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What is the Difference between a Profile and a Delegate in Outlook

Posted on 2004-09-28
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-06-27

I am wondering if anyone knows where I can find documentation that would state what a person with Profile Rights can do vs. what a person with Delegate rights can do.

I have many users that need to get into different mailboxes and there is much uncertainty if you need Profile rights to turn on the Out Of Office Assistant to Forwarding Messages out of the Inbox.

I have searched KnowledgeBase and different Sites with no luck.

If anyone has any thoughts let me know.

Thanks for your help.

Question by:n502cc
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Accepted Solution

icephyre earned 1000 total points
ID: 12174250

While I may not be able to find actual documentation for you that spells out the differences between 'Profile Rights' (AKA 'Mailbox Rights') and 'Delegate Rights', I am able simply tell you what the differences are. :)

Just for fun, I am also going to describe 'Folder Level Rights.'  This is somewhat like Delegate access because the permission options are similar, but is completely unlike Delegate access because it is much more stable.  I say this because Folder Level Rights are given on a per folder basis, so any issues that would normally arise for a true Delegate would not arise for someone with these permissions.  (You can do a search in the MS knowledge base for 'Delegate' and see a slew of these 'issues' I'm referring to!)

A great use for this type of access is when a user wants someone to have access to their Calendar, but NOT have that person be a Delegate.  A delegate, by definition, is someone who acts as a representative of the user - or in "Outlook" terms, someone who will be managing that user's Appointments, for example.

Delegates should be used sparingly; I typically advise users to ONLY use Delegates if they are going to actually have the delegates managing their Calendar.  In my experience, Delegate permissions can get flaky (see the MS knowledge base), especially if a user has several different Delegates listed.

Mailbox Rights:

These rights are given through AD on the mailbox in question by going to the "Exchange Advanced" tab, and then "Mailbox Rights".  Giving permissions here allows you to give Full Mailbox Access, which is what one would need in order to create a Profile and log into another user's mailbox, and do something like set someone's Out of Office Assistant. :)

With full Mailbox Rights, they would also be able to open the mailbox as an additional mailbox in Outlook using their own profile.  To do this (using OL 2000 as an example):

1.      Click Tools -> Services.
2.      Select ‘Microsoft Exchange Server’ from the white box, and click ‘Properties’ below.
3.      Click the ‘Advanced’ tab, and click ‘Add’ on the right.
4.      Type the name of the mailbox to add and click ‘Ok’.  (The mailbox name should appear in the white box.)
5.      Click ‘Ok’ two times to exit the settings.

I also use these rights if, for instance, a manager needs to see everything in an ex-employee's mailbox.

Also, be sure that if you give these rights through AD, you wait for replication to occur before having the person try to open the Mailbox.  Also, they may have to close out of Outlook and reopen it to get into the mailbox.

Delegate Rights:

These rights are given through Outlook on the user's mailbox by going to the Delegates tab in Tools -> Options.  A delegate can be given permissions to the user's Calendar, Tasks, Inbox, Contacts, Notes, and Journal.  The permissions that can be given are None, Reviewer, Author, and Editor.

Permissions given through the Delegates tab only apply to the folder(s) they were given on.  That means that a Delegate can not see custom folders the user may have created, or things like the user's Sent Items.  Full Mailbox Rights are required for that type of access.

Folder Level Rights:

As I partially explained before, Folder Level Rights are given on each desired folder in the user's mailbox.  These permissions are set by right clicking on a folder (like Calendar, for example) in Outlook, and clicking "Properties".  On the "Permissions" tab, click "Add" and enter the name of the person you want to give access to.  Once you have added the name to the list, you can choose a 'Role' for this person.

(You may notice that the Roles listed here are exactly like the Roles you can give on a Public Folder.  I won't go into the details of each one, I'm sure you get the idea.)

The only downside to this type of access is that you have to manually add the person to each folder you want to give them access to.  Typically though, there are only 1 or 2 folders that someone will want to allow someone else to view anyway.

However, a good thing about Folder Level Rights compared to Delegate Rights is that you can give permissions to more than just Calendar, Tasks, Inbox, Contacts, Notes, or Journal.

Well, I hope this has helped you in figuring out the differences between the different ways to give access to a mailbox.

There is obviously a time and place for each of these levels of access, so use any or all of them as you deem appropriate. :)

Let me know if I can help any further.

~ Icephyre ~


Author Comment

ID: 12174786
WOW Icephyre,

This is great....I really appreciate it. I am going to try to get this information to sink in and if I have additional questions I hope that you can help...

Again, thank you very much! ;)


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