New limit on "proxy" addresses - unable to delete old proxy addresses or add new ones

I have an Office 365 email account ("Exchange Online Plan 1") with over 300 "aliases" or "proxy" addresses. This is to give each company that I deal with a unique email address, for example, *** Email address is removed for privacy ***

A recent change has meant that the limit is now 200 addresses. I have no idea why this limit was introduced or why this number was picked, but it was. Therefore my mailbox is in an "unsupported" state and I cannot do anything about it.

If I try to remove an address via the web admin service I get the error "There are too many proxy addresses: 324, and maximum supported number of recipient proxy addresses is 200". If I try via a powershell I get the same error.

My questions are therefore:

a) How can I raise this limit to restore the functionality I had until a week or so ago and allow unlimited or more proxy addresses?

b) If the limit cannot be raised, how can I remove proxy email addresses to get below the new limit, given that trying to remove an email proxy address gives an error?

Thanks for any advice. 

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Hi Nathan,

Regarding "Can anybody point me towards any documentation of information about when the change was made and if we ourselves can do anything about it", we are still in the process of consulting our related team engineers. I will let you know once there are any updates.

Thanks,
Mouran

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What POSSIBLE reason would this limit suddenly be imposed?

I am EXTREMELY upset!! I have been using more than 200 vendor-specific aliases for 15 years so that I will KNOW who SELLS my email address! I'm over 400 now!

Who is the person or team that now wants to dictate how many aliases WE can use?! Did anyone CHECK to see how MANY users have MORE than 200? Are they trying to save SPACE? Do they NOT understand we can GET AROUND this and create DISTRIBUTION GROUPS to which we can assign smaller bundles of addresses or else create an individual Distribution Group for each and every address?

Of course, Microsoft has never figured out how to properly implement wildcard addressing (and I do NOT mean a catchall for the entire domain) of any sort which would cut my aliases by 90 percent!

I really don't care what excuse they give, Microsoft just loves to make customers ANGRY sometimes. I don't understand why they DON'T CARE about that and DO NOT THINK before implementing STUPID policies!

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Hi All,


We've noticed this behavior and submitted it as a feedback to our related team. They are aware of it and working their best. We will publish the newest information soon. Thank you all for your patience and understanding.


Best regards,
Mouran

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First off: hi everyone, my name is Nino and I'm a PM on the Admin Portal team. Vasil reached out to me during a recent meeting when he brought this up. Looking into it now.

I'd like to know details, like:

  • did anyone open an O365 support case - and if so what's the number?
  • Screenshot of the error; where does it happen? New portal? Old portal? EAC?
  • If you get the error mentioning the limit, please copy and send me the PS output with the error text.
  • I'd like to know the primary SMTP address of a few users in this situation (should be visible in the above, but just in case...)

Obviously, you will not want to post this here; email me at ninobATmicrosoft.com please.

Note that - as anything - alias was technically never "unlimited" but was always limited by a number of characters that can be stuffed into this particular property. Hence, even if you are running in a purely on-premises world, you will have a limit, and the limit will not be the same between two users in the same company because of number of characters that can constitute various aliases used. However, if multiple people are now suddenly seeing the hard "200" limit (both in UI and PS - which is key) then something else is going on I expect.

By the way - in this thread, I have learned about an interesting scenario for aliases; I did not know that people use aliases to track what happens to usernames when signing up for various services!

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email sent..

this error is definitely related to the number of aliases, not the number of total characters.

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I also just sent an email with two screen-shots.  One for the new portal, and one for the old.  They do give different error messages.  The old one gives me an error before I even try to enter a new alias.  The new portal only gives me the error when I click "save" after entering one or more new aliases.

Here is a Microsoft article from 2013 stating in the FAQ section that there is no limit on the number of aliases.  The article also mentions the "throw-away" address usage for aliases, so it's not just something that a couple of us are using.

https://blogs.office.com/2013/06/28/simpler-email-aliases-for-office-365-small-business/

And here's the latest disclosure (2016-09-06) about limits/restrictions in Office 365 and Exchange Online, and there is no mention of limits for aliases, proxy addresses, or forwarders in this long list of policies:

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/exchange-online-limits.aspx


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Thanks, everyone! Got 3-4 examples of it all by now, I'm good!

Peeling the onion...

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The Exchange Online Limits document was recently updated and now shows this new limit of 200 proxy addresses.
With kind regards / Met vriendelijke groet, Jetze Mellema | http://jetzemellema.blogspot.com/

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I wanted to provide an update on this whole thing:

The limit is a real thing (as you all have noticed) - and at this time, it is going to stay there. We realize that there are those that are impacted by this, but based on our telemetry, this is a very rare scenario.

Note that the errors and warnings being thrown if the mailbox is in the situation of having more than 200 email addresses is technically cosmetic, in other words - the mailbox still does function and log on/mail flow is not impacted by the new limit. Obviously, being unable to edit the addresses is a thing, though. But mailbox function is not impacted immediately.

Both CMDlets and Exchange Admin Center will successfully update the number of email addresses providing the end result of the CMDlet execution is a situation where the mailbox has 200 or fewer email addresses on it. In other words - if you, for example, had 220 addresses on an mailbox, and then removed 20 through EAC (multi-select) and then pressed Save, we expect the mailbox to be updated properly and validation errors to go away. Same goes for CMDlets; if a set of addresses is passed to be removed, CMDlet execution should succeed.

So - it is possible to export current addresses, decide which ones should be removed, remove them from affected mailboxes and then graft them to let's say a shared mailbox (which does not require a license). Then set that shared mailbox to forward all incoming email to your own user mailbox. It is just an idea, of course, but it would satisfy the requirement of having additional 200 email addresses for the user.

I am currently writing a KB article that goes into all this as well as mentions the errors / warnings that people will see. I will also have the documentation that says that the limit is "100" corrected. The Exchange Online Limits article has the 200 limit documented, although I hate the wording of "Recipient proxy address limit" as I do not think it is meaningful to most humans. It should really say something like "Max. number of email addresses a recipient can have" but still working on that.

One more thing - I think someone earlier in the thread mentioned that there was "no limit" before. This is not correct. The limit was always there, but it was very high; depending on # of characters in emails, it could have been close to 1000 email addresses but could have been fewer. In other words - there was always a limit but very few ever ran into it.

Finally - let me just say that it pains me when we cause additional work to you, our customers. The limit we imposed has nothing to do with something any of you did, but it was the right call at this time for our service. Due to the nature of the problem, there is a possibility that in some time we could remove this limit or make it higher, but that is something that we do not have any timeframe for at this time.

I will update this thread with the KB article once published. I expect a few days. Also - if any of you are going to Microsoft Ignite next week, look me up there and we can discuss!

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thanks for the update.

if you are writing a KB, then you might want to note that the main address counts towards the number of proxy addresses.  so for your example above, you would have to remove 21 proxy addresses..hope this makes sense.

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Last updated October 30, 2020 Views 3,947 Applies to: