I have been working on different SearchFolders cases lately where customers were trying to create SearchFolder using EWS. Working on those issues has uncovered a limitation of Outlook (I tested it on 2007, but may exist with earlier versions as well)
I created the search folder using the following XML
<?xml version="1.0"?> <CreateFolderType xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance" xmlns:xsd="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema"> <ParentFolderId xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/services/2006/messages"> <DistinguishedFolderId Id="searchfolders" xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/services/2006/types" /> </ParentFolderId> <Folders xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/services/2006/messages"> <SearchFolder xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/exchange/services/2006/types"> <DisplayName>Employee Search</DisplayName> <SearchParameters Traversal="Deep"> <Restriction> <And> <IsNotEqualTo> <ExtendedFieldURI DistinguishedPropertySetId="PublicStrings" PropertyName="EmployeeID" PropertyType="String" /> <FieldURIOrConstant> <Constant Value="" /> </FieldURIOrConstant> </IsNotEqualTo> <Exists> <ExtendedFieldURI DistinguishedPropertySetId="PublicStrings" PropertyName="CustomPropertyName" PropertyType="String" /> </Exists> </And> </Restriction> <BaseFolderIds> <DistinguishedFolderId Id="inbox" /> </BaseFolderIds> </SearchParameters> </SearchFolder> </Folders> </CreateFolderType>
I have created an email with custom property and it has some value in there to meet the criteria. The search folder is created and visible in the Outlook but I still do not see any entries under that folder. I also tried with just "Exists" criteria for the custom property but still it does not list the item. Then I created another SearchFolder with specific words in subject and itemClass = IPM.NOTE and that works fine… surprised!!
I went ahead and tried to test the Search Folder from OWA, to further add to my surprise it was not even listed in OWA… strange!! So then I dig into support.microsoft.com and found the following KB - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/831400
Symptoms: When you create Search Folders in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Office Outlook 2003in a Microsoft Exchange profile, the Search Folders do not appear in Microsoft Outlook Web Access.
Cause: This behavior occurs when you use Outlook in Cached Exchange Mode. The local copy of your mailbox maintains a Finder folder. This folder is not synchronized with the Finder folder that is in your Microsoft Exchange mailbox.
Resolution: Switch to online mode, expand search folders, let it sync with server and then you should be able to see.
I followed the resolution steps and now I can see the items in OWA & also in Outlook… relief!!