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OAB for Outlook users

Posted on 2015-01-31
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Last Modified: 2015-02-09
If I understand Outlook users can use Offline Address Book, if Exchange Cached mode is enabled or Public folders are  enabled or Web distributed is enabled.
in our environment Exchange cached mode is grayed out (outlook users cannot change it)and not checked, we do not use public folders. so how do outlook users get the OAB assuming Web Distributed is checked ?

** in another scenario, assuming that cached mode is enabled then would Outlook users get OAB automatically, I mean they can open outlook offline and be able to use GAL ?
the same question applies for when Public folders if they are enabled ?

Thank you
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Question by:jskfan
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Assisted Solution

by:VB ITS
VB ITS earned 400 total points
ID: 40582015
in our environment Exchange cached mode is grayed out (outlook users cannot change it)and not checked, we do not use public folders. so how do outlook users get the OAB assuming Web Distributed is checked ?
If you're running  Outlook in online mode then the Outlook Address Book (OAB) doesn't get used in this scenario, as names get resolved directly against the Global Address List (GAL) instead. Think of the GAL as the master list, whereas the OAB is a copy that gets downloaded locally for offline use (hence the word 'Offline' in Offline Address Book).

Public Folder distribution of the OAB is only really used by older Outlook clients (i.e. Outlook 2003 and older) whereas Web-Based distribution is used by newer versions of Outlook (2007 and onwards).
** in another scenario, assuming that cached mode is enabled then would Outlook users get OAB automatically, I mean they can open outlook offline and be able to use GAL ?
Generally speaking, yes. Outlook automatically updates the OAB on a daily basis providing it has connectivity to your Exchange servers at the time. As this update frequency is hard-coded into Outlook, this cannot be modified. You can manually download the OAB through Outlook if required though.

the same question applies for when Public folders if they are enabled ?
Not too sure what you mean by this question sorry. If you mean offline access to all Public Folders then no, it's not possible. You can access Public Folders you add to your Public Folder Favorites though, but you need to enable a setting in Outlook to achieve this.
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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 40582022
I believe distribution of OAB through PF is not applicable for Outlook 2010
https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc535193.aspx


-- well I want to understand how outlook users can use OAB if cached mode is not enabled ?
--how they can use OAB by enabled web distribution ?
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LVL 24

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by:VB ITS
VB ITS earned 400 total points
ID: 40582030
I believe distribution of OAB through PF is not applicable for Outlook 2010
https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc535193.aspx
Yep, I referred to this in my previous comment:
Public Folder distribution of the OAB is only really used by older Outlook clients (i.e. Outlook 2003 and older) whereas Web-Based distribution is used by newer versions of Outlook (2007 and onwards).

-- well I want to understand how outlook users can use OAB if cached mode is not enabled ?
They don't. When Outlook is not in cached mode then it is running what is referred to as Online Mode. When Outlook is running in Online Mode then the GAL gets used. When Outlook is running in Cached Mode then the OAB gets used.
--how they can use OAB by enabled web distribution ?
Are you asking how to enable web-based distribution or which version of Outlook uses OAB via web-based distribution?
Outlook 2003 and older = PF distribution for OAB
Outlook 2007 and later = web-based distribution for OAB
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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 40582040
I meant when you enable  web-based distribution in exchange server, then what else do you need to do in Outlook to work with OAB when you are not connected to Exchange server.?
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LVL 24

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by:VB ITS
VB ITS earned 400 total points
ID: 40582046
Nothing as far as I'm concerned, as long as we're talking about Outlook 2007 and 2010 here. Outlook 2003 doesn't support web-based distribution.
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Assisted Solution

by:Vaseem Mohammed
Vaseem Mohammed earned 100 total points
ID: 40582146
what else do you need to do in Outlook to work with OAB when you are not connected to Exchange server.
Change outlook profile to cache mode.
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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 40582341
I guess there is Misunderstanding..
Web distribution is enabled in Exchange. What else needs to be done on Outlook 2010/2013 by user, so that when they are not connected to Exchange server they will still be able to use OAB ?
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:VB ITS
ID: 40582360
Outlook needs to be running in cached mode, which is by default when you first set up a new Outlook profile, and nothing else.
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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 40582424
Cached mode is disabled by GPO in our environment...
So web distributed will not help if I understand you ?
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Accepted Solution

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VB ITS earned 400 total points
ID: 40582429
Well if cached mode is disable by GPO then your users won't be able to open Outlook if they don't have access to the Exchange server, therefore they won't be able to open the OAB either.

So web distributed will not help if I understand you ?
Correct, it really makes no difference as Outlook isn't running in cached mode in the first place.
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Author Closing Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 40599778
Thank you Guys!
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