Automapping

Automapping in mailboxes to Outlook is very useful for those users who do not wish to follow instructions to manually connect to the mailboxes to which they have access. The personal mailbox is always picked up by Outlook by default. However, the ‘automap’ property causes Outlook (2007 and later on Microsoft Windows) to automatically display the mailboxes to which a user has 'Full Access' permission.

Without automapping, the user has to know/remember which mailboxes s/he has access to and to map them in manually.

When 'Full Access' mailbox permission for a mailbox (which is not their primary/personal mailbox) is assigned, the automapping property is also assigned by default. This can be disabled if so desired, at the time, or later. The automapping property has not been routinely assigned to Oxford Nexus delegations that were in place before April 2012.

Automapping sounds like a good thing, but there are some situations where it may be undesirable.

When is automapping useful?

With the automapping property enabled for the user to mailbox relationship:

  • Automapping is simply automatic. The secondary mailboxes appear upon opening Outlook. (Manually mapping in a secondary mailbox to Outlook takes several clicks and some users find it to be a technically challenging process.)

    To map in manually

    Outlook 2007 - Running multiple Nexus mailboxes under one profile

    Outlook 2010 - Running multiple Nexus mailboxes under one profile

  • Outlook 2007 users are able to have a secondary mailbox automapped to their Outlook interface where that mailbox is hidden from the Global Address List. (This is not possible otherwise.)
  • Outlook 2010 (and later) users are also able to automatically display a mailbox that is hidden from the GAL with automapping. (This is possible but far more difficult to do manually.)

When may automapping be undesirable?

  • It may be undesirable for people who have a large number of accounts to which they have Full Access. If they are all accessed simultaneously, this can lead to performance issues with Outlook, so some – which are only occasionally used – may be best left without automapping and hidden from Outlook.

    However, please also take care to avoid the ‘500 folders on the same mailbox server limit’. One copy of Outlook should only be used to access 500 folders on the same mailbox server. A fix for this performance issue is to ask IT Services to move a mailbox on to another server, or for the occasionally used mailbox not to be mapped in to Outlook (via automapping or manual means).

  • Where the Outlook user wishes the sent and deleted items produced when interacting with the secondary mailbox to be placed in the 'Sent Items' and 'Deleted Items' folders of the secondary mailbox. (Automapped mailboxes place such items in the 'Sent Items' and 'Deleted Items' folders of the main account of the user sending or deleting the email, not to that of the shared account.)

Other things to be aware of

  • Care must be taken to avoid the situation of having a secondary mailbox that has been added manually and the same mailbox automapped in to Outlook at the same time. This can lead to unpredictable behaviour and is not supported by Microsoft.
  • Automapping functionality does not work if Full Access is assigned to a group; it must be assigned to an individual.
  • The Automap property is set between each individual user and the mailbox. Thus, for example, if 5 users have Full Access to a mailbox, it is possible to give 3 of them automap properties for Outlook and leave 2 of them to have to connect manually to the secondary mailbox.

What to do if you would like your automapping settings changed (i.e. turned on or off)

Please email registration@it.ox.ac.uk with your username and the username of the secondary account, stating explicitly whether you do or do not want that mailbox to automap to your Outlook client.

N.B. This is performed on a user/mailbox basis, not per mailbox. For example, if a mailbox called College Accounts is accessed by 5 people, each of those 5 people gets a choice as to whether they want the College Accounts to automap into their Outlook profile. It is not simply switched on or off for the whole mailbox.