Outlook 2016 and Exchange support

I’m thinking about giving Outlook 2016 a try but I know we are not using the latest version of Exchange.

  • Which versions of Exchange does Outlook 2016 support?
  • How can I check which version I’m currently using?
  • How do I configure an Exchange account in Outlook 2016?

Exchange Server buttonAs a general rule of thumb, any version of Outlook supports 5 different Exchange versions;

  • 2 previous versions of Exchange
  • its corresponding Exchange version
  • 2 future versions of Exchange

So Outlook 2016 supports;

  • Exchange 2010
  • Exchange 2013
  • Exchange 2016
  • Exchange 2019 (vNext 1)
  • Exchange vNext 2

Note: To determine your current version of Exchange from within Outlook see: Which Exchange version am I using?

Configuring an Exchange account in Outlook 2016

Add Exchange Mailbox buttonThe option to manually configure an Exchange account has been removed in Outlook 2016. This was a legacy configuration screen that was only needed for Exchange 2003 and previous and didn’t really serve a purpose anymore for later versions of Exchange.

Instead of using the manual configuration use the Auto Account Setup wizard.

Depending on your Update Channel of Office, you either only have to fill out your email address or need to provide your name, email address and password and your Exchange account will be automatically configured by the settings that are being pushed from the Autodiscover service of Exchange.

The new Add Account dialog only requires your to fill out the email address of the account you want to add.
Don’t make it any harder for yourself than needed; The new Add Account dialog only requires your to fill out the email address of the account you want to add.

Add Account - Auto Account Setup dialog (click on image to enlarge)
Even in the old Auto Account Setup dialog, you are only really required to fill out your email address to add an Exchange account.

Auto Account Setup fails

Autodiscover buttonWhen Auto Account Setup fails, contact your Exchange administrator as it would indicate a configuration issue with the Autodiscover service in the Exchange environment.

Proper configuration of the Autodiscover and Outlook Anywhere service can be tested via the Microsoft Remote Connectivity Analyzer.

For more information about configuring the Autodiscover and Outlook Anywhere service see: Autodiscover: Some quick methods to get it working.

Exchange versions and Outlook support

Outlook buttonExchange support works in the same way, so Exchange 2016 will no longer support Outlook 2007.

The only exception to this was when you were connecting to an Office 365 Exchange 2016 server.

However, as of October 31, 2017, Office 365 dropped support for Outlook 2007 as well. This wasn’t a total surprise considering that support for Outlook 2007 itself stopped on October 10, 2017 already.

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