How to: Get user settings from Exchange by using Autodiscover

Exchange Server 2013

Learn how to get user configuration settings from an Exchange server by using Autodiscover.

Last modified: January 14, 2014

Applies to: EWS Managed API | Exchange Online | Exchange Server 2013 | Office 365

Autodiscover simplifies application configuration by providing easy access to user configuration information using only the user’s email address and password. A number of user configuration settings are available via Autodiscover, such as the user's display name or external web service URL.

You can use one of the following development technologies to retrieve user settings from the Autodiscover service:

The EWS Managed API provides an object-based interface for retrieving user settings. If your client application uses managed code, we recommend that you use the EWS Managed API. If you are using the EWS Managed API, determine whether the settings that you need are available in the Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Autodiscover.UserSettingName enumeration. If they aren’t, you might want to use the SOAP or POX Autodiscover services.

If you are using a web service, we suggest that you use the SOAP Autodiscover service, because it supports a richer set of features than the POX Autodiscover service. If the SOAP Autodiscover service isn’t available, the POX Autodiscover service is a good alternative.

Before you get user settings by using the Autodiscover service, make sure that you have access to the following:

  • If you are using the EWS Managed API or the POX-based Autodiscover service, Exchange Online, Exchange Online as part of Office 365, or a server that is running a version of Exchange starting with Exchange 2007 SP1.

  • If you are using the SOAP-based Autodiscover service, Exchange Online or a version of Exchange starting with Exchange 2010.

Note Note

If you are using the EWS Managed API, you will need to provide a certificate validation callback method in some circumstances. You might also need a certificate validation callback method with some generated proxy libraries, such as those created by Visual Studio.

You can use the GetUserSettings method to retrieve configuration information for a user, as shown in the following example. In this example, you can specify an array of user settings to return (from those available in the UserSettingName enumeration), and the method will follow redirection responses from the Exchange server.

using System;
using System.Net;
using Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Autodiscover;

public static GetUserSettingsResponse GetUserSettings(
    AutodiscoverService service,
    string emailAddress,
    int maxHops,
    params UserSettingName[] settings)
{
    Uri url = null;
    GetUserSettingsResponse response = null;

    for (int attempt = 0; attempt < maxHops; attempt++)
    {
        service.Url = url;
        service.EnableScpLookup = (attempt < 2);

        response = service.GetUserSettings(emailAddress, settings);

        if (response.ErrorCode == AutodiscoverErrorCode.RedirectAddress)
        {
            url = new Uri(response.RedirectTarget);
        }
        else if (response.ErrorCode == AutodiscoverErrorCode.RedirectUrl)
        {
            url = new Uri(response.RedirectTarget);
        }
        else
        {
            return response;
        }
    }

    throw new Exception("No suitable Autodiscover endpoint was found.");
}

You can parse the collection returned to access each key/value pair in the user settings array. The following example shows how to parse through each returned element and display the name and value of each key/value pair.

// Display each retrieved value. The settings are part of a key/value pair.
// userresponse is a GetUserSettingsResonse object.
foreach (KeyValuePair<UserSettingName, Object> usersetting in userresponse.Settings)
{
    Console.WriteLine(usersetting.Key.ToString() + ": " + usersetting.Value);
}

Alternatively, you can obtain the value of a specific setting. In the following example, the UserDisplayName setting is to be displayed.

// Display a specific setting, such as UserDisplayName.
Console.WriteLine(userresponse.Settings[UserSettingName.UserDisplayName]);

If you're not using the EWS Managed API, we recommend that you use the SOAP Autodiscover web service. Only use the POX Autodiscover web service if the SOAP Autodiscover web service fails or is not available.

To get user settings, use the GetUserSettings operation (SOAP). The requested settings are returned as UserSetting elements.

The following example shows a SOAP Autodiscover request to get user settings from the server.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<soap:Envelope xmlns:a="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/2010/Autodiscover" 
        xmlns:wsa="http://www.w3.org/2005/08/addressing" 
        xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance" 
        xmlns:soap="http://schemas.xmlsoap.org/soap/envelope/">
  <soap:Header>
    <a:RequestedServerVersion>Exchange2013</a:RequestedServerVersion>
    <wsa:Action>http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/2010/Autodiscover/Autodiscover/GetUserSettings</wsa:Action>
    <wsa:To>https://autodiscover.exchange.microsoft.com/autodiscover/autodiscover.svc</wsa:To>
  </soap:Header>
  <soap:Body>
    <a:GetUserSettingsRequestMessage xmlns:a="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/2010/Autodiscover">
      <a:Request>
        <a:Users>
          <a:User>
            <a:Mailbox>mara@contoso.com</a:Mailbox>
          </a:User>
        </a:Users>
        <a:RequestedSettings>
          <a:Setting>UserDisplayName</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>UserDN</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>UserDeploymentId</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>InternalMailboxServer</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>MailboxDN</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>PublicFolderServer</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>ActiveDirectoryServer</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>ExternalMailboxServer</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>EcpDeliveryReportUrlFragment</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>EcpPublishingUrlFragment</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>EcpTextMessagingUrlFragment</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>ExternalEwsUrl</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>CasVersion</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>EwsSupportedSchemas</a:Setting>
          <a:Setting>GroupingInformation</a:Setting>
        </a:RequestedSettings>
      </a:Request>
    </a:GetUserSettingsRequestMessage>
  </soap:Body>
</soap:Envelope>

The following example shows the SOAP response that is returned by the server after it parses the request from the client. The response contains only the settings that are requested, if they exist.

