Outlook: Why People Online Status is Grey Out?

Ever faced grey out present status in your outlook? You start to wonder was it the settings block from office 365, or is your firewall blocking, or is there registry configured?

If you have ask above questions and also checked that none above related then the next question you should ask yourself is “What Office 365 license I’m on?“. The answer is if you are not using any Office 365 enterprise license, or your Office installer is “Home and Business” you will not have the online status feature. Is a limitation based on type of license that you subscribed.

Hence, get consultation and get to understand about the licenses that you are going to purchase.

How to check?

Open your Outlook App > Click on File at top left

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Click on Options at the left side bar

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Click on People > Scroll down you will see this grey out

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My Office Application are using ProPlus

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Azure Information Protection: Office application prompt for privacy notice

Microsoft provide notice to end users that has Azure Information Protection enabled and Policy has set to them. It does not matter either you are on Azure Information Protection Classic or Unified labeling.

When you first launch your office application or relaunch it you will get this notice.

A privacy notice such as below;

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Azure Information Protection: Overview Default labels on Office application

I am having an Office ProPlus application, using Windows 10 Pro. Azure Information Protection stands for AIP. I will use AIP term throughout this post. Making sure AIP is enabled at the Global administrator side.

If you are wondering “Hey, I do not want my users to be having the privileged to uninstall AIP application from their devices”, well I will explain more on the next post 🙂 !

Requirements

  1.  An office 365 account
  2. Supporting Office 365 License
  3. Supporting Windows Client/Server
  4. Azure Information Protection Application

Just to show you how the labels look like for each of the Office application (Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, and Excel),

Outlook Without AIP

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Outlook with AIP

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Word without AIP

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Word with AIP

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Excel without AIP

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Excel with AIP

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PowerPoint without AIP

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PowerPoint with AIP

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Troubleshoot MFA for Outlook with Modern Authentication turned on

First of all, understand that I also went through trouble with this modern authentication that is turn on and causing you to see “Always prompt for logon credentials” option is grey out under Outlook application. You would like to have app password for your outlook application but got stop to proceed so because of modern authentication. Is also troublesome to have to keep on keying the code whenever you are re-login your Outlook application without the app password setup on your Outlook account.

*Modern authentication only supports 2013 or the earlier release, please refer to reference for further information

Example for Outlook 2016;

Where to see the grey out “Always prompt for logon credentials”?

File > Info > Account settings > Account Name and Sync Settings > Select More Settings > go to Security tab

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However, to sign in with app password, there are 2 options;

  1. If you have an existing account in your Outlook application and have “Always prompt for a password to log in” is enabled then you will just have to key in the app password in the prompt panel.
  2. If you are re-adding or add new account then you will have to key in the app password during your setup of the account for your Outlook application.

*These options doesn’t just limit to Outlook application only

So to disable the modern authentication you may need to add-on a registry;

  1. Go to registry
  2. Locate this directory HKCU\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\Identity\EnableADAL
  3. If “EnableADAL” registry is not created yet then create it as DWORD and set the value to “0”
  4. If you have already has this registry then just change the value to “0”
  5. Close the registry and restart your Outlook application (by closing and re-open)
  6. You will see the prompt for the credential to log in is shown while you launch your Outlook application
  7. Key in your app password and select remember password

*Is much simple to add registry 

*But I recommend that you remove the profile and then re-add

References;

  1. https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/msoffice/forum/msoffice_outlook/modern-authentication-on-outlook-2016-keeps-on/98a263f4-ab9c-4d6f-b5eb-2728a8e77412
  2. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-my/office365/enterprise/modern-auth-for-office-2013-and-2016?redirectSourcePath=%252fen-us%252farticle%252fHow-modern-authentication-works-for-Office-2013-and-Office-2016-client-apps-e4c45989-4b1a-462e-a81b-2a13191cf517

Outlook: Why am I seeing this pop-up frequently? How do I check the causes?

If you have an environment that is newly deploy or newly upgraded and after few months, than you have only encounter your Outlook frequently shows the pop-up for credentials. Thus, you have no idea, how come there would be such issue happen, even though you have deploy it with best practice.

To check what is causing this situation is to run wireshark;

  1. Run wireshark on a user’s computer, either connected to LAN or Internet.
    • Close all necessary applications
    • Open and run the wireshark
    • Open Outlook only
    • If no pop-up shown, than open other microsoft applications, such as excel or skype for business
    • If than pop up shown, than stop and save your wireshark logs
    • Analyse the wireshark logs
    • You will probably see there is multiple re-transmission of the firewall connection, which successful and than fail instantly
    • This could be your firewall issue that causes the pop up
  2. You can also check from Event viewer from the user’s computer, based on the similar steps for wireshark

For such situation happen, the only assumption you will ask yourself is;

  1. Has there be changes with firewall?
  2. Is the firewall having issue?
  3. Is my exchange or exchange hybrid having issue?
  4. Is my ADFS having problem? (You can check from portal access is it accessible, if yes than ADFS is not the problem)