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Resolving three common Exchange Server 2010 issues

Exchange 2010 is an improvement over Exchange 2007, but it isn’t perfect. Here are three common Exchange Server 2010 problems -- and their solutions.

Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 has matured, but it’s not without problems. There are fairly simple fixes for some...

of the most prevalent issues though.

Here are three of the most common issues with Exchange 2010 -- including Outlook 2007 error messages, malfunctioning Web services and problems opening Exchange Management tools -- and how to fix them.

Outlook 2007 error messages
Organizations using Outlook 2007 may receive one of the following error messages after migrating to Exchange Server 2010:

  • Cannot start Microsoft Office Outlook. Unable to open the Outlook window. The set of folders could not be opened.
  • Unable to open your default e-mail folders. The Microsoft Exchange Server computer is not available. Either there are network problems or the Microsoft Exchange Server computer is down for maintenance.
  • The connection to the Microsoft Exchange Server is unavailable. Outlook must be online or connected to complete this action.
  • Unable to open your default email folders. The information store could not be opened.
  • Outlook could not log on. Check to make sure that you are connected to the network and are using the proper server and mailbox name. The connection to the Microsoft Exchange Server is unavailable. Outlook must be online and connected to complete this action.

These errors occur because Exchange 2010 requires Outlook to connect using remote procedure call (RPC) encryption. If RPC encryption has been disabled, the connection will fail.

The easiest way to solve this problem is to enable RPC encryption at the group policy level. Begin the process by downloading the administrative template for Outlook 2007, then add the template to your domain controller.

After the template has been applied, open the Group Policy Editor and navigate through your policy to User Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Classic Administrative Templates -> Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 -> Tools -> Account Settings -> Exchange. Double click on the Enable RPC Encryption setting and set it to Enabled.

Note: This procedure only works for Outlook 2007; there is a different process when enabling RPC encryption for Outlook 2003.

ActiveSync and OWA issues after an Exchange 2010 SP1 upgrade
When you apply Service Pack 1 to Exchange Server 2010, you may find that various Web services fail to function properly.

The most common problems are that mobile users -- especially those with iPhones -- cannot download message content, OWA users cannot reply to or forward messages, and POP and IMAP users cannot receive incoming email.

All of these issues can be traced to a problem with the accepted domain configuration. You will typically discover that a default accepted domain does not exist, or that the domain name contains a space. To fix this problem, run the following Exchange Management Shell (EMS) command to see the current state of your accepted domains:

Get-AcceptedDomain | fl

If you need to remove a space from an accepted domain name, enter an EMS command that uses the accepted domain's identity, as returned by the command above. The identity of my accepted domain, for example, is Brien Posey; my domain name is Therefore, the appropriate command would be:

Set-AcceptedDomain –Identity "Brien Posey" –Name ""

Note: You may have to reboot your Exchange server for the change to take effect.

Problems opening Exchange management tools
A seemingly simple act, such as opening the Exchange Management Console (EMC) or the EMS, can be problematic in Exchange 2010. The management tools may not open because they work differently in Exchange 2010 than they did in Exchange Server 2007. In Exchange 2010, the management tools use remote PowerShell connections, even if you open them locally. The tools will only open if Internet Information Server (IIS) is configured properly.

The most common management tool error message I've seen is:

Connecting to the remote server failed with the following error message: The WinRM client sent a request to an HTTP server and got a response saying the requested HTTP URL was not available. This is usually returned by a HTTP server that does not support the WS-Management protocol. For more information, see the about_Remote_Troubleshooting Help topic.

This problem almost always relates to an HTTP-binding issue. To fix the problem, you need to open the IIS Manager and ensure that the Hostname field is blank for the Port 80 binding on the default website.

There are numerous other issues that may also cause the Exchange management tools to fail to open, and you can find more resolutions on Microsoft’s Exchange Team website.

Brien Posey is a seven-time Microsoft MVP with two decades of IT experience. Before becoming a freelance technical writer, Brien worked as a CIO for a national chain of hospitals and healthcare facilities. He has also served as a network administrator for some of the nation’s largest insurance companies and for the Department of Defense at Fort Knox.

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