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Set Up CUMC Email on Outlook for Macintosh

Outlook is part of the Microsoft Office Suite of programs that is free to current CUMC faculty, staff and students. It is the CUMC IT standard supported email client for Macintosh, and offers the best compatibility with CUMC's Exchange/Office 365 (@cumc.columbia.edu) email accounts.

While we realize many are used to their Mac's default Mail, Calendar/iCal and Contacts apps, they not supported due to known issues with Exchange noted at the bottom of this page.

If you are new to CUMC, before setting up Outlook please be sure that your account is active (try logging in to the Outlook Web App), that you have changed your password from any default/initial one that was provided to you, and that messages addressed to your @columbia.edu account will be forwarded.

Configuring CUMC Email in Outlook for Macintosh
Instructions can be used with both Outlook 2016 and 2011.
NOTE: Outlook 2011 is not fully compatible with Office 365, please upgrade to version 2016 to use all features and avoid possible issues.
  1. Start Outlook (from the Finder window select Applications - Microsoft Outlook, or Microsoft Office 2011 - Outlook). If this is the first time you've opened Outlook, you'll see the Welcome screen; click past any introductory messages to start using Outlook.
  2. Skip to step 3 if you see the Accounts window and message to Add an Account. Otherwise click Tools from Outlook's topmost menu, then Accounts...
  3. Outlook menu bar with Tools - Accounts selected
  4. In the Accounts window you can either select the Exchange or Office365 button, or click the + (Add) button in the lower left and select Exchange from its drop down menu.
  5. Add Exchange Account Button
  6. In the Enter your Exchange account information window, type in the following making sure to enter your own Columbia UNI instead of [uni]:
    • E-mail address: [uni]@cumc.columbia.edu
    • Method: User Name and Password
    • User name: [uni]@cumc.columbia.edu
      It may default to just your UNI; be sure to enter your full CUMC email address here!
    • Password: the password for your CUMC email account
    • Make sure that Configure automatically is checked.
  7. Entering CUMC Exchange information
  8. Click the Add Account button. The window will display a message that it is Detecting Exchange Server... and may take a minute or more to connect to the server.
  9. Once your account has connected you will see your Inbox and other mail folders in the far left pane of the main Outlook screen, email messages that are in your Inbox or selected folder in the middle, and a preview of any selected item to the far right.
    NOTE: If the Accounts window doesn't close automatically once Outlook has connected (your full name will appear near the middle of the window), simply click the the red button in the upper left corner of the window to close it and begin using Outlook.
  10. To verify that you are fully connected, send yourself or a colleague a test message and make sure it is properly received.
See the Using Outlook on Macintosh page for additional help and tutorials.

Why can't I use Mac Mail, Calendar/iCal and Contacts instead of Outlook?
Due to known issues with these applications we cannot support their use with CUMC Exchange/Office 365 accounts:

  • Shared mailboxes or shared subfolders user mailboxes may not connect or work properly.
  • Events created or updated in your Calendar/iCal may not synchronize properly.
  • Shared calendars may not connect.
  • Meetings in Exchange/Office 365 may save to the wrong calendar on your Mac.
  • Delegated permissions for a mailbox or calendar may not provide the intended level of access.
  • Mac Calendar may take ownership of an Exchange/Office 365 Meeting that you did not create.

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Last updated 11/13/2017