Troubleshooting OWA when the contents frame displays “Loading”

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Article ID: 280823 - View products that this article applies to.
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SYMPTOMS

When you use Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5.0 or later to access Outlook Web Access (OWA) in Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server or in Microsoft Exchange Server 2003, you may receive the following message in the contents frame of OWA instead of the message list that you expect:
Loading ...
Note If you are using either Internet Explorer version 4 or Netscape, you may not experience this behavior.

You may also be prompted for your credentials several times. In addition to seeing the mentioned message in the contents frame, you may also see placeholder images where your toolbar buttons and icons typically appear.

CAUSE

This behavior may occur for any one of the following reasons:
  • Internet Explorer version 5.0 and later supports HTTP-DAV as described in Request for Comments (RFC) 2518). Distributed Authoring Version (DAV) uses Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) verbs that your proxy server or firewall does not recognize. Additionally, your proxy or firewall solution does not permit you to customize the list of approved HTTP verbs.
  • A language is not specified in the Internet Explorer language preferences.
  • A logic error has occurred in the server-side scripting code for OWA. This problem occurs when OWA performs an HTTP GET request that has the Translate header set to f (false).
  • Your Exchange server is behind Microsoft Proxy Server 2.0, and the proxy server has not been configured to publish the Exchweb directory.
  • If placeholder images appear where your toolbar buttons and icons typically appear, this behavior may be cause by either of the following scenarios:
    • The permissions for the Exchsrvr\Exchweb folder are incorrect.
    • The Exchweb virtual directory in Internet Services Manager is not configured correctly or is missing virtual directories such as the Img virtual directory and the Views virtual directory.
    • The Require secure channel (SSL) check box is selected on the Exchweb virtual directory in Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) on the back-end Exchange computer.
  • Your Exchange computer was upgraded from Microsoft Windows Server 2000 to Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and URLScan was installed and configured before the upgrade. URLScan is not required for IIS 6.0 and can cause problems that are consistent with these symptoms. URLScan 2.5 is the only version that Microsoft supports for use with IIS 6.0.
  • The S/MIME update referenced in Microsoft Knowledge Base article 883543 was applied to an Exchange back-end server, but it was not applied to the front end servers. For more information about the S/MIME update, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    883543 The S/MIME control does not load in OWA when you are running the Exchange Server 2003 OWA client on a Windows XP Service Pack 2-based computer
  • You may see "Loading" in the Inbox pane if the user has changed the security zone settings in Internet Explorer. If the OWA Web site, such as http://mail.domain.com, has been added to a security zone, such as "Trusted Sites," in Internet Explorer, and if the Active scripting option has been disabled for that security zone, you will see "Loading" in the Inbox pane in OWA after you authenticate. If integrated authentication is enabled, you will not be prompted for credentials, and you will immediately see "Loading".
  • You are connecting to an Exchange 2003 mailbox through an Exchange 2007 Client Access Server. If you are connecting by using basic authentication instead of forms-based authentication, confirm that basic authentication has been configured on the /exchange, /public, and /exchweb virtual directories in IIS on the Client Access Server.

RESOLUTION

  1. To work around this behavior if the proxy server or firewall does not support HTTP-DAV verbs, use one of the following methods:
    • Method 1 Force OWA to treat Internet Explorer version 5.0 and later as earlier versions. For more information about how to force OWA to treat Internet Explorer version 5.0 and later as earlier versions, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      296232 Empty Inbox when using Internet Explorer 5 and later to gain access to OWA
      For more information about HTTP-DAV and "rich" versus "reach" clients, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      310594 How to hard code the reach client for Internet Explorer 5.0 and later
    • Method 2 Use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) on the OWA Web site. This step encrypts the HTTP traffic so that the firewall cannot determine what HTTP verbs are being sent.
    • Method 3 If the Exchange server is behind a computer that is running Microsoft Proxy Server 2.0, make sure that the proxy server publishes the Exchweb directory in addition to the Exchange directory. To do this, follow these steps:
      1. On the proxy server, start Internet Services Manager (ISM).
      2. Click Web Proxy, and then click Properties on the Action menu.
      3. On the Publishing tab, click to select the Enable Web Publishing check box.
      4. Click Send incoming requests to the local server.
      5. Add an exception to send requests for the following items, where FQDN is the registered mail exchanger (MX) resource record and Server is the NetBIOS name or the IP address of the Exchange computer. Add an exception to send requests for:
        • http://FQDN/Exchweb

