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Outlook 2001:Mac Beta ("Watson") for Exchange Server

Information related to the Beta Outlook client for Macintosh

Last updated July 2, 2001


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If you have any information to share, please contact us.

For information on the release version of Outlook 2001, see our Outlook 2001 special report page.

For information on Outlook 8.x for Exchange Server, see our Outlook/Exchange special report page.


What's Watson?

"Watson," Future Outlook/Exchange for Mac compatible with Win version

In early May, 2000 Microsoft announced an Outlook/Exchange Mac client compatible with the Windows Outlook 2000. This was given the code name " Watson," featuring group scheduling, calendar, and task management features that are format-compatible with the Windows version of the client for Exchange Server. Both Mac and Windows versions will use the same data.

On January 10, Microsoft released a beta version of Outlook 2001:Mac for Exchange Server. The release version of Outlook 2001 will ship this summer 2001, when it will replace Outlook 8.2.2 for Exchange Server.

What's new in Outlook 2001

Some of the new features include:

Outlook 2001 vs. Entourage

Outlook and Entourage are too different programs. Outlook 2001 is a Mac client for Microsoft Exchange Server, and is a collaboration tool. Entourage is the mail client/contact database/scheduler in Microsoft Office 2001, and is meant to be a personal tool.

A Microsoft web page comparing Entourage 2001 vs. Outlook for Exchange Server identifies the types of users the company thinks would use Entourage, the e-mail/PIM software included with Office 2001, and Outlook for Exchange Server. Information on the latter also would seem to apply to Watson, a future version of the Outlook/Exchange client for Mac OS. Based on this page and others at Microsoft, Entourage is an Internet standards mail client with some built-in, single-user calendaring capability. It connects to any POP/IMAP server --including the one in Microsoft's Exchange Server--for sending and receiving e-mail. However, it won't access Exchange Server's collaborative calendar/scheduling features.

Watson (a code name for the Exchange client) will provide messaging and calendaring compatibility with Windows Outlook for Exchange Server. If you configure Exchange Server to send and receive e-mail through the Internet, Watson will be capable of exchanging mail over the Internet as well as through a corporate e-mail system. However, Watson users will not be able to access there own non-corporate, personal e-mail accounts.

Thus, there will only be a need to use both Watson and Entourage if users want to access personal e-mail accounts as well as corporate accounts.

Reader Reports on Watson

The Dallas Watson Preview

October 12, 2000

A MacWindows source who wishes to remain anonymous reports on the Watson Preview on October 10, 2000:

The Good News

I just attended a preview/demo of the "Watson" Exchange client for Macintosh at the Microsoft Exchange and Collaboration Solutions 2000 (MEC2000) conference in Dallas, Tx. The demoed product is, quite frankly, amazing. Amazing mostly for the fact that the Team Leader, Jensen Harris, and his team, are obviously committed to bringing out a real Macintosh application. It looks great, conforms to Mac OS guidelines and uses Mac technologies such as Appearance Manager, Notification Manager, Keychain support, multiuser support, has redesigned 256-color icons and graphics (from IconFactory, I believe I heard), uses the Mac Help facility, has a slick font-size conversion button for messages coming from Windows Outlook users, etc. But more important than that, it is indeed true, Calendaring and Contacts are Outlook Native and genuinely cross-platform (even .pst files/folders), and there will no longer be ANY reliance on Schedule + ! I saw it, it works!

There are too many details to go into, although it should be noted that there are some "Macintosh-first" features, such as a Preferences section that incorporates most of what was previously in Tools/Options, and is laid out in a single, un-tabbed pane. Same for Sharing/Delegation--one pane does it.

The Bad News

On the downside, as has been previously reported, it does not incorporate POP3/IMAP client capability. The explanation was that it was more desirable to release a true MS-EXCHANGE-compatible client than to try to cram in features to make it a Swiss Army Knife. It will likely not be 100 percent feature compatible with Outlook 2000 for Windows, but again, the most important features, cross-platform calendaring and contacts, will absolutely be there.

It will not be Carbonized in its initial release, but will instead take the same tack as Office 2001.. OS 9 (Classic) first, then Carbon. They said they HAVE been testing it with the OS X Beta, and have encountered no problems.

No ship date has been announced. It was hinted that a public beta could be available "soon", but "soon" was not defined adequately (another hint, there may be a big roll out for this product, though it was not hinted what the rollout would be in conjunction with). It will be compatible with Exchange server versions from 4.0 through the just rolled-out Exchange 2000.

Watson for Exchange, Entourage still to leave problems

July 24, 2000 -- Dan Schwartz spoke to Microsoft product reps at Macworld Expo about its upcoming Mac e-mail products, Watson for Exchange Server and Entourage (in Office 2001). He says that business users will still have to use BOTH e-mail clients, as Watson for Exchange Server for Mac will not support Internet POP3/SMTP servers:

Well, MacWorld Expo had a few interesting tidbits if you have to support Macs on the Internet and/or connected to an Exchange Server. I had a long chat with the product honchos for the Outlook for Exchange client as well as for the Office 2001 "Entourage" client.

Basically, those of us using Exchange Server have the Outlook 8.2.2 client, while Watson is slated for 1Q2001 release. Unlike the Fat Binary Outlook 8.2.2, Watson will be PowerPC only. Watson, like Outlook 8.2.2, however, *still* will not support standard POP3/SMTP servers - Only Exchange. These two products are written and supported by the Exchange product group, and *not* by the Mac group.

On the other hand, Office 2001 will introduce the Entourage 2001 PIM and POP3/SMTP application. Microsoft is positioning Office 2001 for Mac as a home (consumer) application, with Entourage being part of the package. In addition, the next Outlook Express will be a stripped down Entourage.

What does this mean for us poor slobs? If we have to connect a Power Mac up to an Exchange Server, we can look forward to Watson. But if these same Macs also need to connect to the Internet for POP3/SMTP service, then you'll *still* need to load either Outlook Express, Entourage 2001, or the stripped down OutlookExpress version of Entourage (when available).

SUMMARY:

MICROSOFT EXCHANGE GROUP:

Outlook 8.2.2 -> Watson

MICROSOFT MAC OS GROUP (Consumer focus) - POP3/SMTP Outlook Express 5.0.2

Entourage 2001 -> Outlook Express (Entourage "Lite")

Looks like a bureaucratic pissing contest between the Microsoft Mac OS and Exchange product groups, which means we get hit with the spray. No matter what, we'll *still* have to support multiple email clients.

Watson won't support POP/SMTP, but Entourage may support Exchange.

