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Frequently Asked Questions

Outlook Web App (OWA)

  • Why are we doing this?

    Universities and colleges across the country are increasingly are adopting this technology, which commonly is used by financial institutions to verify online users' identities. It will assist in protecting your personal information, your intellectual property, and University data.

  • Who can use it?

    All UMass Lowell faculty, staff, and students who use their UMass Lowell email address and password to access UMass Lowell’s network and resources will be required to enroll in Multifactor Authentication.

  • How do I enroll in MFA?

    Employees are automatically enrolled when accessing a protected application (i.e. HR Direct) via a self-service enrollment provided by Duo.

    To manage your MFA settings or add another device, visit the Duo MFA website.

  • Where do I find more information?

    By visiting the MFA Project website - hosted by the UMass President’s Office, you will find video tutorials, and instructions for enrolling and registering your device.

  • What is the MFA solution we’ll be using?

    UMass has selected Duo Security as its partner to bring multi-factor authentication to its faculty, staff, and students.

  • Are there additional applications that will require MFA?

    Stay tuned during the summer and the fall for more applications that will require MFA. Some of the applications that are being considered include VPN, Email, Rave, and One Drive.

  • When will HR Direct require Multi-Factor Authentication?

    The UMass campuses are targeting August 1, 2017 to require MFA enrollment before accessing HR Direct.

  • What browsers are supported in OWA 2010?

    You can use the following browsers on a computer running Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista or Windows 7:

    • Internet Explorer 7 and later versions
    • Firefox 3.0.1 and later versions
    • Chrome 3.0.195.27 and later versions

    On a computer running Mac OS X, use:

    • Safari 3.1 and later versions
    • Firefox 3.0.1 and later versions

    On a computer running Linux, use:

    • Firefox 3.0.1 and later versions.

    If you use a Web browser that does not support the full-feature set, OWA will open using the light version.

  • What is the "Use the light version of Outlook Web App" checkbox?

    The light version of OWA is optimized to support users who are blind or impaired vision, have a slow (dial-up) Internet connection or are using an older Web browser. The key difference between the light and full version is functionality. Several features of OWA are unavailable in the light version.

  • What is the difference between "This is a public or shared computer" and "This is a private computer"?

    OWA has improved security for the logon page. This security measure is especially useful for those who share a computer or access their email from a public computer in a lab or library.

    Your OWA session automatically logs you off after a certain amount of time. When you log on, you specify what kind of computer you are using. If you select This is a private computer, your session will timeout after eight hours. If you select This is a public or shared computer your session will close after 15 minutes. After your session closes, even if you leave your browser open and someone tries to use it, other users will be unable to access your account.

    If you are accessing your email in your office, your home, or another private setting, it is recommended you use the Private setting.

  • How can I save a message in my Drafts folder so I do not lose it when composing it?

    It is important to periodically save your message as you are composing it if you plan to be inactive for periods of time. If you do not save your message, you may lose it if your session times out due to inactivity.To save a message to your Drafts folder, click Save on the OWA toolbar from within the mail message. This is typically next to the Send button.

  • Can I do a spell check in OWA?

    OWA offers spell check functionality if you are running Internet Explorer on your Windows workstation. To enable spell check when using Internet Explorer:

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view.
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right.
    3. Click See All Options… > Settings.
    4. Select Spelling.
    5. Check your options and click Save.
  • How do I change my password in OWA?

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view.
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right.
    3. Click See All Options…
    4. On the Account Information page, select Change your password.
    5. Enter your current password. Enter your new password.
    6. Confirm your new password.

    Password requirements are found on our Self-Service Password Management page.

  • Can I manually reset my "from" address in OWA?

    No. The from address in OWA is automatically configured to your legal first name and last name as documented in the UMass Lowell Human Resources office and cannot be changed. The "from" SMTP address is your official UMass Lowell email address, Firstname_Lastname@uml.edu.

  • How can I configure OWA with a Reading Pane?

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view.
    2. Select View from the drop-down menu option from the OWA toolbar.
    3. Under Reading Pane, select Right, Bottom or Turned Off.

  • How do I send an email to several OWA contacts simultaneously?

    To send to multiple contacts entries simultaneously, enter their names on the To line of your message, separated by a semicolon (;). Before sending your message, click the Check Names button.

