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Global Address List (GAL)

Reference Number: AA-00807 Created: 2012-09-20 13:17 Last Updated: 2012-10-05 06:56 25 Rating/ 4 Voters

General Information About GAL and OAB

Each Exchange domain has a Global Address List (GAL), Address List (AL), and Offline Address Book (OAB). The GAL is compiled on-the-fly by the Exchange server and is available for you as the "Global Address List" in Outlook, as long as it is connected to server (online mode). As soon as any changes are made to your organization, the GAL will reflect this. An Organizations AL represents the same set of mail-enabled objects as the organization's GAL, but is designated to provide the address book service in cached mode. Each AL has a corresponding OAB that holds all real data. The AL is not available for clients until the corresponding OAB is downloaded. In cached mode, Outlook will show the AL first in the Address Book window, by default.


Usually the OAB rebuild happens immediately after a change to contact information has been made through the control panel. The rebuild process can take up to 5-10 minutes to complete depending on the organization size. For our typical clients it takes less than a minute. After the rebuild is completed, it could take up to 4 hours for the new OAB to be propagated to all servers and be available for Outlook clients (native Exchange 2007 OAB distribution mechanism). For Outlook 2003 clients, a new version of OAB is available immediately after a rebuild in the system public folder (legacy OAB distribution). We rebuild OABs every day at 6AM ET for organizations who made changes to their users, contacts, or distribution lists during the previous 24-hour period.

Update contact information for Users in the Global Address List

After logging into your control panel, click on Hosting. In the Exchange section click on Contacts. From this section you can update and add any contacts that you want to appear in your Global Address List either through Outlook or Outlook Web Access.

Adding external email addresses in the Global Address List

After logging into your control panel, click on Hosting. In the Exchange section click on Contacts. From this section you can update and add any contacts that you want to appear in your Global Address List either through Outlook or Outlook Web Access.

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