OWA 2003 Client Issue

Posted on 2006-11-02
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-08
i have a windows 2003 SBS with Exchange 2003 w/sp2 on it.
I have OWA set up and is working properly.
I have a new Dell Latitude d420 with Windows XP Pro w/sp2 on it.
I can get to the OWA site and log into my mailbox.
I see my folders, email, etc.
I cannot open an email, nor can i initiate a new email.  It will not pop up.  I have turned off pop up blocker on IE 6.
I have uninstalled Google taskbar.
i have uninstalled IE and reinstalled it.
I have rolled the machine back to a previous restore point.
It is only on this machine.
When i do try to initiate an email or open an email the IE browser puts itself into the background (as in the screen is not in the foreground...i have to click on it so i can bring it back to the foreground).
Of course out of the whole office...its the owner of the businesss that this is happening to.

Please help.  Its obviously something client based as OWA is fully functional on all other machines i test from.

Question by:datzit
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Accepted Solution

Jyotikadian earned 2000 total points
ID: 17864289

Expert Comment

ID: 17864343
one more link can be useful


Expert Comment

ID: 17872438
Although Windows XP Service Pack 2 solves many problems and provides better OS security, it also creates several issues, some of which are related to Outlook Web Access (OWA). The pop-up blocker Microsoft added to Internet Explorer is the guiltiest OWA culprit. Many OWA functions in Exchange 2000 and 2003 take place within pop-up windows. So if pop-ups are disabled, those features don't work.

There are too many problems caused by the pop-up blocker to list them all, but a few of the problems include blocking of the New Folder action, the attachments dialog box, and the Send Mail to Contact button on the Contact form.

The pop-up blocker can also trigger script errors within OWA. For example, if you double click on a user name within the Find Names dialog box, a scripting error will occur because the pop-up blocker is blocking the necessary action.

The good news is that you don't have to disable the pop-up blocker to fix these problems. In fact, you shouldn't disable the pop-up blocker if at all possible, because malicious code hidden within pop-up ads has been known to spread spyware.

There are three ways of getting around these issues without having to disable the pop-up blocker.

Option 1

Leave the pop-up blocking enabled, but allow pop-ups for your OWA Web site:

Open the Control Panel and click the Security Center icon, followed by the Internet Options icon. The Internet Properties sheet will appear.
Select the Privacy tab and click the Settings button found in the Pop-up Blocker section. Windows will display the Pop-up Blocker Settings dialog box.
At this point, simply enter the URL to your OWA site into the "Address of Web Site To Allow" field.
Finally, click the Add button followed by the Close button.
Option 2

The second technique is more appropriate if you are accessing OWA from a public kiosk and don't have the authority to modify the pop-up blocker. In this case, you would log on with Forms-Based authentication and select the basic client rather than the premium client.

To enable forms based authentication on your mail server, open Exchange System Manager and navigate through the console tree to the server that is hosting OWA.
Expand the server's Protocols container and then right click on the HTTP container.
Select Properties to access the server's HTTP Properties sheet.
Click the Settings tab, then the Enable Forms Based Authentication checkbox, and click OK.
Now, when users log onto OWA, they will have to enter their logon names in the form DOMAIN\USERNAME. However, the sign-on screen will contain an option for using either a basic or premium client. The basic client will work properly with Windows XP's pop-up blocker.

Option 3

I don't recommend this technique per se, because it allows more pop-ups to get through than the other methods. However, it is a way of making OWA work with Windows XP Service Pack 2, so I am including it.

If you are accessing OWA using HTTPS, this method involves changing the pop-up blocker's filter level. By default, the pop-up blocker's filter is set to Medium, which means that most pop-ups will be blocked, but a few will make it through. If you set the filter level to Low, pop-ups will be allowed from secure sites. The filter level setting is found on the Pop-up Blocker Settings dialog box that I mentioned earlier.

S/MIME issue

The majority of the SP2 related issues involve the pop-up blocker. However, Microsoft also acknowledges that the OWA S/MIME control no longer functions. Although the S/MIME control is present, the E-Mail Security area of OWA will tell you that the S/MIME control is not installed. Furthermore, you may not be able to encrypt a message, add a digital signature to a message, or drag attachments to the Compose Message form. Presently, there does not seem to be a fix for the S/MIME issues.

If you would like to read more about OWA compatibility with Windows XP SP2, I recommend Microsoft Knowledge Base article 883575.


Author Comment

ID: 17878347
thanks for these responses.
I do not have pop up blocker turned on so that is not the issue.
looking into the SMIME items i have a couple of questions.
I see in the http://support.microsoft.com/kb/883543/ it tells me to install a fix on the exchange server.  
i have over 10 clients connecting to the OWA site and they all are XP Pro w/SP2 installed on it.
I am not sure why i would install a server based fix if its one client that is having this issue.
I set the security to basic and i am able to work proper.
i re-installed the S/Mime piece within OWA and it prompted me to run and install which i did but nothing happened after that...as in no installation screens or acknowledgement of a success or failure of the install either way.

Can anyone shed any more light/clarify having added the following info:
- basic security at log in allows me to work properly
- S/Mime re-install does not seem to do anything

i would like to have this work like it is supposed to and not have the business owner have to check off the basic client access
Thanks again for your responses.


Author Comment

ID: 17878384
After doing some more work on this machine i have noticed that i am unable to open a web page into a new window.
I see the window open for a split second then disappear.
i click on a link in a IE 6 Web browser and select "Open in a new window" and that is what happens.
Please let me know if i need to re-submit this in a separate subject but it seems that this is a larger issue at play here.

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