  • In my OWA folder list, I see something called Public Folders. What are these?

    Public Folders are shared mail folders that reside on the Exchange server. Several University departments and student organizations maintain public folders to provide shared access to email messages or calendars. If you can view public folders when you open your OWA folder list, your account has appropriate permissions to view the public folder hierarchy. However, you may not have permission to read the messages stored in the public folder. If you see a public folder that you'd like to have access to, please contact that department to learn whether your account can be assigned appropriate permissions.

  • Can I add a signature to my OWA outbound email?

    OWA allows you to add a standard signature to all outbound email. This is how you do that:

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right
    3. Select See All Options… > Settings
    4. Update your E-Mail Signature
    5. If you want your signature to appear at the end of your outgoing OWA messages, select Automatically include my signature on messages I send
    6. Click Save
  • What is the OWA Junk Mail filter?

    The OWA Junk Mail filter is enabled by default and is used to help in the fight against spam. The filter will put suspected junk mail in the Junk E-Mail folder in OWA. You can configure "safe senders" and "blocked senders" to customize your junk mail filtering rules. You can access these options in Block or Allow settings.

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right
    3. Select See All Options…
    4. Click Block or Allow.
    5. Click Save
  • How does Content Filtering work?

    By default, OWA will block some external content in HTML messages, such as pictures or sounds linked within the message. These links are hidden references (not the underlined kind that you click to activate) in the HTML source code to an external location on the Internet, such as a website. They are triggered when the message is opened or previewed, which prompts a download of the external content. While some legitimate senders do this to avoid sending large messages, junk email senders use this technique to verify your email address as a legitimate one. Once verified, you will be targeted directly with more spam.

    If content is blocked, you will see this message: "To help protect your privacy, some content in this message has been blocked. If you're sure this message is from a trusted sender and you want to re-enable the blocked features, click here".

  • How do I forward my email to my non-university account (i.e., Yahoo!, MSN, GMail)?

    The University assumes no responsibility for email forwarded to a non-university account. IT highly recommends that users use their UMass Lowell email account to view campus-related messages and to communicate with faculty, staff and students. IT cannot recover lost email or support any problems that may occur after forwarding. It is possible users may lose important email messages due to problems including forwarding mail to full mailboxes, invalid email addresses, attachment blocking and spam filters that block valid email messages To set up a mail forward, do the following:

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right
    3. Select See All Options… > Organize E-Mail > Inbox Rules
    4. Under Inbox Rules, select New…
    5. For When the message arrives, select [Apply to all messages]
    6. For Do the following, select Redirect the message to… and enter your external email address
    7. Select More Options…
    8. Select any other options you may want
    9. Name the rule or keep the default
    10. Click Save
  • How do I set up the Out of Office Assistant in OWA?

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right
    3. Select See All Options… > Organize E-Mail > Automatic Replies
    4. Click Send automatic replies
    5. Set up your out of office messages and options
    6. Click Save

    Remember to change this setting and configure your email client to no longer send automatic replies.

  • When I use the Out of Office Assistant, why do my contacts receive only one copy of my Out of Office message when they have sent me multiple messages?

    This is by design. The Out of Office Assistant replies to each sender once. This one-reply functionality is to safeguard against looping Out of Office messages between two mailboxes with the feature enabled.

  • Where can I configure other email settings in OWA?

    1. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view
    2. Select the Options drop-down menu on the top, right
    3. Click See All Options…
    4. Select Settings
    5. Click Save

  • I just emptied my Deleted Items folder in OWA and I accidentally deleted something important. Can I get it back?

    Yes. After you Empty Deleted Items from OWA, those "emptied" messages go into a waiting area for 14 days before they are permanently purged from our system. During that 14-day period, you can retrieve messages from the waiting area. To do this:

    1. Right-click the Deleted Items folder
    2. Select Recover Deleted Items
  • I only see a few messages in my OWA in box, but there were dozens when I last looked. Where did they go?

    The default setting for viewing messages in OWA is Conversation Mode by Date. This can be confusing. To turn off this feature:

    1. Click the down arrow next to Conversations by Date under Search Entire Mailbox
    2. Uncheck the box next to Conversation and select one of the other options