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OWA (Exchange 2007) not working externally for IE

Posted on 2014-03-18
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Last Modified: 2014-04-12
We have a CAS server running Exchange 2007 on Server 2008 R2 Enterprise that was working fine until today. Nothing should have changed; no updates have been installed, I am the only one who makes administrative changes to this server, etc.

OWA works normally on our internal network. Externally, OWA works as intended with Firefox. With IE 8/9/10 (and I would assume 11), all that happens is IE errors out instantaneously with "Internet Explorer cannot display the webpage".

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Question by:synaptix
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Expert Comment

by:David Carr
ID: 39937596
Try using compatibility mode for the IE browsers with OWA 2007. Also you could try disabling your antivirus on the machine trying to connect to OWA and see if it works.
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Author Comment

by:synaptix
ID: 39937807
Thank you, but compatibility view has no effect, nor does adding to trusted sites/etc. Also, this is not a feasible solution as we have over 100 users who must be able to access OWA remotely.

So far I have gone through IIS and checked all redirect settings, permissions, etc. Nothing appears out of the ordinary. We have also restarted IIS, restarted the CAS server, and looked through the IIS logs.

It would appear that users trying to connect externally with IE do not even show up in the IIS logs.
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Expert Comment

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
ID: 39937856
If it isn't showing in the logs, then it has to be outside of Exchange.
The error you have posted often means the SSL session cannot be established, but even that is logged.

Check your firewall and turn up logging on it if you can. If it works internally then it is almost certainly something outside of Exchange.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:synaptix
ID: 39937929
My thoughts were similar, but there's nothing I can think of that would selectively block browsers without some real effort to do so. Recall that Firefox works both internally and externally, but Internet Explorer only works internally.

I've had our network admin double-check our firewall/router configs and the only rules in place related to Exchange are translations simply allow the traffic to pass in, and on the appropriate ports (80, 443, 110, 995, 143, 993).

Exchange Connectivity Analyzer (testexchangeconnectivity.com) is not reporting any issues for any of the services we have configured.

Given the circumstances, what kinds of things should I look at on the outside that might be able to cause something like this?
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Accepted Solution

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synaptix earned 0 total points
ID: 39938048
Oddly enough, the issue seems to have resolved itself. External connectivity with all browsers appears to be working now. I have no idea what corrected this, as the OWA site, IIS services, and even the server itself were restarted throughout the process without effect.

After leaving the system alone for a while, everything appears to be working normally again. Multiple users have confirmed this.

I'm glad that we're no longer experiencing problems, but I'm very disappointed at the fact that we may have to chalk this one up to a "Microsoftism", and that we may never know the "true" cause of our problems.
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Expert Comment

by:David Carr
ID: 39939606
Those Microsoftisms can be frustrating. Glad your issue resolved itself.
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Author Closing Comment

by:synaptix
ID: 39995846
Issue resolved itself. No cause for the issue was ever found.
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