No longer able to open multiple instances of Outlook 2016 (for one profile).

On my work computer, I keep multiple desktops open in Windows 10.  Until last week, I was able to open an instance of Outlook on one desktop while another instance of Outlook was already open on another desktop.  Now, when I try to do this:

1. I get shifted over to the desktop which already has a running instance of Outlook,

2. I get an error message “Sorry, we’re having trouble starting Outlook. Only one version can run at a time. See if another version of Outlook is running, or try restarting your computer,” and

3. after I close the error message, another instance of Outlook does actually open in the desktop being shown (which is not the desktop where I was working).

I cannot see that there is any other version of Outlook running, and I cannot see that the "/recycle" switch is being applied in the Properties view for any shortcuts to run Outlook.  I don't keep a lot of emails, so I don't see how some memory issue might be forcing this problem.

My questions:  Why did this problem show up a week ago? Is there a way to explicitly invoke/force the opposite of the "/recycle" switch for Outlook? Is there a way to check that there is/isn't a relevant memory issue?  Is there some other solution I have not considered?

This problem completely defeats the purpose of having multiple desktops.  I cannot stress this enough.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Hello my name is Yohandi

It is a pleasure to have your participation in the Microsoft Community.

How many computers are Office applications installed with a user's license?

This happens with a single user?

Have you tried making an office repair?
Repair an Office application
https://support.office.com/en-us/article/repair...

I recommend creating a new Outlook user profile using the Microsoft Support and Recovery Wizard for Office 365
https://diagnostics.outlook.com/#/

I wish you an excellent day :)

I hope it is work for you

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It's bug. Since you do want another window open, you can right click on a folder and choose open new window to avoid the annoying dialog.

See https://www.slipstick.com/outlook/one-version-o... for more details.






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Diane Poremsky [Outlook MVP]
Outlook Resources: https://www.slipstick.com
https://www.outlook-tips.net

** I don't work for Microsoft.**
** DO NOT CALL phone numbers received in email notifications.**

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>>
Is there a way to explicitly invoke/force the opposite of the "/recycle" switch for Outlook?
>>
As far as I know, no, well not an 'open another window' switch. There is the /select foldername switch:
/select outlook:inbox

>>
Is there a way to check that there is/isn't a relevant memory issue?
>>
It's not a memory issue, it's just outlook being stupid and the error message is poorly written, There is no other version of Outlook running.
Diane Poremsky [Outlook MVP]
Outlook Resources: https://www.slipstick.com
https://www.outlook-tips.net

** I don't work for Microsoft.**
** DO NOT CALL phone numbers received in email notifications.**

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Although it seems the problem will persist, I thank you very much for the additional information.  Much appreciated!

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It's bug.

See https://www.slipstick.com/outlook/one-version-o... for more details.

I wish MS would just come out and say this. It started for me after the latest Office update. I have submitted feedback documenting this on several occasions, including today.

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Last updated October 12, 2020 Views 4,481 Applies to: