Friday, May 26, 2006

Global Address List (GAL)

I had a customer call me because he added a new user to his Small Business Server and wanted to see them in the Global Address List in his Outlook. Exchange doesn't automatically update the GAL upon user creation in Active Directory. I think it's strange that Exchange doesn't automatically update the GAL when it creates a mail box for the user. Instead Exchange is set up to update the GAL once a day. If you want that person to be listed immediately you will have to manually start the update.

First you need to open up the Exchange System Manager and navigate to Recipients > Offline Address Lists

Second, double click on the Default Offline Address List

Third, under update interval click the Customize button.

From there, select a time that is closest to your current time and wait for it to pass. Outlook should update automatically. And your employees won't have to manually type in the new users full email address.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Remote Computer Access

I had a need to remotely access a Windows 2000 Professional computer, but Microsoft didn't have Remote Desktop capabilities built into it. I found TightVNC which is a free program protected by GPL licensing. You can set it up as a viewer, or to control a remote computer based on password access. It operates on ports 5900 and 5800. However I wouldn't recommend it for using over the internet because of weak encryption. I first remote into another machine before I use this program, or you could use OpenSSH to secure it. The website to download it can be found at

Outlook 2003 not default email handler

This article is a re-posting of some help I received from google groups:

UaHardwick wrote -
Let me rephrase that title. Outlook 2003 is the default email handler, yet it won't respond when I click on a mailto: someb link. In my start menu (WinXP) the e-mail Icon is an envelope not the Outlook 2003 icon. If I right click on the start menu > Properties > Start Menu - Customize; the email option is Microsoft Outlook, not outlook express.

In Internet Explorer I go to tools > internet options > Programs(tab) Microsoft Office Outlook is already chosen for email.

In Outlook 2003 I go to Tools > options > other(tab) the checkmark box next to "Make Outlook the default program for E-mail, Contacts, and Calendar." is greyed out.

Also note that I am running a small business server 2003 domain with Outlook 2003 installed as an assigned application through Active Directory.

How can I really make this program my defalult email handler? Or at least show the Outlook icon on the start menu.

Robert Sparnaaij [MVP-Outlook] wrote -
It's a Windows setting. You can change the icon on a per shortcut basis or change the default in Control Panel-> Folder Options-> tab File Types-> URL:MailTo Protocol

UaHardwick wrote -
Thank you for the reply, I actually installed the service pack 2 for office 2003 and it resolved the problem for me.