Sunday, January 17, 2010

Unable to connect Outlook 2003 to Exchange 2010

When you try open an email account located on an Exchange 2010 server using Outlook 2003 you will get the “Unable to open your default e-mail folders” error. If you try to connect to the same mailbox using Outlook 2007 or Outlook 2010 beta version you can connect without any problems.
This is caused by the fact that in Exchange 2010, by default, you need an encrypted conection to access the server. In Outlook 2007 and later this is the default setting but in previous versions this was optional.
To solve this issue, you have two options:
1. You configure your email client to use encryption (recommended). You can do this by accesing your email profile and check the “Encrypt data between Micrososoft Office Outlook and Microsoft Exchange” as you can see bellow:

























2. Or you can disable the encryption on the Exchange 2010 Client Access Server using the following cmdlet (not recommended):
Set-RpcClientAccess –identity <ServerIdParameter> –EncryptionRequired $false

Usually I would go with the first choice. It is more secure and there is no reason not to do it. If you need to configure a large number of computers you can always use Group Policy. You can find more info about GPO templates for Office 2003 here:
http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/help/HA011402401033.aspx

Free/Busy information and Out of Office settings are not available in Outlook 2007

If you try to access Free/Busy info or OOF settings from outside your company firewall and you are not allowed, most of the time it means that you have a bad configured Autodiscover service.
Former versions of Outlook (Outlook 2003 or older) were using public folders to get access to these features.
In the newer versions, like Outlook 2007 and the future release of Outlook (2010), to get access to this important features of Microsoft Exchange messaging environment you are using the Autodiscover web service. This service is used by the Web-based offline address book (OAB), the Availability service, Out of Office or Unified Messaging (UM). The Autodiscover service must be deployed and configured correctly for Outlook 2007 clients to automatically connect to all this Microsoft Exchange features.
To find out how to configure correctly the Autodiscovery service and the associated digital certificates using various scenarios you can use the following links:

Saturday, January 16, 2010

IT Efficiency School - Exchange Server 2010 - Installation and configuration

This year, together with Microsoft Romania, I will continue to deliver new live meeting sessions regarding unified messaging and especially Microsoft Exchange 2010.

The next online meeting will take place on Thursday, January 28, 2010 3:30 PM-5:30 PM (UTC+02:00) and it will cover Exchange 2010 installation and configuration. To register for this please access the following link: http://msevents.microsoft.com/CUI/EventDetail.aspx?EventID=1032440013&Culture=RO-RO

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Error creating a new mailbox database on exchange 2010 in a multiple domain environment

When you try to create a new mailbox database on Exchange 2010 in a multiple domain environment, the database is created but you may get the following error when trying to mount it:

Failed to mount database

'<test>'.
<test>
Failed
Error:
Couldn't mount the database that you specified. Specified database:
<test>; Error code: An Active Manager
operation failed. Error: The database action failed. Error: Operation
failed
with message: MapiExceptionNotFound: Unable to mount database.
(hr=0x8004010f,
ec=-2147221233)
[Database: <test>, Server:
<Servername>].
An Active Manager operation failed. Error: The database action failed. Error:
Operation failed with message: MapiExceptionNotFound: Unable to mount
database.
(hr=0x8004010f, ec=-2147221233)
[Database: <test>, Server:
<Servername>
An Active Manager operation failed. Error: Operation failed with message:
MapiExceptionNotFound: Unable to mount database. (hr=0x8004010f,
ec=-2147221233)
[Server: <servername>]
MapiExceptionNotFound: Unable to mount database. (hr=0x8004010f,
ec=-2147221233)

The following event is logged in the Application log:

Log Name: Application
Source: MSExchange Configuration Cmdlet - Remote Management
Date: 9/17/2009 12:26:00 PM
Event ID: 4
Task Category: General
Level: Error
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Computer: <servername>
Description: (PID 8136, Thread 2652) Task New-MailboxDatabase writing error when processing record of index 0. Error: Microsoft.Exchange.Data.Directory.ADOperationException: Active Directory operation failed on <domain controller>. This error is not retriable. Additional information: The name reference is invalid.
This may be caused by replication latency between Active Directory domain controllers.

According to Microsoft support site (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/977960/EN-US) , the problem occurs when the value of the ConfigurationDomainController parameter and the value of the PreferredGlobalCatalog parameter are different. Their solution is to run the following cmdlet:

Set-ADServerSettings –PreferredServer <DC FQDN>

We encountered this problem with one of our clients and the solution provided by Microsoft did not work. What we did was to mount the database specifying the domain controller that writes the configuration change to Active Directory. The cmdlet is:

Mount-Database -Identity <database> -DomainController <DC FQDN>