IT Connect

Information technology tools and resources at the UW

Client Software Choices

Recommended Client Software

Different client software programs provide different feature sets in the Exchange environment, with Outlook 2013 providing the richest user experience.

The following are the recommended clients for use with UW Exchange. Click the links below to view setup instructions:

For details on clients from Microsoft, see the TechNet article Clients and Mobile Devices.

Outlook Web App (OWA)

Outlook Web App (OWA) allows you to connect to the Exchange Server by using only a Web browser. No other client software is needed. OWA comes in two versions: Standard and Light.

  • The Standard version is the full-featured version. It opens automatically if you are running a supported browser.
  • The Light version offers limited features, and it is optimized to work with browsers that don’t support the standard version.

For more information from Microsoft about OWA Light, see Outlook Web App Light.

For instructions on connecting to the Exchange Server using Outlook Web App, see Outlook Web App and UW Exchange.

Smartphones and Tablets

You can connect to UW Exchange using any smartphone device that uses Exchange ActiveSync to connect to Exchange, such as iPhone and Windows Phone. For Android and BlackBerry, you need additional software to connect to Exchange.

  • For information on setting up Windows Mobile and Android devices with Exchange, see the Microsoft article Phone and tablet setup reference. IMPORTANT: Please read the “Outlook for iOS and Android not HIPAA/HERPA Compatible” section below before deciding to use the Microsoft Outlook app for iOS or Android if your email includes sensitive information.
  • For information on setting up iOS devices with Exchange, see iOS and UW Exchange.
  • For information on setting up BlackBerry devices with Exchange, see Set up email on a BlackBerry.

Outlook for iOS and Android Not HIPAA/FERPA Compatible

Microsoft has released a new mobile app for email and calendaring under the Outlook name for both iOS and Android. This app does not meet the security and compliance needs of most University of Washington faculty or staff. Specifically, this application stores files, emails, and user passwords in a cloud service with which the UW has no HIPAA nor FERPA contractual protections. In addition, the services backing these mobile applications do not appear to meet the otherwise rigorous standards Microsoft has implemented with services such as Office 365.

If the App Is Installed

UW-IT recommends that users who have installed the Outlook mobile app for iOS and Android uninstall it and then change their UW NetID passwords via the standard UW NetID password reset process. This is strongly recommended for users working with sensitive information.

Audit Report for Use with UW Exchange

For departments concerned about use of this app to access UW Exchange mailboxes, please request an audit report through the standard UW Exchange Support group channels. Unfortunately, no such report can be offered currently for those using it to access UW Google mailboxes.

Use Native iOS and Android Mail Applications or OWA

The native mail applications on iOS and Android are still considered safe for use, as is using the Outlook Web Access (OWA) for iPhone, iPad, and Android apps as well as Outlook for Windows or Macintosh OS X.

For More Information

Email-only Client Software

Any email client software program that uses the IMAP protocol can work with UW Exchange. UW Exchange does not support the POP3 protocol.

Thunderbird and Alpine are popular IMAP email clients in use at the University of Washington.

When you connect to an Exchange server using the IMAP protocol, you get only email functionality. You do not get access to the other features of Exchange: calendar, tasks, and contacts. To get the full set of Exchange features, use an Exchange client software program, such as Outlook.

For instructions on connecting to the UW Exchange server using several popular email-only client software programs, see IMAP Settings for UW Exchange.