Windows Prompts You for Your Password Multiple Times When You Use Outlook If Strong Private Key Protection Is Set to High

Support for Windows XP has ended

Microsoft ended support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. This change has affected your software updates and security options. Learn what this means for you and how to stay protected.

This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
If the strong private key protection functionality is set to High with a software key in CryptoAPI, Windows XP prompts you for your private key password every time Outlook accesses the key for signing, encrypting, or decrypting an e-mail message.
This problem occurs because some programs do not maintain a handle to a key in CryptoAPI. This behavior may cause Windows to issue multiple Data Protection API (DPAPI) requests for a user password when Outlook accesses the private key.

Service pack information

To resolve this problem, obtain the latest service pack for Microsoft Windows XP. For additional information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322389 How to obtain the latest Windows XP service pack

Hotfix information

A supported hotfix is available from Microsoft. However, this hotfix is intended to correct only the problem that is described in this article. Apply this hotfix only to systems that are experiencing this specific problem. This hotfix might receive additional testing. Therefore, if you are not severely affected by this problem, we recommend that you wait for the next software update that contains this hotfix.

If the hotfix is available for download, there is a "Hotfix download available" section at the top of this Knowledge Base article. If this section does not appear, contact Microsoft Customer Service and Support to obtain the hotfix.

Note If additional issues occur or if any troubleshooting is required, you might have to create a separate service request. The usual support costs will apply to additional support questions and issues that do not qualify for this specific hotfix. For a complete list of Microsoft Customer Service and Support telephone numbers or to create a separate service request, visit the following Microsoft Web site: Note The "Hotfix download available" form displays the languages for which the hotfix is available. If you do not see your language, it is because a hotfix is not available for that language.

The English version of this fix has the file attributes (or later) that are listed in the following table. The dates and times for these files are listed in coordinated universal time (UTC). When you view the file information, it is converted to local time. To find the difference between UTC and local time, use the Time Zone tab in the Date and Time tool in Control Panel.
   Date         Time   Version         Size     File name   --------------------------------------------------------------   08-Jul-2003  05:31  5.1.2600.1238   126,976  Dssenh.dll          08-Jul-2003  05:31  5.1.2600.1238   136,192  Rsaenh.dll       
Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed at the beginning of this article. This problem was first corrected in Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2.
More information
After you install this fix and after you select the Remember my password check box when you type your authentication, the cryptographic service provider (CSP) caches your authentication.

For more information about CSPs, visit the following Microsoft Web site:

Article ID: 821574 - Last Review: 01/12/2015 21:53:51 - Revision: 4.0

Microsoft Windows XP Professional, Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Microsoft Outlook 2002 Standard Edition

  • kbnosurvey kbarchive kbautohotfix kbhotfixserver kbwinxpsp2fix kbqfe kbwinxppresp2fix kbfix kbbug KB821574