About Michel de Rooij

Michel is a Exchange Server MVP with a PowerShell affection, and publisher of EighTwOne. FInd Michel on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or Google+. Michel is also available for consulting or support engagements.

Knowledgebase RSS feeds

rss[1]Note: This is an update of an article from January, 2010.

Like most people I still use RSS feeds to keep track of news and updates from various sources. But did you know you can also keep track of Microsoft’s knowledgebase articles per product using RSS feeds? Great for keeping track of updates in RSS readers like Outlook or sites like Feedly, or creating triggers on sites like IFTTT (If-This-Then-That) to automatically send e-mail notifications.

Here are some RSS feeds on knowledgebase articles that might be of interest to you:

Exchange Server


Office 365

Lync/Skype for Business

There is no RSS feed for Exchange Server 2016 yet.

For a complete list of the knowledgebase articles RSS feeds check here.

Exchange 2016 and IM Integration

Ex2013 LogoThose configuring IM integration for OWA and Lync or Skype for Business know the drill of editing the web.config files on your Exchange servers and configuring the certificate thumbprint and Lync/SfB pool? That especially became a nuisance as after each Cumulative Update those settings needed to be reconfigured, for which I wrote a Configure-IMIntegration script.

The Exchange team has obviously listened to feedback from customers and made this setting persistent in Exchange 2016. No longer is it required to dive in those web.config files after installing each CU. Instead, you now configure these settings using the Set-Override cmdlet, which will store the setting in Active Directory.

For example:

New-SettingOverride -Name '<Description>' -Server <Server/Wildcard> -Component OwaServer -Section IMSettings -Parameters @("IMServerName=<Server/Pool FQDN>","IMCertificateThumbprint=<Certificate Thumbprint>") -Reason "<Reason>" -MinVersion "<Minimum Version To Apply To>" -MaxVersion "Maximum Version to Apply To"
Get-ExchangeDiagnosticInfo -Process Microsoft.Exchange.Directory.TopologyService -Component VariantConfiguration -Argument Refresh

For example, to configure the override for all servers with a name starting with EX16, configuring lync.contoso.com as pool FQDN and a specific thumbprint, only for Exchange builds starting at (Exchange 2016 RTM), you could use:

New-SettingOverride -Name 'IM Integration' -Server EX16* -Component OwaServer -Section IMSettings -Parameters @("IMServerName=lync.contoso.com","IMCertificateThumbprint=12345678123412341234567812345678123126789") -Reason "Configure IM" -MinVersion "15.01.0225.42"
Get-ExchangeDiagnosticInfo -Process Microsoft.Exchange.Directory.TopologyService -Component VariantConfiguration -Argument Refresh

Finally, restart the OWA App pool to have OWA reread the new settings:

Restart-WebAppPool MSExchangeOWAApppool

Exchange 2016 goes RTM!

Ex2013 LogoToday, the Exchange Team reached a milestone for the On-Premises by releasing Exchange Server 2016. The official announcement contains information on new features and enhancements.The version number of Exchange 2016 RTM is After extending it, the schema version should report 15317, and the forest and domain versions after preparing Active Directory should read 16210 and 13236, respectively.

Much of what’s new or requirements for coexistence scenarios were already announced during the release of the Exchange 2016 Preview, a little over 2 months ago. I did a write-up on that here. However, some features didn’t make it for the RTM release. For example, the feature that makes Search Indexer use Passive Database Copies for indexing, instead of copying indexes from the active copy, is to be expected in a later Cumulative Update. Also, the auto-expanding Archive feature, available in the Preview, has not made it in the RTM version.

Also make sure you read the Release Notes, which contain important information on potential issues. For example, Exchange 2016 does not prevent you from adding Exchange 2013 Mailbox servers to an Exchange 2016 Database Availability Group, or vice-versa. This ability is also not blocked by the Exchange Admin Center console. This is totally unsupported (the database structure is different), but more importantly also puts your data at risk. Just don’t.

Some links to get you started:

The first Cumulative Updated is to be expected in Q1’16.

