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Unable to see free/busy in Outlook 2010 for certain users

Posted on 2011-09-09
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
We currently have an Exchange 2003 environment with users using Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2010.  We have a user using Outlook 2010 and not able to see certain user's free/busy when trying to schedule a meeting.  I can see it without a problem.  The strange thing is all of the users are in a certain security group.  The /cleanfreebusy switch didn't work and not having any luck finding info on the internet.  Any ideas on what to check or things to try?  Thanks in advance for the help.
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Question by:klittlejohn1
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by:tomago
ID: 36510722
CTRL+Click the Outlook icon on the system tray then goto "Test E-mail Autoconfiguration".  You'll want to uncheck the two that have "guesssmart" in the name and run the test.  What do you get?
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by:Lupinus
ID: 36510808
There's an issue with Office/Outlook.  Make sure all the users are at Office SP1 or higher for starters.
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by:klittlejohn1
ID: 36510828
Tomago,
I get autoconfiguration was unable to determine your settings when I run the Test Email Autoconfiguration
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by:klittlejohn1
ID: 36510847
Lupinus,
I am going to check the system that is having the problem and see if Office SP1 is installed.    
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by:tomago
ID: 36510974
Sounds like a DNS issue then.  Try resolving the autodiscover URL from the autoconfiguarion to confirm.
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by:klittlejohn1
ID: 36511336
Tomago, since we are using Exchange 2003, do we need to have the autodiscover URL configured?

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by:Lupinus
ID: 36511384
We have similar issues with Auto-Configure & Free/Busy here.  The Auto-Configure works once in a blue moon, so we usually just configure our Outlook Clients manually.  SP1 was the main cause of our Free/Busy issue, but our server is Exchange 2007.
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by:klittlejohn1
ID: 36511405
Got ya.  I just checked another system that is using Outlook 2010 without SP1 and Free/Busy works without issues.  I might try installing SP1 on the other system and see if that makes a difference.
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by:tomago
ID: 36511548
No, you don't need it config'd, but it is an easy way to troubleshoot.  I forgot the autodiscover feature wasn't introduced on exchange until 2007.

You can try the simple 'free/busy' setting in file > options.  Increase it from default 2 months and see if that helps.
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Expert Comment

by:Lupinus
ID: 36512137
I forgot, Outlook/Exchange 2003 and Outlook/Exchange 2007 look in two different locations for the Free/Busy information.  There's a registry entry you can create/change to fix this.  You can force Outlook 2007 to look for the Free/Busy info in the Public folders (where 2003 stores it) by adding the following registry setting on the PCs:

HKey_Current_User\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\Options\Calendar
"UseLegacyFB"=dword:00000001

(You can copy and paste this into notepad and save it as a .reg file).

This will force the 2007 client to look in the Public Folders for the Free/Busy information.
0 = Off (Use the standard 2007 Location for reading Free/Busy information)
1 = On (Use the standard 2003 Location for reading Free/Busy Information)

Remember:
     You'll need to delete this registry entry if/when you upgrade to Exchange Server 2007, 2010, 2012 or whatever... in the future.
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Lupinus earned 500 total points
ID: 36512172
Oops, forgot to complete the registry file copy/paste info:


Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKey_Current_User\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\Options\Calendar]
"UseLegacyFB"=dword:00000001


Ok, the above three lines are what you'd copy and paste to create the Reg file.
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by:klittlejohn1
ID: 36512303
Thanks for the help on this.  OK and these will work with Outlook 2010 as well?
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Expert Comment

by:Lupinus
ID: 36522889
Yes, Outlook/Exchange 2003 and prior store the Free/Busy information using the Public Folders whereas Outlook/Exchange 2007/2010 use a different location (can't remember where right off hand).  The main issue being you have Outlook 2007/2010 which is looking primarily in the newer location and this registry entry tells the Outlook Client to look at the Public Folders (used on Exchange 2003) instead.

If you upgrade to Exchange 2007 or higher, you'll want to change the entry to "UseLegacyFB"=dword:00000000 (*or just remove the entry entirely).

When we had issues we used this entry and applied Outlook SP1 to our clients and the problem went away.
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by:klittlejohn1
ID: 36537924
I ended up figuring out the problem.  The user created personal contacts of some of the domain users instead of using the address book.  Removing the entries and user was able to access free/busy.  Thanks for the help guys.

KL
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