Remote Connectivity Analyzer gets an updated CAPTCHA experience

We are happy to announce improvements to the Remote Connectivity Analyzer CAPTCHA experience.  Several of you told us how frustrating the previous experience was to use.  And we agree… it was very annoying to have both password fields get blanked out if you got the challenge incorrect.  While we can't remove this "feature" completely, we hope the enhancements will make a big difference.

The latest version (V1.4) of the Remote Connectivity Analyzer has the following improvements:

  • We are using a new CAPTCHA service provided by an internal team!
    • The challenge is NOT case sensitive, so it doesn't matter if you type upper or lower case letters.  We also note this on the web page.
    • The CAPTCHA challenges will not include hard to distinguish letters/numbers.  For example 2 and Z or O and 0.
    • If you get the challenge wrong, the password entries will not be removed.
    • Once you enter a correct response to the challenge, you will be verified for a set amount of time.  This means you will not see additional CAPTCHA challenges until the timeout period expires.

(We can hear the cheers already!!)

A few more:

  • The inbound SMTP test now inserts the IP address of the user performing the test into the test email message. The IP is also inserted into an SMTP Header (X-Originating-IP).
  • Fixed an issue in the Sender-ID test where certain DNS responses while evaluating the "exists" mechanism were incorrectly being treated as a TempError
  • The outbound SMTP Sender-ID tests now conform to the RFC specified limit of ten DNS-based mechanisms that can be used during the evaluation of the SPF record.
  • And more! Read about it here.

Here's a fun 1 minute video which demonstrates some of these improvements.


Brad, Nicole, and Shawn

Comments (14)
  1. Wow … such a relief :) Thanks team

  2. Patrick *** says:

    This made my day! I guess you heard me yelling at the monitor! Thank you

  3. ES says:

    Have these updates gone live?  I still seem to see the old Captcha system that resets the password :(

  4. Bharat Suneja [MSFT] says:

    @ES: Yes, the updates are live.

  5. brad says:

    @ES – make sure to hit the Verify button instead of clicking next.

  6. Thomas N. B. Vestergaard says:

    Great – I'd been yelling like the little girl millions of times 

  7. andreas says:

    the german translation is wrong – it says that upper/lower case is relevant within the challenge – but as stated at the blog entry it is NOT.

    superb improvements!

  8. Andreas Helland says:

    Love the Captcha update – for some reason my Windows 7 laptop only spits out "FFFF" in the verification field, but it works nicely on my Windows Server 2008 R2 desktop. Haven’t rebooted (which shouldn’t be necessary), so it’s probably just a minor glitch

    The diag tools are great, but you still haven’t "fixed" the Exchange ActiveSync diagnostic. It connects with EAS level 12.0 (Exchange 2007 RTM) which doesn’t fully exercise all features of Exchange 2010 SP1. It also means if you don’t allow non-provisionable
    devices you’ll get an HTTP 403 without any instructional clues as to why you’re seeing this error. (Since you do an HTTP OPTIONS before attempting the FolderSync you could adapt the request accordingly.)

    I’ll easily admit that the UI is far less intuitive than yours, and it focuses purely on ActiveSync, but I’ve put together my own online diagnostic at ,(remove link if you consider this spammy), where you can get around these issues.

  9. ES says:

    Love the fact that this got updated, but you need to make the default action when you hit the ENTER key on the CAPTCHA to be the new Verify – instead of (I'm assuming) Next – as this will still annoyingly wipe out your passwords and reset the CAPTCHA.

  10. Daniel says:

    The text sayz "z" will not be included but it's used in the video… ;)

  11. mostblessed says:

    Hi all,

    Pls I need to setup and Microsoft Exchange Server for my company mailing system, and I need to know the requirements with cost effect. Can any one help out

    Many thanks

  12. Bharat Suneja [MSFT] says:

    @mostblessed: Here are some resources to get you started.

    Exchange 2010 Overview…/overview.aspx
    Exchange 2010 Documentation
    Getting Started with Exchange 2010
    Exchange 2010 System Requirements
    Licensing Exchange

  13. vaha says:

    You made my day

    thanks to the exchange team

  14. Ashwini Kumar says:

    I used this and i can see the diffrence :-)

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