Ask the Expert

Lost ability to create Exchange inboxes from Active Directory Users and Computers

I cannot create e-mail inboxes in Exchange from Active Directory Users and Computers anymore. When I create a new user with the wizard, everything finishes, but there are no e-mail addresses on the user properties e-mail tab, no entry in the Global Address Book and the Exchange System Manager doesn't show a new mailbox.

I can move the unseen mailbox from one server to another, and it magically appears. I can then move it back, but there are still issues. The mailbox doesn't appear in the address book, or have an e-mail address in the user properties, and the user cannot attach to the server with Outlook 2003.

I think this started shortly after I added a second Exchange server. NetDiag and DCDiag show no problems, and the Exchange Best Practices Analyzer doesn't show any hints either.

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It sounds to me as though the Recipient Update Service (RUS) is not working properly for mailboxes you create on the problematic server. The RUS is responsible for stamping the SMTP proxy addresses on new object, along with other Exchange objects. It's also responsible for stamping the showInAddressBook attribute, which is required to get the mailbox to appear in the Global Address List (GAL) and permit logon via MAPI (i.e., Outlook). Without knowing more about your issues, I can't take you much further than this, but I'd have a good look at the RUS in troubleshooting your issue.


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Related information from the TechTarget Windows Network:

  • SearchExchange.com Tip: Tool diagnoses Active Directory schema problems
  • SearchExchange.com Reference Center: Active Directory
  • SearchWin2000.com FAQ: Active Directory


  • This was first published in October 2005

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