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Understanding Outlook Web App Advanced Features

Exchange 2010
 

Applies to: Exchange Server 2010 SP3, Exchange Server 2010 SP2

Topic Last Modified: 2012-02-06

You can manage advanced features in Outlook Web App in Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 by using the Exchange Management Console and the Exchange Management Shell. In Exchange 2010, you can enable and disable Outlook Web App features for your whole organization or for individual users by using segmentation. To increase protection against spammers, you can disable Web beacons in Outlook Web App. If the default language and character settings for Outlook Web App at initial sign-in aren't appropriate for your users, you can change them using the language and character settings. If users will be using Outlook Web App over a slow network connection, you can enable Gzip compression to improve the performance of Outlook Web App on the client computer.

Looking for management tasks related to Outlook Web App advanced features? Check out Managing Outlook Web App Advanced Features.

Contents

Segmentation of Features in Outlook Web App

Understanding Web Beacons

Language Settings

Character Settings

Gzip Compression Settings

Customizing the Forms-Based Authentication Sign-In Page

Creating a Custom Theme for Outlook Web App

Segmentation lets you enable and disable features that are available to users in Outlook Web App. By default, any mail-enabled user in your Exchange 2010 organization can access their mailbox by using Outlook Web App. Depending on the needs of your organization, you can use segmentation to configure the following restrictions for user access:

  • Restrict access to Outlook Web App for specific users.
  • Control access to certain Outlook Web App features for specific users.
  • Disable an Outlook Web App feature completely.

Many features can be set for an Outlook Web App virtual directory by using the EMC. You can use the Set-OwaVirtualDirectory cmdlet in the Shell to enable or disable the same features that you can enable and disable by using the EMC, in addition to many other Outlook Web App features for an Outlook Web App virtual directory. For example, you can use the RemindersandNotificationsEnabled parameter to disable the Reminders feature in Outlook Web App. The Reminders feature enables users to receive new mail notifications. You can also modify other Outlook Web App features, such as Tasks and Contacts.

For more information about the parameters that you can use to configure segmentation for all users, see Set-OwaVirtualDirectory.

For more information about the features that can be configured using the EMC, see Configure Segmentation in Outlook Web App.

For more information about how to enable and disable features for specific users, see Set-CASMailbox.

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The following table lists the differences between Outlook Web App segmentation in Exchange Server 2003 vs. Exchange 2010 and Exchange Server 2007.

Outlook Web App segmentation in Exchange 2003 vs. Exchange 2010 and Exchange 2007

Type Exchange 2003 Exchange 2010 and Exchange 2007

Segmentation basis

Segmentation can be performed for individual users and for individual servers. The segmentation setting for each Outlook Web App feature is stored as a DWORD value in the registry.

If the DWORD value is 1, the Outlook Web App feature is enabled. If the DWORD value is 0, the Outlook Web App feature is disabled.

By default, all features are enabled.

Segmentation can be performed for individual users and for individual virtual directories. You can administer the user and virtual directory segmentation settings for each Outlook Web App feature by using the Shell.

Unlike Exchange 2003, segmentation settings in Exchange 2010 and Exchange 2007 aren't configured by editing the registry.

Storing segmentation values

The DWORD values that are set for users and for servers are the same. However, they're stored in different locations.

  • The server DWORD value is stored in a registry key.
  • The user DWORD value is stored in the msExchMailboxFolderSet Active Directory attribute on the user object.

By default, the msExchMailboxFolderSet attribute exists, but the value isn't configured.

  • The segmentation value that's set for an Outlook Web App virtual directory is stored on the virtual directory object.
  • The segmentation value that's set for a user is stored in the msExchMailboxFolderSet Active Directory attribute on the user object.

By default, the msExchMailboxFolderSet attribute exists for each user, but the value isn't configured. Use the Set-CASMailbox cmdlet to configure values for individual users.

