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Set Up an Automatic Replies Message in Outlook Web App


The Automatic Replies can be used whenever you are unable to respond to e-mail for an extended time.

When the Automatic Replies is turned on, it generates replies to senders based on the Automatic Replies messages that you create. After it is turned on, the Automatic Replies sends an automatic reply to a sender one time during your time away. The Automatic Replies does not respond to subsequent messages from the same sender until you turn off the Automatic Replies and then turn it on again.

In Outlook Web App with Exchange Server 2010, you can configure a start and end date in the Out of Office Assistant in advance. If you know in advance that you will be out of the office, you can create your Out of Office message in advance and it will automatically start at the start time that you specify and turn off at the end time.

If you turn on your Automatic Replies message and do not set start and end times, you will be reminded that it is on every time that you log on to Outlook or Outlook Web App. The reminder gives you the option to keep the Automatic Replies message on or turn it off.

Another feature introduced in the 2010 version of Outlook Web App is the ability to set separate Automatic Replies messages for internal and external senders. Internal senders are senders from inside your organization (UW), and external senders send from outside your organization. You can tailor specific messages for internal and external senders or send Automatic Replies messages only to internal senders.


Note: If you are using the lighter version of Outlook Web App, or a non-supported browser, the directions will be a little different, but the functionality is still there. Supported Web browsers include Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari. The light version provides fewer features and is sometimes faster.

To turn on Automatic Replies:

  1. Log into Outlook Web App and
  2. Click the Options button at upper right in the Outlook Web App window. Next, choose Set Automatic Replies from the drop-down menu.

    Options window

  3. Select Send automatic replies.
  4. If you want to use the scheduling option, select the Send replies only during this time period check box, and then use the Start time and End time settings to specify the time period during which you want to send auto-replies. The start and end times apply to Out of Office auto-replies sent to both internal and external senders.
  5. Type the message that you want the Out of Office Assistant to send to each sender inside UW in the Send a reply once to each sender inside my organization with the following message text box.

    Automatic Replies window

  6. If you would like to send automatic replies to external senders:
    1. Verify there is a checkmark in Send automatic reply messages to senders outside my organization.
    2. Select an option to either Send replies only to senders in my Contact list or Send replies to all external senders.
    3. Type the message you want the Out of Office Assistant to send to each sender outside of UW in the Send a reply once to each sender outside my organization with the following message text box.
  7. Click Save in the lower right corner.

To turn off Automatic Replies:

  • When Automatic Replies are turned on, upon logging into Outlook Web App, you will be asked if you would like to turn them off. To turn them off, select Yes.
    Note: If you do not enter text in the text fields and the Out of Office Assistant is enabled, senders will not receive an auto-reply message.


Reviewed: 0611 By: AH, GG

Additional help with the installation and configuration of
UW-supported software is available:
Contact the IT Help Desk at 766-HELP (4357), option 1
Contact the IT Help Desk at 766-HELP (4357), option 1
Come to the student computer lab in the lobby of the
Information Technology Center.

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