Exchange 2010 – Out-of-office response (OOF) won’t turn off?

Two users reported the same problem this week: they turned on their out-of-office reply while they were out, then came back and turned it off. Except even after they turned it off, the autoreply was still being sent out. I had them log in to OWA and make sure it was off (maybe some weird bug with Outlook not registering the change in the server), which it was in both cases. I Googled hard and fast and couldn’t find anyone with this same problem.

I went in with Powershell and checked their autoreply status via Get-MailboxAutoReplyConfiguration and it appears that it is, in fact, disabled:

[PS] C:Windowssystem32>Get-mailbox -identity username | Get-MailboxAutoReplyConfiguration
RunspaceId       : 7ad7e9af-cd57-4572-a4fd-c1e999e4b9a5
AutoReplyState   : Disabled
EndTime          : 8/12/2010 12:00:00 PM
ExternalAudience : All
ExternalMessage  :
InternalMessage  :
StartTime        : 8/11/2010 12:00:00 PM
MailboxOwnerId   :  [removed]
Identity         :  [removed]
IsValid          : True

I used Set-MailboxAutoReplyConfiguration to set the messages to “” (empty string) and it’s still sending the user’s autoresponse, from before I blanked it out. My working theory right now is that the out-of-office message was set on both the Exchange 2010 server and the Exchange 2003 server (where the mailboxes were before I migrated them to 2010).

What a fun problem! It’s hard to test whether I’ve fixed it, since each sender only receives the message once, so I have to keep creating new test email addresses to send test messages.

Also, as an aside, why is “out-of-office” abbreviated “OOF” in Microsoft’s docs?

Edit 1: I had one user verify the message was off in OWA and then start Outlook via Start -> Run… “outlook /cleanrules” and this seemed to resolve the issue. Hopefully this isn’t required every time…

18 Replies to “Exchange 2010 – Out-of-office response (OOF) won’t turn off?”

  1. I guess that’s a more logical explanation than the one I’d come up with – that “OOO” is the abbreviation for

    1. We had the same issue – Exchange Powershell reported the status of the autoreplies as disabled.

      Our environment is an Exchange 2003-2010 Hybrid – our students are still on 2003, everyone else has been migrated to 2010. We had some major power issues and basically the whole of exchange went belly up over the Christmas break.

      Today, everyone that had autoreplies set over the break had turned them off in their outlook clients (all 2010) or expected them to auto shut off, and they were still active.

      The fix, nonintuitive as it seems was this:

      Go into the Automatic Replies section. File > Info > Automatic Replies.
      Turn “Send automatic replies” back on, and click OK.
      Open Automatic Replies back up again and set it to “Do not send automatic replies”, and click OK.

      This has worked for us, and is persistent across restarts of the outlook clients.

      Hope it helps.

  2. If you are sure its in Outlook, close outlook and restart it using the /cleanrules switch – at start menu, run, type
    outlook /cleanrules
    and press enter

  3. I tried to remove OST, reset from OWA and then user told me he has to enter in password once in a while for outlook. So removed the Outlook profile, recreated it and now user can set OOO

  4. We exported the rules and then ran the outlook /Cleanruns and it worked like a champ! Super thanks for that we have many people that came back from the holidays with this issue.

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