How to fix “the action cannot be completed. the name cannot be matched to a name in the address book” in Microsoft Exchange while setting up a mailbox in Outlook.

Wow, that has to be one of the longest blog titles ever, just look at it.

How to fix “the action cannot be completed. the name cannot be matched to a name in the address book” in Microsoft Exchange while setting up a mailbox in Outlook.

Index that google!

Anyway, here is how to fix it.

1. Login to your exchange server! duh.

2. Open adsiedit.msc (start –> run –> adsiedit.msc)

3. Navigate to DC=YOURDOMAIN –> CN=Users –> and this is the trick, right click on a user that isn’t having a problem and go to properties.

4. Find the attribute “showInAddressBook” and click remove then copy what pops up in the form field and then click cancel.

5. Now save that in a notepad file.

6. Go to the user that is having a problem and remove that same attribute and replace it with what you copied in the notepad file.

Save that forever so you never have to look up a good user again. And it will look like this.

CN=Default Global Address List,CN=All Global Address Lists,CN=Address Lists Container,CN=GearHost,CN=Microsoft Exchange,CN=Services,CN=Configuration,DC=DOMAIN,DC=MEH


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  1. Jason Richardson-White

    Thanks! This worked like a charm.

  2. Yeah, good fix. After renaming an account in AD I tried for about an hour to set it up in an Outlook profile and was getting this error. This was the first site that came up on my search and fixed it in minutes. Thanks!

  3. Great quick fix! You saved me a lot of headaches on a crazy day. TY!!

  4. I had this exact problem today, I don’t know if this is a generic error but I found another solution which I thought I’d post here in case it helps others.

    My fix was to delete all previous saved password credentials for outlook/windows under the User Accounts icon in Control Panel for the currently logged in user account.

    I found this fix because I have no control over the server side and the guys that do were adamant the the user mailbox was set up correctly but they only had control over adding or removing accounts and were unable to access the servers to look deeper at this.

    A little more background on my setup. My pc already had a outlook profile created and i was simply adding another new profile to the same logged in user when I got the error, so didn’t think there was anything at the PC end that would have been the problem.

    • Nice find on deleting the passwords. If you haven’t already, let the admins know how you fixed it so they can document it in the future.

    • I know a little older thread but GREAT one Brook! This worked for me. I manage and set up MANY different exchange accounts for clients, not all at same time but constantly adding, editing and deleting accounts. I figured it had to be sending some old/incorrect credentials to the server when trying to add a new mail box. However after all the profile deleting, manual server entries, etc nothing worked till your post. Made total sense as soon as started reading it. Just had to delete the correct xxx.exchxxx.hostingcompany.whatever url creds. I am surprised it doesn’t happen more often! Thanks again!

    • Windows 10 it was a saved credential…probably from using the “Connect to” option for domain join under the new Fall Creators update. I was really scratching my head — thanks!

  5. Another quick solution: Temporarily un-hide the mailbox, configure the client, and then re-hide the mailbox.

  6. What a Fix!! You saved my day! Phew!!

  7. Mike,

    Excellent….thank you for this!! Saved me tons of time…karma your way!

  8. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ve tried just about everything to make this problem go away — it doesn’t even happen on every client — and finally saw your solution. Followed your instructions, and presto! Account logged right in.

  9. I thought I would share my fix as well. Unable to access the exchange server, I tried to delete the windows / outlook credential but was unsuccessful.
    What I did is under the control panel / user account. I created a new windows credential, using the full email address [email protected] as server address and then I populated with user name “me” and password for the email account. And…Magic !

  10. 5 years later and this is blog still applicable. Saved my day, thanks!

  11. Launch Regedit.exe
    Navigate to the below container
    Create this DWORD with a value of ‘1’

    Once created restart the PC and follow either of the below options;
    Create a new Outlook Profile

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