Get a Room! Enable Room Finder with Room List Distribution Groups


If your Exchange Online (Office 365) or Outlook Live (Live@edu) users are already using Room Mailboxes to schedule meetings in conference rooms, auditoriums, labs or other facilities, then why not enable Room Finder for your Microsoft Office Outlook 2010 clients by configuring Room List Distribution Groups?

Room Finder simplifies the process of searching for an available room while setting up a meeting. Instead of adding all possible conference rooms to a meeting request and using the Scheduling Assistant to identify available rooms, meeting organizers can use Room Finder to show a room list, see suggested times, and choose an available room.

 

Room Finder in Outlook 2010 
without Room Lists
Room Finder in Outlook 2010 
with Room Lists
room-finder-without-room-list-distribution-groups room-finder-with-room-list-distribution-groups-2

 

How do I enable Room Finder?

A messaging administrator can enable Room Finder for Outlook 2010 clients in a few easy steps: (1) Connect to Exchange Online or Outlook Live using Windows PowerShell; (2) Create Room List Distribution Groups; (3) Add existing Room Mailboxes to Room List Distribution Groups. 

Outlook 2010 detects the Room List Distribution Groups automatically and populates the Room Finder with room lists, available rooms and suggested meeting times.

 

Connect to Exchange Online or Outlook Live using Windows PowerShell

 

Create Room List Distribution Groups

New-DistributionGroup -Name "Name of Room List" –RoomList creates a new Room List Distribution Group using the cmdlet’s minimum required parameters for a Room List Distribution Group. If you don’t specify any additional parameters, then they will be set for you.

You may want to take control of your recipient object’s attributes by using additional parameters, e.g. –Alias, –DisplayName, –PrimarySmtpAddress, etc. You can find a full list of available parameters at TechNet New-DistributionGroup: Exchange 2010 SP1 Help.

New-DistributionGroup -Name Bldg_HUB -DisplayName "Student Union Building Conf Rooms" –PrimarySmtpAddress Bldg_HUB@contoso.edu –RoomList

 

Add existing Room Mailboxes to Room List Distribution Groups

Add-DistributionGroupMember –Identity "Name of Room List" –Member "Name of Room Mailbox" adds Room Mailboxes to Room List Distribution Groups. It requires that you specify the Room List Distribution Group using the –Identity parameter and the Room Mailbox to be added using the –Member parameter.

Add-DistributionGroupMember –Identity Bldg_HUB -Member Room_HUB1001
Add-DistributionGroupMember –Identity Bldg_HUB -Member Room_HUB1002

You can use the DisplayName, Identity, PrimarySmtpAddress and various other values with the –Identity and –Member parameters. You might find it helpful to list them.

The following command will list the Room List Distribution Groups.

Get-DistributionGroup | Where {$_.RecipientTypeDetails -eq "RoomList"} | Format-Table DisplayName,Identity,PrimarySmtpAddress

The following command will list the existing Room Mailboxes.

Get-Mailbox | Where-Object {$_.RecipientTypeDetails -eq "RoomMailbox"} | Format-Table DisplayName,Identity,PrimarySmtpAddress

 

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Thanks for joining us today!

Zion Brewer

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Comments (25)

  1. Anonymous says:

    If you run Get-DistributionGroupMember -Identity "Display Name of Room List DG" is the Room Mailbox listed? If it is listed, then find the room list distribution group in the Address Book in the Outlook rich client. Is the room mailbox listed as a member? The Address Book may take a while to be updated…

  2. Anonymous says:

    Room Finder populates the "Choose an available room" field with the DisplayName values of the Room Mailboxes in the selected Room List Distribution Group. I set the DisplayName of Room_HUB1001@contoso.edu to "Conf Room HUB/1101 (24) AV" per my naming convention.

  3. guest says:

    How did you manage the additional attributes of the rooms like "Capacity", … to show up in the roomfinder when choosing the RoomList? In my setup it shows the room Name only.

  4. Guest 2 says:

    Can you use Room Finder to find available rooms in period of 15 minutes. Currently it looks like the minimum time slot is 30 minutes

    Many thanks.

  5. guest says:

    Why would Microsoft create this feature and not allow people to create their own room lists?  It's great to have the server management feature, but I need to create my own lists too for the ones I frequently use.

