How to make sure CodeTwo Out of Office Manager supports TLS 1.2

This article is meant for users of CodeTwo Out of Office Manager. This software has been discontinued. If you are looking for a way to manage out of office messages for all users in your Exchange organization, try out the Auto respond feature in CodeTwo Exchange Rules Pro.

Problem:

Starting 31 October 2018, Microsoft makes TLS 1.2 the default security protocol in Office 365. TLS 1.0 and 1.1 still work, but Microsoft does not provide support in case of connection or compatibility issues.

This article explains how to ensure that CodeTwo Out of Office Manager supports TLS 1.2 for communication with Office 365. We recommend following the guidelines below because TLS 1.2 provides better security and allows you to avoid any possible Office 365 connection issues in the future (when Microsoft disables the older TLS versions).

Warning

If you plan to disable TLS 1.0 and 1.1 in your environment and switch entirely to TLS 1.2, you need to update CodeTwo Out of Office Manager to the version that supports TLS 1.2. Otherwise, you will not be able to use the software to manage auto-reply messages in your Office 365 organization. For more information, see Troubleshooting.

Solution:

To ensure that CodeTwo Out of Office Manager supports TLS 1.2 in your environment, you need to:

  • Make sure that you are using the latest version of the CodeTwo software (1.6.2 or newer), as it fully supports TLS 1.2. You can compare the number of the version you're using (displayed on the program's title bar) with the version on the software's download page.
  • If you're not using the latest version, you need to update the software. For guidelines, see How to update CodeTwo Out of Office Manager. This is the recommended solution.
  • If it's not possible for you to update your CodeTwo software right away, you can manually enable TLS 1.2 for the .NET framework on your machine.

How to update CodeTwo Out of Office Manager

To enable support for TLS 1.2 in CodeTwo Out of Office Manager, you need to update the software to the latest version by following these steps:

  1. Download the installer from the program's download page onto the machine where CodeTwo Out of Office Manager is installed.
  2. If CodeTwo Out of Office Manager is running, close it before you proceed.
  3. Launch the downloaded installer and install the program.
  4. If you have more instances of the program in your environment, perform the update on each machine where the program is installed.
  5. After the update process is complete, you can launch the program. All of your settings are retained.
  6. The program now supports Transport Layer Security 1.2, and you can use it to set up out of office messages in your Office 365 tenant.

(Optional) Enable TLS 1.2 for the .NET framework on your machine

If you cannot update CodeTwo Out of Office Manager to the latest version right away (which is our recommended solution), you can work around the problem manually by making the machine where the program is installed use TLS 1.2 for Schannel and .NET framework:

  • first, you need to manually set TLS 1.2 as the default security protocol in your system by modifying the Windows registry (Schannel);
  • then you need to set the .NET framework(s) on the machine to use your system's default TLS protocol. Learn how to check your .NET version

For more information and step-by-step guidelines, see this Microsoft blog article (the instructions provided in the article apply not only to the server versions of Windows, but also to the client versions of Windows, e.g. Windows 10).

Troubleshooting

This section describes problems that occur if your environment has TLS 1.0 and 1.1 disabled (TLS 1.2 is your only security protocol), and you're still using a version of CodeTwo Out of Office Manager that does not support TLS 1.2.

You are not able to configure a connection to Office 365

You are not able to configure a connection to Office 365 (Fig. 1.), and you get the following (or similar) error when the connection is verified:

Server connectivity: The Autodiscover service couldn't be located.

This error appears when you try to create a new connection to an Office 365 tenant or when you edit an existing connection.

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Fig. 1. Connection to Office 365 cannot be established.

When you click the Finish button in the connection wizard (Fig. 2.), you get the following notification:

There are some errors during verification. Do you want to verify again and reconfigure settings?

The only way to close the wizard is to click No.

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Fig. 2. You are not able to finish the Target server connection wizard.

You experience these problems because the software version that you have does not support TLS 1.2 and is therefore not able to connect to Office 365.

To fix these issues, you need to update the program to the latest version.

If these errors still occur after the update, you should make sure your environment supports TLS 1.2.

Users are not loaded, or their status is loading indefinitely

If red error icons appear next to the names of your Office 365 users (Fig. 3., left) or the user status is loading for a very long time (Fig. 3., right), this also indicates a problem with connection to Office 365.

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Fig. 3. Office 365 users fail to load (left) or are loading indefinitely (right).

When you point to such a user with your mouse, a tooltip is displayed, with the following message:

 Failed to read the Out Of Office data for the user "[user-name]" from the server. Currently entered changes will not be submitted to the server.

When you right-click the status icon of a user whose status failed to load (Fig. 4.), you get the following error message:

Failed to load the Out Of Office data for the user "[user-name]". The records from your server will not be visible and currently entered changes will not apply for this mailbox. Try using the Refresh button. If no joy, verify the connection to your server, check whether the mailbox has been activated, and whether you have impersonation rights on this mailbox.
The request failed. The underlying connection was closed: An unexpected error occurred on a receive.
The client and server cannot communicate, because they do not possess a common algorithm.

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Fig. 4. The error notification displayed for a user that fails to be loaded.

You experience these problems because the software version that you have does not support TLS 1.2 and is therefore not able to connect to Office 365.

To fix these issues, you need to update the program to the latest version.

If these errors still occur after the update, you should make sure your environment supports TLS 1.2.

How do I check if TLS 1.2 is supported in my environment?

If you updated CodeTwo software to support TLS 1.2 but you still experience errors related to lack of TLS 1.2 connectivity, you should make sure your environment supports TLS 1.2 and has it enabled.

  • See this MSDN article to learn about TLS 1.2 availability in Windows.
  • If you're working in a server environment, see this Microsoft blog article for additional information. Some older systems (such as Windows Server 2008) have TLS 1.2 disabled or do not support it at all. The article shows how to ensure your Windows Server and Exchange Server version supports TLS 1.2.