Outlook Information

In 2012, HSPH migrated from Novell Groupwise to Microsoft Exchange.  We are partnering with Harvard University Information Technology (HUIT) in this important initiative.

Below is a list of major items of note in regards to the new email system:

Access to the entire University Address Book (the Global Address List – GAL)
Now that HSPH is on the same email system as a majority of the University School’s we have access to the entire University Address Book. You can look up email contacts from all of the School’s at Harvard. You can also see their University title, office phone number and other information about the user, all in the Outlook program.

40 MB maximum for messages
Message size is an email message and the sum of all attachments.

With Groupwise, our external maximum message size was 50 MB and internally we did not impose a maximum.

With Outlook/Exchange, Harvard University Information Technology (HUIT) has established a maximum message size of 40 MB for the University for internal and external email. Large documents messages can be transferred using the secure Accellion product.

HUID required for email account
With Groupwise, we created short-term or contractor email accounts for a variety of purposes without requiring a HUID to be issued.

With Outlook, a HUID will be required for email account creation for all users including contractors, student coops, and other non-Harvard personnel.  Most people who fall into this category will be “persons of interest” (POIs) and will require a printed form to be submitted to the Kresge ID Office. There is a 24-hour turnaround time on this action.

Outlook Quotas
All Outlook Email accounts open with a 5 GB quota for all email, calendar and contacts. The HSPH IT Helpdesk receives daily notifications of any users who are approaching this quota. We will contact the person to see if a quota increase is wanted. If so, we will put in a request to have the quota increased. There currently is no charge to increase the quota but we can only do it for accounts that are close to quota.

25 GB maximum on total mailbox size
The maximum allowable mailbox size is 25 GB.  HUIT warns that at 20-25 GB, users could experience performance issues and encourages users to be beneath 20 GB for best performance.

New Username and Password
Accessing IceMail requires a different Harvard username and password called a Harvard 3+3 (ABC123) or Harvard AD credential.

Although this is short-term step backward in terms of single sign on, long-term goals are to have a more integrated single sign on at the University level in coming years.

Functionally, the impact is modest:

  • There is no difference on the PC/MAC client software.  You will only need the 3+3 credential during setup.
  • There is no difference on mobile devices.  You will only need the 3+3 credential during setup.
  • On Outlook Web Access, if you are accessing from a kiosk, computer lab, or other shared computer, you will need to enter both your new 3+3 credential and password to access OWA.  Since this is a different credential from your Novell login, this is a change from Groupwise.
  • We encourage users to set their passwords to their current strong Novell password.
  • We encourage users to reset both their Novell and Harvard 3+3 password at the same time in the future.  The Helpdesk will provide directions.

New spam filtering
With Groupwise, HSPH employed a leading spam-filtering technology called Barracuda.  Each evening, we received an email with a listing of spam caught in the quarantine.

With Outlook/Exchange, HUIT is employing Microsoft Forefront spam-filtering technology.  This technology works differently and puts all accumulated spam in a folder called JUNK MAIL.  You will not receive a daily email.  We encourage you to check you JUNK MAIL folder especially for the first few weeks after migration.  Senders of mail and domains may be white-listed.

New policy for deleted email
On the new HUIT Outlook/Exchange system, all mail that you delete goes into DELETED ITEMS/TRASH for 30 days.  This is the same behavior as Groupwise. However, once removed from DELETED ITEMS/TRASH, email will only remain on the server for 14 days.  After 14 days, deleted email will not be recoverable.  This is a change from our current policy of being able to retrieve deleted emails for up to six months.

Mobile Device Service and Password
With Groupwise, full syncing required either a Blackberry Enterprise License (BES) or for iPhones/Android devices a Notifylink account.  Personal devices could view mail (without full syncing) by using IMAP.

With Outlook/Exchange, BlackBerry devices will still use BES; however, we will utilize HUIT’s BES server instead of HSPH’s BES server.  There is currently no charge to sync a Blackberry to HUIT’s Outlook/Exchange system using BES, however you must still have an Enterprise Data Plan on your phone through you phone provider. There is a monthly charge for this extra plan.

iPhones, Android, and iPads will no longer require Notfiylink and will use Microsoft ActiveSync technology.  Unlink Notifylink accounts, ActiveSync is free.

Click here for instructions on connecting an iPhone or iPad to the Outlook email.

Additionally, all mobile devices (both Harvard-owned and personal) will require a device PIN to be set to connect with Outlook/Exchange.  Harvard/HSPH will have the ability to remotely wipe your device further enhancing security in case of theft or loss of your device.

Password Lockout
With Groupwise, if you incorrectly type your password 5 times, you are locked out the system and must wait 30 minutes for the lock to expire.

With Outlook/Exchange, if you incorrectly type your password 5 times, you are locked out the system, you can unlock your account by going to the Password Manager website:


You can also call the Helpdesk at 617-432-4357 during business hours if you require help with this.

Click here for more Outlook Email FAQs

Click here for Outlook Email Resources