Accompanying the launch, Microsoft also published a number of videos highlighting certain aspects or features. One of them is the ever charming Greg Taylor talking about Exchange Server 2016 – Performance, architecture and compliance updates:

Other videos from the Exchange Team and Office Garage:

2015 Microsoft MVP Award

I am proud and happy to announce I got re-awarded the Microsoft MVP Award for Exchange Server for the third year in a row:


MVP awards are given to individuals by Microsoft in recognition of their contributions to the technical community, such as this writing on blogs or books, presenting, forum contributions or The UC Architects podcast.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank my readers, followers, fellow MVPs and of course the Microsoft employees that have encouraged, helped and supported me over years.

My MVP profile can be found here.

IT/DEV Connections 2015 Wrap-Up

imageNote: For those that attended Jaap and my workshop on Monday, Managing Exchange On-Premises and Exchange Online using PowerShell, the slidedeck is available here and the sample code is available here.

Last weekend, I returned from one of the largest, independent conferences on Microsoft technologies, IT/DEV Connections. The conference, which took place in the city of Las Vegas, is spread over a 3-day period on popular topics, like Exchange, Windows, SQL or SharePoint, and has a track for Infrastructure as well as Development (hence the ‘IT/DEV’). Apart from the many speakers, most of them experienced Microsoft Valuable Professionals, Microsoft celebrities like Tim McMichael were also presenting sessions.

Like many conferences nowadays, IT/DEV Connections took off with several pre-conference workshops on Monday. One of these workshops was done by fellow Exchange MVP and countryman Jaap Wesselius and myself. We talked a whole day about ‘Managing Exchange On-Premises and Exchange Online using PowerShell’. The turn-up was above expectation, which is always nice, and we had good interaction with, and feedback from the audience. This made our session, from a presenter’s viewpoint, very worthwhile.

imageSince I had no sessions after the workshop, I was free to attend sessions by fellow presenters. Tony Redmond kicked off with a keynote, analyzing the current landscape for Exchange and Office 365, and making references to sessions later that week, should people be interested in those topics. It’s also where you learn who is running what, and as it turned out most attendees are running Exchange 2010 or Exchange 2013 On-Premises, but with an increasing interest in Office 365.

During the week, apart from the excellent contents presented, I was very humbled to learn lots of presenters made references to several of my scripts, e.g.

This conference is also the place where Exchange MVP fellows Tony Redmond, Michael van Horenbeeck, Paul Cunningham and Jeff Guillet presented their 2nd edition of their book, ‘Office 365 for Exchange Professionals’.  Congratulations to them reaching this milestone, looking at the non-stop amount of changes happening in the Office 365 environment. You can get your own copy of the updated book here.

It’s becoming a tradition that the last Exchange session of the conference is a ‘Ask the Experts’ panel session, where the audience can ask a panel of presenters questions, or where the current landscape for Exchange or Office 365 can be discussed. It’s a great way to close the conference, before everyone gets back to their corners of the world, back from the crazy city that is Las Vegas to reality.

imageIf you didn’t consider IT/DEV Connections before, you should. The conference is a must-visit, especially with Microsoft having consolidated MEC, MMS etc. in a single, huge event which is Ignite now. Connections is not small, but the more intimate setting allows you to catch up with peers more easily, have discussions over a pint, great catering, and without the need to max out your step counter. The Aria resort is very nice place to host this event, great for business with a pleasant conference area without too much of the distractions like the other hotels. If you plan on visiting next year, save the date: September 19-22, 2016!

I also want to thank ENow for again hosting an epic Scheduled Maintenance party. Location this time was the Ghostbar at the 55th floor in Palms Resort, which gave an amazing view over the city of Las Vegas and the Strip. I wore my ENow-branded NFL jersey to the party, a gift from ENow last year. This lead to funny moments, as this is ENow’s event gear, and many people mistook me for an employee, thanking me when leaving the party.

Finally, here are some of the other Exchange Connections wrap-ups:

iOS 9 Outlook App & Lync 2013 App Issues

iphone6After Apple released iOS 9 to the public yesterday. From an Exchange or Office 365 perspective, iOS 9 supports the enhanced calendar features of Office 365 and Exchange 2016 when that is released. Unfortunately, incidents have been reported with the Outlook app and the Lync 2013 App.

Regarding the Outlook App, iOS9 users might not be able to start the Outlook App or the Outlook app will just crash. The far from ideal workaround offered by the Outlook team, is to reinstall the Outlook app.


