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Collaboration Data Objects for Exchange (CDOEX) evaluation criteria


Published: July 16, 2012

Find evaluation criteria information for Collaboration Data Objects for Exchange 2000 Server (CDOEX).

Applies to:  Exchange Server 2003 | Exchange Server 2007 

In this article
Functional criteria for CDOEX
Development criteria for CDOEX
Security criteria for CDOEX
Deployment criteria for CDOEX
Additional resources

CDOEX provides the fundamental Component Object Model (COM) classes and interfaces that are used to manage most types of information in the Exchange store. CDOEX provides a superset of the functionality provided by CDO for Windows 2000 (CDOSYS).

CDOEX can only be run on a computer running Exchange Server 2003. CDOEX replaces CDOSYS on an Exchange server. Exchange must be running to access the CDOEX-specific functionality. However, applications can use the basic CDOSYS functionality without running Exchange.

The following table lists and describes the functional criteria for CDOEX. For descriptions of the functional criteria, see Functional criteria in the Exchange development technology evaluation criteria descriptions article.

Table 1:  CDOEX functional criteria



Application function

CDOEX is used in applications that send and process email messages, calendar, and contact information, as well as allow programmatic access to mailbox and public folders.


CDOEX is only available for Exchange 2003.

Application architectures

Applications typically use CDOEX for advanced access to a user's messages and other information stored in Exchange. Applications can also implement CDOEX via an ASP application running on an Exchange server.

Remote usage

CDOEX is not supported for remote use.

Major objects

CDOEX provides COM/Automation-compatible objects that represent items with which user-focused applications work. These objects include the person, addressee, appointment, attendee, CalendarMessage, configuration, DropDirectory, folder, item, and message classes.

Data access model

Collections of some object types are mixed and you can access them as ADO row sets by using the Data Source object. The individual rows represent other CDOEX objects.

Threading models

Applications that use CDOEX do not have any specific threading restrictions. However, applications that use free-threading should not share CDOEX object instances among asynchronously operating threads.


Transactions are not supported with CDOEX.

Management capabilities

CDOEX does not generate event log entries, and no performance counters are available to measure it.

The following table lists and describes the development criteria for CDOEX. For descriptions of the development criteria, see Development criteria in the Exchange development technology evaluation criteria descriptions article.

Table 2:  CDOEX development criteria



Languages and tools

CDOEX can be used with any COM/Automation-compatible language, as well as with non-COM languages such as C/C++.

Managed implementation

CDOEX is an unmanaged component. Use of CDOEX is supported under the COM Interoperability layer of Visual Studio .NET and the .NET Framework.


CDOEX is scriptable by means of ASP and Windows Scripting Host (WSH).

Test/debug tools

You do not need any specific debugging tools to debug applications that use CDOEX.

Expert availability

Microsoft and several third-party websites provide community discussions to help you develop CDOEX applications. To find developers who have experience with CDOEX, see the Exchange Previous Versions – Development forum.

Available information

Microsoft and third-party books that describe programming for Exchange by using CDOEX are available.

Developer/deployment licensing

To determine whether additional licenses are required for the computers where your CDOEX applications are developed and deployed, refer to your Exchange and MSDN subscription licensing agreements.

The following table lists and describes the security criteria for CDOEX. For descriptions of the security criteria, see Security criteria in the Exchange development technology evaluation criteria descriptions article.

Table 3:  CDOEX security criteria



Design-time permissions

Depending on your development environment and configuration, you might need Exchange administrative permissions for the servers you are working with. Use caution when granting anyone unrestricted access to user mailboxes and Exchange system configuration settings.

Setup permissions

Because applications that use CDOEX must run on the Exchange server, the user setting up the application must have permissions to install software on the server. In addition, if Setup makes changes to Exchange, the user must have permission to access that data or make the configuration changes.

Run-time permissions

If the user cannot pass compatible credentials to the application, the user might need permissions to access mailboxes and other user data, depending on the application architecture. We recommend that your application verify user credentials when a user tries to access information in Exchange.

Built-in security features

CDOEX uses the underlying Windows Server 2003 security features.

Security monitoring features


The following table lists and describes the deployment criteria for CDOEX. For descriptions of the deployment criteria, see Deployment criteria in the Exchange development technology evaluation criteria descriptions article.

Table 4:  MAPI deployment criteria



Server platform requirements

You have to run CDOEX on a computer that is running Exchange Server 2003. CDOEX must have access to Active Directory for locating and modifying stored user data. CDOEX does not ship with, and cannot be used against, Exchange 2007 and later versions.

Client platform requirements

If the application client uses CDOEX directly, the client must be run on the Exchange server. If the client accesses the application middle-tier by HTTP or another network protocol, the only requirements are those defined by the application. The application middle-tier must be run on the Exchange server.

Deployment methods

If the client or application being installed needs direct access to CDOEX, the installer should verify that the computer is an Exchange server, and that CDOEX is properly installed on the computer.

Deployment notes


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