Just created a new test box with Windows XP and Office 2003. No service packs or updates on either.
If you put the outlook.exe shortcut in the Startup folder, it works fine. You do a hard reboot on the computer, log in with your credentials, your profile loads and outlook.exe in the startup folder loads. Comes up right away, connected to our Exchange 2003 with SP2 server.
We put service pack 1 for XP on our box and it still works fine (still no updates for Office 2003 though).
As soon as you install service pack 2 for XP, it doesn't work anymore. It's almost as if the computer has to check the network for connectivity to let you start outlook.exe. If it tries to call outlook.exe from the startup folder, you get a "Your exchange server can't be found" error. But if you take the outlook.exe shortcut out of the startup group and manually run it about 20 seconds after your desktop loads then it works fine. As long as you don't start it immediately after your desktop loads. If you then log off of your profile and log back in, it works fine. But If you warm or cold reboot the PC, the same problem surfaces. Exchange server can't be found if the outlook.exe is in the startup folder.
I've tried to search these forums for hours and hours, maybe I'm using the wrong key words. I've googled the errors, and short of some registry keys that people tried on Office 2000, nothing was found.
No firewall is active. I've still tried to add outlook.exe to the "allow" list in windows firewall. I do not have any spyware, virii, or any of those types of cleaners/programs installed to interfere. Just good ole Windows and Office and XP service pack.
We've tried different computers as well, and different offices to rule out cabling.
Last thing we tried was to install service pack 2 onto Exchange in our test domain, but same error.
I would GREATLY appreciate any clues, pointers, hints to what may be causing this.