An Outlook Add-in with SharePoint Framework (SPFx) – Introduction

An Outlook Add-in with SharePoint Framework (SPFx) – Introduction

Since SharePoint Framework version 1.10 you can also develop Office Add-Ins with SPFx starting with Outlook Web Access in public preview. The great benefit is you already have the prepared context for access of Microsoft Graph. In this demo scenario I want to show you how to create a valuable Outlook Add-In with the capability to store complete mails to OneDrive, Office 365 Groups or Microsoft Teams.

An Outlook Add-In to copy a whole mail to Teams, Groups or OneDrive

Let’s start the first part by creating our first Outlook Add-In. It’s already documented quite well in a Microsoft tutorial and I won’t repeat the necessary steps here and they are also quite familiar to you I suppose as you are not new to SharePoint Framework.

The only difference I made to the tutorial above and what you can do as well of course: Use the “React Framework” instead of “No JavaScript Framework”.

At first lets only take a short look into the Outlook Add-In manifest. I won’t go into details about changing position or logo or something but at least a custom title we should give. Therefore open the XML file in the \officeAddin folder and set the following settings according your choice:

What we need to do next is to get our current mail as we want to run our add in in the context of a selected mail. The following code snippet simply handles that:

Base Webpart render function

We first check this.context.sdks.office and if we have that we try to use this.context.sdks.office.context.mailbox.item. From there we can retrieve the mail ID and the subject which we will need at a later point of time. We hand them over to our first React component and in case we found nothing we will handle that null value adequately. On top we hand over the msGraphClientFactory which we will use to connect to Graph for folder retrieval, mail storage and so on.

That component I reduced a bit in code and explanation here. The main task is to render the initial logic for browsing your Teams, Groups or OneDrive folders but also hold the storage methods. Both I will cover in separate parts. The full code you can find in my GitHub repository.

Base Component

First we instantiate a GraphController and once ready it is set to the state so we know it’s there and can display our entry points for OneDrive, Groups and Teams accordingly.

In the second part we will get to know the browsing logic through all available Teams, Groups respectively OneDrive Folders where we can store our mail.

Meanwhile you can check the full code repository here in my GitHub.

Markus is a SharePoint architect and technical consultant with focus on latest technology stack in Office 365 and SharePoint Online development. He loves the new SharePoint Framework as well as some backend stuff around Azure Automation or Azure Functions and also has a passion for Microsoft Graph.
He works for Avanade and is based in Munich.
Although if partially inspired by his daily work opinions are always personal.

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