Outlook 2013 Won't Connect to Exchange 2013 Server (On-Prem)

Posted on 2014-12-10
Last Modified: 2015-08-13
I am having a great deal of trouble connecting one user to our Exchange 2013 server.  I am currently upgrading computers for people at my office to Windows 7 machines.  Fresh install of operating system and Office 2013.  For one user, I keep getting error messages when trying to add their email account to Outlook 2013.  At first the error was:

The connection to Microsoft Exchange is unavailable.  Outlook must be online or connected to complete this action.

The computer is definitely online and joined to the domain.  I went onto to test Outlook connectivity.  For my own account and a few others, the test passed fine.  For this one user, the test failed at the "address book 'Check Name' operation for user" level, saying "An error occurred while attempting to resolve the name."  The user currently has an active email address and is currently using Outlook 2010 on a Windows XP machine just fine.

As a quick test, I logged out of this specific user and logged in as another test user.  I was able to set up email just fine on the computer, so this leads me to believe that it is something wrong with the account or profile?  As another test, I was able to successfully log onto OWA using the account credentials with no errors.

A quick internet search said to copy the .reg settings from a computer that works from HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders and put it onto the affected computer.  This did not work.

Another quick search gave the idea to add a REG_SZ key to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Exchange\Exchange Provider with a value name "DS Server" and putting in the FQDN of the Global Catalog server.  I added this, and setup through Outlook 2013 was able to find the account and complete the process.  

HOWEVER, now when starting outlook I get the error:

Cannot start Microsoft Outlook.  Cannot open the Outlook window.  The set of folders cannot be opened.  You must connect to Microsoft Exchange with the current profile before you can synchronize your folders with your Outlook data file (.ost).

So I take off cached mode, and now get the error:

Cannot start Microsoft Outlook.  Cannot open the Outlook window.  The set of folders cannot be opened.  Microsoft Exchange is not available.  Either there are network problems or the Exchange server is down for maintenance.

This is definitely not true because we can all still receive email, I can ping it from the computer in question, and I can log onto it with no problems.  

I have now exhausted myself in trying to figure this out as I have no good reason why everything I've done so far does not work for this one user.  The user's account name is all numbers versus everyone else in the organization which uses letters, but that shouldn't make a difference.  Log on and off from Windows itself is no problem.  The only problem arises when I try to start Outlook for this user.

Is this a profile problem on the computer?  It can't be computer since I was able to log in as someone else and gain access to Outlook.  Has anyone experienced these problems before?  Any leads would be very helpful!
Question by:hogefenton
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LVL 11

Expert Comment

ID: 40496286
Please check if the users is included in the address book of the Exchange 2013.

Also check if the user settings is not set to hide the user from the address book.

Accepted Solution

hogefenton earned 0 total points
ID: 40497441
Yes they are.  I eventually had to remove the user entirely off the Exchange server after taking a total backup of their account, then re-adding their mailbox to the database.  Then opened the backup PST and moved all the emails into appropriate folders.  I'm not sure if the Exchange account was corrupted or what.  But that is what eventually worked.
LVL 59

Expert Comment

ID: 40537482
This question has been classified as abandoned and is closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See the recommendation for more details.

Expert Comment

ID: 40928700
I had the same issue, and it took forever to find a solution and what an easy fix it was. Login to Exchange server and open services and make sure that Microsoft Exchange Address Book is started. That fixed my issue.

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