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Redirect to https owa url in Exchange 2010 with custom error pages

If you want to know how to redirect to https owa url in Exchange 2010 with Custom Error Pages then please read on:

By default if a user wants to access the Outlook Web Application they have to type in it’s full address including https e.g. http://mail.example.com/owa which isn’t ideal. If you wanted your users to type in mail.example.com you would usually have to create a redirect and configure SSL settings on you Default Website affecting SSL settings for each of your Exchange 2010 virtual directories.

You could perform the actual SSL redirect by changing settings in all your virtual directories  however there is another, easier way, use custom error pages. When you attempt to access a secure website with a standard http request the server will throw a 403.4 error and redirect you to whatever 403 page is defined in IIS. The problem with this is that the error page doesn’t help nor does it actually explain to the user what they have done wrong in order to rectify it.You can define a custom 403.4 error page and perform a 302 redirect to the actual URL of the Outlook Web Application from within IIS. The advantage of this is two fold, you can redirect the user without changing any virtual directory settings and you can remove the change by deleting the custom error page. Far easier to manage then multiple changes to the virtual directory structure. In order to do this I have provided step by step instructions below:

  • Open IIS Manager (Windows 2008 R2) from Start->Administrative Tools -> Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager
  • Select the Default Web Site:
Selecting the Default Website in IIS7.

Selecting the Default Website in IIS7.

  • Click on Error Pages then right click and select Add:
Add a Custom Error Page.

Add a Custom Error Page.

  •  On the Add Error Page form that appears type 403.4 into the Status Code input box, select the “Respond with a 302 redirect” radio button and input the absolute URL in the input field below. E.g. https://mail.example.com/owa then press OK:
Filling in the Add Error Page form.

Filling in the Add Error Page form.

  • Then open a command prompt and type in iisreset and press enter. Once IIS has restarted try to type in the non secure URL to your webmail and your browser should successfully redirect to the secure URL.

By reading this post you should know how to redirect to https owa url in Exchange 2010 with custom error pages.

Thanks for reading. Links to similar articles are below. If you want to contact me you can do by visiting my About Page.

Jason Edwards