How To Create Advanced E-Mail Signatures With Windows Live Mail
In Windows Live Mail (as in the e-mail client and not the web site) the default method for an e-mail signature is nothing but plain text, like this:
You can however create advanced e-mail signatures using the freely available Nvu web pageeditor.
Here’s how it’s done.
1. Download and install Nvu. It’s free.
2. Copy any images you plan to use to the folder My Stationary.
My Stationary is a folder you already have on your computer, located under My Documents. This was created when you installed WL Mail originally. Any images to be used in a signature must reside in this folder, else it will not work.
For the example below I’m going to use a small image of myself:
The above is a 48×48 pixel image. You should keep whatever image you use small so you don’t annoy the people you send mail to. If you’re asking the question, “How big is too big?”, try not to use anything over a 100×100 image.
If you have an image you’d like to use but it’s too big, you can resize it quickly using Pixlr editor. This is a free in-browser editor (no need to install anything). Load that site, open the image you want to edit, click Image then Image Size from the black bar at the very top and resize to 80×80 or smaller, then save as PNG or JPEG.
When your images are ready, copy any you intend to use to the My Stationary folder.
4. Launch Nvu and save a blank signature first.
When you first launch Nvu you will be given a blank web page to edit, much like editing a new document a word processor. The first thing we’ll do is save this file. This is necessary to do first so that images can be added in more easily.
Click the Save button. You will be prompted to title the page. Call it signature, like this:
You will be be prompted to save the file somewhere. Navigate to the My Stationary folder and save your file as signature, like this:
The file will be auto-saved with the .html file extension.
5. Edit and save your signature.
First we’ll add in the image. Click the Image button at the top of Nvu. A new window will open.
Click the Choose File button.
You will be automatically placed into the My Stationary folder to find the image you want. If not, navigate to My Documents then My Stationary. Find the title of the image you want to add, then double-click to open it.
After that, tick the option for Don’t use alternate text (if you don’t, Nvu will force you to use alternate text for images, which is not necessary).
You should have something like this:
Your image will be inserted into the page.
After that, type in some text you want in your signature.
For any text you want linked to another web site, highlight the text and click the Link button at the top of Nvu.
Here’s an example of what you could have:
The last thing we’ll do is change the font.
Press CTRL+A to highlight everything in the page.
Click the drop-down menu that states Variable With or Mixed and pick Helvetica, Arial like this:
It is strongly suggested that you only use Helvetica/Arial, Times or Courier as everybody has these fonts installed on their computers. If you choose a font that is non-standard, chances are high that it will show up as nothing but Times New Roman (or other standard serif font) on the recipient’s computer.
Lastly, adjust the font size by using the font increase/decrease size buttons:
Remember that you can highlight and select different text just as you would in a word processor program, adjusting some to be one size and other text a different size.
Here’s an example of what you could have:
When we’re all finished, simply click Save and close Nvu.
6. Enable the signature in Windows Live Mail.
In WL Mail, press ALT+M to bring up the menu, then click Options:
For the new window that appears, click the Signatures tab, then tick the option File at bottom, like this:
Click the Browse button to the right of File.
From the Open window that appears, change Text Files to HTML Files, like this:
Navigate to your My Stationary folder and select signature (this is the file you just saved a few moments ago).
At this point you will see the file path next to File, similar to this (the path will be different on XP computers because My Documents is in a different location):
Make sure Add signatures to all outgoing messages is checked:
Click Apply then OK.
7. Compose a new e-mail to yourself to test it out.
If all goes well…
Success! Your new advanced signature works!