Public folder for resource



I set up a public calendar folder for a conference room so that the room can
be scheduled via Outlook. This is on Exchange 2000 as part of SBS2K server.

However, since this is a public folder only (no user associated), users must
schedule events & invite attendees from the Conference Room folder (i.e. not
their own calendar), and responses are not tallied.

How can I set up this resource as an entity that can be scheduled by
invitation as an attendee so that users can schedule it from their own
calendars and receive responses from other attendees?




Not using a public folder. You really need to create a Resource and have it
auto book.

Exchange 2003 Auto Accept Agent vs. direct booking

The Auto Accept Agent is a server-side store event sink available in
Exchange 2003 SP1 which provides automatic server-side processing of meeting
requests sent to resource mailboxes. The Agent handles initial scheduling,
cancellations and updates and sends responses to the meeting organizer -
meaning less scheduling conflicts and allowing receptionists and conference
room owners to spend their time more productively.

What are the advantages of using Auto Accept Agent?

1.. The agent runs on the server 24 hours per day, 7 days a week. The
agent responds immediately and the requestor does not have to wait for the
receptionist to return from lunch.
2.. The agent checks the availability by looking at the calendar (resource
schedule), not the Free/Busy information. This reduces the number of issues
caused by free/busy update lag.
3.. It can decline individual conflicting instances within a recurring
meeting request.
4.. In case of declined meeting request with conflicts (or a meeting
request accepted with conflicts) the response includes date/time information
on which instances conflict.
5.. All comments and attachments are removed from the meeting requests.
Only the time and date information will remain on the meeting item. This
prevents the delegate from viewing and confidential or private information.
It also keeps the mailbox trim.
6.. Meetings marked as private are processed immediately. Additionally,
the private flag is stripped from meeting requests so the receptionist will
always have clear visibility to what is on the calendar.
7.. It replaces the need for excessive permissions needed to allow direct
booking and does not require delegate permissions or configuration
8.. Much more robust than Outlook "auto-booking".
9.. Reminders are removed from the conference room's copy of the meeting.
This avoids "reminder hell" in the event the conference room mailbox is
directly opened in Outlook.
10.. It handles meeting requests from all clients including OWA.
11.. The resource mailbox owner retains their rights on the resource
mailbox and will remain the ultimate authority on the mailbox.
Does Auto Accept Agent have any disadvantages compared to direct booking?

1.. The agent code must run on every Exchange server that has a resource
mailbox, since CDOEX is used to process requests and can only access local
2.. Delegates (e.g. Receptionists) will be less aware of the number and
nature (urgency) of incoming requests.
3.. Currently the booking window will be limited to 6 months. This can be
changed but it's not recommended. It will take a while for requestors to
become accustomed to this hard limit. Important: Any request beyond the
six-month window, including recurring meetings extending past it, will
automatically be declined.
4.. Delegates will have to check the Inbox, Sent Items, and Deleted Items
for unexpected items, but can do so more infrequently.

With that said, I would also like to talk about direct booking and its
advantages and some considerations while using it.

Why direct booking?

Direct booking is an Outlook-specific feature that uses the organizer's
Outlook client (Outlook 2000 or later) to book an appointment directly into
a resource mailbox schedule. The Outlook client of the person organizing the
meeting performs all the necessary tasks, such as conflict checking and
placing the reservation on the resource calendar. To set up direct booking,

291616 How to direct book a resource in Outlook 2002 or in Outlook 2003;EN-US;291616

Advantages of Direct booking:

1.. Immediate confirmation/denial of booking request.
2.. It has the logic to avoid double-booking.

With these advantages in mind, some disadvantages of Direct booking include:

1.. Direct booking requires granting organizer read/write permissions on
the calendar. Hence, users can just go onto the resource's calendar and
delete existing meetings to free up space for their own meetings.
2.. Organizer must remember to designate resource as "Resource" and not
"Required" or "Optional". No conflict checking is done if resource specified
as one of the latter (rule on resource's inbox should be created to generate
reply to this effect).
3.. Since there is availability against free/busy, latency in free/busy
replication can result in double-booking.
4.. Conflicts aren't detected beyond the range of published free/busy and
can result in double-booking.
5.. Outlook Web Access does not currently support the "direct booking" of
meeting requests.

Direct booking should not be used in conjunction with automatic booking done
by the Auto Accept Agent. There is also configuration associated with direct
booking that could conflict with Auto Accept Agent settings. For example,
the default setting for direct booking is to accept all requests, regardless
of conflicts. There is also a direct booking setting that automatically
declines all recurring requests. These settings are only honored by Outlook
and only when the resource is specified as a resource attendee. You should
not register a resource mailbox for Auto Accept Agent in Exchange 2003 when
you set up a resource for direct booking in Outlook. This is discussed in
the below article

903290 You should not register a resource mailbox for Auto Accept Agent in
Exchange 2003 when you set up a resource for direct booking in Outlook;EN-US;903290

How to Set Up a Conference Room as a "Resource" in Outlook 2000

How to Successfully Book a Resource

291616 How to direct book a resource in Outlook 2002 or in Outlook 2003;EN-US;291616

Nikki Peterson


I have the same request here. It would be good if the auto accept agent or
direct booking feature can also be used in Public Folder. Also would like to
know how user can choose and view public folder calenders in the new Outlook
2003 Calender list.



Sue Mosher [MVP-Outlook]

It's not going to happen. Public folders go away completely in the version after Exchange 2007, which makes a massive overhaul of the whole resource scheduling feature.

Tell users to add calendars to Public Folders\Favorites if they want to see them on the Calendar navigation pane.

Sue Mosher, Outlook MVP
Author of Configuring Microsoft Outlook 2003

and Microsoft Outlook Programming - Jumpstart for
Administrators, Power Users, and Developers

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