Starting in June 2009, organizations can use Outlook 2003 to connect to Exchange Online Standard. Prior to this update, customers could connect to Exchange Online Standard via Outlook 2007 or Outlook Web Access (OWA).
Customers should be aware of two technical caveats when using Outlook 2003 with Exchange Online Standard.
1. Exchange Online Standard will not support free/busy status in Outlook 2003. A workaround for this is to use Outlook Web Access.
2. Exchange Online Standard will not support offline address books in Outlook 2003. Global Address Lists will not be available in offline mode.
Support for free/busy status and offline address books is scheduled to be added later in the calendar year.
UPDATE: As of December 2009, Free/Busy status and offline address book support is now available by installing the Microsoft Exchange Online Connector for Office Outlook 2003. You can download this connector for free from the Microsoft Download Center at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=604a539a-5ec1-4fb2-a3cf-60076aa17618.
This update does not impact Exchange Online Dedicated customers, typically enterprise organizations with more than 5,000 end-users. Exchange Online Dedicated fully supports Outlook 2003, Outlook 2007, and OWA today.
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The Microsoft Online Services Monthly Service Update for June 2009 is currently in deployment and will
The Outlook 2003 Connector is now released and can be downloaded from the Microsoft Download Center at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=604a539a-5ec1-4fb2-a3cf-60076aa17618.