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178 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 185759 4-Dec-2015 09:56
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Hi all,

If you are like me and use a custom domain with an outlook.com mailbox then you may strike this issue that I had on the weekend.

Microsoft are moving outlook.com mailboxes to their office 365 platform, (all be it a cut down feature set being a free mailbox).
You can tell when this has happened to you two ways:
1) When you login to the web client, up in the top left the heading says "Outlook Mail (Preview)"
2) You can no longer sync with active sync or imap clients (didn't try POP) - noted that EWS still works.

This means if you are syncing via Outlook 2013 EAS for example - you are screwed
If you are syncing via native IOS mail client - you are screwed
If you are syncing via IOS Outlook app - you are ok (it uses EWS)
If you are syncing via Windows 8 / 10 mail client 0 you are ok (uses EWS)

For some reason with IMAP and EAS they reject a username that is any domain except theirs (Oh and your domain autodiscover will be screwed too)
Trolling microsoft forums the official response is "We don't support custom domains on outlook.com - we suggest you pay for office365"
 - Thanks for nothing microsoft
 - Oh and thanks for the heads up that this was coming.

So, I've done some investigating and here are the options, and a workaround:
Option 1 - Do what they say and go to office365
Option 2 - Take your mail hosting somewhere else

Workaround 1:
I've been trying a few things for a couple of days, and this works (unsupported of course)

* Login to your outlook.com webmail, go to the options and create a mailbox alias eg <emailaddress@outlook.com>  However leave your custom domain address as the "Primary" alias.

* On your mail client, change the username being used to login to the email address for the new alias you have created. This will authenticate correctly as it is an "outlook.com" domain, your custom domain address will still receive mail, and because it is your primary alias that will also be used as the "From" email address when you are sending.

Happy days.



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803 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1440358 4-Dec-2015 10:17
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IMO for the $4/month it costs, It's easier just to migrate over to O365 and have the support of a business product if needed.

https://products.office.com/en/exchange/exchange-online

2572 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1440449 4-Dec-2015 12:58
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Thanks for the heads up.

I think I'll be migrating our email elsewhere. We pay for web hosting and they provide email as part of the service.

I don't like the way MS goes about this sort of thing.  They're not the only ones doing it. It bugs me when a service is offered and then the terms of service change but the provider dosen't bother to communicate the up coming changes.

I'm not a fan of "Software as a Service" either which is what Office 365 effectively is. I see it as an easy way to increase the price of a product incrementally. A side effect of the process is you end up paying for stuff you don't necessarily need, or get upgrades you don't want.

I'd rather pay for a product and when  I want a new version etc then I'll pay for it.  I don't want to be continually paying for stuff.




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380 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1440744 4-Dec-2015 21:26
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Technofreak: T
I'm not a fan of "Software as a Service" either which is what Office 365 effectively is. I see it as an easy way to increase the price of a product incrementally. A side effect of the process is you end up paying for stuff you don't necessarily need, or get upgrades you don't want.

I'd rather pay for a product and when  I want a new version etc then I'll pay for it.  I don't want to be continually paying for stuff.


But what's your proposed alternative to avoiding a SaaS solution? Run your own mailserver? Back when I was a network engineer, I ran an in-house Exchange cluster for the Australian & NZ branches and I would not want to return to those days! The overall cost for Exchange Online is minimal compared to the outlay for hardware, software, bandwidth, ancillary services and labour, besides which the SaaS solution helps companies to focus on their core business instead.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1440755 4-Dec-2015 21:59
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wsnz

I probably didn't make my point very well. When I was referring to SaaS and 365 I wasn't looking at 365 as an email server but rather services like like Word, Excel etc.

I think this move by MS is designed to sign up more users onto the 365 platform to sell the Office product services as SaaS.




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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1441269 6-Dec-2015 10:03
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FOr what it's worth- while I know your frustrations, I too was a little annoyed, but could understand, when they stopped offering custom domain support in outlook.com. I can at least say that my performance of their Exchange Online plan has been fantastic. I'm quite happy paying the $4.x a month for it.

Another option, if you want something ever so slightly cheaper, but IMO less professional but with still a decent feature set, www.zohomail.com could be an option for you.







UHD

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1441308 6-Dec-2015 11:57
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How many custom domains is one permitted with an O365 subscription?

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1441332 6-Dec-2015 12:12
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Technofreak: Thanks for the heads up.

I think I'll be migrating our email elsewhere. We pay for web hosting and they provide email as part of the service.

I don't like the way MS goes about this sort of thing.  They're not the only ones doing it. It bugs me when a service is offered and then the terms of service change but the provider dosen't bother to communicate the up coming changes.