Features in Outlook Web App in Exchange 2010 or Exchange 2007 that can be segmented

  • Not applicable
  • You can segment the following Outlook Web App features:
    • Unified Messaging integration
    • Windows SharePoint Services and Windows file shares integration
    • Exchange ActiveSync integration from Mobile Settings on the Options page

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A Web beacon is a file object, such as a transparent graphic or an image, which is put on a Web site or in an e-mail message. Web beacons are typically used together with HTML cookies to monitor user behavior on a Web site or to validate a recipient's e-mail address when an e-mail that contains a Web beacon is opened. Web beacon configuration is set on a per virtual directory basis for each Outlook Web App virtual directory in your organization.

Web beacons frequently come in the form of images that are downloaded onto a user's computer when the user opens a junk e-mail message. After the images are downloaded, a Web beacon notification is sent to the sender of the junk e-mail that informs the sender that the recipient e-mail address is valid. After a user opens a message that sends a Web beacon notification back to the junk e-mail sender, the user may receive junk e-mail more frequently because the junk e-mail sender has verified that the user's e-mail address is valid. Web beacons can also contain harmful code and be used to circumvent e-mail filters to deliver a spammer's message.

noteNote:
By default, Outlook Web App disables all potential Web beacon content in e-mail messages.

In Outlook Web App, an incoming e-mail message that has any content that can be used as a Web beacon, regardless of whether the message actually contains a Web beacon, prompts Outlook Web App to display a warning message to the user to inform the user that the content has been blocked. If a user knows that a message is legitimate, they can enable the blocked content. If a user doesn't recognize the sender or the message, they can open the message without unblocking the content and then delete the message without triggering beacons. If your organization doesn't want to use this feature, you can disable the blocking option for Outlook Web App.

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The configuration settings for filtering Web beacons are stored in Active Directory. You can configure how Web beacons are filtered by using the Set-OwaVirtualDirectory cmdlet in the Shell. For more information about syntax and parameters, see Set-OwaVirtualDirectory.

The following list describes the parameters in the FilterWebBeacons property for Web beacon filtering in Outlook Web App:

  • UserFilterChoice   You can let users decide whether they want to enable or continue to disable blocked Web beacon content by using the UserFilterChoice parameter. Outlook Web App blocks all potential Web beacon content in an e-mail message and displays a message in the information bar when a user receives an e-mail message that contains potential Web beacon content warning them that content is blocked. To view the blocked Web beacon content, the user can click Click Here in the infobar message.
    noteNote:
    By default, the UserFilterChoice parameter is enabled on Outlook Web App.
  • ForceFilter   You can block all potential Web beacon content by using the ForceFilter parameter. Users can't override the ForceFilter parameter to view the blocked Web beacon content.
  • DisableFilter   You can enable all Web beacon content on Outlook Web App by using the DisableFilter parameter setting.

For more information about how to disable Web beacons, see Configure Web Beacon and HTML Form Filtering for Outlook Web App.

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You can configure the following language parameter settings on an Outlook Web App virtual directory by using the Set-OwaVirtualDirectory cmdlet in the Shell:

  • DefaultClientLanguage   The DefaultClientLanguage parameter, a Regional property setting, specifies the Outlook Web App language that's used when a user who hasn't selected a specific language on the Options page signs in to Outlook Web App. This prevents the user from being able to view the initial page to set the time zone and language, but doesn't prevent the user from changing these settings using Options in Outlook Web App after they've signed in. This parameter doesn't apply to Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server or Exchange 2003 virtual directories.
  • LogonAndErrorLanguage   The LogonAndErrorLanguage parameter specifies which language Outlook Web App uses for forms-based authentication and for error messages that occur when a user’s current language setting can't be read. This parameter applies to Exchange 2003 virtual directories.

The user can configure the language that's used by Outlook Web App by using the Regional Settings option in the Options menu after he or she is successfully authenticated for an Outlook Web App session. The LogonAndErrorLanguage parameter can be configured only by an administrator. The administrator must configure the LogonAndErrorLanguage parameter before the user authenticates into Outlook Web App.

noteNote:
To make all Arabic, Asian, Hebrew, and Urdu text display correctly in Outlook Web App, support for languages that are read from right-to-left and script languages must be installed on the client computer. Other languages may also require that the appropriate language pack be installed on the client computer.

