When I enable the Do not use Cached Exchange Mode for all new Outlook profiles policy setting in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007, Cached Exchange Mode is enabled instead of disabled. Why doesn't that policy setting turn off Cached Exchange Mode?

Apparently, this setting isn't set up correctly in the Outlk12.adm administrative template file. You can see the problem if you look at the .adm file itself, and not just at the information exposed in Group Policy Editor (GPE). You can download Outlook 2007 administrative templates from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=92d8519a-e143-4aee-8f7a-e4bbaeba13e7. Once you've run the download file and extracted the .adm files, open the Outlk12.adm file in Notepad.

Because Office 2007 .adm files are fully localized, it's not as easy to look up settings in them as it was in the .adm files of previous versions of Office. If you know the name that GPE displays for the .adm file, you can search for it to find the token that serves as a marker for the policy setting. In this case, search for Do not use Cached Exchange Mode. You'll find the following entry in the .adm file:

L_ConfigureCachedExchangeMode="Do not use Cached Exchange Mode for all new Outlook profiles"

The token for that policy setting is L_ConfigureCachedExchangeMode. If you search the Outlk12.adm file for that token, you'll find the following policy setting:

 POLICY !!L_ConfigureCachedExchangeMode  KEYNAME "Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\Cached Mode"  VALUENAME Enable  VALUEON NUMERIC 1  VALUEOFF NUMERIC 0  EXPLAIN !!L_ConfigureCachedExchangeModeExplain  END POLICY

Now we can see the problem! When you set the Do not use Cached Exchange Mode policy setting value to Enabled, affected Group Policy Objects (GPOs) get the VALUEON value, 1, for the Enable registry value, and this value enables Cached Exchange Mode. To disable Cached Exchange Mode, you have to set the Disable Cached Exchange Mode policy to Disabled instead of Enabled.

Using that counterintuitive setting is one solution to the problem. Another solution is to update the Outlk12.adm file so that it has the opposite (and correct) values for the VALUEON and VALUEOFF settings:

 VALUENAME Enable  VALUEON NUMERIC 0  VALUEOFF NUMERIC 1

If you've already loaded the Outlk12.adm file into GPE, you'll have to reload it after you've updated the file.

Also note that the name of the policy setting, Do not use Cached Exchange Mode for all new Outlook profiles, is misleading because disabling Cached Exchange Mode affects not only new mail profiles, but also existing ones. One nice thing about Office 2007 administrative templates is that they have complete descriptions, which is a big improvement over previous versions of Office.