In the support forums, there are a lot of questions asking about shared folders and shared mailboxes.  In this article, we address some of the most common questions including:

  • How to Share a Folder
  • How to open a Shared Default Folder
  • How to open a Shared Non-Default Folder
  • How to open an additional mailbox
  • How to give someone access to an entire mailbox
  • How to Send As a Mailbox

There are other ways to do many of these tasks, but these instructions are written so they apply to Outlook 2003 – 2010.  The instructions were written using Outlook 2007, but the procedures for Outlook 2003 and 2010 are very similar.

How to Share a Folder

  • In Outlook, right click the folder you want to share and choose properties.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

  • Click the Permissions tab.
  • Click the Add button and select the user(s) that you want to give access to.
  • After the users have been added, select the appropriate level of permissions for each.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

  • Click OK.

How to Open a Shared Default Folder

  • From the File Menu, choose Open->Other Users Folder

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

  • In the dialog box that appears, select the folder you would like to open.  Note, only the Default folders are shown, if you need to open a non-Default folder, see the section, “How to open a Shared Non-Default Folder”.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen submenu

How to Open a Shared Non-Default Folder

  • Opening a Non-Default folder first requires the user not only has permissions on the folder, but also Reviewer rights at the Root of the mailbox that contains the folder.   This can be set by opening the properties of the mailbox root in Outlook and setting the permissions.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

  • The person sharing the folder should grant the person Reviewer Rights on the Root level of the mailbox.
  • Once the permissions on the mailbox have been set, the person who wants access to the mailbox can follow the steps outlined in the next section, “How to Open an additional Mailbox”.

How to Open an Additional Mailbox

  • Opening an additional mailbox, allows you to see the mailbox and its contents much like your normal mailbox.  Once added to a profile, it will remain in the profile, even if Outlook is closed.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

  • To add an additional mailbox to a profile, from the Tools menu, click Account Settings.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

  • On the Account Settings Window, double-click Microsoft Exchange.
  • Click the More Settings button.
  • Click the Advanced Tab.
  • Click Add and Select the mailbox you would like to add to the profile.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

How to give someone access to an entire mailbox

In some cases, you might want to give an individual access to an entire mailbox, not just a single folder in the mailbox.  One way to accomplish this would be to grant the user Owner permission to each folder in the mailbox they need to access.  While this would work, it could be time-consuming, especially if you need to do it for a large number of users.

The better way to do this is to use the Add-MSOnlineMailPermission PowerShell command.  To use this command you must have the Microsoft Online Migration Tools installed on a workstation.  To grant a user full access to a mailbox, you must:

  • Launch the Migration PowerShell Command (Start->All Programs-> Microsoft Online Services -> Migration -> Migration Command Shell.
  • Run the following command, where [email protected] is the mailbox you want to give [email protected] access to:

Add-MSOnlineMailPermission -Identity [email protected]-grantfullaccess $true -Trusteduser [email protected]

After the permission has been set the user can follow the steps in “How to open an additional mailbox” to open the mailbox.

How to Send As a Mailbox

If you are working with Shared Mailboxes, in some cases you might want to send mail from the Shared Mailbox and have the message appear to come from the Shared Mailbox instead of the actual user’s account.  Setting this up requires 2 main things.

First, you must use the Add-MSOnlineMailPermission PowerShell command to set the send as Permission. To use this command you must have the Microsoft Online Migration Tools installed on a workstation.  To grant a user sendas access on the mailbox you must:

  • Launch the Migration PowerShell Command (Start->All Programs-> Microsoft Online Services -> Migration -> Migration Command Shell.
  • Run the following command, where [email protected] is the mailbox you want [email protected] to send as:

Add-MSOnlineMailPermission -Identity [email protected]-grantsendas $true -Trusteduser [email protected]

Second, when composing a message, you must select the option to show the From Address.

microsoft outlook browser menu screen

When the user sends the message it will appear to come from the account specified in the From Address instead of their own.  All replies will be sent to the mailbox in the From field.  One thing that is a bit strange about out Send As, is the sent message is kept in the Sent Items folder of the person who sent the message, not the shared mailbox. (This behavior changes in Outlook 2010).

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