Any plans to fix autodiscover for Outlook clients?

lukekenny

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Jan 24, 2018
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I note the cPanel Documentation:

The AutoConfigure (AutoConfig) and Autodiscover services quickly and easily configure a user’s mail client to receive their cPanel email. These services work with Microsoft Outlook®, Outlook Express®, Thunderbird, and most other popular mail clients.

Warning:
The Autodiscover feature doesn’t work with email addresses that you add in the following email clients:

  • Microsoft Outlook 2016
  • Microsoft Outlook 2019
  • Microsoft Outlook for Office 365
  • Any mobile email client.
Now that it's 2021, most clients that use Outlook have moved to either Outlook 2019 or Outlook 365 on their desktop, and many want to use Outlook for Android or iOS on their phones. Often, they have a work email account that provides this software and they'd like to add their IMAP accounts hosted on cPanel servers as well.

It seems really curious that cPanel simply state their Autodiscover implementation wont work with these modern email clients. Sure, Microsoft has changed something, I get that, but these clients are deployed to millions of computers, and in many end user cases, are the only application the user knows how to use or is comfortable with.

Configuring IMAP settings, for a non technical user, is a major challenge. Obviously, as that is the reason the Autodiscover protocol was developed, I guess.

It's not much good having an Autodisover that only supports deprecated clients and Thunderbird. Does anyone know if cPanel has any plans to update their implementation? Is there a way to work around this problem?
 

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BlueSteam

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Feb 21, 2013
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I know I am reviving an 8month old thread but this is really ridiculous! The masses are now using modern outlook clients and with cPanel charging the fees that they are now, this is something that should immediately be available as part of the cPanel platform.

cPanel need to get their act together on this one!
 

BlueSteam

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I'll reach out to the email team about this issue tomorrow and see if I can dig up some more details on this.
Thank you cPRex. This really should NEVER EVER have to go through a feature request process as it is already there. The current feature already there just needs to be kept updated as time goes by. This should be a standard service as part of cPanel. The fact that the team implemented the autodiscover for every outlook and thunderbird client before 2016 proves that they understood that this is a required facility. Somewhere along the line the development team dropped the ball on this one and ignored the fact that Microsoft actually updated outlook in the meantime!
 
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cPRex

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I spoke with the email team about this and apparently there is a lot more that goes into it than just "update your software" to get Autodiscover working in a way that is happy with Microsoft tools.

At this point, there are two different protocols, that each work with various systems. The Z-Push protocol that we use works well with mobile devices, but there is a totally separate, and proprietary protocol for desktop clients. You can find out more details on the Z-Push tool here:


The desktop protocol requires a separate license from Microsoft as part of an Exchange server, so there just isn't a way to implement that on a cPanel machine.

For those reasons, we're not able to get complete support for Autodiscover that will work with desktop clients at this time. It's best to stick with IMAP for desktop clients.
 

BlueSteam

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Feb 21, 2013
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I spoke with the email team about this and apparently there is a lot more that goes into it than just "update your software" to get Autodiscover working in a way that is happy with Microsoft tools.

At this point, there are two different protocols, that each work with various systems. The Z-Push protocol that we use works well with mobile devices, but there is a totally separate, and proprietary protocol for desktop clients. You can find out more details on the Z-Push tool here:

I'm very confused with the reasons given here as to why it won't work. We are anyways using IMAP for desktop clients. We aren't using Exchange. It's not about whether we use exchange or IMAP. What we need is a way to autodiscover and configure mailboxes on outlook that are hosted on cpanel. Not exchange.

The desktop protocol requires a separate license from Microsoft as part of an Exchange server, so there just isn't a way to implement that on a cPanel machine.

For those reasons, we're not able to get complete support for Autodiscover that will work with desktop clients at this time. It's best to stick with IMAP for desktop clients.
You stated that Z-Push works well for mobile devices but then why is it that we can autodiscover and configure mailboxes in the desktop version of outlook on any version before 2016?? Does the ZPush platform handle that as well??

And when you said that the desktop protocol requires a separate license from Microsoft Exchange, were you referring to all Outlook versions from 2016 and above???

It seems strange that DirectAdmin do not state anywhere on their support documentation that the autodiscover only works for versions below 2016 which implies that it would work fine on all versions if you follow their guide and yet cPanel can't do it. However, I will concede that maybe DirectAdmin can't actually do it for versions 2016 and above and they just aren't saying it there in their docs but I would need to confirm that by opening a ticket with them.

See here:
 
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BlueSteam

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So if I understand you correctly, Z-Push is not only handling autoconfig on mobile devices but also desktop devices running any outlook below version 2016?
 

jndawson

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TL;DR
Microsoft continues to find ways to change their software requiring users to spend more money in order to use it.

Back in the olden days, when I started my first ISP, we were boldly going to support any mail client that was out there. After about 3 years, we stopped supporting MS mail clients because they kept changing the interface and adding their own protocols, making our support team work overtime to keep up. We settled on supplying Eudora (remember that?) and didn't have any support issues after that.
 
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Cameron Worts

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Apr 22, 2015
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I understand that Microsoft is wanting money for such service and wanting to push users to Office 365 however some of our clients don't want to spend money on subscription services.

It is a real pity for Microsoft is not working with cPanel/Plesk to allow people to easily configure their email simply by just entering their username/email account and password. We have had so many clients getting frustrated every time when they are wanting to set up their email service having to spend a few minutes setting up an account.

Today I received a call from a client who said why is his own domain harder to set up than a free outlook.com email account. Where he can just enter his email and password and everything is set up within seconds and not having to enter everything manually.