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Outlook 2007 Distribution Lists Won't Work

By steve - Posted on 12 May 2010

I had a client report a problem using Outlook 2007 when trying to send email to a group list. The error was "An unexpected error has occurred" (what, as opposed to an expected error?) when email was sent and Outlook wouldn't expand the list when the + was clicked in the "To:" box.

The problem turned out to be pretty simple...

This user had been using Office 2003 before upgrading to 2007 and, instead of using contacts, had gotten used to using the email address cache provided by the TO: box (the automatic list that shows up when you start typing).

When we migrated to their new system, they lost that cache. I had copied that special file from her old system and put it on her new system. This made caching work and she could now use all the "lost" email addresses.

However, the contact lists she had been using were no longer pointing to the correct list in contacts.

The solution was to delete the distribution lists from the cache (type the first letter of the list name, scroll down to the list name, then press the DELETE key to remove the cached name from the list). This prevented the cache from trying to point to the old list ID and causing the "unexpected" error.


Thanks!! That worked, I would have never guess you can press Delete in the list displayed when you enter the first character!

I ran into the same problem, but in attempting to remove the offender from the cache, it was impossible to highlight the name of the list without populating the to: field I it just jumped right in as soon as I released the mouse. I found if I hit the delete key while holding the button I could delete it--- Stange confusers!!!

You don't need to use your mouse at all, just type the first part of the address and then use the down arrow key to move down the list.

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