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How to access search folders for shared mailboxes in Outlook 2007

I spent some time fiddling with this today and have finally solved it. Took a while to find something useful on Google, so I will note it here for my own reference and any Google refugees…

I wanted my PA to be able to see my search folders, especially the follow-up flagged items. I eventually found that I could see them fine on her machine if I turned off cached mode, but as we access our Exchange server over a VPN this would get seriously annoying. Turning cached mode back on meant that I could still see everything in my mailbox, but search folders were missing.

There are two things to do. The first is to get the Exchange server to operate the search folders instead of just Outlook – this requires having the full-text indexer etc set up on the server, which is automatic from E2007 onwards anyway. All you need to do is log onto the mailbox to be shared in online mode – i.e. disable cached mode – and access the search folders once. This kicks the server and tells it to get on with it. You can test this by logging onto the mailbox in OWA, if the search folders are there this is done.

The second thing is very simple and just requires going into advanced settings in the profile that’s accessing the shared mailbox and untick ‘download shared folders’ under cached mode, but leave the cached mode box itself ticked. Restart Outlook and they appear (NB – the mailbox needs to be opened under additional mailboxes, not just by file/open shared folder.)

This was one of those things that probably required more effort than it will ever save, but at least it’s done now…

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