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When an Exchange administrator moves a mailbox from one administrative group to another, any Outlook profiles created for that mailbox will no longer work correctly. E-mail security settings, public folder moderation, free/busy data, calendar data and object delegation all become vulnerable to malfunction.
The reason for this is simple: Outlook profiles are coded to look for a mailbox in a certain group and on a certain server.
To deal with this issue, Microsoft has written a command-line tool called ExProfre -- the Exchange Profile Update Tool, which Updates Outlook profiles after you move mailboxes across Exchange organizations or administrative groups.
The tool gleans information from both Active Directory and the current default Outlook profile to determine where a current user's mailbox is being hosted (via an X.500 e-mail address lookup), backs up a user's current profile, and then attempts to modify it with the newly-researched information.
In the event the changes fail, a user can restore the old profile (the backup is saved under the name "<username> exprofre"). The program also logs all its actions to a file for later inspection; if there is a failure, it can be traced to a specific step.
ExProfre runs only on Windows Server 2000/2003 and XP. It does not run on NT 4.0 or any 9x operating systems. It supports Outlook 98 to Outlook 2003 -- but it should not be run when Outlook is running. If attempted, the program will warn that Outlook needs to be closed first.
The best way to run ExProfre is through a logon script, so it can be updated at login and before Outlook is opened. Exprofre also cannot be run on a Terminal Server with multiple users; the user profile must be deleted and recreated from scratch to work there.
About the author: Serdar Yegulalp is editor of the Windows Power Users Newsletter.
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