<s:Envelope xmlns:s="http://schemas.xmlsoap.org/soap/envelope/" xmlns:a="http://www.w3.org/2005/08/addressing">
  <s:Header>
    <a:Action s:mustUnderstand="1">http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/2010/
        Autodiscover/Autodiscover/GetUserSettingsResponse</a:Action>
    <h:ServerVersionInfo xmlns:h="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/2010/Autodiscover" 
        xmlns:i="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
      <h:MajorVersion>15</h:MajorVersion>
      <h:MinorVersion>0</h:MinorVersion>
      <h:MajorBuildNumber>160</h:MajorBuildNumber>
      <h:MinorBuildNumber>4</h:MinorBuildNumber>
      <h:Version>Exchange2013</h:Version>
    </h:ServerVersionInfo>
  </s:Header>
  <s:Body>
    <GetUserSettingsResponseMessage xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/2010/Autodiscover">
      <Response xmlns:i="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
        <ErrorCode>NoError</ErrorCode>
        <ErrorMessage />
        <UserResponses>
          <UserResponse>
            <ErrorCode>NoError</ErrorCode>
            <ErrorMessage>No error.</ErrorMessage>
            <RedirectTarget i:nil="true" />
            <UserSettingErrors />
            <UserSettings>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>UserDisplayName</Name>
                <Value>Mara Whitley</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>UserDN</Name>
                <Value>/o=microsoft/ou=Exchange Administrative Group (FYDIBOHF23SPDLT)/cn=Recipients/cn=mara</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>UserDeploymentId</Name>
                <Value>649d50b8-a1ce-4bac-8ace-2321   e463f701</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>CasVersion</Name>
                <Value>15.01.0160.004</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>EwsSupportedSchemas</Name>
                <Value>Exchange2007, Exchange2007_SP1, Exchange2010, Exchange2010_SP1, Exchange2010_SP2, Exchange2013</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>InternalMailboxServer</Name>
                <Value>mail.contoso.com</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>ActiveDirectoryServer</Name>
                <Value>dc.contoso.com</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>MailboxDN</Name>
                <Value>/o=microsoft/ou=Exchange Administrative Group 
                  (FYDIBOHF23SPDLT)/cn=Configuration/cn=Servers/cn=mail.contoso.com/cn=Contoso Private MDB</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>PublicFolderServer</Name>
                <Value>public.contoso.com</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>EcpDeliveryReportUrlFragment</Name>
                <Value>PersonalSettings/DeliveryReport.aspx?exsvurl=1&amp;IsOWA=&lt;IsOWA&gt;&amp;MsgID=&lt;MsgID&gt;&amp;Mbx=&lt;Mbx&gt;</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>EcpTextMessagingUrlFragment</Name>
                <Value>?p=sms/textmessaging.slab&amp;exsvurl=1</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>EcpPublishingUrlFragment</Name>
                <Value>customize/calendarpublishing.slab?exsvurl=1&amp;FldID=&lt;FldID&gt;</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>ExternalEwsUrl</Name>
                <Value>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/Exchange.asmx</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>ExternalMailboxServer</Name>
                <Value>mail.contoso.com</Value>
              </UserSetting>
              <UserSetting i:type="StringSetting">
                <Name>GroupingInformation</Name>
                <Value>CONTOSO-1</Value>
              </UserSetting>
            </UserSettings>
          </UserResponse>
        </UserResponses>
      </Response>
    </GetUserSettingsResponseMessage>
  </s:Body>
</s:Envelope

Although we recommend that you use the SOAP Autodiscover web service, the POX Autodiscover web service is a good backup option for those times when SOAP isn't available. For example, Exchange 2007 does not support the SOAP Autodiscover web service, so if you are targeting Exchange 2007, you have to use the POX Autodiscover web service. Unlike the SOAP Autodiscover web service, the POX Autodiscover service does not allow you to request specific settings. Instead, the server returns a full list of available settings as child elements of the Protocol element.

