Creating two or more contacts with the same smtp address in Exchange


I need to have a large number of contacts in Microsoft Exchange 2003, several of these need to have the same smtp adress. When I try to create this I get:

"This e-mail address already exists in this organization.

ID-no: c10312e7
Microsoft Active Directory - Exchange Extension"

Now I am well aware that this is not a bug but a intended feature that you should not be able to have two or more of the same SMTP addresses in Exchange, what I am asking for, is there a workaround for this?
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PeteJThomasConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I see your dilemma, so Joe Bloggs in Organisation C might be both the Chairmain role and the Accountant role, so the SMTP address for both roles would be or whatever...

I do think that although as you say it is a bit messy, having a DL with a separate SMTP address ( etc) and just adding the mailboxes of the people fulfilling those roles as a member of that DL, is the best way to go...


Note sure why you'd want to implement this, it seems like a curious request to me - different entries in the GAL that point to the same external address?  Wouldn't that be confusing?

However, you can indeed get round the issue if you really must, but you need to create the contacts by import rather than through the GUI.  Probably the easiest way to do this is to use the built-in utility CSVDE - this article has more details:

As an alternative, if the external email system you are pointing the contacts to supports secondary proxy addresses (like Exchange), then just give the target account multiple SMTP proxies, and use a different unique proxy as the destination address for each of your contacts.  That keeps everything nice and neat, and means you can use the GUI to create your Contacts as normal.
It sounds like you need a distribution list?

As you can assign an SMTP address to a distribution list, the result should be what you're after - You simply create the Distribution List, say 'Marketing', give it the SMTP address you want (say and then add the individuals who need to see these emails to the Distribution List.

So whenever someone sends an email to Marketing, all the users in the list will get it. That should be the same result that you wanted from assigning the same address out to multiple mailboxes?

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It is not possible under any circumstances to assign similar email addresses to two contacts and each time you try to add any address that already exists in the org then you would get this error.
HPSAdminAuthor Commented:
I'm testing csvde, but having some problems, I will try more tomorrow.

Creating multiple SMTP proxies on the external contacts is unfortunatly not an option, that was actually my first idea that was shot down.

I need to sleep on your solution, but yes, I probably could create distribution lists for each organization and each role, then adding the contact of each role to these. Basically having close to 200 distribution lists with only 1 member in each, which of course seems silly, but that should actually work.

Yes, but again, I need a workaround for this, one way or another.


To give a little bit more detail, I have approximately 40 external client organizations, each of these have between 3-6 different roles (chairman, accountant, receptionist, etc) and some of these need to have the same external SMTP address.

My only idea is instead of contacts I would create AD users for each role in each organization and setting up a forward from these AD accounts to the approriate contact in Exchange, however I am not happy with this solution.
Sorry, I'm a little confused as to your purpose - Are you saying that these roles (lets pick Chairman for example) in different organisations require the same SMTP address? So the Chairman role in Organisation1 and Organisation2 may need to both receive emails sent to 1 SMTP address?

Or are you saying that within each organisation, maybe 2 roles (say Chairman + Accountant) may need the same SMTP address?

I think I must be misunderstanding though, as either one of those scenarios wouldn't require to create DLs with only one member in each, as you would only create the DL in cases where an email address needs to be 'shared', and then you would have at least 2 members of the DL...

If you can explain it a little clearer maybe I can 'tailor' my suggestion a little more for this specific case?

You can - using backend scripts - assign the same smtp address to different contacts. You will get no error.
However, there is not much practical value to this as then Exchange will refuse to accept the message
HPSAdminAuthor Commented:

Organization C has 4 roles.
Role 1,2 and 4 are taken by Person X

In my company I need to be able to send an email to each role in Organization C separately, I would for instant put Organization C - Role 1 in the To: field, not knowing that Person X is the recipient in the end, I only email the specific role in the specific organization.

Because I cannot create Exchange contacts for each role since some have the same SMTP address. I was thinking of creating users with local mailboxes that forwarded to a contact with the external SMTP address. However your suggestion with DLs is better because then I dont have 200 AD accounts that arent actually used for anything except forwarding emails. So the DLs would have only 1 member in each, some DLs would have the same contact, but thats fine by Exchange and even though its not pretty, it works.

I just need to run this by the person in charge and if its accepted I will accept yours as the solution.
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