Allow Automatic Forwarding/Replying to the Internet

As a secure default, Exchange doesn’t allow sending automatic forwards, replies and old style (Outlook 2003) Out of Office Assistant Messages (OOF) to the Internet. The security in this is that there can’t be created any mail loops and that Exchange doesn’t reply to any spam messages which might lead to spam attacks.

If you still want to disable this behavior after careful consideration you can do this in the following way.

Exchange 2013, Exchange 2016 and PowerShell (all versions)

Exchange Management Shell - PowerShellIn Exchange 2013 and Exchange 2016, the only way to see or change the current configuration for automatic replying and forwarding to the Internet is via the Exchange Management Shell (EMS) with PowerShell commands. These PowerShell commands can also be used with Exchange 2007 and Exchange 2010.

To get the currently configured Remote Domains, use:

This usually only return a single result: Default.

To see the current configuration for this remote domain use:
Get-RemoteDomain Default | fl

In the result list, look for the settings for AllowedOOFType, AutoReplyEnabled and AutoForwardEnabled. You can directly filter your results list for these properties by using:
Get-RemoteDomain Default | fl AllowedOOFType, AutoReplyEnabled, AutoForwardEnabled

To change the settings, use the Set-RemoteDomain command.

  • Enable automatic replies
    Set-RemoteDomain -AutoReplyEnabled $true
  • Enable automatic forwards
    Set-RemoteDomain –AutoForwardEnabled $true
  • Enable OOF for Outlook 2003 and previous (for Exchange 2007 and 2010 support)
    Set-RemoteDomain –AllowedOOFType $ExternalLegacy

To change all these properties at once, you can use:
Set-RemoteDomain Default -AutoReplyEnabled $true –AutoForwardEnabled $true –AllowedOOFType $ExternalLegacy

Valid settings for the AllowedOOFType property are:

  • External
    This is the default and only allows for the new style OOF messages as introduced in Outlook 2007.
  • ExternalLegacy
    This settings allows for both the new style and old style OOF messages and needs to be set if you want to enable external OOF support for Outlook 2003 as well.
  • None
    This setting doesn’t allow for the use of OOF messages at all (both internal and external).
  • InternalLegacy
    This setting only allows for internal OOF messages to be sent for all Outlook versions.

Exchange 2007 and Exchange 2010

  1. Open Exchange Management Console
  2. Expand Organization Configuration-> Hub Transport
  3. In the right pane select the Remote Domains tab
  4. Right click Default and choose Properties
  5. On the General tab you can set which type of Out of Office Messages you will allow to be sent out. By default only external OOF messages are allowed. You can change the option to also allow OOF messages created by Outlook 2003 and previous.
    On the tab named “Format of original message sent as attachment to journal report:” (Exchange 2007) or “Message Format” (Exchange 2010) you can enable or disable the automatic replying/forwarding.

Allow automatic replies and forwards in Exchange 2010
Setting the option to allow automatic replies and forwards in Exchange 2010.

Exchange 2000 and Exchange 2003

  1. Open Exchange System Manager
  2. Expand your site-> Global Settings-> Internet Message Format
  3. In the right pane right click Default and choose Properties-> tab Advanced
  4. Here you can enable or disable the automatic replying/forwarding

Exchange 5.5

  1. Open Exchange 5.5 Administrator
  2. Expand your site-> Configuration-> Connections
  3. In the right pane right click Internet Mail Service and choose Properties-> tab Internet Mail Service-> button Advanced Options….
  4. Here you can enable or disable the automatic replying/forwarding
  5. Stop and restart the Internet Mail Service