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exchange 2013 autodiscover

Posted on 2014-12-05
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Last Modified: 2014-12-07
Dear Experts,
i have installed a new exchange 2013 environment and added the users mailboxes etc. I have also setup the virtual directories so that they are pointing to the public domain addresses:

autodiscover.domain.com
mail.domain.com

both these have A records changed to point to the exchange server and likewise the internal network domain has records so that they resolve internally also.

My question is as follows:
I am trying to make to setup for the users on their mobile devices as easy as possible but can't get settings to come through automatically, i always have to then manually enter the url of the server (in this example mail.domain.com) and enter the DOMAIN\Username as the email address isn't the username. Is there a way to get it working seamlessly?
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Question by:bluewaveit
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Cliff Galiher earned 500 total points
ID: 40484090
This is very dependent on the mail client, and isn't so much an autodiscover issue as much as it is an Exchange ActiveSync issue. Exchange ActiveSync has the ability to take an SMTP address and match it to a user account in the background. So in an ideal situation, all the user needs to do is type in their email address and password and the domain\user mapping will happen behind the scenes.

Sadly not all mail clients have implemented this feature. Apple's iOS client doesn't last I checked, but their desktop client on Mavericks did at one time. Most new androids do, but Android likes to break Exchange ActiveSync in some new way with every release, and I haven't tested Jellybean yet.

So, for non-Microsoft devices, sadly, the only real answer is user training if your usernames don't match your email addresses. That's the only 100% successful method. Everything else is potentially problematic, and since it is up to the vendor, there is no universal workaround.

Personally, I prefer to make the primary SMTP address match the username and UPN. This has, long term, eased confusion with users when logging into various resources. Whether it is office 365, a cloud resource protected by ADFS or Azure AD (Evernote, dropbox, etc), or on the local domain, by unifying that experience, the user no longer needs to remember multiple formats. It is how I recommend solving the problem. As federated and cloud services become ever more popular, this seems like the best strategy moving forward.

-Cliff
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by:bluewaveit
ID: 40484470
Thank you very much for the informative answer. One more associated question if i may, would Active-Sync automatically map the email address to user account 'out of the  box' as it were if all the domains and dns are setup correctly; or would there still be a need for further configuration?
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Assisted Solution

by:Cliff Galiher
Cliff Galiher earned 500 total points
ID: 40484869
No need for further configuration.
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