By Wikipedia’s definition, Microsoft (News - Alert) Outlook is a personal information manager from Microsoft, whose current version is Microsoft Office Outlook 2010 for Windows and Microsoft Office Outlook 2011 for Mac. It can be used as a stand-alone application or can work with email hosting solution Microsoft Exchange which is primarily used by enterprises and organizations to streamline operations.
Synchronizing the Outlook and email hosting server can be tricky. As a result, mailboxes today are cluttered with extraneous logging messages that accumulate over time and must be deleted manually.
According to WindowIT Pro writer Tony Redmond, Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2010 generate synchronization logs when errors occur when clients synchronize local replica copies (held in the OST file) of cached server folders. Logically, wrote Redmond, “Synchronization errors and log generation only happens when Outlook is configured in cached Exchange mode.”
In Redmond’s opinion, “There are many reasons why a synchronization operation might experience some difficulties.” Network glitches are the obvious example – something that is extremely likely to happen when connecting Outlook to Exchange Online in Office 365. Redmond added, “Transient network errors are common between the network that the PC client runs on and Microsoft’s data centers. After all, no one controls the Internet and no one guarantees the speed, latency, or reliability of an Internet connection.”
The WindowsIT Pro article suggests that synchronization problems also occur when multiple clients attempt to operate on the same item over a short time period. As a result, changes made by the different clients can generate conflicts. For example, explains Redmond, “You might view an item using Outlook on your laptop and look at it through a mobile device. Because there’s a long track record of multi-client conflict generation in email hosting server Exchange, especially when using BlackBerry (News - Alert) clients to view calendar meeting requests, there’s lots of code in the server to eliminate or automatically resolve conflicts, but some still occur.
“And then there are instances when servers are just too busy to be able to elegantly handle all the incoming RPC threads generated by clients that want to update server folders,” Redmond added. Consequently, this can, “result in errors such as synchronization of some deletions failed”, a transient error that is invariably cleaned up by subsequent synchronizations.”
However, these problems have existed for many years and it all started when Microsoft introduced cached Exchange mode in Outlook 2003. So, why worry about Outlook synchronization logs problem now?, Redmond asks.
“The reason is that the combination of Outlook 2010 and Exchange 2010 seem to generate more logs than ever before and worse still, Microsoft doesn’t seem to know what’s causing some of the logs,” he concluded.