Remotely set users Outlook 'Out of Office Assistant'?

Posted on 2006-04-20
Last Modified: 2012-10-11
Hi. Hopefully is a quick one. Haven't had a definitive answer from my searching so far.

It it possible for an administrator to remotely set our clients Out of Office Assistant in Outlook? We are using Exchange 2003 with 2000 clients.

We frequently have people leave the office and not turn this on. Our current practise is to reset their password and perform it manually but hopefully there is a more efficient method.

Thanks in advance.
Question by:MALDcns
    LVL 7

    Expert Comment

    Hello MALDcns

    Wow that seems like such a cumbersome task to have to be the crutch in remembering these things for other users.  Is it not an option for users to simply log onto OWA and set their Out of Office on?  With internet access of course this should take the user all but a minute using the default message of course.

    - Monty
    LVL 7

    Accepted Solution

    OOF is something I truly believe should be left for the user but you can try third party softwares that may be of assistance.

    - Monty
    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    If you are an admin in the domain then simply give yourself full mailbox rights to their mailbox temporarily.  Create a new profile in your own Outlook installation and open their mailbox.  Now its just like they're back there doin their job right (except your doing it for them).  You can turn it on in theirs just as easily and exactly the same way as they could have before they left.

    P.S.  Make sure to remove your rights to their mailbox and also delete the profile you created temporarily that points to their mailbox as a house keeping excercise.  All up it takes about 10 minutes per mailbox.
    LVL 7

    Expert Comment

    cammillemarlow option will work but for 2000 users you may want something more centralized.  This is my opinion of course.  The OOF admin works without messing around with permission levels.  Imagine 10 minutes per mailbox being cut down to a few minutes if not less.  

    - Monty

    Author Comment

    Thanks for all the comments.

    Not everyone within our company has access to OWA so we can't pursue that path. I'm currently looking at the OOF program MontyV suggested and it looks to be the ideal solution if we can configure it.

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