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Customized Outlook Install Always Defaulting back to original Exchange Server

Posted on 2012-04-06
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Last Modified: 2012-04-25
We are migrating to a new domain and new Exchange server.  Our PCs are built from a customized Office installation that forces Outlook to connect directly to a specific Exchange server.  We are trying to connect users to a different, new Exchange server.

We have tried creating an Outlook .prf file that points the user to the new server, but this doesn't work.  It always defaults back to the original server.

We've compiled a new MSP file which points to the new server, and this works perfectly for new users, but does not over-write existing users.  If we delete the existing user's Windows profile and have them login and recreate the profile when they open Outlook it uses the new MSP file and connects to the new server.

In the original profile we have also tried deleting the Outlook profiles and re-creating from scratch.  They always are forced to the old server.

The old server is Exchange 2003 and has no autodiscover records configured and we have done all the testing we could to rule out DNS issues.  It is definitely coming from the Office install / customization.

Anyone know how to force-overwrite this?  We have a case opened with Microsoft and we are awaiting a response but I was hoping someone on here may have some ideas.
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Question by:Larry Larmeu
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Expert Comment

by:Felix Leven
ID: 37817111
If the custom Office installation points to a CNAME in dns like EXCHANGE.yourdomain.com you can redirect the CNAME to the new server in DNS.
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by:Larry Larmeu
ID: 37817120
It points to an A record, but that Exchange server is still existing and acting so we cannot do that because others need to access that server.
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by:Felix Leven
ID: 37817146
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Author Comment

by:Larry Larmeu
ID: 37817227
Just tried that, doesn't appear to be working.  I do see that that is for Outlook 2003 and we are running Outlook 2007.
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Larry Larmeu earned 0 total points
ID: 37873316
Turned out to be a key that was in a GPO that set the following:

"HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Exchange\Exchange Provider" /v "DS Server" /t REG_SZ /d [server] /f

It overrides autodiscover and Office Customization Tool and queries a Global Catalog server for the Exchange provider.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Larry Larmeu
ID: 37890934
Found it myself
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