Using MailTo Protocol in Visio Shapes

A newsgroup question asked whether you can send an email from a Visio shape, so I thought it was time to document an example of just that..

In this example, I have added four Shape Data rows for the Address, Subject, CC and BCC fields…


However, I have used the Screen Tip cell for the message body because it is the only out-of-the-box dialog that allows you to enter multi-line text into a Shape Cell.


To open the Screen Tip via the right mouse menu, I added the formula =DOCMD(1685) to an Actions row.

To force the Hyperlink.Address cell of the new Hyperlink.Mail row to update whenever any of the values in the four Shape Data rows or the Screen Tip is changed, I added the following formula to a new User-defined cell called, MailToTrigger:


That’s it! Just enter email addresses, a subject and body, then your mail client will be opened pre-filled from the right-mouse menu of the VIsio shape, or, of course, from a SaveAs web page.

You can read about the MailTo protocol here:

Old Trafford in Deep Zoom

Sometimes in life you get opportunities that you just have to take …. and one just came to this old Manchester United supporter … a chance to watch my team play from a corporate box against Arsenal … and I could take my son, Krysh, too!  We only needed a draw to win the Premier League (again) … and a draw is what we got! Like an earlier post, I took lots of photos and patched them together using Microsoft Image Composite Editor.  I love that tool!

Just in case you have never heard of Old Trafford .. it is in Manchester, England … just here:

Map picture


I last went to Old Trafford over 20 years ago … it didn’t look like this then …  this is the East Stand.


Here is the Deep Zoom version : Old Trafford East Stand


Here is the Deep Zoom version : Old Trafford Pre Kick Off


Here is the Deep Zoom version : During the match

The match was 0-0, but that was enough to be presented with the Barclay’s Premier League title for the 3rd consecutive year … that’s 18 in total!


Thank you to everyone who made it such a great day!


(PS : You missed a great day, Tim)

An Interview on TechNet about Visio

I was interviewed by Microsoft when I was at the MVP conference in March. I rambled on about some of my experiences with Visio over the years.  It has now been published for all to see at 


In case you are wondering, the shirt was from the 1998 Visio Conference, which was pre-Microsoft.  It’s probably time that I had a new wardrobe!


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