This is a weird one, and I've been Googling for days without any luck.

I have a client who runs Exchange/Outlook 2016. Jane Doe is in the Marketing department, and her AA (John Smith), and a few others in that department (We'll call them Jimmy, Sally, and Bob) cannot see her Free/Busy status (the entire row is grayed out) when in the "Scheduling Assistant" in Outlook.

However, if John goes into OWA, he sees everything perfectly fine. If John views Jane's calendar through the normal shared calendar, he can see everything perfectly fine. If I personally use Scheduling Assistant to create a meeting with Jane (using an account that is not Exchange privileged), I'm able to see her Free/Busy status in Scheduling Assistant. This behavior happens even on a computer these users have never logged into before, so it's not an Outlook caching issue. Permissions appear fine: This is using get-mailboxFolderPermission Jane.Doe@contoso.com:\Calendar

FolderName           User                 AccessRights
----------           ----                 ------------
Calendar             Default              {AvailabilityOnly}
Calendar             John, Smith          {Editor}
Calendar             Null, Sally          {Reviewer}

I can't for the life of me figure out what's going on.

TL:DR: User in Marketing cannot see Jane Doe's Free/Busy status only in Scheduling assistant on the Outlook client. OWA is perfect.


Please check the WebServices Virtual Directory settings, and run the Test E-mail AutoConfiguration on the Outlook client to verify the URLs returned from the server.

Get-WebServicesVirtualDirectory |fl *Url*

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If everything is correct, it could be a misconfiguration proxy issue, here is a similar case for your reference: Free Busy only in OWA but not in Outlook

  • Thank you for your reply. I came across that post, but I didn't look too far into it because my issue is only a few users cannot see Jane's Free/Busy only in Scheduling Assistant. In normal calendar view, they can see the Free/Busy without issue. – Josh B Sep 6 '18 at 14:00
  • Running the Test E-mail AutoConfig, Availability Service URL: webmail.contoso.com/ews/exchange.asmx. Should those PS commands in the linked post be run on an Exchange Management Shell on a gateway Exchange server, or can it be run on any in the environment? Running it on an internal doesn't display "Internal/External Domain Names" – Josh B Sep 6 '18 at 14:07

For out situation, the users that were unable to see Jane's Free/Busy had a shared contact with only Jane's cellphone number in it, that was not a valid contact entry in Exchange. It's just weird because the Scheduling assistant was able to see her Skype status, but her Free/Busy was attempting to pull from that manual contact entry.

Resolved by deleting that shared contact and restarting Outlook. I'm assuming this solved it for all users that couldn't see her Free/Busy in scheduling assistant, as the shared contact entry seemed to be syncing. We couldn't validate because of other users' positions in the company.

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