Microsoft – Outlook – Disabled Adds-In

Background

Things are always fun in support land.

One of our end users is not able to see one of the Adds-In we have.  There were no error messages; the only way we knew is that the Add-In was not visible in Microsoft Outlook.

We re-installed the Application many times, but no help.

Outlook -Add-In

Accessed Outlook Adds-In and here is what we see:

AddInDisabled

Trouble Shooting

Disclaimer

As always, I am not at liberty to discuss too much specifics about the actual Outlook plugin that we were having problems with.

Thankfully without going too far off track, we have a Piñata and we will use that in its place.

Simplified Path

Let us review our Outlook Add-Ins:

  • Launch Outlook if not already active
  • Access Menu option File \ Options
  • From the left bar, select the Add-Ins link

Disabled-AddIn

On the right panel:

  • The Add-Ins are listed
  • Please pay attention to the Inactive and Disabled Add-ins

Remediate

To re-mediate:

  • From the right bottom pane, in the manage drop-down, select “Disabled Items”
  • Click the “Go” button

Disabled Items - Manage

Here are the disabled items:

DisabledItems

Iterate through the disabled items, select the ones you are interested in enabling, and click on the enable button.

Re-mediate – Registry

In cases where the GUI does not work well, access the registry and rename the Resiliency\DisabledItems branch

  • Launch regedit
  • Depending on the version of Outlook, transverse to the corresponding branch
    • In our case, “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\DisabledItems
  • Rename the key
    • In our case, we renamed “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\DisabledItems” to “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\DisabledItems.bak.20150305”

Registry Tree

Registry Tree Exported

Here is what our end user’s Registry Key looks like:

 

Textual:


Key Name:          HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-21-2052111302-854245398-1177238915-1609866\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\DisabledItems
Class Name:        <NO CLASS>
Last Write Time:   6/2/2015 - 3:58 PM
Value 0
  Name:            19A351C
  Type:            REG_BINARY
  Data:
00000000   01 00 00 00 40 00 00 00 - 00 00 00 00 63 00 3a 00  ....@.......c.:.
00000010   5c 00 77 00 69 00 6e 00 - 64 00 6f 00 77 00 73 00  \.w.i.n.d.o.w.s.
00000020   5c 00 73 00 79 00 73 00 - 74 00 65 00 6d 00 33 00  \.s.y.s.t.e.m.3.
00000030   32 00 5c 00 6d 00 73 00 - 73 00 70 00 68 00 74 00  2.\.m.s.s.p.h.t.
00000040   62 00 2e 00 64 00 6c 00 - 6c 00 00 00              b...d.l.l...

Key Name:          HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-21-2052111302-854245398-1177238915-1609866\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\xDisabledItems
Class Name:        <NO CLASS>
Last Write Time:   6/2/2015 - 3:58 PM
Value 0
  Name:            39B55
  Type:            REG_BINARY
  Data:
00000000   01 00 00 00 40 00 00 00 - 00 00 00 00 63 00 3a 00  ....@.......c.:.
00000010   5c 00 77 00 69 00 6e 00 - 64 00 6f 00 77 00 73 00  \.w.i.n.d.o.w.s.
00000020   5c 00 73 00 79 00 73 00 - 74 00 65 00 6d 00 33 00  \.s.y.s.t.e.m.3.
00000030   32 00 5c 00 6d 00 73 00 - 73 00 70 00 68 00 74 00  2.\.m.s.s.p.h.t.
00000040   62 00 2e 00 64 00 6c 00 - 6c 00 00 00              b...d.l.l...

Value 1
  Name:            2BDB71
  Type:            REG_BINARY
  Data:
00000000   01 00 00 00 86 00 00 00 - 1e 00 00 00 63 00 3a 00  ............c.:.
00000010   5c 00 70 00 72 00 6f 00 - 67 00 72 00 61 00 6d 00  \.p.r.o.g.r.a.m.
00000020   20 00 66 00 69 00 6c 00 - 65 00 73 00 20 00 28 00   .f.i.l.e.s. .(.
00000030   78 00 38 00 36 00 29 00 - 5c 00 63 00 6f 00 6e 00  x.8.6.).\.c.o.n.
00000040   64 00 65 00 63 00 6f 00 - 20 00 6c 00 74 00 64 00  d.e.c.o. .l.t.d.
00000050   5c 00 63 00 6f 00 6e 00 - 64 00 65 00 63 00 6f 00  \.c.o.n.d.e.c.o.
00000060   20 00 61 00 64 00 64 00 - 2d 00 69 00 6e 00 20 00   .a.d.d.-.i.n. .
00000070   76 00 35 00 5c 00 61 00 - 64 00 78 00 6c 00 6f 00  v.5.\.a.d.x.l.o.
00000080   61 00 64 00 65 00 72 00 - 2e 00 64 00 6c 00 6c 00  a.d.e.r...d.l.l.
00000090   00 00 63 00 6f 00 6e 00 - 64 00 65 00 63 00 6f 00  ..c.o.n.d.e.c.o.
000000a0   61 00 64 00 64 00 69 00 - 6e 00 76 00 35 00 00 00  a.d.d.i.n.v.5...

Image:

disabledItems

 

After Registry Tree Disabled

Here is what happens once we renamed :

HKEY_USERS\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\DisabledItems
– to –
HKEY_USERS\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\Resiliency\xDisabledItems

disabledItems-Renamed-v2

 

 

Additional Resources

Microsoft is a Software Shop.  And, in truth, they have developers writing “one off” utilities all the time.

Here are some diagnostic tools that can further your insight:

Outlook Product Stability Diagnostic

When one tries out the “Outlook Product Stability Diagnostics”, this security Alert avails:

MicrosoftOutlookSecurityAlert

Obviously the alert is to inform us that a 3rd party app is trying to access Outlook’s email address registry.

One more proof that Microsoft might be silent about Security traps, but it is not as muted as those disengaged from day to day affairs might want to believe.

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