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401 Unauthorized OWA External Access Error

Posted on 2007-03-27
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I am currently able to access our Exchange 2003 SP2/ OWA/ IIS6.0 services internally on our network.  No problems there.

I cannot access OWA externally using  "mail.domainname.com/exchange"  I get a 401 Unauthorized error.  I do not get prompted for a Username and password, however.  This is very confusing seeing as how I am able to access internally.  FYI, I have followed KB articles http://support.microsoft.com/kb/293386  and  http://support.microsoft.com/kb/327843.  The first KB article got my error from "Error: Access Denied" to "401 Unauthorized"

Any help is greatly appreciated! Thank you.
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Question by:metricroofing
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by:Sembee
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When you are prompted for a username and password, what do you enter?

username
password

domain\username
password

something else?

Simon.
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Expert Comment

by:AnthonyP9618
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Are you accessing OWA through an ISA server or directly on the FE?

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Author Comment

by:metricroofing
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I do not receive a login prompt, it seems to give me this error right away.

I am accessing it through a firewall but not an ISA Server. Ports 80 and 443 have been allowed via NAT to the private IP of the exchange server.

Thank you
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Sembee earned 500 total points
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If you are getting the prompt immediately, then that would indicate the authentication settings are not correct somewhere.

Check that you have anonymous enabled on /exchweb
on /exadmin it should be integrated only
on /exchange it should be integrated if you are not using SSL, if you are then /basic and integrated, if you are using forms based authentication then it should be basic only.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:metricroofing
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Sembee:

Correct, I have double checked these authorizations and all seems as it should.  I did have one difference, the /exchange was set to Anonymous and Integrated. De-selecting Anonymous changes the error I get in the browser to "Error: Access Denied". Internally all still works as long as Integrated under /exchange is selected.

FYI, I've tried OWA Externally from Firefox 2.0, IE 6, IE 7 and Linux running Firefox 2.0. All the same error(s).

Thank you

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Assisted Solution

by:Sembee
Sembee earned 500 total points
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You shouldn't have anonymous on the /exchange virtual directory.
If you don't have basic enabled, then authentication doesn't work for anything other than Internet Explorer either.

Therefore I would change the settings then drop in to a command prompt and type iisreset to ensure the changes are written to the metabase.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:metricroofing
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Sembee:

I have disabled anonymous access to the /exchange virtual directory. I still receive that error "Unauthorized" but there is one difference.  The whole time I was using anonymouse.org to simulate an outside connection because I was in my local network.  Apparently anonymouse.org does not support something because I tried connecting from home via mail.domainname.com/exchange and it worked!  Although this is a peculiar problem, seemingly with just the external web browser test I was using, OWA seems to work on other PCs as well.

Thank you for your help and sorry if I wasted your time.  You did help me confirm the correct settings though.
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