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Outlook Keeps Disconnecting from Microsoft Exchange

Posted on 2016-08-25
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Last Modified: 2016-08-26
We have a Windows 8.1 Pro domain attached workstation that has been experiencing frequent DNS related errors.  Several times per day the end user's MS Outlook 2016 will go offline and show 'disconnected' in lower right corner.  A reboot, temporarily disabling IPv6, or connecting to the WiFi network (instead of ethernet) generally solves the issue for a short time and then it happens again.  Also, when trying to access the OWA mail app in Chrome I received this error - "outlook.office365.com's server DNS address could not be found"

Please note that the domain controller is running Windows Server 2012 and has DHCP and DNS roles running and other domain connected workstations are working as expected.  Any suggested troubleshooting steps will be most appreciated.
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Question by:Poly11
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41770946
A reboot, temporarily disabling IPv6, or connecting to the Wi-Fi network (instead of Ethernet) generally solves the issue

Uninstall (delete) the NIC from Device Manager. Shut down, start up, reinstall the NIC and then see if Outlook continues to disconnect.  You should not have to disable IPv6 however.
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Expert Comment

by:Jakob Digranes
ID: 41770981
given the fact that both webmail and outlook fails - there something networkingish ...

try to reset winsock and TCP/IP for nic

netsh interface ip reset
netsh winsock reset

reboot
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41770982
If you have done the driver update, it will do all of the above and a bit more as well.
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Author Comment

by:Poly11
ID: 41771184
I logged in as the domain administrator and opened CMD as administrator. Below is the output:
Microsoft Windows [Version 6.3.9600]
(c) 2013 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

C:\Users\administrator>netsh interface ip reset
Resetting Interface, OK!
Resetting Neighbor, OK!
Resetting Path, OK!
Resetting , failed.
Access is denied.

Resetting , OK!
Restart the computer to complete this action.


C:\Users\administrator>netsh winsock reset

Sucessfully reset the Winsock Catalog.
You must restart the computer in order to complete the reset.


C:\Users\administrator>

Please note that the network that has the problem PC we opened this case for has approximately 25 users. Only 2 users are having this issue and the rest are not. The problem PC noted in this case is running Windows 8.1 Pro and is domain attached.

Thx
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John Hurst earned 500 total points
ID: 41771558
Did you try replacing completely or upgrading the NIC driver to test?  I have seen driver issues with Windows 8 before.

If that does not work, consider doing a Windows 8 Refresh. This is done from Recovery Options and means replacing your software but keeps your data (back up anyway).

Consider upgrading the machine to Windows 10 Pro which works much better. No longer free.
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Author Comment

by:Poly11
ID: 41771571
When I ping the system by it's name it responds with the IPV6 address, not the IPV4 address. Could this be part of the problem?
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41771580
Should not be. There is nothing wrong with IPv6.
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Author Comment

by:Poly11
ID: 41771583
My thoughts exactly. I disabled IPV6 and had somebody onsite reboot. Need to get the user up and running for now. I do agree about Windows 8.1, however if this is an IPV6 issue are there any suggestions for what we can check? Please keep in mind that only 2 of the users on the network are having this issue. The other use is running Windows 10.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41771589
So you have N-2 computers running Windows 7 and no issues.

You have 2 computers: one Windows 8 and one Windows 10 that disconnect from Exchange. Correct?

You can try disabling IPv6, but Windows 7 has IPv6 installed as well. Try it and see.

What is in your network that won't work with Windows 8 and up?

On the Windows 10 machine, try doing a Windows 10 Repair Install. Easy.

Go to the Media Creation Link

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10

Click on Upgrade to Windows 10 (even if Windows 10 is running), click on the Download button, select Open (Run) but NOT Save. Allow the program to run. Allow drivers to update. Then select Keep Everything.
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Author Comment

by:Poly11
ID: 41771607
Thanks for the quick responses, John. We have disabled IPV6 and rebooted and Outlook is connected, however we do anticipate a call from the user within the next few hours to report that it is once again disconnected.

We're going to plan on a refresh of the workstation and upgrade to Windows 10. But in terms of IPV6, do you think there's a setting on the domain controller that we should check? We have this problem at other sites that are running Windows 2012 domain controllers and ironically they too are also Windows 8 workstations.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41771617
We have IPv6 running in all Servers in all Clients so I do not think there is any default setting that would cause this. You might check through the DHCP settings to see if you changed something.
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Author Comment

by:Poly11
ID: 41771666
Nothing has been changed and all Windows 2012 servers that we have a running the defaults. I will open a separate case for that issue. Thank you for your help with this issue. The solution is a system refresh.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Poly11
ID: 41771667
Thank you.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41771675
You are very welcome and I was happy to work with you. A bit of a complicated problem - this one.
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