Where to look when troubleshooting E-mail Settings

E-mail Settings is one of the many used features of RES Workspace Manager. It is an easy and quick way to configure the MAPI profile which is used by Microsoft Outlook. But even easy things might sometimes not behave as desired and you have to start troubleshooting. Customers regularly ask RES Support to help them with this. Most of the time this comes down to pointing the customer where to look for and what they should expect to see.

With a couple of examples I will show you where to look and what to expect to see when troubleshooting the following examples:

  • The First Run Wizard is started
  • The wrong signature is used
  • The Microsoft LDAP Directory cannot be reached

Let’s take a look at my configuration. I have configured two E-mail Settings: “Exchange auto-detected” and “Voluntary signature”. By separating the signature you gain a lot of flexibility in configuring the signatures. A much used configuration is to use multiple voluntary signatures and use groups to provide users with one or more signatures to choose from.

The E-mail Setting “Exchange auto-detected” is used for the connection to a Microsoft Exchange Server in combination with a connection to a Microsoft LDAP Directory for a custom Address Book lookup.

The connection to a Microsoft Exchange Server is resolved through Active Directory.

The connection to a Microsoft LDAP Directory.

The configuration of the E-mail Setting “Voluntary signature”.

The behavior of the signature is voluntary. Here it is also possible to clear the history.

As a side note: By editing the signature as HTML it is possible to use advanced layouts and include pictures. To prevent problems with the layout, the HTML signature has to be edited in a text editor like Notepad. This is as opposed to using the default application, most likely Microsoft Word. You can follow this knowledgebase article on how to configure this on your management machine: Q202253 – Line distance not correct in Instant Mail Signature.

The First Run Wizard is started

When Microsoft Outlook is started, the MAPI Profile will be created in [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows Messaging Subsystem] with a lot of registry keys underneath it.

There should only be MAPI Profiles that are configured in E-mail Settings in the RES Workspace Manager Console. In this case there is only “Exchange auto-detected”. The E-mail Setting for a signature does not create its own MAPI Profile.

When using an E-mail Setting for the Exchange connection, the First Run Wizard should not be starting. Most of the time when you experience this problem, you will see that there are more MAPI Profiles that might have names like “Outlook” or “BACKUP OF Outlook”. This is caused by the auto-configuration options that are available in the setup of Microsoft Office. An easy way to resolve this for Microsoft Office 2010 is by searching the registry hives [HKEY_CURRENT_USER] and [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE] for the registry value “Custom14.prf” and delete all values you find. For Microsoft Office 2007 you should search for “Custom12.prf” and with Microsoft Office 2003 for “Custom11.prf”.

The wrong signature is used

With a new profile the signature options in Microsoft Outlook should reflect the configuration that is done in RES Workspace Manager. The “Voluntary signature” is used in “New messages” and in “Replies/forwards”.

Now take a look at the registry again. The signature can be easily found by searching the MAPI Profile for the phrase “signature”.

Right click on “New Signature” or “Reply-Forward Signature” and select “Modify Binary Data…”.

Here you should see the same name of the signature files that are used.

With an English version of Microsoft Outlook these signature files located in %userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Signatures. This location might differ when a different language version of Microsoft Outlook is used. For example with a Dutch version of Microsoft Outlook the path to the signature files will be %userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Handtekeningen. Regardless of the location should the names be the same as the binary content of the registry values. When a user creates  its own signature in Microsoft Outlook, the signature files will be stored here.

The content of the signature files should be the same as configured in the E-mail Setting.

Because the signature is voluntary, it will only be set once. RES Workspace Manager keeps track of this by comparing the ID for the signature with an *_outsig.once file located in the “Personal Settings” folder in the homedrive of the user (in RES Workspace Manager 2011 and earlier the folder “Pwrmenu” is used instead of the “Personal Settings” folder).

You can clear the history of the signature by selecting “Clear history, signature will be set next time Outlook starts”. When you tick the box, this will generate a new ID for the signature and it will be set for all users. If you want to reset the signature for one user, then you obviously can delete the *_ougsig.once file.

The Microsoft LDAP Directory cannot be reached

The Microsoft LDAP Directory can be as easily found as the signature by looking for the name of the LDAP Server or the port number.

Here you should see the same settings as configured in the E-mail Setting. Of course you could use the same procedure to look for the Exchange server settings.

As you can see it is very easy to locate information on E-mail Settings in the profile of the user as to start troubleshooting E-mail Settings, if you know where to look of course.

Also check out the video tutorial: E-mail Templates


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