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1) In general, I don't understand where permissions for Calendars in Exchange 2003 are stored and how that exactly works. Anyone have a link that explains that well, or want to explain it in a post?

2) More specifically, can I set a user's calendar so nobody can view the contents of each appointment from the server instead of the calendar properties from the client?

I just want people to be able to view when the person is 'busy'.

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So, in essence, you want each appointment marked Private (by default)? – squillman Aug 17 '09 at 16:42
squillman: Sounds about right... – Kyle Brandt Aug 17 '09 at 17:13
Right now someone else can view the calendar, I want to make is so they can't anymore, and if possible, do it from the server – Kyle Brandt Aug 17 '09 at 17:17
I guess I don't generally understand how mailbox permissions and calendar permissions relate either. I see 'mailbox rights' from AD, but nothing about the calendar – Kyle Brandt Aug 17 '09 at 17:19
up vote 2 down vote accepted

A calendar is a subfolder (if you will) of a mailbox that is set to contain appointment items, just as the Inbox is a folder that is set to contain mail and post items.

Basically, permissions are two-tiered. You can grant permissions to a mailbox, then you need to specify additional permissions at the folder level. There is no permissions inheritance. By default, nobody will be allowed to see the content of calendar items unless the mailbox owner has specifically granted access first to the mailbox and then additionally to the folder istelf.

It sounds like what you're asking is for someone to be able to open this person's calendar and see free-busy information based on a day/week/month type view. There's no way to do that without marking all items as Private, which I don't know of a way to do by default.

UserX could view someone's free/busy information through Outlook by creating a new appointment/meeting request in Outlook, adding that person to the invite list and looking on the Scheduling tab on the new item.

Here's an article that explains how the Free/Busy information is created, stored, and used by clients.

Does that cover it?

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Think So, So as long as I removed other users from 'MailBox Rights' under the exchange advanced tab and then go to the users outlook, and removed the other users from 'shared calendars' , I should be good? – Kyle Brandt Aug 17 '09 at 18:48
Right, as long as "shared calendars" is a subfolder of the user's mailbox. – squillman Aug 17 '09 at 19:11

As an addendum, can can make all appointments for a user private by default

Permissions are still required to ensure that no one but yourself can access the calendar using other methods, but it will address the issue going forward for a particular user.

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Yes, this is an option from the client-side. The question was specifically about doing it server side... – squillman Aug 17 '09 at 19:12
Short of some sort of powershell scripting, I doubt there is an effective server side solution since, as you noted, the free/busy information is client generated. – Kevin Kuphal Aug 17 '09 at 19:31

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