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Outlook reverts server settings to the old internal Exchange settings

When migrating your Exchange services to a Hosted platform you may find that your users Outlook settings keep reverting back to the old server settings. The process of moving your users from an internal Active Directory (AD) environment with Exchange running can cause problems such as this.

Outlook 2007 and up uses a process called AutoDiscover which locates the Rackspace Hosted Exchange settings. The AutoDiscover process within Outlook works through a pre-defined list of places to obtain server settings from. This list is hardcoded into Outlook. The first location is to look at the Service Connection Point (SCP) object located within AD. The SCP object is part of the Exchange server configuration and has the Autodiscover URI which Outlook is uses within your network. This means that if a workstation running Outlook is connected to the AD domain, even if you have setup your AutoDiscover record correctly for Rackspace, Outlook will ignore the CNAME settings if it finds the SCP Object in AD first.

You can test that this is in fact the cause of your problems by following the these steps. You will need to do this from a windows machine running Outlook, which has an Outlook profile already setup.

1. Hold the 'CTRL' key and right click on the Outlook icon in the notification area (to the left of the Windows clock). You will see the hidden option 'Test E-mail AutoConfiguration', click on this option.

2. When the  'Test E-mail AutoConfiguration' window appears, fill in the E-mail address and password for an affected mailbox.

3. Only leave 'Use AutoDiscover' selected i.e. deselect the two other options.

4. Click the 'Test' button and wait for the test to complete.

5. When the test is complete, click on the 'Log' tab.

If you see a line mentioning '…found through the SCP' as shown the below screenshot. You are impacted by the issue this article describes.

You should be able to work around this problem by removing the URI information from the SCP object in your AD using the following instructions.

The following commands need to be run from an Exchange Server on your old environment by an account that has the required permissions to make this change.

1. The first command will provide you with the name of your client access server on your environment, note this down.


2. The second command will, allow you to list the current setting of your AutoDiscover internal URI. It is important you make a safe note of this in case you need to revert the settings back to the original.

Get-ClientAccessServer | Select-Object AutoDiscoverServiceInternalUri

3. The next command will remove the current AutoDiscover internal URI. Please replace CAS1 with your own Client Access Server's name found in step 1.

Set-ClientAccessServer -Identity “CAS1” -AutoDiscoverServiceInternalUri $NULL

To revert the above settings for any reason, please issue the following command by replacing with the output you made note of from Step 2, as well as replacing CAS1 with your own server's name (as you did in Step 3).

Set-ClientAccessServer -Identity “CAS1” -AutoDiscoverServiceInternalUri ""

Once you have issued the command in Step 3, the change should take immediate effect and Outlook clients will not be able to locate the SCP object anymore. You will now be able to setup Outlook without the settings reverting.