move / Size / Minimize / Maximize — choose Move or Size; (3) use your cursor keys, going arbitrarily N/S/E/W, to try to move or size the Outlook window back into view. Basically, the app behaves as though it were open in a 0x0 window, or at a location that’s offscreen, and this will frequently work to resize and/or move the window. Don’t forget to close while resized/moved, so that Outlook remembers the size/position for next time.

    1. Lynda said on February 12, 2013 at 3:37 pm

      THANK YOU Claude!!! I could get the main window to launch but could not get any other message window to show on the desktop. You are my hero!!!!

    2. Chad said on November 20, 2018 at 4:24 pm

      Solved my issue! 6 years later and this is still problem…

    3. Ivan X said on January 21, 2021 at 4:50 pm

      Fantastic. Thank you. Size did the trick.

  4. Andrew said on October 26, 2013 at 7:06 am

    This solved my Outlook problem, too. Thank you. :)

  5. Charles said on December 7, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    Thank you so much, this started happening to me today and was causing big problems. You are a life saver, I hope I can help you in some way some day.

  6. garth said on November 7, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    You are a god – thank you!

  7. Faisal said on February 9, 2015 at 10:09 am

    thanks a lot…. work like charm.. :-)

  8. Simon said on March 24, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    Yah…thanks Claude. I’ve been having the same problem and tried all the suggestions…your solution was the answer. It had resized itself to a 0/0 box. Cheers

  9. Olu said on April 14, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    Excellent post. This had me baffled even trying to accurately describe the problem. This fixed it for me.
    Thank you

  10. Coenig said on July 23, 2015 at 7:36 am

    Thanks a lot for the article. Don’t know why it happenend, don’t know how it got fixed, but it was really annoying and now it works :-)

  11. Fali said on January 20, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    Thanks a lot. I was facing this issue from past 3 week. I tried everything but no resolution. The issue was happening intermittently and mainly when I was changing the display of screen ( as i use 2 monitors). The only option i had was to do system restore. But thanks to you.

    1. MIki said on January 10, 2019 at 11:54 am

      I’ve been tried to sole this problem for 12hours. Your comment about changing the display of screen helped me a lot!! Thanks!!

  12. Christina said on January 20, 2016 at 6:14 pm

    Thank you…don’t know why this happened but your instructions helped me fix it. Running Windows 10 and office pro 2007

  13. Oz said on July 22, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    Great tip! Thanks!

  14. Tracy said on September 1, 2016 at 4:48 pm

    Worked for me, too – thank you!!!

  15. shawn said on September 9, 2016 at 10:25 am

    It’s Worked for me, too
    thank you very much!

  16. Jari said on October 31, 2016 at 11:53 am

    I had a similar issue with Outlook 2013 on Windows 10 and this helped me to fix it. Thank you very much!

  17. Michel H said on November 30, 2016 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you so much. Solved!
    Considering you published this in 2012, incredible not been debugged by Microsoft.
    Thank you again. M

  18. Ziad Bitar said on January 9, 2017 at 2:00 am

    This problem was faced by only one user logging to TS 2008 r2 using outlook 2010.The issue was resolved.


  19. Anonymous said on February 15, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    Great tip. Thank you!!!! If it helps, I had to use the Control Key and the arrow keys at the same time to bring my window back into view. Worked like a charm.

  20. Rochelle said on March 6, 2017 at 11:59 am

    Thank you, this worked !!!!

  21. anom1234 said on May 20, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    Man, you are a fucking god. Thanks a lot, what an annoying bug!!

  22. JC said on October 12, 2020 at 2:14 pm

    Awesome, this post solved the issue. Many thanks!

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