February 3 2012

Outlook profile settings ignored in Office 2010 SP1 using OCT

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I was using the Office Customization Wizard to deploy a MST file for Office 2010 – pretty staight forward – it had some settings in there for for creating Outlook user profiles. It was working without problem. Then I added the Office 2010 Service Pack 1 MSP files to the Upgrade folder (slipstreaming). After this, the Outlook profile settings were no longer applied when a new install was done – whether they were defined setting in the OCT GUI or whether it was a PRF. It turns out that this is a known bug in Service Pack 1 for Office 2010 – see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2590591. My solution was to use the ‘Automatically configure profile based on Active Directory Primary SMTP address’ setting and leave the Outlook profile setting section blank.

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January 12 2011

Outlook prompting for credentials with Exchange 2007

I saw this issue again today. Outlook 2007 & 2010 were prompting for username and password at startup and randomly during use.

I’ve used this fix a couple of times now. In IIS Manager navigate to the website that contains your Exchange Virtual Directories (In Exchange 2007 this is Default website, in SBS2008 this is SBS Web Applications)

In turn highlight the following Virtual Directories:


Once highlighted select Authentication, right click on Windows Authentication and select Advanced Settings and put a check in the enable kernel-mode authentication. Do this for each directory.

Careful as when upgrading to Exchange 2007 Service Pack 3, it reset the setting on 2 of the 4 directories, so these needed to be set back to enable kernel-mode authentication.


December 31 2010

Adding photos in Lync 2010

There are a number of ways for users to have photos in Lync 2010 but my preference is to store them in Active Directory because they can then be reused by Sharepoint, Exchange / Outlook and other applications.

This is a quick post about the easiest and cheapest way I have found to do this. I’m assuming that you already have your user photos.

Firstly, obtain and install Picture Resizer from here. I used the following options “-o -f96x96 -q100”. This meant that I can easily right-click on a user photo and have it resized to 96 x 96 while maintaining photo quality. This still results in image size reduction, which we are aiming to have well under 30KB to avoid bloating the AD database.

Right-click resize to 96 x 96
Right-click resize to 96 x 96

Next, install a piece of software by a guy named OliD that extends the Active Directory Users and Computers MMC with two tabs on the user properties page – from here. Read the installation instructions can be found in the .zip file.

Once installed you will have a Photo tab in ADUC. Select your newly resized photos and add them to to the thumbnail section.

Photo tab
Photo tab

More useful info here and here.

May 31 2010

How to export RSS feeds in Outlook 2010

This task should be very simple and easy to navigate but for some reason in Outlook 2010 it is not user friendly. To export your RSS feed in Outlook 2010, you need to click on File, then Open and then Import! Yes, that’s right, to export you need to click on import!


Export RSS feeds in Outlook 2010


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November 18 2009

Migrating email to Google Apps

I recently made the choice to move my email hosting to Google Apps after having several bad experiences with my previous email hosting provider.

I decided to use the ‘free’ Standard Edition which seemed to meet my requirements. It was a surprising easy transition which involved the following steps:

  • Verify domain ownership – this required me to upload a small file to my www.danovich.com.au website to provide that I had ownership of the domain
  • Create accounts – using the Google Apps web interface, I created new accounts for all users using danovich.com.au
  • Google Email Uploader – I used this fantastic tool to upload all of my email from my existing Outlook PST file. It was a very easy to use tool and can be stopped and started as  needed. My Outlook emails then started to appear in the Google Apps web interface. It also preserved information such as sent dates and sender/recipient data, as well as the folder structure used by Outlook.
  • Change MX DNS records – I updated the domain MX records to point to the Google servers, which also provided many more entries than previous hosting company, giving an added level of comfort
  • Imported my Outlook calendar into Google Apps

So far I’ve found Google Apps to have a fantastic web interface and I’ve also configured an IMAP connection so that I can still use the feature of Outlook if required. I’m really enjoying the powerful search within Google Apps as well as the web-based Offline mode provided by Gears.  I still have access to all of my old emails throught a single interface and not a single email was lost for any users during the transition.

The only negative thing I have found so far is that with the web-based version of Google Apps, you cannot set a default font for when you compose an email, which can be quite frustrating.

I now gain the benefits of hosting email for free with a company like Google, which give me many connectivity options and allows for almost unlimited customization. Overall, this was a very painless experience and I would highly recommend it as a solution to anyone having issues with email hosting.