Outlook Web App customization evaluation criteria

Exchange

Published: July 16, 2012

Find evaluation criteria information for Outlook Web App customization.

Applies to:  Exchange Server 2003 | Exchange Server 2007 | Exchange Server 2010 

In this article
Functional criteria for Outlook Web App customization
Development criteria for Outlook Web App customization
Security criteria for Outlook Web App customization
Deployment criteria for Outlook Web App customization
Additional resources

Outlook Web App provides a rich Exchange-based messaging environment that users can access over the Internet. If you are running Exchange 2010, you can create custom display and data entry forms by means of the Outlook Web App forms registry and add custom entries into the New drop-down menu and the right-click (context) menu. You also can alter the default theme, and implement custom instant messaging (IM) server integration libraries.

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

Table 1:  Outlook Web App customization functional criteria

Criterion

Description

Application function

Outlook Web App customizations are typically minor stylistic or graphical modifications to the display theme. You can register custom forms to handle custom content item types, add navigation bar icons to access custom applications, and add items to the New Item drop-down and context menus.

Availability

Outlook Web App customization is available in Exchange 2010.

Application architectures

Outlook Web App is a web client application.

Remote usage

Outlook Web App customizations cannot be implemented remotely.

Major objects

Outlook Web App does not expose COM objects or provide an object hierarchy. To register forms and user interface extensions, you use XML configuration files. To integrate Outlook Web App with IM servers, you implement the IM provider API.

Data access model

Outlook Web App returns data in various forms, including HTML and XML, depending on the capabilities of the client browser.

Threading models

Not applicable.

Transactions

Outlook Web App customization does not support transactions.

Management capabilities

Outlook Web App customization as a development technology does not provide any management features.

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

Table 2:  Outlook Web App customization development criteria

Criterion

Description

Languages and tools

You can use XML CSS and PNG image files to customize Outlook Web App.

Managed implementation

Outlook Web App customization is not an API and does not provide components for use in a managed or unmanaged development environment.

Scriptable

You cannot customize Outlook Web App components by using a script or by using HTTP requests.

Test/debug tools

No tools are available for debugging customizations you make to Outlook Web App, because the Outlook Web App internal architecture is not available for debugging.

Expert availability

Although Outlook Web App customization component reuse is not supported by Microsoft, you may be able to find developers who have experience customizing Outlook Web App by visiting the Microsoft Exchange development forums or other third-party forums.

Available information

Information about Outlook Web App customization is available in the Exchange Server 2010 SP1 Outlook Web App Customization SDK.

Developer/deployment licensing

Outlook Web App customization is supported by Microsoft.

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

Table 3:  Outlook Web App customization security criteria

Criterion

Description

Design-time permissions

You need to have administrative rights on the computer on which you are making Outlook Web App customization changes.

Setup permissions

You need to have administrative rights on the server running Outlook Web App in order to deploy Outlook Web App customization changes.

Run-time permissions

Users who have permission to use Outlook Web App to access their mailbox information have permission to use the customizations. Depending on the customization, users might need specific item-level and application access permissions.

Built-in security features

Outlook Web App uses SSL/TLS and basic authentication by default.

Security monitoring features

None.

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

Table 4:  Outlook Web App customization deployment criteria

Criterion

Description

Server platform requirements

You can only deploy customizations on servers that are running Exchange 2010.

Client platform requirements

Outlook Web App customizations are available to all client platforms that can use the premium experience mode of Outlook Web App. Custom forms, custom applications, and IM applications may have specific platform requirements based on the nature of those customizations.

Deployment methods

You can deploy most customizations by copying the files onto the Exchange server that has the Client Access server role installed.

Deployment notes

When you deploy Outlook Web App customizations, ensure that all Client Access servers that are available to your users have the same customizations.

In addition, note that changes you make directly to the operating Outlook Web App files can be overwritten when you install an Exchange 2010 rollup update or service pack.

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