Are you unable to see attachments in Outlook for Mac app? If you’re here, it might be yes! In that case, find below to fix attachments not showing in Outlook Mac app.
Email attachments are the easiest way to share files or documents linked to the email. Outlook for Microsoft 365 for Mac and earlier versions allow you to send and receive emails with file attachments. The app also offers a quick look at the attachments via the macOS Preview app or any other compatible application.
However, recently many macOS users reported the following issues with the Outlook for Mac app:
- Mac Outlook attachments not showing
- Mac Outlook not showing attachments
- Outlook for Mac not showing attachments
When you suffer from any of the above problems on your Outlook for Microsoft 365 for Mac, try the following fixes.
Best Fixes for Attachments Not Showing in Outlook Mac Issue
The following troubleshooting methods are good for various Outlook for Mac app versions like Outlook for Microsoft 365 for Mac, Outlook 2019 for Mac, Outlook 2021 for Mac, etc.
1. Check With the Sender
If you don’t see any attachments in an email sent by a colleague or friend but they’re claiming they did attach files to the email, double-check with the email sender. When the attachment you’re expecting is any EXE or DMG or PKG file, then Outlook may not have allowed it and the sender didn’t notice either.
Not just for Outlook, it’s also for other popular email clients like Gmail. If the sender ignored the warning of an unsupported attachment on the email and clicked the send button, then you won’t receive the attachment.
2. Get a Compatible App for the Attachment
macOS Preview mostly handles all the attachment preview tasks. However, some attachments may not show a thumbnail or quick view if a specific application isn’t present on your MacBook or iMac.
Thus, check the attachment extension file name and download the related software from Mac AppStore.
3. Open Email in the Outlook Web App
If the sender confirmed that they did send the attachment, then it could be a server sync issue with the Outlook app. To rule out any global Outlook app issue, try to access your email on the Outlook Web App (business user) or Outlook on the Web app (individual users).
Suppose, you see that the attachment is available on Outlook’s web version, then the issue is local and only specific to your macOS Outlook installation. For such problems, continue with the following troubleshooting methods:
4. Open Email in New Window
Open your Outlook for Mac app and check for the attachment or paperclip icon on the email in the left-side Inbox navigation pane. If the paperclip icon is available, it means there’s an attachment for sure.
Right-click on the email and select Open in the context menu that shows up. This will pop out the email in a dedicated window. There, you’ll see all the elements of the email including the attachments.
You should see the Download and Preview buttons just below the attachments. And the attachments will show up below the address and subject line of the email.
5. Force Sync With Outlook Servers
You can also perform a manual sync with the Outlook servers or Microsoft 365 Exchange servers. Here’s how you can perform a sync on Outlook:
- Open Outlook and look at the Outlook ribbon for the Sync button.
- If the Sync button isn’t available, click Elispses or the kebab menu and add the Sync option from the Customize Toolbar setting.
- Now, click the Sync button to manually sync with the servers.
- Check if you can download or preview the attachments now.
6. Clear Application Data
Another way to fix attachments not showing in Outlook for Mac app is by clearing the cache of Outlook. Now, you won’t find the clear cache on the Outlook app on macOS as you find on Windows or Android smartphones. Here, the terminology for this setting is slightly different. Here’s how it’s done on Outlook for Mac app with an individual user license or a freeware license:
- While on the Outlook app, click the Help menu on the Mac toolbar.
- Click on Clear Application Data on the context menu that pops down.
- Close Outlook app.
- Right-click on the Outlook app icon on Dock and select Quit.
- Now, launch the Spotlight tool and search for the Outlook app.
- Open the app from the Spotlight search results and you should see your attachments now.
Also read: How to Turn Off Dark Mode on Word on Mac
7. Delete Cache in Outlook for Mac
Suppose, you use Outlook business setup where the organization serves emails using the Microsoft 365 Exchange server. In that case, you can delete the cache file of the Exchange server by following these steps:
- The MacBook or iMac must be connected to the Microsoft 365 Exchange server.
- Now, you should see Exchange folders in the navigation pane.
- Use right-click or Ctrl + click on the Exchange folder and select the Properties option from the context menu that appears.
- Go to the General tab on the Properties menu and select Empty Cache.
- Now, Outlook will re-download the latest server data from Microsoft 365 Exchange server.
- This should also push the previously undelivered attachment to your Outlook Inbox.