July 25, 2000
David Toub

I can confirm Dan Schwartz's comments. I had received an e-mail from Irving Kwong, head of the MBU, who informed me that Watson would not include Internet mail support, only Exchange. He also informed me that he is currently using Entourage connected to an Exchange server (!). However, having used OE to connect to our Exchange server under TCP/IP, it only will detect mail from the outside world. All intra-office e-mail is routed through Exchange, not SMTP and is apparently invisible to non-Exchange e-mail clients. So I'm not sure how Mr. Kwong gets his internal e-mail using Entourage with Exchange, but his e-mails were very helpful and pleasant.

Just to clarify, Watson is the next Mac version of Outlook for Exchange Server, and Entourage is the POP/SMTP mail client and PIM that will ship with Office 2001.

Entourage can accept Win meeting proposals

Entourage is the email/calendar program that comes with Office 2000. Entourage is not designed to be a collaborative client, and does collaborate with Watson. Microsoft calls Entourage "personal productivity" software. You can see this in Microsoft's comparison of Entourage and Outlook for Exchange Server. Under Entourage it lists "Personal e-mail, contacts, calendar, task list and notes." Under Outlook/Exchange is lists "Group calendaring, scheduling, task management, Interoperability with Outlook for Windows."

However, it turns out Entourage is not complete un-collaborative.

November 16, 2000 -- Marco Gavini has discovered some semi-collaborative aspects of Entourage, the email/ calendar app in Office 2000:

I have found that [Entoruage] will accept meeting proposals from Wintel clients and even put them on my calendar but that's it. I can't share my calendar with my colleagues nor can I see their free/busy times.

Gavini says his network uses a "generic SMTP server to host calendar data" running on a Linux server. He does not use Exchange Server.

November 20, 2000 -- A reader (who wishes to remain anonymous) provides a detailed technical explanation of the difference between "collaboration" and "accepting iCal" meetings:

Just a quick explanation on the difference between "collaboration" and "accepting iCal" meetings. What the user is doing is called out on the web page you list (just have to be a messaging nerd to catch it) as the first * at the bottom- note the iCal protocol reference. Entourage has always said that it would support exchanging iCal based calendar requests (they even describe it at a Microsoft Entourage How-to article).

But users will find that the iCal standard has not gained wide acceptance nor is it capable of working in the way that most people use their Exchange based calendars (free/busy, sharing, public folder calendaring). Again this fits the bill as an Internet protocol client designed for personal productivity- you can send meeting requests to your friends, they can accept them, and you both get copies on your calendar. You cannot, however, check to see when your friend is available either by checking free-busy times or physically checking their calendar. A lot of this is handle by the more robust "collaboration" features of Exchange and Outlook.

November 20, 2000 -- Christian Thomas puts it this way and adds a suggestion:

Entourage DOESN'T allow you to "accept" meeting proposals. All it allows you to do it add the meeting to your Entourage calendar. It doesn't send a rely to the meeting organizer and doesn't show you as accepting or declining the meeting.

My workaround has been to keep my PC running and I have a mail rule that only shows meetings on my PC from which I can respond to them and create my own meetings using Outlook/Exchange. However I have my Mac and Entourage also receive the mail via SMTP to Exchange so I can use my Mac as my primary mail client and my PC for the meeting aspects of Exchange. A bit of a hack but worth it as it gives me the best of both worlds.

November 28, 2000 -- Martin Forrester comments on this suggestion:

Regarding Christian Thomas's workaround of using his PC to deal with meeting requests from Wintel users, and Entourage for all other email, that seems like a bit of overkill when you can of course use the Mac Outlook/Exchange client to accept the meeting requests. Despite the many deficiencies of that program, it can certainly do that just fine. I pretty much use it for that job alone, and Entourage for everything else.

Reader Reports on the Outlook 2001:Mac Beta

Please note that beta software is prerelease software and is expected to have a few bugs. MacWindows won't be pursuing solutions to problems until the final release ships.

First reports

January 11, 2000
Todd Miller

I have been using the new beta all day, and I must say that I am almost entirely pleased.

I have been using a PC for Outlook for over a year, and today I didn't need to go on the PC once. These are the things I have tested that work:

  1. Meeting planner - requests and responses work like you would expect. I can see free/busy times of my colleagues.
  2. Public folders are working. Public Mail, Contacts, Tasks all work.
  3. You can send tasks to others and receive them from others.
  4. Preview pane is working.

It didn't crash once all day. Supercool.

What's missing? Minor gripes.

I have a Microsoft wheel mouse, and Outlook doesn't accept the scroll up and down inputs. I had to make an application setting to convert to key presses. What difference does it make? If the cursor is at the top of the page, and you wheel down, you have to wheel for every line on the page until the cursor is at the bottom and then the next wheel click scrolls. If this where working, the page would scroll on the first click. There is not this problem in other MS apps like Word or IE5.

It would be nice if Microsoft could add an LDAP service. There is currently only Exchange Server, Outlook Address Book, Personal Address Book, and Personal Folders available.

The inbox assistant is lacking. It was unable to read my server side rules from our server. There is no Junk Mail or Adult Mail filtering tool.

You can choose the sound that is played for a meeting reminder, but not for a new message alert.

I almost feel bad about complaining about these few things as the application seems very solid and complete after the first day.

January 11, 2000
David Toub

I tried it and here are my comments:

First the interface-very nice! Similar to IE 5.0, one can change the color scheme (and there are additional options compared with IE, including the latest iMac colors). The setup was easy, although some interface elements creep in from 8.x (particularly when clicking on the Advanced button). It is very similar to OE and Entourage, but also similar to the windows version of Outlook. Despite the disclaimer, printing seemed to work just fine for me on a PowerBook G3 1998 under MacOS 9.0.4. The beta even imported most of my preferences just fine. And I didn't even mention the drag-and-drop installation...

Now the downside:

Converting Schedule Plus calendars to Outlook

January 12, 2001
Perbix Michael

Instructions on converting Schedule Plus calendars to Outlook I have successfully converted my schedule + calendar to Outlook, but I needed to do it with Windows since the import/export feature of Outlook 2001 are not active yet.

The steps are pretty straight forward...but here you go.