Of course, this also requires users to reconfigure accounts and Outlook App settings, so organizations can expect some calls to the service desk by users who upgraded. Organizations can report on the currently registered iOS8 devices that syned in the last 30 days, using:

Get-MobileDevice | Where-Object {$_.DeviceOS -like 'iOS 8*' -and $_.whenChanged -gt (Get-Date).AddDays(-30)} | Select UserDisplayName, FriendlyName, DeviceModel, DeviceOS, whenChanged

This will product a list of users, the name of their device, the device model and OS and when it last synced with Exchange. This information can be useful when you want to proactively approach users with iOS8 devices.

For Lync 2013 users, there are sign-in issues when they have configured different region and language settings on their iOS device. Those users will be presented the following:


The issue has officially been confirmed through publication of KB3096704, which states:

“This problem is fixed in the Microsoft Skype for Business for iOS app that will replace Lync for iPhone and Lync for iPad when it’s released. No fix for this issue is scheduled for the current releases of Lync for iPhone and Lync for iPad”.

Since the Skype for Business app is not available yet, this is not good news. Mitigation is possible by matching the region with the language setting (or the other way around), after which you need to reinstall the Lync 2013 app from the store.

With all this in mind, should organizations wish to first test the new iOS against their Exchange environment for potential other issues, you can block iOS 9 from accessing your Exchange 2013 environment, or Office 365 tenant if you must, using the Access/Block/Quarantine feature. First you need to retrieve the reported DeviceOS string for iOS 9 for a device:

Get-MobileDevice | Where-Object {$_.DeviceOS -like “iOS 9*”} | Select DeviceModel, DeviceOSLanguage, DeviceOS

The reported DeviceOS strings then is used to create an ActiveSync device rule. For example, my iPhone 6 reports DeviceOS as “iOS 9.0 13A344”. To block these devices with iOS 9.0 and put them in quarantine, run the following:

New-ActiveSyncDeviceAccessRule -QueryString "iOS 9.0 13A344" -Characteristic DeviceOS -AccessLevel Quarantine

If you would like to know more about the Access/Block/Quarantine option, check out this article.

The UC Architects Podcast Ep55

iTunes-Podcast-logo[1]Episode 55 of The UC Architects podcast is now available. This episode, which was recorded live at the Modern Workplace Summit and Skype Days in Oslo, is hosted by Steve Goodman, who is joined by Ståle Hansen and Tom Arbuthnot. Special Guests are Johan Delimon, Thomas Poet, and Fabriazo Volpe. Editing was done by Andrew Price.

Some of the topics discussed in this episode are:

  • Introducing the Microsoft Office 365 Hybrid Configuration Wizard
  • Set up Skype for Business Online for Skype Meeting Broadcast
  • Overview of Modern Workplace Summit
  • Exchange 2016 new features
  • Lync 2013 multi-tenant upgrade path
  • How do I convince the firewall team to open ports 50-59k?
  • Extensive reporting statistics on room bookings and internal message stats
  • Move Public Folders to room mailboxes
  • What are the technical challenges and business challenges and opportunities for Cloud PBX
  • Skype – in place upgrade with Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Lync Room System (LRS) upgrade route
  • UCDAY UK meeting

You can download the podcast here or you can subscribe to the podcasts using iTunes, Zune or use the RSS feed.

The UC Architects is a community podcast by people with a passion for Unified Communications; our main focus is on Exchange, Skype for Business or related subjects.

Exchange 2013 and .NET Framework 4.6

Ex2013 LogoA quick heads-up that when you are running Exchange Server 2013, you should not install or update to .NET Framework 4.6. This version of the .NET framework is not only not supported, it may also cause your Exchange 2013 server to stop functioning correctly.

When you have updated from a previous version, a suggested workaround is to uninstall .NET Framework 4.6. However, with all the dependencies on the .NET Framework by Exchange Server, it maybe preferred, when you did install version .NET Framework 4.6, to migrate contents, i.e. mailboxes etc., to a new Exchange 2013 server, and decommission the one you installed .NET 4.6.

More information can be found in KB3095369.

Exchange 2013 CU10 & Exchange 2010 SP3 RU11

Ex2013 LogoThe Exchange Team released Cumulative Update 10 for Exchange Server 2013 (KB3078678) as well as Rollup 11 for Exchange Server 2010 Service Pack 3 (KB3078674). These version levels will be required for co-existence with Exchange Server 2016, which is to be released at a later date. The updates raise the version numbers to 15.0.1130.7 and, respectively.