8. Forward the Email to Someone Else
This is a workaround if none of the troubleshooting methods worked above. Just forward the email to the same colleague or someone else you trust with the attachment and email content. You could reach out to them before and ask them to delete the email as soon as they receive the forwarded email.
Now, you should see a copy of the forwarded email in your Outlook’s Sent or Outbox folder. Double-click the email and the attachment Download and Preview options should be visible now.
9. Revert to Legacy Outlook
Many Outlook for Mac users reported that going back to the legacy Outlook resolves the attachments not showing in Outlook for Mac issue. Thus, you can try that as well by following these steps:
- Select the Outlook app and click on the Help menu on the Mac toolbar.
- Choose the Revert to Legacy Outlook option from the Help menu.
- If it’s not available, click the Outlook menu on the Mac toolbar.
- Uncheck the New Outlook option.
Also read: How to Switch from New Outlook to Old on Mac
10. Force Quit Outlook App
If attachments still don’t show up after disabling the New Outlook interface, then follow these instructions to force quit the app on your MacBook or iMac. Force quit deletes all backend files of the Outlook app from the device. When you restart the app, it loads all files from its installed location and online servers and this is when it also brings back your attachments.
Here’s how it’s done:
- Open the Spotlight app on Mac and type Activity.
- The Activity Monitor app will show up in the search results. Click on it.
- Search for the Outlook app in the Activity Monitor Search box.
- Usually, you’ll find the following three processes:
- MS Outlook
- Microsoft Outlook Networking
- Microsoft Outlook web content
- Double-click on each of the above processes and then select the Quit button.
- Now, re-open Outlook from Dock or Spotlight.
11. Move the PLIST File to Trash
In Mac, Outlook stores certain settings responsible for sync in the Property List or PLIST files. You need to move the existing PLIST files to Trash and force Outlook to create new ones. This should also resolve Mac Outlook not showing attachments error. Here are the easy steps:
- Quit or force quit the Outlook app.
- Select Go and then click the Go to Folder from the context menu on the Mac toolbar:
- Type the following command in the Go to Folder search box:
- Select all the PLIST files in the folder that opens thereafter.
- Right-click and select Move to Trash. Don’t empty the trash now.
- Open Outlook and see if you can find all the emails including the new email with attachments.
- If the attachment is visible or downloadable, delete the trash items.
- If the issue doesn’t fix after moving the PLIST files, move the files back to the original folder.
- Select all the PLIST files, right-click, and choose Put Back.
12. Uninstall Outlook and Upgrade macOS
The final troubleshooting you can try is to uninstall the Outlook app from your iMac or MacBook and update the device to its latest software as well as security patch levels. Then, re-install Outlook from Mac AppStore. Here’s how you must proceed:
- Right-click on the Outlook app on the Dock.
- Hover the mouse cursor over the Options menu.
- Then, select Show in Finder from the new context menu.
- Now, you must right-click on the Outlook app icon inside the Applications menu on the Finder app.
- Select the Move to Trash option.
- Right-click the Trash icon on the dock and click Empty Trash to uninstall Outlook for Mac app.
- Click the Apple menu on the Mac toolbar and choose System Preferences or System Settings.
- Find and click the Software Update tool.
- Upgrade to the latest operating system for your Mac.
- If you’re already on the most recent macOS, then apply all security updates or any other pounding updates.
- Restart your Mac.
- Once you’re back on Mac Home Screen, launch the AppStore from the Dock.
- Search, download, and install the Outlook app.
- On startup, Outlook will guide you on how to activate the app using your email on which a paid or freeware subscription for Microsoft Office exists.
- Check your Outlook Inbox for the troubled email and you should find the attachments.
13. macOS Big Sur-Specific Fix
In certain dated versions of macOS Big Sur, you may face the attachments not showing in Outlook for Mac error. Usually, you can see the paperclip icon, an indication of an attachment, in the Inbox navigation pane. But when you open the particular email, no attachments are there.
According to Microsoft, this is a known issue. You can fix this by installing macOS Big Sur, version 11.6.8, or newer macOS editions.
Attachments Not Showing in Outlook for Mac: Fixed!
These are some sureshot ways to fix attachments not showing in Outlook for Mac issue. If the issue doesn’t fix after trying all the above, contact Outlook for Mac support from the Outlook app > Help > Contact Support.
Don’t forget to comment below if the issue gets fixed. Also, share the content with your social media friends and office colleague if they’re also facing the same issue.
Next up, learn the best feature of the new Outlook for Mac.