  1. Have the user being converted log into a windows machine
  2. Have them log into Web Access (if you are using that) and unselect USE SCHEDULE + AS MAIN CALENDAR in the option section of Web access, logoff Web Access.
  3. go to the mail and fax control panel and make sure Microsoft Exchange is set up for the users account.
  4. Open the schedule plus application (located in the Office folder, in the
  5. Microsoft office folder in program files) schpls32.exe I believe....
  6. Go to the tools menu, go to synchronize tab and select work primarily from local file box. When prompted locate an area on your HD give your file a name, and click on open.
  7. When this is finished quite Schedule Plus
  8. Launch Outlook
  9. Choose import from the file menu, select schedule+ (7.0) format and find the file you just saved.
  10. Follow the prompts, when asked to delete the schedule+ file from the server, click on yes.
  11. Copy the personal address book over to the new outlook folder, add the personal address book option and point to the address book file.

    That is it. Seems a bit rough, but it is rather a smooth process, I would however recommend users not use the personal address book and use the Outlook address book, or contact instead since the reside on the server.

Conflict between Outlook 2001 Beta and the Mac OS 9.1 software update control panel and extension

January 12, 2001
Gregory Smith

I installed Mac OS 9.1

I then installed the Outlook 2001 beta

I was getting Address errors immediately on start up. After a lot of testing I had to disable the software update control panel and extension.

I don't know how these can cause a "address error" immediately on start up,even before they load.

A solid beta

January 12, 2001
Craig Grannell

I noticed the report on your site -- thought I'd pipe in with my 2p.

I've been waiting for this release for about six months. Our office has two (count 'em) Macs and about 60 PCs, all of which were 'upgraded' to Outlook a while back, hence the Macs couldn't use the Calendar.

This new release solves all that and, despite being a bit sluggish (much like the PC version, in fact) it seems stable (no crashes today -- 8.2.2 would crash maybe once a day) and reasonably nice to use. Despite some graphical glitches that appear now and then, it seems quite bug free and the interface is a major improvement over 8.2.2 and the colour coordination is a nice touch, even if it is rather heavy-handed in implementation.

There are still a few issues with importing old contacts and such-like, but as far as I'm concerned 8.2.2 is now banished forever from my hard drive!

January 12, 2001
David Ahrens

Praise the Lord. I can finally view and update my Office 97 calendar from my Mac using the new Office 2001:Mac client for Exchange Server. The interface is slick and intuitive. It was a snap to install and didn't require any hair pulling. Microsoft is on the road to the release of a quality product with release of this beta.

January 16, 2001
Steve Levinson

I've been using Watson continuously on my desktop for nearly 2 days now. Except for quitting with one type 2 error, it has performed flawlessly - except for a few small bugs and un-implemented features that will almost certainly be fixed by the summer. The best way I can put it is that Watson provides the full operability of the Windows version, but it's a true Mac application, making it a joy to use. I haven't been using Outlook 8.x because Schedule + is, as we all know, incompatible with Windows' Outlook calendar format.

Instead, I've been using Virtual PC. Thanks to Watson, I'll never have to put up with all the waiting for Windows to catch up with my attempts to move appointments around etc. Watson, even in beta, makes Virtual PC totally unnecessary for me.

Conflict with RAM Doubler 8

January 16, 2001
Dave Green

I've run into a conflict between the new Microsoft Outlook 2001 Mac client and OrangePC. After several hours with no apparent problems yesterday, my Mac started locking up whenever I try to open either application when the other application is already open. So far have not found a solution.

After disabling RamDoubler 8 I have not had another lockup. With RamDoubler active, Outlook:Mac was fine until I booted OrangePC (or vice versa). Then it would lock up every time. Guess it's time to invest in more RAM.

OS 9.1 and Outlook 2001 conflict

January 16, 2001
Gregory Smith

The error came back. This time I had to remove the HID Library extension from the extension folder. Now my MS IntelliMouse does not work. I also am not entirely sure it's related to Outlook 2001.

Finish Outlook 2001 and character sets

Seppo Laaksonen
Helsinki, Finland

Incoming mail seem to be displayed in Latin1 instead of MacRoman, causing all special characters (äöå) to display incorrectly in the body of the message. Subject lines are OK. Since those special characters are very common in our language (Finnish), the mail part becomes pretty much useless.

At first I thought that this was just my misconfiguration, but I could not find anything that would change the behavior. Outgoing mail seem to work just fine.

Am I missing something here, since this would seem to be such a basic feature?

Otherwise, the version is from a whole new planet compared with the old one.

Problem with MacaNTee

January 16, 2001
Nick Pitman

I notice that Outlook 2000 no longer accepts logon authentication provided by MacaNTee. It was useful not to have to enter authentication password again when opening Outlook.

TIP: Turning off preview pane

January 16, 2001
Michael Perbix

I would like a way to turn off the preview pane, since it takes a good deal of time to click on each message when dialed up, however on a LAN it is great! BTW the voting feature works great, but only a Windows user can generate the vote e-mail. And there is supposed to be support for forms using Web based mail, but I have not tried that yet...

Now all I really need is native Mac Palm synching and all will be well with the world...

January 23, 2001

You can turn off the preview pane: uncheck Preview Pane" under the View menu.

(Thanks to Leland Jory and Simon.Gibbs)

Configuration advice

Having trouble getting Outlook 2001 to work? This question is fairly typical. After it, are over a dozen suggestions from readers that may be able to help.

January 16, 2001
Jim Beam

We are and IT staff new to networking Macs with PCs and we are trying to configure a couple Mac clients on our PC network...We installed Outlook 2001 and have tried to create a profile. In doing so, we found we had to enter the IP address of the Exchange Server into the profile setup (the network couldn't resolve the hostname we received an error). Upon doing so, the Exchange Server was able to recognize the mailbox account and resolve the IP address into the name of our mail server (MAIL). The profile setup underlined both the mail server and the users name.

After creating the profile we are presented with the option of connecting to the server or working offline (this computer will be used on the network and off). After clicking the connect to network button, the domain logon box appears (just like in the PC environment) asking for username, password and domain. After entering the information in, and clicking 'OK' we receive a username/password error and the only option available is to click 'Work Offline' and then quit Outlook. The username, password and domain are all correct.

It seems Outlook is communicating with the Exchange Server okay, but the username is not being correctly verified by the NT Authentication Server (which must authenticate the user before Outlook will work).

We are running NT 4.0, SP4 (I believe), Exchange Server 5.5. Services for Macintosh is not installed (we are trying to accomplish this over TCP/IP and trying to avoid AppleTalk). The users mailbox works just fine on Outlook 98.

We have successfully been able to access shared volumes using DAVE, and can successfully logon to the NT network and map those drives. DAVE appears to use some form of NetBIOS translation, is this why we can connect with DAVE but not with Outlook? Any suggestions on how to get this up and running would be appreciated.

