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Exchange 2013 ActiveSync broken post CU6 Update (pure Exchange 2013 setup, no older versions)

Posted on 2014-09-15
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Last Modified: 2014-09-19
Since upgrading to the CU6 release of Exchange 2013, ActiveSync has been broken in some ways. We are running a fully native Exchange 2013 setup, with just one Exchange 2013 Standard Server, on Win 2012.

The few instances of ActiveSync still working are for profiles already configured on devices BEFORE CU6 was installed (in our case, all devices are running Apple iOS 7.1.2). Any profiles added to iOS after the CU6 will not work (apart from a brief window when it did), presenting the error on device:

"Cannot Get Mail
The connection to the server failed"

I've run connectivity tests too, which at times have indicated different things, most commonly problems along the lines of http error 500 for Autodiscovery. But these have varied, and once (for a brief period) new Activesync configurations started working again. I've checked my host records on DNS, and have even reset the IIS parts of Exchange 2013 to defaults, but to no avail.

I'm aware Microsoft have screwed up a bit with CU6 - I'm also aware of the co-existence with Exchange 2007 error causing ActiveSync problems. We don't have any such setup, but perhaps the issues are more widespread and somewhat related. I am going to try and speak to Microsoft about it - we are nearing the end of 180 day trial, and it would be nice to have this sorted before I go ahead and buy it.

I've also considered setting up another trial of Exchange 2013 CU4 and trying to migrate all mailboxes back to this, but I'm not sure whether that will actually be viable.

Any thoughts appreciated - I wished I'd stayed at CU4, as the CU6 update was only installed to try and correct another problem it didn't even fix!!

Any input gratefully received.

Thanks :-)
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Question by:bluemercury
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bluemercury earned 0 total points
ID: 40324430
I think I may have worked this out for myself.

I cautiously opened the ADSI Edit tool on the DC, connected to the 'Default naming context' and expanded the containers till I found one of my ActiveSync users having the problem. My expanding the user and deleting the 'CN=ExchangeActiveSyncDevices' container it seems to clear the corrupted memory of past ActiveSync relationships. For good measure I force replication between the DCs. Please excercise extreme caution using ADSI Edit.

Then, when the next ActiveSync connection attempt is made by the iOS device, this container is recreated and now all works! Accounts that have not been able to create new device sync relationships for weeks are now syncing perfectly.

I'm just waiting for final confirmation from a few end users (it's 2 am in the UK, so this won't be a for a little while) and then I will come back on here and marked this as solved...
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Author Closing Comment

by:bluemercury
ID: 40333843
As outlined, my own explanation worked, and has been working fine for days. Happy Days! :-)

I hope this helps someone else out there hitting the same issue....
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