          -to-
        • http://Server/Exchweb
      6. When you access OWA through Proxy Server, use the fully qualified domain name (FQDN). For more information about how to configure Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) behind Proxy Server, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
        207655 Setting up Web Publishing and OWA access through a proxy
  2. To resolve this problem if a language is not specified in the Internet Explorer language preferences, follow these steps:
    1. Open Internet Explorer.
    2. On the Tools menu, click Internet Options.
    3. On the General tab, click Languages, click Add, click the language that you want to add, and then click OK two times.
    4. Close all open browser windows.
  3. For more information about how to work around this behavior if a logic error has occurred in the server-side scripting code for Outlook Web Access, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    330220 Outlook Web Access does not display Inbox messages when a "Loading..." message is displayed
  4. To work around this behavior if the proxy server has not been configured to publish the Exchweb directory, follow these steps:
    1. On the proxy server, start Internet Services Manager.
    2. Click Web Proxy, and then click Properties on the Action menu.
    3. On the Publishing tab, click to select the Enable Web Publishing check box.
    4. Click Send incoming requests to the local server.
    5. Add an exception to send requests for the following items, where FQDN is the registered MX record, and Server is the NetBIOS name or the IP address of the Exchange computer. Add an exception to send requests for:
      • http://FQDN/Exchweb

        -to-
      • http://Server/Exchweb
    6. When you access OWA through Proxy Server, use the fully qualified domain name (FQDN)>. For more information about how to configure Outlook Web Access behind Proxy Server, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      207655 Setting up Web Publishing and OWA access through a proxy
  5. To resolve this behavior if placeholder images appear where your toolbar buttons and icons typically appear, give the Authenticated Users group access to the Exchsrvr\Exchweb folder. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. Start Microsoft Windows Explorer, and then locate the Exchweb folder.

      Note On a new installation of Exchange 2000, the default location of the Exchweb folder is C:\Program files\Exchsrvr\Exchweb. If you upgraded to Exchange 2000 from Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5 or earlier, the default location of the folder is C:\Exchsrvr\Exchweb.
    2. Right-click the Exchweb folder, and then click Properties.
    3. Click the Security tab.

      Note If the Security tab is missing, you are not using an NTFS file system formatted drive. In this scenario, the OWA issue is not caused by incorrect permissions.
    4. Verify that the Authenticated Users group has the following permissions:
      • Read and execute
      • List folder contents
      • Read
    5. If the Authenticated Users group is not listed, click Add to add the Authenticated Users group to the list of users with permissions.
    6. After you have verified that the Authenticated Users group has the correct permissions, click OK.
  6. The Exchweb virtual directory must have the Anonymous access option enabled. The Exchweb virtual directory must not restrict the IP address or the domain of users who must have access to OWA. To verify that the Exchweb virtual directory is configured correctly, follow these steps:
    1. Click Start, click Programs, click Administrative Tools, and then click Internet Services Manager.
    2. Open the Web site that contains the Exchweb virtual directory. The default Web site is the default location for all the virtual directories that are used by OWA.