Suggestions

January 17, 2001
Br. Jacob Grisley
St. Meinrad Archabbey

The Outlook 2001 user "Jim Beam" described a problem which sounded vaguely familiar to me, although with Outlook Exchange Client for Macintosh version 8.2.x.

I am not positive about when this problem occurred but there were login problems which were solved when the computer name was registered in the domain. This is different from the user name and apparently in some domain configurations is required.

January 17, 2001
Luis D Antezana

I had this problem once and felt very stupid after realizing I had been entering the Exchange Server's name in the log-on field that was actually asking for the domain name.

So, when you log into Outlook the dialog should be something to the effect of:

UserID: UserID
Password: Password
Domain: Domain Name (Not Exchange Server Name!)

January 17, 2001
Tara D. Martinez

In setting up the client, he might want to try to type the whole users name (Outlook will recognize it fine) and then the password (I have found that once Outlook recognizes the user, he/she can enter the short login fine ) i don't know why but in Outlook/Mac this happens more often. on the pc, authentication from he NT station is sufficient to launch Outlook and no login window is reguired....

Create a hosts file

January 17, 2001
Jim Monahan

I have successfully configured both Outlook 8.22 and Outlook Mac:2001 an an NT4/Windows 2000 Pro Server network, no Mac Services, and Dave 2.5

The user below had to enter the IP address instead of the server name because the Mac was unable to resolve the exchange server by UNC name.

I had the same problem in Outlook 8.22. For Outlook 8.22, I had to enter the Exchange Server name and IP in a Host file on the Mac.

Create the host file in Simpletext, and save the host file in the System/Preferences folder.

Host file format:

servername CNAME mail.server.name.org
mail.server.name.org A 123.123.123.123

Where 123.123.123.123 is the IP address of the mail server, and mail.server.name.org is the FQDN of the mail server.

Once the host file is created and saved:

Open the TCP/IP control panel, click select host file..., locate the file in the dialog box, click open.

When prompted to replace the existing file, say yes.

That should take care of the problem.

January 17, 2001
Kevin J. Weise

I don't think DAVE is their problem. I also use DAVE, the NETBIOS function is crucial to interoperation with NT. DAVE has a CSM module that allows you to enable/disable NETBIOS operation. (I recommend being logged out when you disable NETBIOS).

I also have been unable to establish a profile with Outlook 2001 beta. However, I disabled DAVE NETBIOS and attempted first run again, specifying the IP address of the Outlook Server (which I had not tried before) and it was still unable to verify that the stated machine was an Outlook Server.

Create a hosts file

January 17, 2001
Dave Green

One thing to check is to make sure TCP/IP is set up with a "TCP/IP Hosts" file to define server names/addresses. This file must be located in the Control Panels folder and must be selected from the TCP/IP control panel. The hosts file is a text file like this:

SERVER_D.PRPA.ORG

A

172.16.20.8

SERVER_B.PRPA.ORG

A

172.16.20.2

EXCHANGE1.PRPA.ORG

A

172.16.20.3

It took me quite a while to figure this out with the old Outlook/Mac. I couldn't find any documentation on the format of the hosts file...just had to take the default file and try to decipher it's format. I have no idea what the "A" means, but the first field is the server name and the last field is the IP address.

January 23, 2001
Debby Garcez:

Do you have SP 3 on your Exchange Server? Version 2.6.1 of Open Transport is the first release that doesn't require a host file. Don't forget to put your domain name (i.e. anycompany.com) it the TCP/IP control panel.

January 23, 2001
Martin Forrester:

Sounds like Jim Beam's problem with logging on to the Exchange server with Outlook 2001 is just the same old issue with the server not being in the DNS or local host file. This is already covered (for Outlook 8.x) at MacWindows.

January 23, 2001
Roger Pfändler

To resolve the hostname and to get access to the Exchange Server you probably have to create a Host file as described in Microsoft's Product Support Article Q149596. It works fine on my test system.

January 23, 2001
Benjamin:

I have connected my G4 with the NT4 network, using DAVE 2.5.1 to share the volumes and Outlook 2001 for messaging. Their doesn't seem to be a problem running the both programs together. However, I had to configure a hosts-file specially for Outlook.

January 23, 2001
Michael Ahern:

We had a similar problem with our NT setup. We had to create a host file in the preference folder, and tell TCP/IP to use the host file. The contents of the host file looked like this:

hostname CNAME hostname.domain name
hostname.domain name A IP Address

example:

exchange_server CNAME exchange_server.yourdomain.com
exchange_server.yourdomain.com A 161.120.22.13

January 23, 2001
Andreas Kampe-Wennborg

I had the same exact problem as reader Jim Beam. After I got confirmation that I had the correct Exchange server using TCP/IP and mailbox I couldn't not start working with Outlook 2001.

Solution for me was to switch to AppleTalk. It was very tricky, I had to throw out the preference files created and start over. Note - the first step is to get verified with TCP/IP (mailbox and that) and then switch to AppleTalk.

Other than that it works fine expect it doesn't display characters from the Swedish alphabet (åäö) so it's pretty useless to me...

I really, really, really want synching with my Palm. And please not the conduits from Entourage, they are very bad. Chapura.com are you listening? I want PocketMirror for MacOS/Outlook 2001, please!

January 24, 2001
Shane Palmer

When my organization first started moving to Exchange as our Email system we had problems getting the Macs connected and changing passwords. At first we had tried the Hosts file (which was also suggested by Microsoft's Tech Support). We ended up finding out all we had to do was add the domain (DNS) that our Exchange server was in to the Additional Search Domains list in the TCP/IP control panel. For example, our server was listed in the DNS as exchange.dept.iastate.edu, so we added an entry for dept.iastate.edu into the Additional Search Domains field in TCP/IP. After this it worked fine.

January 24, 2001
Sven Kasper

I was reading your comments about getting Outlook 2001 to work with Exchange Server. I found out you can also set your name servers within the TCP/IP control panel, therefore put in the IP of the primary and secondary windows name server followed by your Internet name server IP. In my case start with the 192.168.200.x then 192.168.200.y and after this the DNS given me by our ISP. This solved the problem and the Exchange Server Name had been resolved.

However, Kasper, January 26, Kasper added this note:

I just tried the other suggestions to set up TCP/IP with the host file. It works much faster than the way I had suggested.

