We report computational and experimental investigations on injection and transmission of light in microfabricated fully Aluminum-coated quartz probes. In particular, we show that a selective coupling of either the HE11 or the TM01 mode can be carried out by injecting focused linearly or radially polarized beams into the probe. Optical fields, emitted by the probe after a controlled injection, are characterized in intensity and phase with the help of an interferometric technique. With the help of near-field measurement, we finally demonstrate that a longitudinally polarized spot localized at the tip apex is actually produced when the TM01 mode is coupled into the probe. © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.