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We have an automated mail program that sends order-reports. These reports are plain-text and always have one xml file attached. For each order in our system there are at least two reports being send. These e-mail reports look very much alike. The only difference for an e-mail about the same order would be in the attached xml file.

The problem is that some of these e-mails do not show up in my inbox (in outlook 2010). I have tracked the messages from source to destination and the problem points to our local Exchange 2003 server. The Message Tracking Center says "Message delivered locally to Store to" and shows no errors. But it does not show in my inbox.

The e-mail account was created solely for receiving these messages. It has no spam filter, no rules and it receives 95% of the same messages without any problems. Even messages about the same order are no problem. Sometimes the first out of two fails to show up, and sometimes the second e-mail for the same order fails to show. I do not see any link between the messages that fail.

As a test i created a new pop3 account on another mailserver we administer. This is linux mailserver and has nothing to do with our Exchange server. No order-reports seem to be missing from the linux mailbox so the problem really must lie at the Exchange server.

I googled for this failure but did not find anyone describing the same problem. So the question is: How can a message be stored locally without error, but not show up inbox?

Server information: Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 SP2 (version 6.5.7638)

More information about the tracking log. When i check the log-files by hand i can see the messages that do not show in my inbox. When i copy the MSGID and track that MSGID in the Message Tracking Center it shows a different subject. When tracking a MSGID that was that does show up in my inbox it shows me the correct subject.

Question update: We now know a client who seem to have the same problem on a Microsoft Exchange Server Standard 2010 and who uses Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 as a client. Unfortunately i do not have access to the server so i cannot check the message tracking log. This client receives the same e-mail messages as the Exchange 2003 server (it's a Cc recipient).

Things i've checked so far

  • The message does not show in OWA either (so not an outlook view problem).
  • There are no filtering rules (it's a new account, created for testing this problem).
  • The message is not in deleted items or any other folder.
  • There is a hosted spamfilter, but it's before delivering to Exchange. No local spamfilter.
  • The message is logged by the message tracking log without any error.
  • A newly created pop account on another domain (webmail, no Exchange) receives all messages.
  • Virusscanner is MS Security Essentials which has no e-mail scanning (or filtering). Also, no log of any virus is available.
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In all seriousness, when I started getting complaints like this about our Exchange 2003 server my response was ~"Yeah, it's Exchange. 2003. This is how you know it's overdue for an update." And now, in Q4 of 2012, we have a shiny new Exchange 2010 server. I recommend a similar approach for you. – HopelessN00b Nov 21 '12 at 9:09
I understand your reaction, but you do not simply install a new Exchange server. If this is a bug then i would like to be really sure about it before proceeding to upgrade. And if the upgrade is really needed, i also have to upgrade some clients with the same problem. – Martin Nov 21 '12 at 9:16
It's not a bug and the Message Tracking Center doesn't lie. I've been running a hosted Exchange environment for 7 years that handles 50,0000 emails a day and if the Message Tracking Center shows the email as being delivered then it was delivered. You either have a rule that's moved the email (or taken some other action with it), or you have a view set on your Inbox that's preventing you from seeing the message or you've got some client side Spam/Antivirus/Antimalware software that's taken some action on the message. – joeqwerty Nov 21 '12 at 13:29
You seem to be missing the point. It's not a bug (as explained by @joeqwerty ), it's an excuse to upgrade a major piece of software that you're running which is dangerously out of date. – HopelessN00b Nov 21 '12 at 14:20
Is it any emails that do not show up, or just ones from this particular automated process? (or could it be any emails, now I mention it, but you've only noticed them on the automated process because that's the only time you're definitely expecting an email?). Because I think it makes a big difference to the scope of problem if it's "random emails go missing" rather than "random emails from a particular source" go missing. – RobM Dec 3 '12 at 13:28

I had this same issue. I found that I was able to fix it by making sure the Junk mail option in Outlook did not have the "Permanently delete suspected junk email instead of moving it to the junk email folder" ticked. I could see from the Anti-spam and exchange server that it was delivered, but obviously it didn't show up in outlook due to this option being enabled.

Hope that helps.

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Where can i find that option? Is that a Outlook client or Exchange server option? – Martin Mar 25 '13 at 8:01
I had the same issue but it was fixed thank to Geoff. Check the junk mail option folder and remove the tick from permanent delete suspected junk mail. – user175122 May 24 '13 at 9:29

Open Outlook. Go to Tools menu -> Options and click the Junk E-mail button in the E-mail section.

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