January 24, 2001
Geordie Korper

In general I have been able to fix problems with Outlook not being able to find the Exchange server by making sure that there was a DNS entry for that server on our DNS servers and that the Macintosh's TCP/IP control panel had the appropriate domain listed in the search domain field. That will only work if the windows domain and the DNS domain are identical but in practice that is usually the case. The suggestion of using a host file will also work but it is much more cumbersome for large installations and means that if IS has to switch to a backup server with a different IP address the Hosts file will have to be changed on every client. Also the Hosts file does not have to be in the control panel folder as someone suggested. Supposedly you can even use different host files for different locations if you choose a different one in the TCP/IP control panel.

January 26, 2001
Peter Attanasio offers advice for dialing into Exchange Server:

I experienced the same situation on my home machine using a dial in connection. I found that if you set the default to this profile at startup in the preferences, instead of using the select profile at startup the program does not exhibit this problem. But when you want to change profiles you have to do so via the Outlook control panel. I've had to do it this way since The last version of Outlook Exchange came out.

Another problem I'm experiencing is if you can't add address to your contacts automatically, but if put the old personal address book into your services and then select it as your default under keep your personal addresses in, under the preferences, you can do addresses automatically this way.

Why Macs need extra care in configuration

January 23, 2001
Andy Pastuszak

What people need to realize here is that Windows machines use WINS for name resolution of the server. Macs are not capable of WINS resolution...So, in order for the client to find the server, it is important that the server has proper DNS entries on your corporate DNS server and that you use the server's DNS name and not it's WINS name when connecting (though they should be the same for sanity's sake).

Either that, or a hosts file will work.

TIP: How to copy e-mail in the pane

January 23, 2001
Craig Grannell  

Since my previous comments to you, I have found a few more bugs, but most of them are cosmetic and the release is still better than 8.2.2. One really irritating bug is the way you cannot copy from emails in the pane, instead you have to open them in their own window.

January 29, 2001 --
Ted Brown

You can copy from the pane using the context-sensitive menu (control-click). The command key and normal menu do not work.

Too many fonts problem

January 23, 2001
Johann Dijkstra

Outlook 8.2 had the problem that it would hang or wouldn't start up if there were to many fonts open. I think the problem remains in 2001.

I tried the beta on two Macs, one beige G3 and one G4/400 gigabit , both running OS 9.1. On the G4 Outlook would only run after closing all the fontsets in ATM Deluxe. I didn't do any tests to see how many fonts can be open at the same time.

Conflict with Entourage

On the G3 I am having a problem with Entourage after installing the Beta. When I want to send an E-mail Entourage quits without any warning. I hope the font issue is solved by the time Outlook ships. On the other side I think the beta is running better that 8.2.2 ever did.

January 26, 2001 --
Jeff Lucia

I have been very pleased with Outlook 2001. The only issues I had occurred when running Outlook 2001 for the first time. When it used my existing profiles, it added one of my name servers to the end of the Exchange server name (ex. Exchange Server: 12345 www.www.com). This prevented me from logging on. Once I removed the name sever it worked fine.

However, as reported by Johann Dijkstra, Outlook is still reading and building it's font cache on startup (unlike Office 2001). This is a bummer since it will more than likely still have issues with too many fonts open. Only time (and more testing) will prove that.

On a side note, I want to thank EVERYONE who came up with the suggestions for moving .pst and .pab files from the PC to the Mac. They were ROCK solid ways of converting. The only issue was distribution lists (oh and the client with the 12,000 file - 1.4 gig Personal file...which only took 4 hours to transfer).

Minor bug: Can't send with print job in the queue

January 23, 2001
Dave Green

I have noticed that the "Send" button on a message doesn't work while a print job is still in the queue, i.e., I often print a message before I send it. While the print job is processing, the "Send" button flashes when clicked, but doesn't send the message. After the print job leaves the queue, Send works normally.

HTML problem with in e-mail

January 24, 2001
Jeff Sternberg

I can echo others' sentiments about the Outlook 2001 Beta -- finally! This will be a welcome upgrade when it is released.

One issue I'm somewhat concerned about, however, is the apparent lack of support for HTML e-mails. They appear formatted just fine in my Outlook Windows client, but are generally presented very oddly in the Mac client -- nothing is clickable, and images and tables don't appear, but things like type fonts, sizes, and colors do! I hope they can "throw" support in for HTML e-mail -- or at least treat HTML e-mail as attachments that you could view in your browser of choice...

January 26, 2001
Gregory Smith

I've noticed this too. But is the problem with HTML or is it with Outlook Rich Text format? I have received some e-mail that links do work with and I cannot figure out what the format is.

Moving from Entourage to Outlook 2001 for Exchange Server: pros and cons

January 26, 2001 --
Colin Curwen

Switched from Entourage to Outlook 2001 Beta

I am the lone Macintosh in an office of about 30 PC's and have been using Entourage as my primary Outlook client. Our Exchange guy enabled IMAPaccess for me to the exchange server and it works fairly well (key things are that it recognizes Exchange meeting requests and the palm synching rocks!) I have tried the 8.x client a few times but without the calendar support it was very frustrating.

Now [with Outlook 2001 for Exchange] I'm singing a different tune! Apart from some weird behavior with the contacts it's working great. I went through the setup without any problems

I use Dave to access our Win2K network - and I didn't need the IP address to resolve the exchange server address either. The drag'n'drop install hadme up and running in minutes and unlike office 2001 didn't cause any extension problems. I really like the look and feel although there are some 8.x interfaces still lurking about. I do miss the Palm sync though.

Problems:

The contacts sometimes mixes up phone numbers or won't save my changes, and I don't have as much flexibility in viewing them as the PC client. I also noticed that I have problems adding recipients to my contacts from a message with a "requested service is not supported" error.

Needs Address Import

January 31, 2001
John Willis

My comments are similar to those of David Toub on Jan 11th. The interface is much prettier, but the beta product is fatally flawed by not allowing import of previous address books or even the creation of a personal address book by clicking on properties and "adding to personal address book". I have to ask what is the point of putting out a product that doesn't work at least as well as the existing. I'm sure some folks will be attracted by the addition of a cross-platform calendar, but since that's basically downgrading anyway from Now-up-to-date, I am very put off by being left only with the prospect of typing in a hundred email names.

Almost any email program worth it's salt can import a list of addresses.

TIP: Synching Outlook 2001 with Palm--use an Ethernet cradle

February 5, 2001
Michael Perbix wrote to say he found a way to synch a Palm device to Outlook 2001:Mac Beta for Exchange Server. It involves using:

Here is his description:

I had asked a while back if anyone had any info on using the Palm Ethernet cradle. Well here is my answer... IT WORKS!