The following example shows a POX Autodiscover request to get user settings from the server. The following XML is sent to the server via an HTTP POST.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<Autodiscover xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/autodiscover/outlook/requestschema/2006">
  <Request>
    <EMailAddress>mara@contoso.com</EMailAddress>
    <AcceptableResponseSchema>http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/autodiscover/outlook/responseschema/2006a</AcceptableResponseSchema>
  </Request>
</Autodiscover>

The following example shows the POX response that is returned by the server.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<Autodiscover xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/autodiscover/responseschema/2006">
  <Response xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/autodiscover/outlook/responseschema/2006a">
    <User>
      <DisplayName>Mara Whitley</DisplayName>
      <LegacyDN>/o=First Organization/ou=Exchange Administrative Group (FYDIBOHF23SPDLT)/cn=Recipients/cn=f5eeabead90d4b6fb51d6379474692cd-Mara</LegacyDN>
      <AutoDiscoverSMTPAddress>mara@contoso.com</AutoDiscoverSMTPAddress>
      <DeploymentId>50817eff-b925-4578-a0db-13bfc635e7a5</DeploymentId>
    </User>
    <Account>
      <AccountType>email</AccountType>
      <Action>settings</Action>
      <MicrosoftOnline>False</MicrosoftOnline>
      <Protocol>
        <Type>EXCH</Type>
        <Server>5f76be3c-9138-4f66-85e0-21bc23ca35f0@contoso.com</Server>
        <ServerDN>/o=First Organization/ou=Exchange Administrative Group (FYDIBOHF23SPDLT)/cn=Configuration/cn=Servers/cn=5f76be3c-9138-4f66-85e0-21bc23ca35f0@contoso.com</ServerDN>
        <ServerVersion>73C08204</ServerVersion>
        <MdbDN>/o=First Organization/ou=Exchange Administrative Group (FYDIBOHF23SPDLT)/cn=Configuration/cn=Servers/cn=5f76be3c-9138-4f66-85e0-21bc23ca35f0@contoso.com/cn=Microsoft Private MDB</MdbDN>
        <PublicFolderServer>public.contoso.com</PublicFolderServer>
        <AD>dc.contoso.com</AD>
        <ASUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/Exchange.asmx</ASUrl>
        <EwsUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/Exchange.asmx</EwsUrl>
        <EmwsUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/Exchange.asmx</EmwsUrl>
        <EcpUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/ecp/</EcpUrl>
        <EcpUrl-um>?rfr=olk&amp;p=customize/voicemail.aspx&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-um>
        <EcpUrl-aggr>?rfr=olk&amp;p=personalsettings/EmailSubscriptions.slab&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-aggr>
        <EcpUrl-mt>PersonalSettings/DeliveryReport.aspx?rfr=olk&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;IsOWA=&lt;IsOWA&gt;&amp;MsgID=&lt;MsgID&gt;&amp;Mbx=&lt;Mbx&gt;&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-mt>
        <EcpUrl-ret>?rfr=olk&amp;p=organize/retentionpolicytags.slab&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-ret>
        <EcpUrl-sms>?rfr=olk&amp;p=sms/textmessaging.slab&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-sms>
        <EcpUrl-publish>customize/calendarpublishing.slab?rfr=olk&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;FldID=&lt;FldID&gt;&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-publish>
        <EcpUrl-photo>PersonalSettings/EditAccount.aspx?rfr=olk&amp;chgPhoto=1&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-photo>
        <EcpUrl-tm>?rfr=olk&amp;ftr=TeamMailbox&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-tm>
        <EcpUrl-tmCreating>?rfr=olk&amp;ftr=TeamMailboxCreating&amp;SPUrl=&lt;SPUrl&gt;&amp;Title=&lt;Title&gt;&amp;SPTMAppUrl=&lt;SPTMAppUrl&gt;&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-tmCreating>
        <EcpUrl-tmEditing>?rfr=olk&amp;ftr=TeamMailboxEditing&amp;Id=&lt;Id&gt;&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-tmEditing>
        <EcpUrl-extinstall>Extension/InstalledExtensions.slab?rfr=olk&amp;exsvurl=1&amp;realm=contoso.com</EcpUrl-extinstall>
        <OOFUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/Exchange.asmx</OOFUrl>
        <UMUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/UM2007Legacy.asmx</UMUrl>
        <OABUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/OAB/c21c7bc2-53b3-4ddc-ad89-1219b486c37c/</OABUrl>
        <ServerExclusiveConnect>off</ServerExclusiveConnect>
      </Protocol>
      <Protocol>
        <Type>EXPR</Type>
        <Server>mail.contoso.com</Server>
        <SSL>Off</SSL>
        <AuthPackage>Ntlm</AuthPackage>
        <ServerExclusiveConnect>on</ServerExclusiveConnect>
        <CertPrincipalName>None</CertPrincipalName>
      </Protocol>
      <Protocol>
        <Type>WEB</Type>
        <Internal>
          <OWAUrl AuthenticationMethod="Basic, Fba">https://mail.contoso.com/owa/</OWAUrl>
          <Protocol>
            <Type>EXCH</Type>
            <ASUrl>https://mail.contoso.com/EWS/Exchange.asmx</ASUrl>
          </Protocol>
        </Internal>
      </Protocol>
    </Account>
  </Response>
</Autodiscover>

After you've retrieved the necessary configuration details for your user from the server, you are ready to communicate with Exchange to do the things your application needs to do. What you do next depends on how you communicate with Exchange and what you want to accomplish. If you need some inspiration, and you're using EWS, you might explore the Exchange 101 code samples for some ideas.

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