For detailed syntax and parameter information, see Set-OwaVirtualDirectory.

For more information about how to configure the language settings for an Outlook Web App virtual directory, see Configure Language Settings for Outlook Web App.

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The Charset parameter specifies how the Web browser decodes data and appends the character set, for example, ISO-8859-15, of the content-type header in the Response object of the Web page. You can use the Response object to send output to the client.

You can configure the character settings on an Outlook Web App virtual directory by using the Set-OwaVirtualDirectory cmdlet in the Shell. You can configure the following character settings on an Outlook Web App virtual directory:

  • OutboundCharset   The OutboundCharset parameter specifies the character set that's used on messages that are sent by users on a specific Outlook Web App virtual directory. It accepts three settings: autodetect, alwaysUTF8, and UserLanguageChoice. Autodetect causes Exchange to examine the first 2 kilobytes (KB) of text and deduce the character set to use. This is the preferred method. AlwaysUTF8 causes Exchange to always use UTF-8 encoded UNICODE characters on outgoing messages. UserLanguageChoice causes Exchange to use the language that's used in the Outlook Web App user interface to encode messages. This can be a problem if the preferred language and the language that's used on an individual message aren't the same.
  • UseGB18030   The UseGB18030 parameter, a Regional property setting, specifies when the character set GB18030 is used. This parameter is a character-handling key in Active Directory that works in coordination with the OutboundCharset registry key. If USEGB18030 is on and OutboundCharset is set to Autodetect, Outlook Web App will use GB18030 whenever GB18032 is detected.
  • UseISO8859-15   The UseISO8859-15 parameter, a Regional property setting, specifies when the character set ISO8859-15 is used. This parameter is a character-handling key in Active Directory that works in coordination with the OutboundCharset registry key. If USEISO8859-15 is on and OutboundCharset is set to Autodetect, Outlook Web App will use ISO8859-15 whenever ISO8859-1 is detected

For detailed syntax and parameter information, see Set-OwaVirtualDirectory.

For more information about how to configure the character settings for Outlook Web App, see Configure Character Settings for Outlook Web App.

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Gzip compression enables data compression. Data compression helps optimize response time over slow network connections. Depending on the type of compression setting that you select, Outlook Web App compresses static Web pages, dynamic Web pages, or both static Web pages and dynamic Web pages. Gzip compression is performed by the Client Access server.

You can configure Gzip compression settings on an Outlook Web App virtual directory by using the Set-OwaVirtualDirectory cmdlet in the Shell. You can use the Get-OwaVirtualDirectory cmdlet to retrieve information about the current settings on an Outlook Web App virtual directory. For more information about syntax and parameters, see Set-OwaVirtualDirectory.

The following table describes the three levels of data compression settings for Outlook Web App.

Data compression settings for Outlook Web App

Data compression setting Description

High

This setting compresses static and dynamic pages.

Low

This setting compresses only static pages.

By default, Gzip compression is set to low.

Off

No compression is used.

For more information about how to configure Gzip settings, see Configure Gzip Compression Settings.

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You can customize the appearance of the forms-based authentication page by writing a new version of the sign-in page that sends the same HTML form to Outlook Web App as the original forms-based authentication sign-in page.

The forms-based authentication page is enabled for anonymous access. Therefore, you must use caution when you decide what content to display on the Outlook Web App sign-in page. Don't reveal any sensitive data that may pose a security risk for your organization on the Outlook Web App sign-in page.

If you customize the sign-in page, your changes may be overwritten when you install hot fixes and service packs on the Client Access server that provides the sign-in page. For more information about how to customize the forms-based authentication sign-in page, see Customize the Outlook Web App Sign-In and Sign-Out Pages.

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You can create a custom theme for Outlook Web App by copying an existing theme and modifying the files that define the icons, logos, and colors. For more information, see Create a Theme for Outlook Web App.

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