I have a Palm V, and being a Mac user, can not sync it with our Exchange server (meaning my Calendar Mail etc.)...Then Palm came out with an Ethernet Cradle...then realized that the Ethernet cradle was only available for Palm III form factors. So I inquired here and there (Mac Managers and Mac-NT mailing lists) and was pointed to a nifty Palm V-to-III adapter made by Solvepoint (you need the DockV PRO for this).

Armed with these pieces, and having already converted myself (using Windows Schedule+ and Outlook) to Outlook 2001, I was looking for the Server software piece. Palm offers no evaluation download, and when asked about pricing, 50 users would cost $14,000. Yeah, you read that correctly, at least that is what we were told. So I followed a few links and found XTNDConnect Server from Extended Systems (works with Windows CE, Palm, and one other) and Exchange and GroupWare I believe- for significantly less $$$ than Palm. So I fired up my trusty NT 4 test server and installed this VERY EASY to install package, choose to let Exchange Authenticate the users, it generates a public key for encryption and loaded the software on the Palm. Set up the software piece for the server app, threw my Palm in the cradle hit the button and--nothing.

Turns out I was missing a piece from Palm for Network Synching, I got that from the Ethernet Cradle page at Palm, installed and configured it via the PDF user Manual and VIOLA! Works Like a charm.

February 5, 2001
Laura Altergott

I am disappointed that your still not able to sync the Palm with the new Watson. I was hoping it would allow for Conduits to be installed into Watson. I have tried. Its such a hassle for our Mac users to have to run yet another program. Entourage however does snych, just great.

Outlook 2001 Beta -- no user-defined fields.

February 5, 2001
Dan Warne

Thought I would throw in my experience of the Outlook 2001 Beta and mention that it does not support user-defined fields in the task list.

This is a real problem for me because our department uses user-defined fields to track workflow via the task lists. We publish a newspaper and have user defined fields such as Journalist, Edition Number etc. to group and sort jobs (articles).

As Outlook 2001 can apparently only use the hard-coded field names we lose that collaborative functionality on the Mac side. (However the older version of Outlook hardly supported tasks at all so I suppose at least Microsoft is progressing... I just hope they don't forget to include this functionality altogether, albeit our slightly obscure usage of it).

Can't see address book when not connected to server.

February 5, 2001
Robin Jackson

I loaded this yesterday and so far it is looking very good, the only odd thing is that I don't seem to be able to see my address book locally i.e. when working disconnected. I can see it when connected to the server. I have downloaded it. I was wondering if anyone else had this problem?

Outlook 2001 Beta problem with Office 98 extensions files

February 5, 2001 -- Ray Kloss reports that the Outlook 2001 Beta has rendered parts of Office 98 unusable by adding newer versions of extensions files. He writes:

I'm surprised no one has mentioned the problem with using Outlook Beta with Office 98. I think the new beta is very nice and stable, but when I tried to start Excel, I started getting OLE and memory errors. Outlook Beta adds newer versions of:

Microsoft Component Library
Microsoft Internet Library
Microsoft OLE Automation
Microsoft OLE Library
Microsoft Structured Storage

February 6, 2001 -- However, half a dozen readers wrote in to say that they did not see the problem. The readers were all running Mac OS 9.1.

Steve Minard points out a similarity of this report with another problem, and offers a workaround:

This sort of problem has occurred before with users of the ancient MS project or FoxPro products. The workaround I've used in the past was to move the MS specific shared library file to the application folder immediately after each product installation. Keeping none of the libraries in the Extensions folder allowed each application to use the libraries that it shipped with, avoiding the problem described above. Outlook 2001 seems to insist that the common libraries be in the Extensions folder, hopefully this is only a characteristic of the beta. Even so because my systems do not depend on anything in the Extensions folder, simply moving the Outlook installed shared libraries to the Extensions Disabled folder restores full function of the older products even MS project 4.0.

February 15, 2001
Kim Thesiger

Discovered a minor but very annoying incompatibility problem between Excel 98 and Outlook Beta 2001 which appears to be reproducible.

After installing Outlook Beta 2001 on a machine with Excel 98, try typing in a date and formatting the date cell as ddd-d-mmm so that typing in, for example, 2/8/01 should give you Thu-8-Feb.

What it actually gives you is Wed-8-Feb. All date formats that include the day of the week, show the day of the week as one day earlier than the correct value.

Replacing the Microsoft OLE 2.3 and Internet Library 5.0.3 extensions with the OLE 2.2 and Internet Library 5.0.2 extensions, solves the problem.

Upgrading to Office 2001 also appears solves the problem since other machines that use Excel 2001 and Outlook 2001 Beta do not have the same problem.

All these machines were running OS Z1 9.0.4 (an International English version).

February 16, 2001
J. Scott Franko

Every since I installed the Outlook beta, I have the problem with clicking links to launch Internet Explorer freezing my computer when Internet Explorer launches.

But I've only noticed it from Entourage. I don't use Outlook as often as Entourage. So I haven't noticed it happening from links in Outlook. Even when I have Internet Explorer open, clicking a link in Entourage crashes the computer sometimes, but rarely. It happens 100 percent of the time when Internet Explorer is not already running.

I followed the workaround and removed the office manager extensions. I got a link from Entourage to open Internet Explorer without crashing once, but now its back to crashing the Mac.

February 20, 2001
Rick Zeman

The Entourage team STRONGLY suggested (on the Entourage-Talk mailing list) putting a COPY of the Microsoft Internet Library in the Office 2001 folder where the Entourage application resides. There's a contention issue otherwise when Entourage and IE 5 access the library at the same time. This way, IE uses the copy in Extensions and Entourage uses copy local to it (remember, the Mac will use the copy local to the application before looking to system files).

Dunno if the Outlook 2001 beta has anything to do with this as luckily I'm in a Novell GroupWise environment, not Exchange. I suspect that's a non-issue as it's just Entourage passing the GURL event to IE.

February 21, 2001
Rick Wintheiser adds:

When moving the MS Internet Library, do we put it in the same folder as the application or the folder called Office. I use a trick before 2001 to help the different extensions work and reduce failures. We were told to put the extensions in the Office folder.

Issues of Memory and resource use

February 6, 2001
Simon Gibbs

It appears that since Outlook 2001 has been installed Internet Explorer 5 constantly crashes out with memory errors when downloading files or receiving pages with large images - I have had IE5's memory allocation set to between 15 and 25 MB but still the problem occurs.

I assume that this has something to do with Microsoft's shared libraries, but we have another Mac on 9.1 running all three programs OK so maybe it's an OS problem.

