Exchange 2010: Shared Mailboxes

Understanding shared mailboxes and shared mailbox group delegation in Exchange 2010

A shared mailbox on Exchange is a mailbox used by more than one person. At UD, these mailboxes are often used for generic addresses for departments, centers, programs, or offices to use in publications, or used so that more than one person may monitor and respond to inquiries.

It's important for IT Professionals (IT Pros) to understand, however, that Exchange shared mailboxes are really exactly like a user mailbox, only the user object has been disabled.

When IT creates a shared mailbox (e.g., example-mailbox@udel.edu), they create an Active Directory Security Group for the mailbox (e.g., example-mailbox shared mailbox group). Other users are then added to this group, and the group is granted full access rights to the shared mailbox.

IT Pros should note that delegating an individual's calendar access to a shared mailbox does NOT grant all the users of that mailbox access to that calendar. Instead, users have to delegate access to their calendar to a shared mailbox group.

Shared mailbox for student workers: An example

The Department of Wizardry employs several students to work at a reception desk in their front office. The students answer the phones and have access to a departmental events calendar and several meeting room calendars. They make appointments for some of these and only view appointments on others. Additionally, several faculty and professional staff members would like the students working at the front desk to be able to view or edit their personal calendars.

It would do the following:

  1. Create a shared mailbox called WZRD-FrontDesk.
  2. Create a security group called WZRD-FrontDesk Shared Mailbox Group.
  3. Give the above group access to the above mailbox.
  4. Add students employees to the group.

When Outlook is configured on the Front Desktop computer, the profile specifies the shared mailbox, but students log in with their own credentials (UDelNet ID/password).

Users can also log in to

https://owa.win.udel.edu/owa/wzrd-frontdesk@win.udel.edu

using their UDelNet ID and password.

Calendar and meeting room permissions specify "WZRD-FrontDesk Shared Mailbox Group" to have read/edit access as appropriate (i.e., NOT the WZRD-FrontDesk mailbox--it must be a group).

Faculty and staff also specify the group when setting permissions on their personal calendars.


Requesting shared mailboxes

You request a shared mailbox by submitting a request form. When you request a shared mailbox, you must specify the following:


Configuring shared mailboxes for Outlook 2010

  1. From the Control Panel, click Mail.
  2. Click E-mail Accounts.
  3. On the E-mail tab, choose the Exchange Account from the list of accounts (there may only be one).
  4. Click New.

shared mailbox

  1. You can now configure the shared mailbox just as you would a personal mailbox. On the Add Account page, fill in the name of the shared mailbox and the full address as shown in the following graphic. You do not need to fill in the password fields on this page.

Add Account screen


Accessing shared mailboxes from Outlook Web Access (OWA)

Shared mailboxes can be directly accessed from Outlook Web Access (OWA) if appropriate access is granted even if a user does not have an Exchange account.

The URL is as follows:

https://owa.win.udel.edu/owa/{shared mailbox name}@win.udel.edu

The user can log in with his or her UDelNet ID and password.

For example, if the shared mailbox name is XYZ-Shared, the URL would be the following:

https://owa.win.udel.edu/owa/XYZ-Shared@win.udel.edu