How to Change Exchange Server Reminders with Regard to Meeting Requests

Microsoft Exchange ServerExchange Server has many features, many of which are extremely valuable to users. In order to utilize these features, it’s important to understand what the users are going to be using most often and what they will not.  As some features are useful to users, they will be used the most, while others not as much. Understanding this will help System Administrators to improve system performance as well as user experience for the most frequently used features.

In almost all business environments that have an Exchange server, the creation and scheduling of meeting requests will be one of the most often used features. Meeting requests are a key part of the infrastructure of any business that utilizes this form of communication. As a System Administrator it is your responsibility to ensure that these features are always working correctly.  And when an issue arises within the scope of the Exchange Server environment it is your responsibility to fix it as efficiently as possible. Most recipients of a meeting request will also receive a reminder; but that may not be a part of the original meeting request configuration setting.

Consider the following scenario:

  • You create a meeting request in Microsoft Outlook.
  • You configure Outlook not to send reminders. For example, you set the Reminder status to None in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007.
  • You send the meeting request to a recipient.
  • The mailbox for the recipient is hosted on Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 or Microsoft Exchange Server 2010.

In this scenario, a reminder is set to the default value of 15 minutes when the recipient receives the message.

Although this isn’t a critical error and doesn’t involve any system downtime, it is still an error because we have not initiated this action to occur. Good System Admins have complete control over their system and will usually want to correct this as soon as possible. Even simple problems such as unwanted reminder notices can become issues when users begin to complain. This is another reason to correct these problems as soon as they occur.

To resolve this particular issue we are going to set up a simple file containing code that will allow us to change the default settings on our Exchange Server. This code will completely turn off reminders on appointments made through the system. To undo this fix simply change the values of the following code from “false” to “true”.

The following steps will provide you with a resolution to this issue within Exchange 2007, 2010, and 2013. You will need a word editor such as notepad to save the code as a “.config” file.

Exchange Server 2013

  1. Start Notepad.
  2. Type the following in the Notepad file:
  • <?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”utf-8″ ?> <configuration>  <storeDriver>   <parameters>    <add key=”AlwaysSetReminderONAppointment” value=”false” />   </parameters>  </storeDriver> </configuration>
  1. Click File, and then click Save.
  2. In the File name box, type StoreDriver.config.
  3. In the Save as type box, click All Files.
  4. Save the file in the %ExchInstallFolder%\bin folder.
  5. Restart the Microsoft Exchange Mailbox Transport Delivery service.
  6. Repeat steps 1 through 6 on all Exchange 2013 servers that have the Hub Transport role.

Exchange Server 2010

  1. Start Notepad.
  2. Type the following in the Notepad file:
  • <?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”utf-8″ ?> <configuration>  <storeDriver>   <parameters>    <add key=”AlwaysSetReminderONAppointment” value=”false” />   </parameters>  </storeDriver> </configuration>
  1. Click File, and then click Save.
  2. In the File name box, type StoreDriver.config.
  3. In the Save as type box, click All Files.
  4. Save the file in the %ExchInstallFolder%\bin folder.
  5. Restart the Transport service.
  6. Repeat steps 1 through 6 on all Exchange 2010 servers that have the Hub Transport role.

Exchange Server 2007

  1. Install the latest Exchange Server 2007 service pack on the Hub Transport servers. For more information about how to install the latest Exchange service pack or update rollup
  2. Start Notepad.
  3. Type the following in the Notepad file:
  • <?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”utf-8″ ?> <configuration>  <storeDriver>   <parameters>    <add key=”AlwaysSetReminderONAppointment” value=”false” />   </parameters>  </storeDriver> </configuration>
  1. Click File, and then click Save.
  2. In the File name box, type StoreDriver.config.
  3. In the Save as type box, click All Files.
  4. Save the file in the %ExchInstallFolder%\bin folder.
  5. Restart the Transport service.
  6. Repeat steps 1 through 7 on all Exchange 2007 servers that have the Hub Transport role.

These steps are taken from Microsoft’s support page right here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/945854

The reason why this condition occurs is because of an internal bug with the HUB Transport service. This happens because the transport service was configured for AlwaysSetReminderONAppointment and on all HUB transport role servers this attribute is set by default.

 

 

Written by Jacob Rede

2 Comments

  1. Mario B. · April 30, 2013

    I am quite new to the whole Exchange Server scenario. I’m still “groping in the dark” and trying to learn how things work. My partner, though, is more experienced than I am. We have been getting too many reminder notices lately and this does not suit us well. We cannot just sit and wait for complaints to come in. We need to find a way to fix things. So this is a big help. Exchange can be quite difficult to deal with, especially for one who’s relatively new to it. But this is pretty much how things should be done.

  2. Arnold · April 30, 2013

    Nice tutorial! I don’t deal with Exchange servers myself, though I’m one of those working in the IT department. The issue doesn’t concern us as much as it does to the administration or the management, but since we belong to the same organization, where we co-exist, we need to provide them ample technical support, including making sure they can set up or call on meetings properly.

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