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Allow end users to create global distribution groups in Outlook? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I Wan to allow end users to create and manage their own global distribution lists from Outlook. I see how they can create local DL's through their contacts and share, but I want the group added to the Global Address Book.

    Exchange Server 2010
    Outlook 2010 and 2013

    Thursday, August 8, 2013 4:19 PM

All replies

  • I don't that you can create a Global Address list entry from Outlook, out-of-the-box.  You might be able to find a 3rd party solution to allow that.  You can MANAGE the group object but you cannot create.

    There are other solutions available that would allow the user to create via web page, 3rd party application, or powershell.  You can do powershell out of the box but that takes some time to setup and train.  Otherwise, once the admin creates it, the user can manage it.

    Thursday, August 8, 2013 4:50 PM
  • Hi __BN_,

    it is indeed possible to do this, but be prepared for it to be some effort if you want to make it for yourself. I'm into PowerShell scripting and PS can do it. But it'll be a bear - and not the fluffy huggable kind of bear either.

    Basically, what I'd do (if someone payed me very handsomely for the effort, that is):

    1. Use the EWS Managed Api to access the mailboxes' contact folders and read the contact groups.
    2. Tag each new such group with a custom extended property tag that identifies it in a unique way so I can find it again.
    3. Create the global distribution group for new groups, fill it and tag it with that unique identifyer somewhere noone's likely to fiddle with it.
    4. Check for changes in the local group and apply them to the global one.

    Now I'd packagge this into a nice, robust application and setup a service to run it frequently.

    Oh, and while we're at it: I'd try to handle support for unique names (users will not coordinate their list's names after all).

    Then there's this flood of local DLs that might be local for a reason, so maybe create a smell app that allows users to register their DLs for globalization somewhere the sync-service can read. (Doing it the other way around, by having them register their DLs they want to keep local would have inertia working against you instead of for you)

    But that's just the aspects I can think of right now, I'm sure there are some more pitfalls out there that will try to stop you.

    Cheers and good luck,
    Fred

    Friday, August 9, 2013 6:39 PM