I'm not a fan of "Software as a Service" either which is what Office 365 effectively is. I see it as an easy way to increase the price of a product incrementally. A side effect of the process is you end up paying for stuff you don't necessarily need, or get upgrades you don't want.

I'd rather pay for a product and when  I want a new version etc then I'll pay for it.  I don't want to be continually paying for stuff.


Web hsting email tends to suck if on a normal shared server. You just need one compromised website and the IP on the server can get blacklisted. Spam filtering can also suck. Gmail and outlook email(or whatever they call it) tends to be some of the more reliable ways of handling email. Also nothing is ever really free, at least not forever. Some services may start out that way, as a way to grab market share, but terms and conditions change. Diskspace limits are reduced etc.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1441496 6-Dec-2015 19:50
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UHD: How many custom domains is one permitted with an O365 subscription?


As far as I'm aware, the limit is technical, rather than a soft limitation, which is around 500 domains.





UHD

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1441606 6-Dec-2015 22:23
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Ah, nice. I am probably going to shift half a dozen off of the old free Outlook.com platform so a 365 sub might be the way to do it.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1441896 7-Dec-2015 11:20
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I'm in the same situation as UncleArthur and had previously posted on Geekzone about the appalling lack of information from Microsoft regading these changes - Office Outlook Connector Changes - Official Communication Sucks, but with no replies, so I figured it was not an issue for most people.

I have had two email accounts in my custom domain moved so far, one used by a family member and the other just used for subscriptions to various things.

There is some helpful information at www.slipstick.com - Outlook.com Migration Status and Outlook.com is moving to Office 365. The info there did allow me to re-set up these accounts on Android devices using the standard email app, with the trick of adding an outlook.com alias to my custom domain based email (don't make it the primary alias) and then using that alias as the login credentials for an Exchange based account on the Android email app. That works fine and syncs email, calendar and contacts. The same trick does not work with PC based Outlook 2010, 2013 or 2016 however.

I take the point made above about the relatively cheap cost of Office 365 email hosting, although that soon adds up when a number of family members are using it and I guess I didn't think that custom domain based email inside outlook.com was going to last forever given its grandfathered status, but I restate my original post and say that I do think Microsoft have done an appalling job of communicating the implications of this move. I'm guessing there are thousands of custom domain users worldwide, all of whom are or are about to be very disgruntled.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1442391 7-Dec-2015 22:08
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allan:  The same trick does not work with PC based Outlook 2010, 2013 or 2016 however.



Odd, it works fine for me on outlook 2016.

When setting up the profile, do the following:

* at the email account screen, select 'Manual setup or additional server types' (rather than using the autodiscovery part)
* At the next screen select "Outlook.com or Exchange Active Sync compatible service"
* At the server settings screen complete the fields as follows:

User Information:
Your Name:   <Your name obviously>
Email Address:  Name@whateveryourdomainis.com

Server Information:
Mail Server: eas.outlook.com

Login Information:
Username: <whatever secondary alias you setup> (eg name@outlook.com)
Password: <your password>

* Then just follow the rest of the wizard prompts to complete the profile setup as you wish.

Sorted.


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1442533 8-Dec-2015 10:35
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UncleArthur:

Odd, it works fine for me on outlook 2016.


Excellent thanks for that. Just needed the right combination of details in the right places :) Got it going for Outlook 2016 and 2013 now. Not 2010, but it has a different dialogue for setting up an Exchange style account

Awesome
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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1442624 8-Dec-2015 12:52
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Ugh. Means I am going to have to move my parents email




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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1442916 8-Dec-2015 16:29
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I have my primary email address with Outlook as a custom domain (@trebloc.co.nz)
Seeing this, I signed into Outlook.com and saw nothing different, but when I signed into a Hotmail address (that was used to control the custom domain, back when you could) I saw that I now get Outlook Preview.

I used Outlook 2013 at home via Windows 10, and have not had any issues connecting (I think I use Active Sync to connect) and no emails/notifications that any changes are coming

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 1442927 8-Dec-2015 16:43
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nzkiwiman: I have my primary email address with Outlook as a custom domain (@trebloc.co.nz)
Seeing this, I signed into Outlook.com and saw nothing different, but when I signed into a Hotmail address (that was used to control the custom domain, back when you could) I saw that I now get Outlook Preview.

I used Outlook 2013 at home via Windows 10, and have not had any issues connecting (I think I use Active Sync to connect) and no emails/notifications that any changes are coming

From my searching around, it appears that they are doing them in batches. But not all accounts in a custom domain are moved at the same time. In my case, only two of nine so far. At least their is now a workaround to make them work in Outlook - well 2013 and 2016 anyway.

You can tell if they have been migrated by logging in via a Web browser. If it says Outlook Preview at the top left, it will have been moved to the Office 365 platform.

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