How-To Geek

Share RSS Feeds Between Internet Explorer and Outlook Using the Common Feed List


The Common Feed List is a list of subscribed RSS Feeds that is saved with your Windows user profile. RSS clients, including Windows Internet Explorer and Outlook, use this list allowing you to configure your RSS subscriptions in one location for multiple readers.

NOTE: Also see How-To Geek’s explanation of RSS and how you can benefit from it.

We will show you how to add RSS feeds to the Common Feed List in Internet Explorer so they can be shared with Outlook.

First, you must turn on the setting in Outlook that allows it to obtain RSS feeds from the Common Feed List. To do this, open Outlook and click the FILE tab.


Select Options from the menu on the left.


Select Advanced from the menu on the left.


Scroll down to the RSS Feeds section and select the Synchronize RSS Feeds to the Common Feed List (CFL) in Windows check box so there is a check mark in the box.


Click OK to accept your change and close the Options dialog box.


Now, we will add the RSS feed for How-To Geek to the Common Feed List in Internet Explorer. To do this, we need to make sure the toolbar with the RSS button (05a_command_bar_rss_button) is available. Open Internet Explorer (we’re using version 10 on the desktop in Windows 8). If you don’t see the RSS button on a visible toolbar, right-click on the tab bar. Select Command bar from the popup menu. If the Command bar is visible, the option on the popup menu should be checked.


Click the arrow next to the RSS button on the Command bar and select the How-To Geek RSS Feed.


The RSS feed displays in the current tab. Click the Subscribe to this feed link in the yellow box at the top of the page.


The Subscribe to this Feed dialog box displays. If you want to change the name for the feed, enter a new one in the Name edit box.

NOTE: Some names for RSS feeds can be rather long. You may want to abbreviate them.

We opted to create our feed in the default Feeds folder. If you want the feed to be available on the Favorites bar, click the Add to Favorites Bar check box. Click Subscribe.


You should see a message in the yellow box saying that you’ve successfully subscribed to this feed. Click the View my feeds link to view a list of your feeds.


The Favorites Center displays pinned to the left side of the Internet Explorer window and the How-To Geek feed displays on the Feeds tab. To close the Favorites Center, click the X button in the upper, right corner of the pane.


When you open Outlook, the How-To Geek feed displays under the RSS Feeds folder in the list of folders on the left. Click on it to view the current RSS feed for How-To Geek.


If you want to remove the feed from the Common Feed List, you must do so in Internet Explorer. Open IE and click the Favorites button in the upper, right corner of the window.


Initially, the Favorites Center displays on the right and goes away when you click anywhere else in the IE window. To pin it to the left side of the IE window, click the Pin the Favorites Center button.


To delete an RSS feed from the Common Feed List, right-click on the feed name on the Feeds tab and select Delete from the popup menu.


A confirmation dialog box displays to make sure you want to delete the feed and any associate enclosures. Click Yes.


Deleting an RSS feed from the Common Feed List in IE may not delete it from Outlook as well. If you want to delete it from Outlook, open Outlook and right-click on the name of the feed to be deleted under the RSS Feeds folder. Select Delete Folder from the popup menu.


Again, a confirmation dialog box displays. Click Yes if you are sure you want to delete the feed.

NOTE: Deleting a feed from the RSS Feeds folder in Outlook does not delete any items previously downloaded for this feed.


Now, you can keep up with all of the useful How-To Geek articles, whether you’re surfing the web in IE or checking email in Outlook!

Lori Kaufman is a freelance technical writer who likes to write geeky how-to articles to help make people's lives easier through the use of technology. She loves watching and reading mysteries and is an avid Doctor Who fan.

  • Published 06/3/13

Enter Your Email Here to Get Access for Free:

Go check your email!