What’s new with Microsoft Remote Connectivity Analyzer? A lot!


Have you ever gotten a call from someone you know whose Outlook client is having trouble connecting to their email server? Don’t you just wish you had a tool that you could send to them that would walk them through a connectivity test and provide a simple way for them to send the results back to you?

Or perhaps you’re an administrator that has been using the Remote Connectivity Analyzer for years to verify email configuration, but wish you had a way to verify the same tests from within your organization, that provided the same diagnostic details as the RCA website?

We’ve heard requests like these, and our team has built a tool for just these scenarios. I’d like to introduce you to the Microsoft Connectivity Analyzer (beta), a portable version of the Remote Connectivity Analyzer website. Here is a short 49 second video that introduces the Microsoft Connectivity Analyzer.

This tool contains the same tests as the website, in a slightly simpler UI – something you can share with your users, family, or your neighbor down the street.

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In addition, we’ve split the results into two views – a simplified view which only shows results that your mom could understand, and the full detailed results that only an administrator would love (yes, that’s you).

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And the additional details for administrators is shown under “Review all the tests we ran”:

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Or ask your user to save the detailed results and send them to you! The detailed results are saved as an HTML file and can be viewed in your browser.

Microsoft Connectivity Analyzer Pre-Requisites

  1. The tool supports the following operating systems: 64bit Windows 7, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008+
  2. Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5 is required.
  3. Browsers requirements:

The installation will work on all modern browsers. However…

You can find the full release notes here.

We’re not finished yet. We have plans to add additional tests.

Just like when we first released the website, this first version of the Microsoft Connectivity Analyzer is a work in progress.

Having a tool on site with the end user, we’re in a unique position to extend the testing to include common problems with all types of connectivity. This early version of the tool is just the beginning.

And that’s not all!

In addition to providing a new tool, we’ve joined forces with the Lync Remote Connectivity Analyzer, and brought the two tools together. You’ll notice we’ve dropped the “Exchange” from the name, and we have a new way to access the website: http://testconnectivity.microsoft.com. That’s right – all the same great tests for Lync and Exchange available on the same website.

Tests include:

  • Microsoft Lync Mobile Auto-Discover Web Service Remote Connectivity Test will test your remote connectivity to the Microsoft Lync Mobile Auto-Discover Web Service Server
  • Microsoft Office Communications Server Test will test your remote connectivity to the Microsoft Office Communications Server, it will auto-discover the Access Edge and port to connect to, OR allow you to specific an Access Edge server.
  • Microsoft Lync Server Remote Connectivity Test will test your remote connectivity to the Microsoft Lync Server, it will auto-discover the Access Edge and port to connect to, OR allow you to specific an Access Edge server.

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But wait, there’s more…

Did we mention we’ve been busy this year? On the Office 365 tab, you’ll notice two new tests – the Office 365 Lync DNS test, and the Free/Busy test.

The Office 365 Lync DNS Test will check the external domain name settings for your custom domain user in Office365.

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Thanks to the Office 365 Deployment Services team, the RCA website now hosts the Office 365 Free/Busy test. This test verifies an Office 365 mailbox can access the free/busy information of an on-premises mailbox and vice versa.  This includes:

  • a check to confirm the system time of the hybrid server is not offset by more than five minutes, which causes failures when requesting delegation tokens from the Microsoft Federated Gateway.
  • a check to verify inbound connectivity to the hybrid server does not require firewall pre-authentication; that is, the firewall allows pass-through authentication.
  • a check to verify the hybrid server meets the minimum Exchange Server version requirement (Exchange Server 2010 SP1).
  • a basic free/busy query against the target Availability Service.
  • Links to guidance on the Hybrid Configuration Wizard, a common source of hybrid deployment misconfiguration

Phew! Thanks for reading this far. We hope you enjoy the new updates, and we look forward to hearing from you,

Nicole Allen
On behalf of the RCA team

Comments (19)
  1. kjetil@ispservices.no says:

    Wow, great works people! :)

  2. Jason says:

    This is very impressive.  Thank you Microsoft for making this happen, very valuable tool to have in the kit.

