Troubleshooter: Solving a Meeting-Request Problem

When users in our organization send meeting requests to users in other organizations, the requests arrive as .ics file attachments, which the recipients can't handle. Can we stop this from happening?

No. Exchange Server 2003 and Exchange 2000 Server convert meeting requests to .ics files before sending the messages to foreign recipients. This behavior complies with both the spirit and the letter of Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) Request for Comments (RFC) 2445, which outlines how SMTP Message Transfer Agents (MTAs) should convert calendar data for transmission between SMTP hosts. If the receiving client can't handle the attachment, the most likely cause is that the client is one that lacks calendaring support (such as Eudora or Outlook Express). The solution in that situation is to configure a helper application—such as Outlook—to handle the .ics file attachment on the recipients' systems.

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