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Disable Per-user Read/Unread Property in Public Folder

Posted on 2004-09-20
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Last Modified: 2008-03-17
Hello,

I have to following problem with our Exchange 2000 Server on a Win2K Server machine (both German localisation). My job is to create a public folder, that receives messages by a general company email address (office@company.tld). Some people are designated to read the messages and to respond to them. To avoid, that the same message is read by more then one employee, I would like that Exchange (or Outlook) would mark a message as read if the first one who read it, marked it as read.

It seems, that in Exchange System Manager the option "Disable Per-user Read/Unread ... for this folders" matches exactly my requirements. But to my surprise, instead of the expected behaviour, the following happens:

The user who created the PF has the ability to mark every message as read (und even mark it as unread). Every other user, even if he or she has level 8 permissions on the folder, can't mark the messages as read. I.e. pressing Control + Q doesn't help - nothing happens, allthough it is possible to read or even delete the message.

The alternative to create a special user 'office' und share its mailbox is not my favourite as I would have to install the mailbox on every employees Outlook, and the users would be confused as everything would be under the public folder tree, except that single special folder.

I tested that scenario with Outlook 2000, Outlook 2002 and Outlook 2003, with Exchange 2000 (SP3) and Exchange 2003.

I hope you have an advice for me.

Kind regards,

Dominik
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Question by:DominikRappaport
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rhandels earned 125 total points
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Hi Dominik,

Hate to say this to you, but we had the same problem and eventually (after seeking for an answer for over a month) stopped looking for it. As Microsoft said.... "these public folders are user as some sort of thread were users can contribute, it is not meant to be an e-mail inbox. Also, items send to the public folders are sometimes mails and sometimes posts to the public folder, so this is also a problem...

We solved it by telling our users to open the item and change the title name by adding the text "read" behind the topic. You could also create subfolders of this folder and make sure that users place the mails they read into the subfolders..
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by:DominikRappaport
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Hi,

thank you for your replay. I have expected something like this as I was - like you - looking for an answer without success. The only thing I doesn't understand is, what is that option "Disable Per-user Read/Unread ... for this folders" good for, if not for that what we were talking about?

Kind regards,

Dominik
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by:rhandels
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Well that's a good one, i have no idea why they made this function... I also thought that this would be the thing i was looking for, it just doesn't work. I guess this we can just call it a Microsoft thing.. ;)
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by:DominikRappaport
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One last question. In your first reply, you said "... as Microsoft said...". Did you open a support call to them or do you cite a general (KB-) article?

Kind regards,

Dominik
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by:rhandels
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Hi,

Our network supporting company is a big company in the Netherlands and they contacted (at least one of their consultants) Microsoft Netherlands, who said that this was indeed the case. So i trust this guy if he says so...
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by:DominikRappaport
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Hi, I found new something new. It seems that the feature is still working, but a little bit different then we expected. If you create a PF, mail enabled or not and with "Disable Per-user Read/Unread ... for this folders" deactivated, then the following happens:

Every item (mail or post) is marked as unread by default. If now a user opens the item und saves it (with pherhaps changing the subject) then it is marked as read - for everyone. It seems that this featers keeps an eye on those items that were edited. Viewing alone is not enough.

So we could simulate our goal by advise the users to open the mail item and immideatly press Control + S to save the item. Then everyone sees the item as read item.  In fact that function would need a more detaild description and maybe it has another effect if one would use different types of PF, i.e. contacts or jobs.

Kind regards,

Dominik
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