      Note If the Exchweb virtual directory is not listed on any part of the Web sites, and if the Exchange, Public, and Exadmin virtual directories are listed, you must manually add the Exchweb virtual directory. To do this, follow these steps:
      1. Click Start, click Programs, click Administrative Tools, and then click Internet Services Manager.
      2. Right-click the Web site, point to New, and then click Virtual Directory.
      3. When the Virtual Directory Creation wizard starts, click Next.
      4. Type Exchweb in the Alias box, and then click Next.
      5. Click the Browse button, locate the Exchsrvr\Exchweb folder, and then click OK.
      6. Click Next, and then click Next again to accept the default access permission.
      7. Click Finish.
      Verify that the following virtual directories are located in Exchweb:
      • Bin
      • Cabs
      • Controls
      • Help
      • Img
      • Views
      If any one of these folders are missing, repeat steps 1 through 7 to re-create the Exchweb virtual directory.
    3. Verify that the directory has the Anonymous access option enabled. To do this, follow these steps.

      Note If you have enabled the Integrated Windows Authentication option for the Exchweb directory, you receive a message that asks if you also want to apply the changes to the subdirectories. If you receive this message, click Select All and then apply the changes.
      1. Right-click the Exchweb virtual directory, click Properties, and then click the Directory Security tab.
      2. Under Anonymous access and authentication control, click Edit.
      3. Verify that the Anonymous access option is enabled, and then click OK.
      4. Under IP address and domain name restrictions, click Edit.
      5. Make sure that the Granted Access option is selected and that only the specific IP addresses or the domains that you want to restrict from the OWA site are in the exception list.
      6. Click OK two times.
    If the issue continues, verify that the Anonymous access option is configured correctly.
  7. To resolve this behavior if the S/MIME update described in KB 883543 has been applied on an Exchange back-end server but has not been applied on a front-end server, install the S/MIME update on both front-end and back-end servers.
  8. To resolve this behavior if the Require secure channel (SSL) check box is selected on the Exchweb virtual directory in IIS on the back-end Exchange computer, follow these steps:
    1. Open the IIS Management Console on the back-end Exchange 2003 server.
    2. Right click the Exchweb virtual directory under the default Web site, and then click Properties.
    3. Click the Directory Security tab.
    4. Click Edit in the Secure Communications area.
    5. Click to clear the Require secure channel (SSL) check box, and then click OK for all windows.
If you are experiencing "Loading" message issue on Microsoft Windows Server 2003, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

905812 The navigation bar in the Outlook Web Access list view is distorted when you try to load the e-mail view in Outlook Web Access on a Windows Server 2003-based client computer

MORE INFORMATION

If the methods listed in the "Resolution" section do not resolve this issue, try one or more of the following steps:
  1. Reregister Msxml.dll and Msxml3.dll. To do this, type the following commands in a command prompt on your Exchange computer:
    regsvr32 c:\winnt\system32\msxml.dll
    regsvr32 c:\winnt\system32\msxml3.dll
  2. Use one of the following methods to re-create the Exchange-related virtual directories in Internet Services Manager, depending on your situation.

    Exchange 2000

    1. Start Internet Services Manager, and then click the Computer icon under Internet Information Services.
    2. On the Action menu, click Backup/Restore Configuration.
    3. Click Create backup, type a name for your backup file, and then click OK.

      Note By default, the backup file is saved to the %SystemRoot%\system32\inetsrv\MetaBack folder. If you want to save your backup file to another location, you can copy the file from this default location to another location. Keep a copy of the backup file in the default location to permit easy restoration. This backup method permits you to restore only your Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) settings, not your content files. This backup method does not work if you reinstall your operating system. Backup files cannot be used to restore an IIS configuration on other computers that are running Windows 2000.
    4. Click Close.
    5. Right-click Default Web Site, and then click Stop.
    6. Delete the following virtual directories:
      • Exadmin
      • Exchange
      • Public
      • Exchweb
    7. Open a command prompt on the Exchange computer, type cd c:\inetpub\adminscripts, and then press ENTER.

      Note The Adsutil.vbs script uses CScript. If you register Cscript.exe as your default scripting host, you do not have to type Cscript.exe in front of the scripts to run them. If you do not want to register Cscript.exe, or if you have already registered CScript as your default scripting host, go to step k.
    8. To register CScript as your default scripting host, type adsutil, and then press ENTER.