Also, has anyone else noticed that if Outlook is left running for an amount of time it slowly starts using up system resources. Programs which run simultaneously to Outlook when it's first launched will not run later on in the day.

February 16, 2001
Craig Grannell

Outlook is one of a number of badly-behaved applications, such as Netscape and Office that don't 'give back' system memory when they quit. Restarting is the only option (or quitting the Finder, which is what I tend to do...)

I have noticed that if a lot of processor-intensive apps are run along with Outlook, things start to go awry after a few hours, notably with Photoshop. Also, if the system hangs (which it does now and again) upon restart I notice that there are a ton of Outlook temp files in the Trash -- this occurs even if Outlook had been quit prior to the crash. I'm not sure what the problem is, but note that I've had some bad crashes when opening Adobe Acrobat Reader while Outlook is already running...

Despite my initial glee with this app, I've also noticed that it's gradually getting worse, although probably not quite back to Exchange standards. One really frustrating and common error that I'm getting is "Too many files open. MacOS error -42," which appears when I'm running a lot of apps with Outlook in the background (although with enough free RAM etc.). Sometimes I can force quit Outlook in this situation, but half the time the system freezes.

Roll on the final 'bug squashed' version, that is assuming they do get squashed...

Problem with Outlook 2001 Beta and Mac OS X

March 26, 2001
Leland Jory

I've discovered a problem running the Outlook 2001 Beta for Mac on build 4K78 of OS X. I had the beta installed on the OSXPB and it worked in the Classic environment (after I booted into OS9 and created a Hosts file).

Since installing the 4K78 build (clean install), I can no longer do this. If I boot to OS 9.1, create the Hosts file, then boot into X, the Classic environment stops at around the 85 percent mark on the progress bar. I then have to delete several networking preferences files from my OS9.1 System Folder before Classic will launch again.

If you've seen this problem, please let us know.

A fix for the problem: hosts file the culprit (Or, how to create a hosts file in OS X)

March 29, 2001
Ed Dyer

The problem is not really with the Outlook 2001 beta, but with the hosts file. I have just duplicated the problem with Outlook 8.2.2 and OS X final release. OS X creates a TCP/IP config in OS 9.1 called "classic."

Dyer send us a procedure for creating a hosts file in Mac OS X:

I modified this info slightly to tailor it to creating a hosts file for Outlook users. This is from Andreas Monitzer' read me file for his PPTP utility on Apple's downloads page for OS X.

Outlook users: To create a hosts file for Outlook in OS X:

  1. Open /Applications/Utilities/NetInfoManager
  2. Go to "domain" and "security" and "authenticate" Enter your admin password
  3. In the middle column click "machines"
  4. Press Command-N
  5. Double-click 'new_directory'
  6. Go down to the "name" property and change it to the name in your hosts file
  7. Press Command-Shift-N
  8. Doubleclick 'new_property'
  9. Enter 'ip_address'
  10. Press Command-Option-N
  11. Doubleclick 'new_value'
  12. Enter the ip-address in your old hosts file
  13. Press Command-S, confirm
  14. Finished! You can now quit the application.
  15. Open your Network utility and ping the name (no IP, no xxx.com) If you get a successful ping, open outlook and you're good to go.

March 29, 2001
George W Raduano also found the hosts file to be the problem:

I had the same exact problem when I installed OS X. I discovered it through a process of elimination. After eliminating the "hosts" file, everything worked just fine. I worked through the problem with Apple tech support and alerted them to my find.

March 30, 2001
Leland Jory

FYI, I've tried the suggested fix by Ed Dyer and it still isn't working. Obviously this isn't a universal fix.

Mac OS X problem related to the Dock

March 29, 2001
Michael Cohen

Although I don't have the same problem that Leland Jory has with the Outlook beta on OS X I have some interesting ones that may be related to the hosts file and how X modifies the OS 9.1 system folder.

After installing OS X, the Outlook Beta would not work when I rebooted under OS 9.1: claimed that it couldn't find the server. I reinstalled the beta under 9.1, and it allowed me to set up a profile and seemed to find the server during the check phase, but when I actually tried to use Outlook, again the server was not to be found.

Interestingly, the Outlook beta does work in the Classic environment under OS X, but only once per session. If I launch it, do some work, and quit, then relaunch, the beta hangs, freezing the dock completely.

Even restarting the system doesn't work; I actually have to press the reset button on my G4. (Interestingly, I see the same pattern trying to run Eudora 4.3 in the Classic environment: one launch per session).

The fix

March 30, 2001
Michael Cohen

I was able to track this down to a bug in the Dock. It seems when you drag an application to the Dock, it stores it as a symbolic link. Somehow, launching a Classic mail app this way from the Dock causes it to do something odd when the Classic mail app quits: something is not cleaned up (maybe a connection not closed or a file handle left dangling), and when it is launched again, the Dock freezes. However, storing an alias to the application in the Dock seems to work around what ever has gone bad. Launching the alias does not cause the Dock to freeze on subsequent launches.

So, now I have Outlook in both 9.1 and Classic under X working satisfactorily.

Another take:

May 26, 2001
Bruce Bowden

I tried Ed Dyer's solution using Netinfo manager to set up the Exchange server IP address. I was able to ping it under OS X but Outlook 2001 Beta reported that the machine was not an Exchange server.

For my next attempt I transferred the Hosts file from my OS 9.1 machine into the classic System Folder and linked to it using Classic TCP/IP. Outlook now works fine. The problem of Classic hanging on launch does happen.

I did not start this machine under 9.1 during all this, I stayed in OS X and Classic. I was running the demo version of Sharity while I wait to see what Dave for OS X will do. I have no idea whether that affected my results.

What can I say except 'Your mileage may vary.'

OS X Mail and Exchange Server

March 29, 2001 -- Matthew Smith tried using the Mail IMAP client that comes with Mac OS X with Microsoft Exchange server:

I am having the following problem with OS X's mail program and Exchange Server. I attempt to connect to the Exchange Server as an IMAP server. Some mailboxes I am able to read messages from, but if they have other folders within them, then I can't read messages... I can just open the enclosed folders.

March 30, 2001
Andrew White

I want to corroborate Matthew Smith's report of problems reading Exchange Server mail via IMAP configuration with OS X Mail. Strangely, I cannot access all of my folders (including my inbox) when logging in at work on a G4 533 Tower, but can access my inbox on the same account at home with my PowerBook G3 400. Both machines connect wirelessly.