  3. Peter says:

    Hello, I treid the OOF test, and it threw the error below. The enviornment is Ex2007 SP3. Looks like it may only want to talk to Ex2010 Sp1 & later. Other tests Like Outlook Anywhere and ActiveSync worked fine.

    Exchange Web Services synchronization, notification, availability, and Automatic Replies (OOF).

    An unexpected error has occurred in the application. An event has been logged for the system administrator. If you continue to experience this error, please send us feedback.

    Additional Details

    Exception details:

    Message: The service request EmptyFolder is only valid for Exchange version Exchange2010_SP1 or later.

    Type: Microsoft.Exchange.WebServices.Data.ServiceVersionException

  4. Satheshwaran Manoharan says:

    Nice one — !!.. Thanks for making life more simpler

  5. Eugeniu Patrascu says:

    Could you add an option so that the test can continue even if there is a mismatch between the presented certificate and the hostname ? For testing purposes I have a certificate for a specific hostname, but since this is for testing, the dns name is different (production.domain.com = actual working ActiveSync, test.domain.com = testing ActiveSync, but the cert is only for production)

  6. David says:

    It's not really portable if you need to install the software and browser add-ons?  I would like a tool that I can run from a USB stick at a client site without my pc / laptop.  

  7. Thomas says:

    @David, what are you doing at a client site withour your Laptop ?

    Great improvement of the test sites – onestopshop for remote connectivity analyzing.

  8. RAF says:

    How can I download (and install) a stand-alone version of the tool [Microsoft Connectivity Analyzer (beta)] on Intranet networks with no access to the Internet?

  9. Uwe says:

    Unfortunately it does not work for me "…. application is improperly formatted …."

  10. Christian says:

    Unfortunately it does not work for me either.

    Exception reading manifest from
    http://www.testexchangeconnectivity.com/…/Microsoft.Exchange.Connectivity.Analysis.Tool.application: the manifest may not be valid or the file could not be opened.

  11. xC0000005 says:

    Note – if you are getting "improperly formatted" errors, you may be attempting to run on 32 bit.  For now, the tool is 64 bit.

  12. xC0000005 says:

    Also, note that you need to activate the click once installation, NOT save the .application file.  If you get a clickonce error complaining that the zone doesn't match, it's most likely because you either saved the .application locally, or didn't have a click once handler for your browser.  Both result in a similar error.

  13. Steen says:

    Argh only 64 bit? I have 6000 32 bit clients :-)

  14. Arkiados06 says:

    I also received: Exception reading manifest from http://www.testexchangeconnectivity.com/…/Microsoft.Exchange.Connectivity.Analysis.Tool.application: the manifest may not be valid or the file could not be opened.

    I noticed the .application xml referenced AMD64 but the system requirements do not mention 64-bit only. The way it reads is that 64-bit is required for Vista only.

    It would also be nice to make this tool portable so we can easily distribute it to our second tier LAN Managers.

  15. Duncan says:

    Is it possible to get an option to not require ssl for the active sync tests, it would be helpful for testing connections to individual CAS servers behind our load balancers where we offload ssl.

  16. Video Introducing RCA...? says:

    Excuse me but the video does not "introduce" the remote connectivity analyzer beta. It flashes and twirls a logo and plays music.

    Why, spongebob…. why???

    -Tim-

  17. Smappy says:

    Great.  Looking forward to potentially using this but all my clients are 32 bit.

  18. Erwin says:

    Is it normal the analyzer says it's version 1.0 (Beta) when it's really version 2.0. Or is the old version still present on the website?

  19. Erwin says:

    – Would it be possible to select the tests that are run, like on the website?

    – Could you also test/retrieve autodiscover internally by checking the SCP?

Comments are closed.