  6. anon says:

    Hey, this command is better for listing room mailboxes:

    Get-Mailbox -RecipientTypeDetails RoomMailbox

  7. kjstech says:

    i get this error.

    New-DistributionGroup : A parameter cannot be found that matches parameter name

    'PrimarySmtpAddress'.

  8. Long says:

    Did anyone get at empty list under rooms when you choose a location? under room finder?

  9. ka says:

    yes, i get an empty list.

    i can choose my roomlist, but there are no rooms listet

  10. Eoin Ryan says:

    Unfortunately, I am seeing the same problem.  I have my two test rooms in a room list, and the room list is the dropdown in the Scheduling Assistant.  But when I choose the room list name from that drop down, the rooms are not listed – the list is just empty, it only says 'none'.

    Any tips on what to try, please?

  11. sadhak01 says:

    I have same problem with Eoin Ryan

    All RoomMailboexs added via GUI (ESM) and Get-DistributionGroupMember -Identity " Display Name of Room List DG" show all necessary RoomMailboxes.

    When i choose "Display Name of Room List DG" in RoomFinder, Outlook2010 does not list any Rooms (only "none" available).

  12. Guest I says:

    Hello,

    thank you for sharing this article. I have one question regarding room finder. Can I use Address Book Policies to scope which Buildings (Room Distribution Groups) can see particular user? Let say, we have end user in Dallas and we want to scope that user to see only Buildings from Dallas, not from Berlin for example. As far as I can see from my test lab this isn't implemented or maybe I'm doing something wrong.

    Answer will be much appreciated.

    Regards

    I.

  13. guest says:

    CAPACITY: Is there an extra step for Room Finder to show the capacity in ()? The mini-addressbook shown by clicking the ROOMS button correctly shows numbers in the Capacity column, so how do I get these to display? OR have you simply manually changed the Display Name to include (24) as text.

  14. josie says:

    I manage calendars for several individuals.  Somehow the Room Finder is no longer visible in one person's calendar.  How can I get it back?  It is not listed under the Options on the Meeting Occurrence tab and it doesn't open when I start a new meeting.

  15. Philip says:

    Great post. Thank you

  16. Carl Jones says:

    Josie, if you haven’t fixed your issue yet, this article may help:
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2673231

  17. Brandon says:

    We have several room lists in our Exchange 2010 SP3 RU7 environment that are logical listings of conference rooms in various office locations, or if they have a certain piece of equipment, etc.

    Some of our room lists can have up to 175 rooms. Yes, you read that right.

    The problem that has been raised to us is that some of the room lists do not display all the items in the room list in via the Room Finder GUI. We’ve confirmed the Room List is populated correctly.

    I’ve read somewhere in the past that there is a limit to how many objects you can have in a distribution list (or maybe just a room list) but I can’t seem to recall where or whether this is true or not.

    Is anyone having this issue, and if so, know how to fix it? Is there anything I can do?

  18. How can i restrict that some people should be able to see Room list DL members and available times?

  19. Iliyas says:

    We faced similar issue, upon investigation we found the "working hours" issue caused the problem and corrected via OWA …..Get-distributiongroupmembers "room list name" | get-mailboxcalendarconfiguration | ft

  20. Wayne S. says:

    Does a room require the purchase of an additional user/exchange license?

  21. Kenneth Henseler says:

    @WayneS. – Rooms/Resources/Shared Mailboxes do NOT consume a user license. You can create as many as needed.
    Thanks for this post – this is exactly what I’ve been looking for.

  22. Bill S says:

    Room list are working fine for us. Except they appears in the GAL and Distribution List address list.

    So we want to remove them from users view, as it makes no sense to send a mail to a group of rooms !

    I changed the filter for distribution list and remove them –> fine
    But if I remove them from the GAL, room finder is empty.

    how did you manage to hide room lists from @book , but still having them in room finder

  23. Outlook Plugin says:

    Hi All,

    PLEASE CHECK THIS VERY USEFUL APPS which will save your time in room finder.

    https://outlooksmsroomfinder.codeplex.com

    Thanks,
    Sundar M.

  24. Parez says:

    I have created a room list and added members to it but it does not show any members in RoomFinder:
    it shows "None"

    any suggestion?

  25. Outlook Plugin says:

    @Parez current Room finder will not work as you expect.
    Please my outlook plugin.
    https://outlooksmsroomfinder.codeplex.com
    Thanks,
    Sundar M,
    syncsundar@live.com