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Outlook 2003 on Win XP often cant connect to Exchange server when on a certain broadband Wifi

Posted on 2015-01-01
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2015-03-08
On my Win 7 Outlook 2010, I have no problem connecting to just a basic WPA2 broadband Wifi (of 100Mbps)
in my offsite (ie not at our HQ which hosts the Exchange 2010 server) office & sync/download/send emails.

On my Win XP Outlook 2003 (another laptop), tho it connects to the same broadband Wifi & that very
same laptop could browse the Internet, it often can't connect to our HQ's Exchange 2010 server with
a message at the right bottom corner "Trying to connect ..." for hours.  Occasionally it will be "Connected".
Webmail on this Win XP laptop certainly has no issue reading/sending emails, so the Wifi connection is
good.  When Outlook 2003 client fails to download/sync emails, I wud immediately connect using my
3G dongle (which is only 1-3Mbps) & cud download/sync emails on the Outlook 2003.

While this Win XP is connected to the offsite office Wifi, doing continuous ping to gmail (can't ping our
HQ's exchange servers as ping is blocked) did not result in any packet loss.

When I'm at home connected to my home's WPA2 Wifi using this Win XP laptop, I never have any issue
with the Outlook 2003 syncing/downloading emails & will almost instantly get the message "Connected"
at the bottom right corner.

I'm inclined to think that my wireless driver has sort of 'compatibility' issue with the Wifi broadband
router at the offsite office.

How do I go about troubleshooting this?
Question by:sunhux
LVL 45

Expert Comment

ID: 40526685
Do a trace route and check where it is failing. Best to run wireshark and check why it is failing.
LVL 17

Assisted Solution

WORKS2011 earned 300 total points
ID: 40527948
How does the laptop act on another wireless network outside of your house and work, for example a coffee shop? Could be useful for troubleshooting purposes.

Do ipconfig /all next time you're at the office and show info here?

What happens if you do ipconfig /flushdns at the office, does it start working after.

I expect it's the office DHCP / wireless router. I expect if you reset the wireless device it will work for awhile. Often the internal LAN and Wireless IP addresses build up and leases don't expire / delete correctly which can cause this. Reason it doesn't happen at your home is because there are less devices.

What size business? About how many devices?
LVL 24

Assisted Solution

SunBow earned 400 total points
ID: 40529553
Most likely I think would be subnetting, 2nd would be the selected dns servers. IPconfig/release should do a reset if followed by reboot. Optionally, a dhcp/renew 'should' do the deed. Worst case is to edit registry and remove dhcp, it will be reset on reboot.

First run IPConfig/all to get the overall picture. Ensure subnet and dhcp server are correct. Dhcp uses bootp, not tcp/ip.

On occasion the MS client will latch the 'home' network (unroutable) or the work server (such as when >256 addresses are managed).

If only an outlook issue at work, you may want to just make a new account (local) to access same Exchange server. This is case if you've other activities that access other servers at work well, and flushing dns remains highly advisable. It also rebuilds well enough.
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LVL 45

Assisted Solution

Amit earned 300 total points
ID: 40529615
Goto exrac.com>click client tab>install it and run the tool. This tool will help you find cause for your issue

Author Comment

ID: 40555267
I've done the commands below in the past without any joy:
   ipconfig /flushdns

Note that occasionally it works & after on the office Wifi for a while, Outlook fails to

I'll post ipconfig/all this Tue

Author Comment

ID: 40600019
Another of my colleague's X230 Thinkpad has similar issue with this
offsite office Wifi too while his laptop doesn't have this issue with our
HQ office & his home Wifi.

My laptop doesn't have this issue too with other (say MacDonald's Wifi)

I'll run the xrac after taking a backup.
Sorry for the late posting.

ipconfig/all output:

        Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : XXX-MyName
        Primary Dns Suffix  . . . . . . . : xxx.corp.int-ads
        Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Hybrid
        IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
        WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
        DNS Suffix Search List. . . . . . : XXX.corp.int-ads

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

        Media State . . . . . . . . . . . : Media disconnected
        Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Intel(R) 82566MM Gigabit Network Con
        Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-16-D3-C6-C5-4C

Ethernet adapter WirelessNIC: (this Wifi NIC connects to the problem Wifi service currently) :

        Connection-specific DNS Suffix  . :
        Description . . . . . . . . . . . : Intel(R) PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Networ
k Connection
        Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-1C-BF-2B-EA-44
        Dhcp Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
        Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
        IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . :
        Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . :
        Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . :
        DHCP Server . . . . . . . . . . . :
        DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . :
        Lease Obtained. . . . . . . . . . : Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:05:39
        Lease Expires . . . . . . . . . . : Tuesday, February 10, 2015 3:05:39 P

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection 7:

        Media State . . . . . . . . . . . : Media disconnected
        Description . . . . . . . . . . . : HUAWEI Mobile Connect - 3G Network C
        Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-1E-10-1F-5A-CD
LVL 27

Assisted Solution

Steve earned 200 total points
ID: 40623048
check the IP subnet of the wifi having the issue and check if it happens to be the same as the office network.
if both happen to be on the same subnet (eg you may find the laptop is simply confused and thinks it is actually in the office/main site, even though it isn't.
LVL 20

Accepted Solution

Iain MacMillan earned 800 total points
ID: 40627818
do you use Outlook Anywhere/RPC over HTTP in Outlook 2003??  What have you set as your Exchange Proxy settings, that may cause occasional issues.  Assuming your cert is all correct (and if Win 7 works you should be fine).  I add in MSSTD:\<name of OWA server> in the Only Connect to Proxy Servers....section.  Also try setting it to BASIC auth and see if that works on the troublesome wi-fi networks, NTLM sometimes doesn't play along.  You also have TWO locations to tick the Cache mode.

I have had this before a long time ago with OL2007 & XP, but can't for the life of me remember what the full cause is (is is an XP issue as much as i can recall).

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