Email does not sync to Windows Mobile in India - using OWA 2003.

Posted on 2009-05-04
Last Modified: 2013-12-05
We have three employees that our company has sent to India to work offshore with an outsourcing partner during the parallel phase of a large project. The employees were issued Windows mobile based phones - HP iPaq 910 Smart Phones WM 6.1 - prior to their departure so they could have mobile email access. Testing with email and general data services worked perfectly fine for several days "before" they left for India. But, seems that since they have arrived in India the data service isn't working right.

Example - the voice services seem to work fine, they can make and receive calls, and they can send email, but they cannot receive "email"?

These folks just got there basically and I haven't had much of an opportunity to review this with them, so I did not have the chance to ask if they could simply browse the Internet.  But one employee told me that when they landed on the ground in Dehli, she immediately received a batch of new email messages, but since traveling to Jaipur, she is no longer receiving mail. I had this same user on the phone with AT&T Wireless International support for about an hour or more this afternoon and was finally told that the problem was with our Exchange server..?

We are using Outlook Web Access 2003 - an installation that has been up and running as well as supporting tons of iPhone and Smartphone users for years - and there are no other user problems that we are aware of at all.

I'm posting a snippet from today's IIS logs from the OWA server. The file contains a few lines that are specifically related to one of the users in question.  She was successful in sending me two emails today, but again, could not successfully receive mail.

DOMAIN\username and the server IP in the file have all been changed to protect the ignorant.

Question by:FWST-Systems
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Accepted Solution

flaphead_com earned 500 total points
ID: 24302215
okay so lets check to see what the device is attempting to do.

On the device .. start/Programs/ActiveSync

Select Menu, Options, Settings
Edit Server Settings - Next
User Information - Next
Edit Server Settings - Menu, Advanced
Set Event Loging to Verbose
Save, Finish.
Now when the device syncs, it will generate some logs and put them in My Device, Windows, ActiveSync.  You should see CtrlLog and Microsoft.Exchange.  Now the hard bit is getting them to you.  Copy them from the source location to somewhere like My Documents on the device.  Then compose an email and attached the logs

From the Microsoft.Exchange logs you should get an idea of what the device is doing.  I suspect, it is having issues maintaining a connection to your FrontEnd Servers or the mobile phone carrier doesn't like the extended html commands.

Let me know when u get logs backs

Expert Comment

ID: 24316933
did u get a chance to try this?

Author Comment

ID: 24316958
We're getting the data today - 'thanks man.
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Expert Comment

ID: 24316965
no probs let us know when u get something

Author Comment

ID: 24318285
Solution Resolved.

I've attached three files I was able to find under My device\Windows\Active Sync\. However I have somehow resolved the Issue.

I went into Settings, connections , HPIpaq Data Connecrtion, and changed her location from United States to India. This changed the Operator to Airtell. Had her try to manually Sync and she still received the error. This time she could NOT send or receive mail.

In efforts to not make the situation worse I changed her back to United States location and AT&T operator. She then manually ran active sync to verify she could still send email and she started to receive all the mail shes been missing.

This was not the conclusion we we're looking for but glad it worked. We'll let her run for a day to make sure the problem has been resolved before testing it with other Windows mobile Users in India.

Author Comment

ID: 24318344
Here are the logs.

Author Comment

ID: 24319343
Having problems uploading the files... here we go again.

Expert Comment

ID: 24320017
From CtrlLog1.txt
You are roaming, and you have chosen not to use your schedule settings while roaming.

The server could not be reached.  This can be caused by temporary network conditions.

On the device start ActiveSync, select Menu, Schedule.  What is the Roaming setting set to?  Is it enabled? or disable?  Me thinls disabled

Author Comment

ID: 24320192
Thanks for uploading the files A ;) (There is two of use responding as FWST).

I know her scheduled Active Sync is not working when roaming, because she manually sync to send and recieve. I would also suspect that her her schedule is disabled while roaming, i can check the setting tomorrow. But that wouldnt couse our initial error when manually active syncing...I believe changing back from India Airtel to US AT&T "refreshed" or possiblty cleared some sort of cache, that refreshed her GPRS communication.

Since charges apply when using data when roaming, I dont think enabling scheduled syncing would be the best idea, but I will be happy to take a look at her settings.

Expert Comment

ID: 24320241
check that out and see if it works ... does she have two SIM cards? or just the one?

BTW I used roaming while away and it cost a shed load of money, so I turn it off, but if work is paying that is a different thing.

Check the local office and see who they use.  might b an option to get a local sim if she is out there a while. or enable WiFi when in the office?

Author Comment

ID: 24332768
We've paid for "Unlimited International Data", and since AT&T Wireless cannot have true coverage in every country, we're assuming that all data overseas is considered roaming and is covered under this add-on to the plan.

Sidebar question - since the users are roaming, the "Push" features of MS Exchange and OWA don't apply do they?  I mean, because the user is out of network, is a manual sync is necessary to get mail to transfer?

We've gone 24 hours with the test user working fine now - we will config the other two users tomorrow morning and if it's cool, then we can close this off and award points.

Thanks for the help so far.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31577834
The solution provided helped us prove the issue wasn't something we could fix - it was ultimately an issue with the cellular carrier.

Author Comment

ID: 24346232
The solution provided helped us prove the issue wasn't something we could fix - it was ultimately an issue with the cellular carrier. There was nothing we could do with Exchange, OWA or with the cellular devices using Windows Mobile 6.

Changing the carrier settings seemed to force some kind of reset that allowed mail to flow both ways finally.

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