      If CScript is not the default scripting host on this computer, you receive the following message:
      This script does not work with WScript.
      If CScript is already the default scripting host, text that describes how to use the Adsutil.vbs tool appears.
    9. Click OK.
    10. Click Yes to register CScript, click OK, and then click OK again.
    11. Type the following command:
      adsutil delete ds2mb
    12. Restart the Microsoft Exchange System Attendant service. This re-creates the Exadmin, Exchange, and Public virtual directories in IIS.
    13. In Internet Services Manager, right-click Default Web Site, and then click Start.

    Exchange 2003

    Method 1: Reset the HighWaterMarks

    1. Download and install the IIS 6.0 Resource Kit Tools. To obtain the IIS 6.0 Resource Kit Tools, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
      http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=56FC92EE-A71A-4C73-B628-ADE 629C89499&displaylang=en
      If you do not want to install all the IIS 6.0 Resource Kit Tools, click the Custom installation option to install only Metabase Explorer 1.6.
    2. Start IIS Manager.
    3. Back up the metabase. To do this, right-click Default Web Site, click All Tasks, and then click Save Configuration to a File. Type a filename for the file and click OK.
    4. Expand Default Web Site, and then delete the following virtual directories:
      • Microsoft-Server-ActiveSync
      • OMA
      • Exadmin
      • Exchange
      • Public
      • ExchWeb
    5. Start Metabase Explorer. To do this, click Start, point to All Programs, point to IIS Resources, point to Metabase Explorer, and then click Metabase Explorer.
    6. Expand the LM key, right-click the DS2MB key, and then click Delete.
    7. Close Metabase Explorer.
    8. Restart the Microsoft Exchange System Attendant service to re-create the virtual directories in IIS.

      Note If the virtual directories are not re-created after 15 minutes, restart the server.
    9. In IIS Manager, expand Default Web Site, right-click Exchweb, and then click Properties.
    10. Click the Directory Security tab, and then click Edit under Authentication and access control.
    11. Verify that only the Enable anonymous access check box is selected.
    12. Right-click Default Web Site, and then click Stop.
    13. Right-click Default Web Site, and then click Start.

    Method 2: Use ADSUtil to delete the DS2MB key

    1. Follow steps a through c of the "Method 1: Reset the HighWaterMarks" section to back up the metabase.
    2. Expand Default Web Site, and then delete the following virtual directories:
      • Microsoft-Server-ActiveSync
      • OMA
      • Exadmin
      • Exchange
      • Public
      • ExchWeb
    3. Open a command prompt, type c:\inetpub\adminscripts, and then press ENTER.
    4. Type adsutil, and then press ENTER.

      If CScript is not the default scripting host on this computer, you receive the following message:
      This script does not work with WScript.
      Click OK, click Yes to register CScript, click OK, and then click OK again.

      Note If CScript is already the default scripting host, text that describes how to use the Adsutil.vbs tool appears.
    5. Type adsutil delete ds2mb, and then press ENTER.
    6. Restart the Microsoft Exchange System Attendant service to re-create the virtual directories in IIS.

      Note If the virtual directories are not re-created after 15 minutes, restart the server.
    7. In IIS Manager, expand Default Web Site, right-click Exchweb, and then click Properties.
    8. Click the Directory Security tab, and then click Edit under Authentication and access control.
    9. Verify that only the Enable anonymous access check box is selected.
    10. Right-click Default Web Site, and then click Stop.
    11. Right-click Default Web Site, and then click Start.
For more information if the "Loading" also includes the "Unable to display folder. An internal server error occurred" error message, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
267911 Error message "Internal server error" occurs when using OWA
For more information about the IIS Virtual Directories, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
262181 Virtual Internet Information Server directories used by Outlook Web Access
The following products have been known to cause this issue:
  • Microsoft Proxy Server 2.0
  • Symantec Raptor 6.5
  • Netscape Proxy Server
  • Network Associates Gauntlet
The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, regarding the performance or reliability of these products.

Properties

Article ID: 280823 - Last Review: September 10, 2011 - Revision: 15.0
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbprb KB280823

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