Reader reports mysterious Outlook 2001 Beta type 2 errors

May 30, 2001
Charles Buki

I have been problem free using Outlook 2001 Beta for nearly four months, on both a G3 laptop and a G4 desktop. One is connected via airport at home and the other via Ethernet to an NT system, and in both cases integration with the Windows Exchange users has been very very good.

Until now. Suddenly, on each machine, using OS 9.1, the application quits at 22 seconds citing a type 2 error. There is ample memory dedicated to the program so I am at a loss to determine what has gone wrong. Furthermore, it seems very mysterious that it occurred independently on two different machines in the same way.

I have deleted all Outlook 8.2.2 files and all Outlook Beta files and all preferences of any kind. I then went to Mactopia and downloaded Outlook Beta and reinstalled and the problem persists. So I downloaded 8.2.2 to get me through to September.

May 31, 2001
Jay Rolls points to Office Updater:

I had essentially the same problem, and it occurred right after installing the Office Updater.

June 1, 2001

Charles Buki responded that he, too, had installed the Office Updater before the problem began.

May 31, 2001
Morten Davidsen

I haven't seen this problem at all, and we have installed the beta on approximately 250 machines.

But, my first thought is that there is some problem with his account on the server. The easiest way to check this out would be to create a dummy account on the server, and log on and see if the problem persists. Or, he could get someone else to log onto their account on one of his machines.

Another thing worth checking out: Make sure not too many fonts are active on his machines. I don´t think this is the problem though, since it happens on two different machines at the same time.

Another fix: fonts

June 1, 2001
Balder Martens also sees this with Outlook 8.2.2, but found a fix:

I'm trying to run Outlook 8.2.2 on my g4/400 gigabit Ethernet, OS 9.1 and 200 Exchange Windows server. Everything configures out fine, the Mac sees the server but when starting up Outlook it crashes on error type 2.

Outlook 2001: same problem but no error message, it refuses to boot.

I fixed all of my problems!

There were simply too many fonts activated in ATM de luxe, I reduced the amount of open fonts to 20 and now everything works fine (both versions, but I'm using 8.2.2.).

Beside that I increased the program's memory to 15 mb.

June 1, 2001
Sheri Nikishin says that points to open font suitcases causes Outlook to quit, and mentions a RAM problem causing Type 2 errors:

We are a 24 user, Mac-based art department (in a sea of 10,000+ Windows users corporate-wide). Most of us have been using Outlook 2001 Beta since February (G4's and iMacs, OS 9.04 and OS 9.1). All in all, it's been a pleasant experience compared to coaxing the department to continue using Win NT/Citrix.

The designers in our department are using Adobe Type Manager 4.6 with Adobe Type Reunion Deluxe 2.6. The administrative users are just using a small, basic set of true type fonts placed in their System font folder.

When users have several fonts open, it affects Outlook. It will either slow to a crawl upon launch and while using it; or, it will try to launch and then quit immediately. In each case, the user had several font suitcases open (I have yet to pinpoint the cutoff of how many fonts you can have activated before it dies). After deactivating a handful, Outlook works fine again.

I have seen the type 2 errors with Outlook, but it seemed to be RAM related (type 2 errors were common in any app and the finder, but occurred consistently on every Outlook launch). It was only happening on two computers: our new dual processor G4's. As soon as I swapped out the memory, the problem ceased.

Limitations on meeting request functionality

First the problem, then a workaround below it:

June 25, 2001
Brian Willett has discovered some limitations to the Mac client, and somewhat of a workaround. He says that "resources such as conference rooms, projectors, etc. which are set up with Outlook accounts will not auto-accept meetings requested by Outlook 2001 clients." His full report:

I support a marketing department of about 100 Macs within a large Wintel-based company.

Over the last year the lack of full cross-platform calendar functionality in Outlook 8.2.2 has grown from a minor irritation in the early days into something of a crisis now that the company at large has become increasingly Outlook-dependent for meeting scheduling.

I was therefore pleased to read that Outlook Beta 2001 promised full compatibility with the PC world. Yet my tests have shown that while Outlook 2001 Beta does allow Mac users and Windows users to share calendars more equally (i.e. at least they use the same format), there are still limitations in the meeting planning functionality.

The "problem" I've found---which Microsoft in typical fashion dismisses as "a feature that is not supported in Outlook 2001"---is that resources such as conference rooms, projectors, etc. which are set up with Outlook accounts will not auto-accept meetings requested by Outlook 2001 clients. Thus, if a Mac user creates a meeting within their own calendar and invites a resource, that resource will not automatically accept the invitation and block out the time in its calendar (even though the 'auto-accept' option is indeed selected in the Properties of the resource account).

It's interesting to note, however, that if you log in as the resource account and simply read or preview the meeting requests stacked up in the Inbox, the invitations are immediately accepted and added to the resource's calendar. You don't even have to click the accept button; just reading the messages triggers the auto-accept action and confirmations are sent out to the meeting organizers. In fact, as a workaround Microsoft recommends leaving a computer logged into the resource account in order to allow it to auto-accept meetings. But with scores of conference rooms in our corporate center, dedicating a computer to each one to leave logged in is not a very realistic option.

So as it now stands, the only acceptable way I've found that Mac users can book time for a room is to open the resource's calendar via File>Open Other User's Folder>, and set up the meeting from within the room's calendar rather than from within their own calendar. Using this method, meeting organizers MUST remember to include themselves in the required attendees list so that they can accept invitations to their own meetings so that they will be added to their own calendars.

Workaround

June 26, 2001
Luis Antezana

Mr. Willett correctly notes Microsoft's workaround for a resource not auto-accepting a meeting request (auto-accepting requests without having a client open only works in Outlook 2000, not 2001, 97, or 98). Microsoft suggest running an Outlook client for that resource so it can auto-accept meeting requests.

To ease Mr. Willett's concerns over needing multiple computers to answer multiple resources, I offer this tip:

1. Log into a resource account in Outlook

2. In Preferences>Microsoft Outlook>Sharing, choose another account (you may want to create a new one ahead of time) and assign it as a delegate, then check the box to send meeting requests only to delegates.

3. Repeat this process with each resource, assign the same account as a delegate each time.

4. Finally, log in as the delegate account and make sure the auto-respond preferences are set to your liking, then leave that account running.

This way you can have one computer running to auto-respond for multiple resources.

I hope this helps, and that Microsoft adds the auto-respond functionality to requests from Outlook 2001 clients.


See also our Outlook 2001 special report page for information on the release verison of Outlook 2001.

For information on Outlook 8.x for Exchange Server, see our Outlook/Exchange special report page.


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