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Configuring Clients for Offline Address Book Use


Topic Last Modified: 2005-05-18

This topic discusses how to configure Microsoft® Office Outlook® clients for optimal use of the offline address book. It covers Outlook 2003 in Cached Exchange Mode, Outlook 2003 in online mode, and Outlook 2003 in offline mode.

Outlook 2003 in Cached Exchange Mode synchronizes the user's offline address book with updates from the Exchange Server copy of the offline address book system folder every 24 hours. You can help control how often users download offline address book updates by limiting how often you make directory changes that affect the Exchange server's copy of the offline address book. If there is no new data to synchronize when Outlook checks, the user's offline address book is not updated.

By adding a registry value to the Outlook client computer, you can control offline address book downloads in Cached Exchange Mode.

For detailed instructions, see How to Control Offline Address Book Download Behavior in Outlook in Cached Exchange Mode.

If you plan to deploy Cached Exchange Mode with Outlook 2003, you may want to configure and deploy options for migrating users to Unicode mode first. Cached Exchange Mode synchronizes user's offline files with Exchange Server data. When you deploy Unicode options to users, synchronizing offline files might also be required.

For example, Outlook files are synchronized with Exchange Server in the following Unicode deployment scenarios:

  • When you deploy a new offline Outlook profile—for example, to move current offline users to Unicode mode—Outlook synchronizes offline files, after creating the new files for users as part of the new profile.

  • When Outlook users are moved to an Exchange Server 2003 computer with a Unicode offline address book, the new offline address book is downloaded.

As a best practice in scenarios like these, you may want to wait to deploy Cached Exchange Mode until after you have deployed Unicode options for your organization. For more information about the full Unicode support in Outlook 2003, see "Unicode Enhancements in Outlook 2003." For more information about using Unicode options with Outlook 2003, see "Configuring Unicode Options for Outlook 2003."

If an Outlook client is configured for online mode, it never uses an offline address book. Instead, it communicates directly with Exchange and the Active Directory® directory service to retrieve the user and address data it needs to resolve names and send messages.

When you use an Exchange Server e-mail account, working offline allows you to continue working with a local copy of your information. If you use an Exchange Server e-mail account, it is recommended that you use Cached Exchange Mode instead of offline mode. Using Outlook in Cached Exchange Mode avoids a known issue with digitally signed e-mail messages that can be encountered when working in offline mode. If you try to reply to a signed e-mail message or to send a new signed e-mail message in Outlook 2003 while in offline mode, you may receive the following error message: "Microsoft Outlook could not sign or encrypt this message because your certificate is not valid." This problem occurs because the Full Details option for the offline address book has not been downloaded to the offline computer. If the No Details option is selected for the offline address book properties, you cannot send encrypted e-mail messages with the Remote Mail feature.

By default, the Full Details option for the offline address book is selected when you download the offline address book. When you send encrypted e-mail messages while you are working offline, the Full Details option for the offline address book must be used for Outlook 2003 to find certificates or digital signatures. To work around this problem, download the Full Details option for the offline address book.

For detailed instructions, see How to Download the Full Details Option for the Offline Address Book.

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