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Exchange 2003 - Making the OWA Login Page the Default Page on a Web Site

If you have a specific machine for Outlook Web Access, you may want users to go to http://mail.example.com instead of http://mail.example.com/exchange/ . This is a simple change to the default web site on the machine that is hosting OWA. 

It is more effective when used with Forms Based Authentication, as the users get a web page immediately - and without any authentication prompts - providing a level of confirmation that they have hit the correct address.

For Windows 2008, 2008 R2 and Exchange 2007 and 2010 see this page instead.

Windows 2000 / 2003 (including SBS)

  1. Start IIS Manager
  2. Right click on the "Default Web Site" and choose "Properties".
  3. Click on the "Home Directory" tab.
  4. Change the first option to "A redirection to a URL".
  5. Enter "/exchange" in to the box (minus quotes) if Exchange 2000, Exchange 2003, or Exchange 2007 co-existing with Exchange 2003 systems.
    For SBS users, you could also change the URL to /remote and have the remote web workplace as you default site as an alternative.
  6. Change the entry below to "A directory below URL entered".
  7. Click Apply/OK.
    If you are prompted about changing child objects, click cancel so that nothing else is changed.
  8. Close the IIS Manager.
  9. Test.

Complete Configuration Screenshot - Windows 2000/2003

The screenshot below shows a complete configuration.

Screenshot - Default Web Site configured for OWA to be the default home page - Windows 2000/2003

Fig 1: Screenshot - Default Web Site configured for OWA to be the default home page - Windows 2000/2003

Co-Existing with Outlook Mobile Access - Exchange 2003

If you want to do a similar trick with Outlook Mobile Access, then you will have to customise the forms based login page or modify the default.asp file in the root of the web site to detect and redirect depending on which device is accessing the site. 

Related Links

Outlook Web Access Redirect Pages: http://exchange.sembee.info/2003/owa/redirectpages.asp


Exchange 2003 Home Page - Site Home Page
Last Page Update: 03/05/2012



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