Outlook user keeps losing his contacts! O_o

5020 pts.
Tags:
Exchange 2003
Outlook
Outlook contacts
Outlook Errors
Outlook Express
Windows XP
I have a user (Japanese) who is connecting to our Exchange 2003 system. Occasionally, all (or at least most) of his contacts simply vanish. Twice I found them in his deleted items folder, and once I had to look at the deleted item recovery area to find them. I keep restoring them, but every so often they simply disappear again! He had originally been using Outlook Express when in Japan with another mail host. He admitted that sometimes prior to his losing the contacts he had clicked on OE to look at his old Japan mail. I since remedied that by importing it all into his Exchange account. Any ideas? Could this be a virus of some kind? We have Panda's latest and greatest protection, and it could not find anything dangerous on his laptop. Also, I believe he is Outlook XP. Thanks!

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If you are finding these in the deleted items then he is deleting them. I am not aware of any viruses which delete items in Outlook, no. He may deny it, but it definitely sounds like user error. I can’t tell you how many times I have found out a user was doing something which they completely denied doing!

*************************
I agree, it sounds like a PICNIC (<b><i>P</i></b>roblem <b><i>I</i></b>n <b><i>C</i></b>hair,<b><i>N</i></b>ot <b><i>I</i></b>n <b><i>C</i></b>omputer). Remember, you can’t fix stupid.
Good Luck!
-Flame

Look into the users rules and archive settings. I had a user that had incomplete rules, that caused all his incoming email to go to a folder that was one of about 100. He had no idea. Good Luck

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  • Koohiisan
    Thanks for the ideas! I turned off autoarchive, in case that was deleting old items, but now he's back again. Deleted items folder = empty. But, I just noticed that in his deleted item recovery area that all of the times this 'mass delete' occurred were in groups (such as 100s of messages at 9:41 am, 100s at 4:48 pm, etc...) Now I just have to determine the exact problem. He said before that it seemed to coincide with him clicking on Outlook Express...and now that I am working on his computer, Outlook is asking if I want it to be the default mail program...which tells me that he's been in OE again. So...I'm going to restore all of his stuff once again, and then remove Outlook Express! Bwahaha...
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  • Technochic
    Great idea, Koohiisan! Sometimes removing the problem program for them is the best solution. Kinda reminds me of the old joke "Doctor, doctor, it hurts when I do this!" The doctor replies "Well then, don't do that!"
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  • Koohiisan
    It's happening again! Arrgh! Now get this: all of his inbox emails vanished. Then, all of his sent items went into his inbox. Now, some of his contacts have 30+ duplicates. *banging head on laptop* I don't get it. I advised him to turn the laptop off at night in case someone is pranking him. I had opened his mailbox on my system earlier in the week to check something, and it cached most of the emails to my system then, so I was able to export/import them back into his Exchange mailbox. Then I had to manually trim the fat from his contact list. I now dread seeing him coming toward my office... >_<
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  • mshen
    Found a user telling me that the mouse was jumping round when he typed in word. I turned off his mouse pad and no more problems. hehehe. This sounds like a harder problem to prevent, but also check is mouse. If the roller ball is sticking sometimes he may drag and drop unknowingly when he jerks the mouse round. no pun intended.
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  • Technochic
    Sounds like it is time to format the user Koohiisan. :-)
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  • Koohiisan
    @Mshen: Good idea, but his is already disabled. :( @Technochic: I am soooooo tempted to do this, but since his system is from our parent company, I'm trying to be as careful with it as I can. I don't really suspect an issue with his mailbox, so the only real erasure of his account I could do would be the Windows one. I'm going to try to deal with his occasional oddities for the next few weeks until he bugs out and then I can let his HQ lose sleep/hair/sanity over him. ;) If I ever find out what the problem is, I will certainly let you all know! Thanks!!
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  • Technochic
    When I said "format the user", I was meaning the USER, not the PC. Just one of those off-the-cuff frustration venting techniques we WISH we could do! :-) Like electrocuting the keyboard or mouse when they go to do something we keep telling them not to do. How many times have we all wished THAT was an option? - ha
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  • Veterkins
    Sorry, but I am having the same problem - and it is NOT a user issue. I am well versed with MS Office products. I save my contacts, go on to something different - Go back and the contact has simply disappeared. Or they will show up in my suggested contacts when I've saved them in my Outlook Contacts. I've had one entire distribution list completely disappear and we've looked everywhere trying to locate it. We have gone back to previous emails where I used the distribution list and they do not expand. We are going to try exporting my contacts list as backup - but this is getting VERY annoying. I have previously worked in IT and do realize that sometimes it is user error - this time it is not. There is definitely a glitch somewhere!
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