Ask the Expert

Troubleshooting Outlook Web Access user login issues

We use Windows Small Business Server 2003 Standard Edition. One of our users is able to log on to the local network and connect to his Exchange Server mailbox using Outlook 2003. However, via Outlook Web Access (OWA), the same logon username/password combination is rejected. This it not a problem for any other user. I would appreciate any troubleshooting tips you have to offer.

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First, make sure that this user has permission to access OWA. In Active Directory Users and Computers, select the Exchange Features tab of the user properties and verify that Outlook Web Access is enabled. Most likely, this is already enabled, but it's worth the check.

If OWA is in fact enabled, then try preceding the username with the domain name and a forward slash in the logon prompt. For example, instead of typing just JDoe, type MyDomain\JDoe -- obviously replacing the domain name and account name with the actual values.

If that still does not work, try resetting the password from the server. While this may seem somewhat odd, I have actually seen instances (on more than one occasion) where the user changed his/her password from a workstation, successfully logged onto the domain using the new password from the workstation, but couldn't access OWA. Resetting the password at the server actually fixed it. Strange but true.

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Related information from SearchExchange.com:

  • Expert Advice: Outlook Web Access permission problems
  • Expert Advice: Username and password logon problems in OWA
  • Tip: Troubleshooting OWA issues
  • FAQ: Outlook Web Access
  • Learning Center: Troubleshooting Outlook Web Access
  • Reference Center: Outlook Web Access tips and resources
  • This was first published in July 2006

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