User Self-Service: Message Tracking from OWA

by Bharat Suneja

One of the things on top of my Exchange wish lists, and I’m sure on the Exchange wish lists of many Exchange folks, is allowing users to help themselves with common tasks such as managing Distribution Groups, and tracking the status of their own messages as I suggested in Message Tracking as part of OWA/Outlook (hard to believe this was posted in July 2005!).

Yes, Exchange has had Message Tracking for administrators, but this results in the waste of valuable IT resources when users call/e-mail/shoutout (depending on location and position… ) why a particular message they were supposed to receive hasn’t yet made it, or why someone never received a message they sent.

Exchange 2010 allows users to track their own messages using the Exchange Control Panel (ECP). Head over to Spotlight on Exchange 2010: Delivery Reports on the Exchange team blog for more info.

I’ll gladly admit the final implementation of this feature is a lot better than the way I thought it should work 4 years ago. Allowing users to perform common tasks using easy-to-use web-based self-service options, using functionality found out-of-the-box in Exchange Server, should help you reduce administration costs and resources.

What’s your take on these self-service features?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike June 9, 2009 at 12:53 pm

2010 looks to be very promising- Although, with more and more work forces working remotely thanks to improvements in OWA / MOSS, there is still no way for domain users to self service domain password changes, password resets and account lockouts. This functionality will not be present in any of the upcoming offerings from MS, unfortunately.

However! I have found an excellent solution for the common issue of dealing with password expiring domain account users. Head over to and check out Password Reset PRO (web based self service portal). This is a brilliant new user self service product that is easy to deploy, feels like a company internal application, is plain simple for non-tech users, and leverages the full power of Active Directory (e.g. no DB installs, no funky apache-based web servers etc). It deploys in about 10 minutes and is highly secure. I just found this not too long ago, and it appears to be the only solution of it's kind. We use this for supporting our remote Exchange / MOSS / VPN users and it has been working remarkably well.


unlock blackberry September 8, 2009 at 4:04 am

Definitely one of the more useful features, will check out the link


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