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#1 Thu, 07/21/2011 - 16:45


Microsoft has been using "autodiscover" in their email clients to basically help end users autoconfigure their Outlook to connect to the corporate mail server.

The mechanism seems pretty simple. Outlook uses the user's email address to get the domain, like VIRTUALMIN.COM and performs a DNS lookup to a hostname of The client then makes a web service call for an XML file at which lists out the mail server settings.

Outlook then configures to those settings and the user's email client is configured. No helpdesk call required.

Easy to find documentation of the autodiscover.xml file on Microsoft's site.

I've tested a static setup manually, not hard to get working. For the gurus here, I would think scripting it into Virtualmin wouldn't be very difficult. Definitely a quick win.


Thu, 07/21/2011 - 17:24

Indeed, good idea!

Thunderbird uses a similar method, or even the same, since at least the "autodiscover.*" domain name, and usage of an XML file, are the same.

Info here:

If it's indeed the same, would be a +1 for Virtualmin to get that feature, already covering two major email applications.

Sat, 03/17/2012 - 03:14

Any progress on this? Seeing as how this is the only mention of this, I'm assuming there's no interest in this, which is sad.

It would make email auto-configuration so much easier for clients.

Sat, 03/17/2012 - 15:50

Auto-discover is a good idea. I'll look into this further.


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 12:06

Yes yes.... connecting thunderbird using its default settings and the default vanilla install of virtualmin doesnt work. Thunderbird has an autodetect port / ssl feature but this one from MS sounds like a much better idea.

It would be cool if virtualmin had a page for each email user with instructions on ports and security settings for that email account so I could print it and hand it to a tech so they know how to set it up.


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