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Exchange Server domain name changes -- don't forget about IIS

Because of their co-dependent relationship, changes to Exchange Server can influence Internet Information Server (IIS) behavior and vice versa. One potentially troublesome interaction between Exchange Server and IIS involves domain name changes.

Because of their co-dependent relationship, changes to Exchange Server can influence Internet Information Server...

(IIS) behavior and vice versa. One particular interaction between Exchange Server and IIS that can sometimes cause problems involves domain name changes.

When you change the domain name of an Exchange server, that domain name change is also replicated to the IIS metabase so that it can be used by the SMTP service (SmtpSvc).

Each domain that the SmtpSvc sends on behalf of is listed there in LM -> SmtpSvc -> 1 -> Domain -> <domain_name>. The <domain_name> entry may be a fully qualified domain name (FQDN) like, or it might be an internal .local DNS entry.

If domain name changes are not propagated to the IIS metabase, email to the SMTP service will generate a non-delivery report (NDR) with the error:

Error 5.1.1: The e-mail account does not exist at the organization this message was sent to. Check the email address, or contact the recipient directly to find out the correct address.

This sounds confusing, especially since it seems like you're getting an error from the target organization. It's so misleading that you might be tempted to go on a wild goose chase to debug a nonexistent problem with a remote server -- but the problem really lies with your own Exchange Server/IIS setup.

To confirm that this is truly the issue, use MetaEdit to open the IIS metabase and look at the abovementioned entry. If you see an entry for a domain name other than your currently configured one (under Domain), delete it. (You may want to back up the IIS metabase before doing this, just in case.)

About the author: Serdar Yegulalp is editor of the Windows Power Users Newsletter.

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This was last published in October 2006

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