Outlook inserts document as icon with hyperlink in body of message

Original KB number:   3175690

Symptoms

You use Outlook 2016, Outlook 2019, or Outlook for Microsoft 365 to connect to a mailbox in Exchange Server 2013 or earlier versions. When you insert a OneDrive for Business or SharePoint file into a new email message, the attachment may be added to the body of the message as an icon with a hyperlink.

Cause

Outlook 2016, Outlook 2019, and Outlook for Microsoft 365 include support for new Exchange Server document sharing functionality. This functionality isn't supported with Exchange Server 2013 or earlier versions.

Workaround

To work around this issue, change the format of the email message to Rich Text or Plain Text before attaching a document from a OneDrive for Business or SharePoint file. To change the format, use the following steps:

  1. In a new email message, select the Format Text tab in the ribbon.
  2. Select Plain Text or Rich Text.
  3. Select the Message tab in the ribbon and then select Attach File.
  4. Attach the file the way you normally do.

Status

Microsoft is researching this problem and will post more information in this article when the information becomes available.

More information

Exchange Server 2016 includes a new approach to attachments to simplify document sharing. You can use either the Microsoft Outlook app or Outlook on the web to attach a link to a SharePoint or OneDrive for Business document instead of a traditional attachment. This provides the benefits of coauthoring and version control.

Although the user interface has been updated since Outlook 2016, attaching documents as links to SharePoint 2016 and 2019, SharePoint Online, or OneDrive for Business isn't supported with Exchange Server 2013 or earlier versions.