RPC_S_Server_Unavailable error (0x6ba) and Microsoft Exchange is unavailable.

Filed Under IT Tipz & Trix, Sighs

This post probably falls more under the doh! category than anything else but it might still be useful if anyone else suffers from the same apparent brain failure as I did 🙂 When setting up a remote user to use Outlook and was struggling massively to get it to connect. Every time Outlook would give me the following error stating that Outlook must be online or connected to complete this action.
Exchange Unavailable
Could something have changed that I was unaware of? I tried testing it with the Exchange Connectivity Tester (which is a brilliant troubleshooting tool btw) and that failed too with the horrible “The RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE error (0x6ba) was thrown by the RPC Runtime process” error.

Remote connectivity results

Remote connectivity results – click for full version

Google advice on the 16000+ results for that term ranged from disable IPv6 to registry edits on the server. But since it was only this one user that had issues, I didn’t think we needed to go that far. I could happily connect to ports 6001,6002 and 6004 and every other remote user was having no issues. Then it occurred to me, like a 100 year old lightbulb slowly, so very slowly, dispelling the dark fugue of confusion – this looks like a DNS error. Why is it unable to ping the server? What is it trying to ping? OWA works find for the user so it’s not an account issue. The problem – I had entered the external server name in the Outlook Account Settings (:facepalm:).

The proxy server you enter for RPC over HTTPS for the Exchange account details here :

Account Settings

Account Settings

 is NOT the same as the address you enter for your server here :

Outlook Config

Outlook Config – click to enlarge

Once I changed the Outlook Config to point to exchange.contoso.local – BOOM! Problem solved. And a quite shocking amount of “OMFG I wasted so much time on this, what a numpty I am” 🙂

But the lights are green guv!

Filed Under Rants, Sighs

My very first post to this blog was the random musing that perhaps Onetel used the advanced system of checking its on-line status of sending the teaboy down to the server rack to make sure all the lights were green.

I am starting to think this was not just a random musing after all. Apparently the teaboy last popped down and checked the server rack sometime ago.

Lights are green

Now the lights may well be green Onetel, but the server is definitely NOT active and responding.

How do I know this?

Well – using my Clouseau like investigative powers, my suspicions were first raised when I got this (sadly becoming all too familiar) error message :


As you will notice, I use AVG as my anti-virus. Being of a naturally suspicious nature I thought that it might be my AVG mail proxy. So lets disable that and connect and collect all my emaily goodness. And a metric shed-load of spam (way to go Onetel, great spam-filtering :S ).

But wait! What is this?

It wasn't AVG

A pox on me for doubting you AVG. It appears it was not the proxy server after all. ‘Zis is most peculiar’, says I in my most convincing Clouseau accent. ‘From where could zis problem be coming. After all, ze zerveur at Onetel is Actif and Responding’.

Most perplexing. Further investigation is warranted.

Active and responding my $£%£$^%

Righty. I’ve got an idea for you Onetel. Perhaps pinging your servers once every twelve hours is possibly not the best way to determine if they are actually working. I had an x64 box not so long ago, about the only damn thing that would do was respond to pings. It certainly wouldn’t talk to my printer. So maybe you send a test message to teaboy@onetel.com and if it leaves and arrives back within say 10 minutes (?) then you can say it is responding.

If it gets back within one minute then you can say it is active. However since I can send an email from me@onetel.com to me@onetel.com and not once has this ever been achieved in less that 10 this may well be considered running before we can walk.

Perhaps, in an effort not to mislead your customers too much, we could drop the word active as well. As you can see from the definition linked, perhaps “Marked by energetic activity” may give the wrong impression. There is no argument that it qualifies as active under the “capable of functioning” part of the definition, but I fear active may be stretching the point a little.

Why don’t we settle for something more like this :

More accurate description

I suggest the use of recently but in a astronomical kind of way. You know, as in “Recently the sun was formed and pretty shortly after that some planets started orbiting it. Almost immediately afterwards life appeared and hoopla! here were are.”


Online and feeling fine

Filed Under Sighs

You have to wonder how some companies check their online status. For over 12 hours I was unable to check my one of my email addresses (onetel.com). Yet the network status site still proclaimed that everything was active and responding. No problems here ‘guv – honest!

I think they must have someone who pops by every now and again and checks that all the lights are green or something.

What you say? What if the machine has crashed? Oh no my good fellow, it can’t have! The light is green.