Outlook 2010 does not automatically send/receive with Exchange account

Posted on November 25, 2010

One of our clients recently reported an issue with a hosted exchange account failing to send/receive automatically. On pretty much every hosted exchange or mapi exchange account Outlook will begin to send immediately. This is a nice feature and requires no manual intervention hitting "send/receive" on a regular basis.

This particular issue normally calls for the following checks:

- Disable antivirus/security suites
- Ensure the outbox is not loaded with extra large messages that delay sending
- Verify connectivity between client and server (ping/telnet is generally sufficient)
- Verify if send/receive works manually
- "Outlook /safe" to disable add-ins or extensions and test

Followed by the more aggressive actions:

- Delete the mail profile and re-create
- Complete a repair install of Office
- Completely remote office and re-install from scratch

What happens if you're still stuck?
You can then proceed to the first thing you should have checked (unlike me):

Outlook -> File -> Options -> Advanced -> Send and Receive -> Turn on "Send immediately when connected"

How the customer managed to turn this off is one of life's grand mysteries. I should mention that even after re-installing Outlook/Office from scratch, this setting did not default back to factory settings. In recent versions of Outlook, preferences are stored as a convenience should you ever re-install. I would love to see the Microsoft team to release an outlook command line switch to reset outlook to factory defaults.