Cumulative Update 10 contains the following fixes for Exchange Server 2013:

  • KB 3087126 MS15-103: Description of the security update for Exchange Server: September 8, 2015
  • KB 3094068 Permissions for a linked mailbox are added to an account in the wrong forest in an Exchange Server 2013 environment
  • KB 3093884 The link in a quarantined email shows an empty list for ActiveSync-enabled devices in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3093866 The number of search results can’t be more than 250 when you search email messages in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3088911 Inline attachments are sent as traditional when you smart forward an HTML email in an iOS device in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3087571 Can’t edit or resend a delayed delivery message when you open the message from the Outbox folder in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3087293 “550 5.6.0” NDR and duplicated attachments when an encrypted email is sent in Outlook in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3080511 HTML forms aren’t available when the DisableFilter parameter is enabled in Outlook Web App in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3080221 LegacyExchangeDN attribute is displayed when you use Outlook Web App to view an appointment in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3079217 Outlook Web App replies to the wrong email address when an email has more than 12 recipients in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3078966 Outlook 2011 for Mac client displays emails as they come from the same senders in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3078443 Incorrect results are displayed when you search for an email that has a certain attachment name in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3078438 Performance issues occur in an Exchange Server 2013 environment that’s running BlackBerry Enterprise Server 5
  • KB 3078404 Can’t access a shared mailbox after you migrate from Exchange Server 2010 to Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3076257 EWS returns a Success response code even if a batch deletion request isn’t completed in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3074823 No Send As audit events are logged when you use Send As permission in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3071776 “A problem occurred” error when you access shared folders in Exchang Server 2013 mailbox by using Outlook Web App
  • KB 3069516 Mailbox size and quota information are reported incorrectly in Outlook and Outlook Web App in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3061487 “FailedToGetRootFolders” error when you run an eDiscovery estimate search for archive mailboxes in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3058609 Wrong recipient is specified in an inbox rule that has the ForwardTo or RedirectTo option in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3009631 Advanced Find against the Sent Items folder in Outlook returns no result in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 2999011 Documents are partially indexed by Exchange search when they embed other documents in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 2983161 Organization unite picker is missing when you create a Remote Mailbox in Exchange Admin Console in Exchange Server 2013
  • KB 3091308 Can’t install cumulative updates or service packs when MachinePolicy or UserPolicy is defined in Exchange Server 2013

For Exchange Server 2010 SP3, Rollup 11 contains the following fix:

  • KB 3092576 Exchange 2010 Information Store crashes randomly


    • When using Exchange hybrid deployments or Exchange Online Archiving (EOA), you are required to stay current.
    • If you want to speed up the update process for systems without internet access, you can follow the procedure described here to disable publisher’s certificate revocation checking.
    • This Cumulative Update does include Active Directory changes when compared to the previous Cumulative Update. If you have deployed a version earlier than CU10, make sure you run setup /PrepareAD.
    • If you got an Exchange 2010 DAG, and want to properly update the DAG members, check the instructions here.

Note that Cumulative Updates can be installed directly, i.e. no need to install RTM prior to installing Cumulative Updates. Note that once installed, you can’t uninstall a Cumulative Update nor any of the installed Exchange server roles. The order of upgrading Exchange 2013 servers is irrelevant, unlike with previous generations of Exchange. Exchange 2010 Rollups are cumulative per service pack level, i.e. they contain fixes released in earlier updates.

You can download Exchange 2013 Cumulative Update 10 here and Exchange 2010 SP3 Rollup 11 here. The Exchange 2013 CU10 Language Packs are available here.

IT/Dev Connections 2015

imspeakingatdevconnections[1]I am in Las Vegas at the moment for the IT/DEV Connections conference which will take place in Las Vegas this week. Looking at the schedule and list of speakers, the conference is bound to be a success. If you’re not in Las Vegas, you can follow the conference on Twitter. The designated hashtag is #ITDEVCON.

itdevconMany thanks to Penton Media for giving me the opportunity to co-host the “Managing Exchange On-Premises and Exchange Online with PowerShell” workshop in the Enterprise Collaboration with Jaap Wesselius, on September 14th in Bluethorn 4. I will be present at the conference the whole week, so if you have questions or just want to say hi, look me up or ping me on Twitter or e-mail.