My 2p about ERP Solutions, Information Worker Solutions and other software products (mainly Microsoft Dynamics AX and Microsoft SharePoint).

26 January 2008

Email Alerts not working for SharePoint users not belonging to the domain of the SharePoint server

by Patrik Luca 13 comments


Recently I ran into following problem: e-mail alerts were not delivered to SharePoint users which were not belonging to the domain of the SharePoint server. The installation was consisting of a web application with windows authentication. This web application was extended with one with forms based authentication. Users logging in to the first web application (with Windows authentication) received perfectly their alerts. Users logging in to the second web application (with forms based authentication) didn't receive any alerts, nor did they receive the notification when they had set up a new alert.

Looking in the log files on the SharePoint server, I found following error:
#160009: The e-mail address '' is unknown.

The domain mentioned in the error was off course another domain than the domain of the users logging in through Windows authentication, as the second web application was created to allow access for external (it is, not belonging to the company) users.

We fixed this by adding the IP address of the Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 into the Allowed Relays in Exchange.

Comments 13 comments
David Evans said...

Thanks, this helped as we had the same issue.

Anonymous said...

Fixed My issue as well... thank you for the posting

Patrik Luca said...

Always a pleasure to hear people are being helped out by one of my posts!

vandana said...

Hello Patrik,

Nice information regarding troubleshoot the alerts issue. I had a problem where only initial alerts were send to but after that no alerts mail were send.

Doing research I found this article that help me resolve the issue alerts. Just thought of sharing it with you.


Patrik Luca said...

Thanks for sharing vandana.

Another of my posts speaks also about troubleshooting alert problems: Alerts not working for some users on some document libraries.

Trevor Hook said...

Your post was very good and it solved my problem.

MOSS_Lover said...

I have the same scenario as above and am facing the same problem.
I tried implementing: the IP address of the MOSS server should be added into the Allowed Relays in Exchange.
But users get initial email notification and email alerts on Windows Auth. site but NOT get any email on the FBA site.
I have searched Google and tried every solution possible.
Any help appreciated.

mahak said...

Many thanks for this valuable post that helped me in sending mails to external email addresses.

Thanks again :)

Andreas said...

I'm using SBS 2008 and am running into the same issue.
Since everything (Exchange 2007, WSS 3.0, etc) is on one server, how do I add the IP address of the Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 into the Allowed Relays in Exchange? From what I see, it's already there as

Anonymous said...


Andreas did you find a sollution for this issue, I'm in the same situation: WSS 3.0 on a SBS 2008

John B. said...


At some point something happend and our farm stopped sending out e-mails to clients outside our domain. I suspect the cause was some changes, at some point, to our Exchange server.

The solution was to add the correct IP adresses on the SharePoint farm to the Exchange server Relay. (There was already an IP adress, but it was not the one used for e-mails, due to our NLB setup).

So, make sure all IP's are set correctly in the relay option.

Mani Kandan said...

In addition to the above Points, there are few more reasons for alert mail failure. Found this checklist in

SharePoint Alert Notifications Not Working - Checklist for Troubleshooting

JeenyM said...

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Patrik Luca, Ieper, BELGIUM
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