State of Alaska, Department of Administration, Enterprise Technology Services

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Statewide eMail & Calendar Service

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)


Q: What is my Outlook password? How do I reset it?
A: Your Exchange password is the same as yourLightweight Directory Access Protocol/Active Directory (Ldap/AD) password. It can be changed by going to this website. Additionally, you can change your password from within Outlook Web Access (OWA). If you still need help, please contact your Departmental Enterprise Directory Password Administrator (DEDPA).

Q: What is my new email address?
A: Your new email address is based on your primary email address in the old @*.state.ak.us world. It is your FirstName.LastName@alaska.gov. The only exceptions are when there multiple people with the same name combinations. The exact rules are department specific, however among the options are:

  1. Choose an a FirstName alias (eg Bob for Robert)
  2. Adding an incrementing digit to the email address (eg FirstName.LastName1@alaska.gov)
  3. Using middle initial (eg FirstName.MI.LastName@alaska.gov)


Q: Can I get an additional email alias?
A: Aliases are not being allowed. However, if your name is "Robert" but go by "Bob", you can requests your email address be changed to Bob.LastName@alaska.gov from Robert.LastName@alaska.gov

Q: How can I tell what department someone is located in?
A: After a user's display name, there is their Department Three Letter Accronym (TLA). For example Jan Moyer, the Deputy Director of ETS would be "Moyer, Jan (DOA)"

Q: How can I change the way my name appears in the Outlook address book?
A: Your 'Display Name' is derived from Alaska Statewide Payroll System (AKPay). To have it, or any other information on your profile, changed you need to have the information changed in AKPay. The exact process for changes in AKPay depend on your department.

Q: Can I schedule meetings with other state employees in a different department?
A: One of the major benefits of the new Enterprise email environment is that you can schedule a user from different department and location, from within Outlook. For example, someone from the Department of Admin could schedule a meeting with users from DEC, H&SS, & Law. From within Outlook, open a new Meeting or Appointment and click “Invite Attendees” and find the person you wish to invite.

Q: What is my mailbox quota?
A: 300mb. This will be enforced once transition to Enterprise Vault has been completed. Remember, that messages that have been ‘Archived’ only the stub counts towards your quota and not the mail message itself. The stubs only take 1-4K per messages.

Q: How can I check how much space I'm using?
A: In Outlook, right click your mailbox name (Lastname, Firstname). Select Properties for "Lastname, Firstname"... On the General tab, click the Folder Size button... If you are using cache mode, you will see two tabs, choose the Server Data tab.

Q: What happens when I reach quota?
A: When your mailbox fills to within 300MB of your quota, you will receive a warning message. When you reach 325MB, you will not be able to send mail until you get under quota. You will continue to receive mail, however. When you reach 400MB, you will not be able to send or receive email. This will be enforced once transition to Enterprise Vault has been completed.

Q: What can I do to control my mailbox size?
A: See the Outlook Quick Reference Guide for some ideas.

Q: Is virus and spam filtering done in Exchange?
A: Yes, we have Symantec's Exchange server solution scanning the mail server. All SOA computers should be running Symantec on their desktop. Finally, all email coming from the Internet goes through Postini for anti-virus and spam checking.

Q: Is Deleted Mail automatically purged from my mailbox?
A: Yes, 7 days after you delete email from a mailbox it will be purged from your 'Deleted Items' folder. Additionally, You can set Outlook to automatically delete messages on exit.

Q: Can I change from the From: address in Outlook?
A: You can only change your From: address in Outlook to the address of someone who has granted you delegation privileges to Send On Behalf of them.

Q: How do I set up my account to allow someone to Send On Behalf of me?
A: You must set up the other Exchange user as a delegate.

Q: I set a rule to move tagged spam to my Junk folder but spam is starting to creep into my folders. Why?
A: If you are using rules, you need to make sure that your X-SPAM rule stays at the top of the rule list. Since rules are processed in the order they appear, rules that appear after other rules that automatically move items into folders will not run.

Q: Is there a limit on the number of rules you can have?
A: Yes, it’s a size constraint, not a specific number constraint. The size is 32K. It usually works out to around 50-60 rules, depending on their complexity.

Q: What should I do if I see a message that I've been disconnected from the Exchange server?
A: Usually you will be reconnected automatically.
If you are not, Ctrl-click Outlook icon in system tray, select Connection Status.
If that shows you are not connected, you can:
  1. Click Outlook icon in system tray, select Cancel Server Request
  2. From Connection Status screen, click Reconnect button
  3. From bottom right of Outlook, click Connected, then Work Offline. Once offline, click Connected, then Work Offline again to toggle back online.
Q: If I get an email from someone outside of Exchange with a meeting proposal, how do I make that email into a calendar item?
A: In Outlook, click on the email message and drag it onto the Calendar icon on the bottom left. When you let go, a new appointment will open with the email message in the notes area. You'll need to adjust the start and end dates/times as these will not be automatically set correctly.

Q: Meeting invitations from Exchange users in other systems go directly into my calendar when I accept. What's up with that?
A: Because Exchange meeting invitations are in the standard .isc format, invitations from other systems using that format can be recognized and automatically accepted by Outlook. Likewise, meeting invitations sent from Exchange can be accepted by users of other .isc-compliant calendar systems, like iCal on the Macintosh. Just remember that meeting information from different systems becomes unlinked from the system that originated it and looks just like an activity you set up yourself.

Q: Can I look at multiple calendars in a composite view?
A: No, but you can look at them side by side by selecting multiple calendars at once.

Q: When I set an event in my calendar to be an All Day event, others still think I'm available. Why?
A: This is the default behavior. It can be changed globally or by individual event. In its default mode it provides the same functionality as meetingmaker banners with a bit more functionality (can easily use for birthdays, etc.).

Q: How do I access Outlook Web Access?
A: https://webmail.alaska.gov/owa

Q: What do I put in the "Domain\user name" field?
A: For the SOA Enterprise Exchange System, the domain is always 'SOA' and user name is always your [FirstIntial][MiddleIntial][LastName], example Jan Moyer’s would be ‘soa\jamoyer’.

Q: What's the difference between the "Basic" and "Premium" Client options?
A: Premium gives you the best web experience. You must access OWA from a recent version of Internet Explorer (IE) on Windows. Basic is less feature-rich. It is better for slow connections and is your what you get from non-IE browsers, browsers on non-Windows platforms and older versions of IE .

Q: What's the difference between the "Public or shared computer" and "Private computer" Security options?
A: The "Public or shared computer" setting has a much shorter timeout (30 minutes) than the "Private computer" setting (24 hours). If there has been no activity between the web client and the server for the duration of the timeout setting (i.e. no mail passing to or from the server), you will be presented with an authentication screen. Once you re-authenticate, you will be able to continue where you were. If you are using OWA from a public computer, you should choose "Public or shared computer". If you are using it from your own secure computer, the "Private computer" setting is more convenient.