An online extraction/mass spectrometry technique was evaluated for direct analysis of plasma samples. A simple user-friendly online extraction system that consists of two pumps, an autosampler, a six-port switching valve and a mass spectrometer is described. The system was controlled by the LC-MS software (Masslynx 3.5, Waters Corporation, Beverly, MA). Various analytical conditions such as extraction column, mobile phases, run time and wash solvent were optimized to establish an analytical method that was simple, easy to set up and generic. Sample preparation effort was minimal, which included dilution of plasma with water and centrifugation conducted in 96-well plate format. The system was used to analyze in vivo plasma samples from rat n-in-one cassette dosing studies. Concentration and pharmacokinetic (PK) data obtained from the online extraction method were comparable with data obtained from the protein precipitation extraction method. Overall, the simple, robust online extraction system provides cost savings by minimizing sample preparation and method development time. The system was used to analyze compounds from different structural classes. These studies suggest that calculated lipophilicity of a compound can be used as a tool for pre-selection of extraction column, which would save method development time for early discovery studies.