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Outlook Web App complains about ActiveX control

Posted on 2010-08-19
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Last Modified: 2013-12-08
A user launches IE8 on a Windows XP Pro SP3 workstation within a Windows 2008 domain and attempts to connect to OWA on the internal Exchange server. The user logs in fine using the "This is a private computer" option. The landing page with the folders, email, etc displays very briefly (half a second) and then is replaced with a page containing the following message: "The ActiveX control needs to be enabled in Internet Explorer for Outlook Web App to work correctly. Click here to sign out, enable the ActiveX control, and then sign in to Outlook Web App."

The Exchange server (http://servername and https://servername) has been added to Trusted Sites. All IE Add-ons are seemingly Enabled, although there are no add-ons which contain "owa" in their name. Most of the "ActiveX controls and plug-ins" settings in IE security options are set to either Enabled or Prompt.

This behaviour is the same for other users on this workstation, but other workstations in the domain behave as expected, i.e. OWA launches fine.

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Question by:askrabbit
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by:montyhk
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Have you tried resetting the web browsers settings?

If not, here's how you do it:

1. Open the Tools menu in the row of buttons right at the top of the browser
2. Choose Internet Options
3. Go to the Advanced tab
4. Click Restore Defaults
5. Close and re-open the browser and see if the issue still occurs
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by:montyhk
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Failing the above, I'd suggest disabling ALL the add-ons, just to see if they (the add-ons) are causal factors. If that fixes your problem, then re-enable your add-ons one by to one to determine the problem add-on. Then see if you can live without it, or if there's an updated version of it.
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by:askrabbit
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Hi montyhk, thanks for your quick response.

Unfortunately, the problem still persists. Resetting IE overall settings to defaults (as per your first post) didn't fix the issue. I then disabled "all add-ons" and everything listed in "Run witout permission" and "Downloaded controls" - again, no joy.
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askrabbit earned 0 total points
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I eventually fixed the issue.

I downloaded IE8-WindowsXP-x86-ENU.exe which helpfully uninstalled IE8, but would not reinstall it. The version of IE reverted to v6. Subsequent attempts (following many reboots) installing manually and via Microsoft Update would not reinstall IE8. However, with IE at version 6, OWA started working!!

I then applied the Method A fix from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/949220#MethodA.

Again, no joy reinstalling IE8. The next step was to stop all antivirus services and to run a malware scanner. No malware was reported, but IE8 did install OK this time (and OWA still worked!).

Antivirus was re-enabled, IE8 is now fully updated and OWA works.
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by:montyhk
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Glad you got it working :)
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