Last reviewed on May 8, 2014   —  26 Comments

We're seeing complaints that Outlook automatically sends meeting updates to the attendees several times a day. When users delete the responses from their inbox it triggers another update to attendees.

The good news: it’s not user error.
The bad news: it appears to be a problem only for people who sync iPhones with Exchange.

The bug appears when the user creates an appointment in Outlook and includes themselves as an attendee, often because they are the members of a distribution group or a delegate.


The repro steps are as follows:

  1. The iPhone user creates a new appointment in Outlook and uses a distribution group as an attendee; the meeting organizer (iPhone user) is also part of the distribution group.
  2. The Meeting organizer sends the appointment from Outlook.
  3. An attendee accepts the appointment request.
  4. The organizer receives the response from the attendee and deletes it from their inbox.
  5. A meeting request update is sent out to all attendee’s of the meeting.
  6. This repeats itself and continues to send out meeting updates.


Until Microsoft or Apple releases a fix, use this solution discovered by Derik and Mark:

When creating a new appointment in Outlook, do not include yourself as an attendee. If you are using a distribution group to invite others, expand that group and remove yourself as an attendee.


  1. Chris says

    This article is usesless. It does not have a date on it and does not talk about which version of the IOS are in play here.

  2. Diane Poremsky says

    The problem began with iOS3 and continues with the newer iOS. When we confirm an issue is fixed, we update the article with that information (but sometimes we forget to do it immediately). We have the last updated date at the bottom of the page.

  3. Tara says

    I'm pretty sure that it has ALWAYS been a best practice NOT to include yourself as an attendee on a meeting request, even before the iPhone even existed. The problem is that if you invite yourself as an attendee and then accept the meeting (even in Outlook), you are no longer the organizer (you're an attendee). Evidently the iPhone just takes care of the 'accepting it' part and forces you to be an attendee.

    • Diane Poremsky says

      Yes, it's generally bad practice to not invite yourself but for the most part, it wasn't a problem - in most cases, outlook reminds you that you are the organizer and won't let you accept.

  4. Alan Jones says

    I have this problem even with appointments scheduled by others. I get reminders every day at least once up until the date of the appointment, even in the middle of the night. I keep accepting the meeting, but it doesn't do any good.

    • Diane Poremsky says

      Accepting won't stop reminders. Do you have multiple copies of the appointments and meetings? Are you accepting them on the iPhone or in Outlook?

    • Carrie says

      I am having the same issue as Alan. My receptionist is sending the appointments once but I get them multiple times (around 5-10 times a day) through out the day and they are waking me up in the middle of the night. None of the other attendees have this issue. I do not have multiple copies of them.

  5. Bill Walker says

    I have a user who 'accepts' a meeting that was created by another for which he is an attendee and when he does that he receives a meeting response for that sent to himself by himself???

    Has an iPhone and iOS6 as well as Outlook 2010 on Windows 7 - all using Exchange (iPhone connects via ActiveSync to our mail system)

  6. Larry Millican says

    I received an invite to a meeting and when i accepted it i received another invite to the same meeting from myself. I am trying to delete it from my iphone since it shows up on my invite button at the bottom. Everytime i try to delete it to clear it off my iphone, it sends a message to every one on the invite list. Any ideas on how to get this off my phone?

    • Diane Poremsky says

      Did you accept it on the phone? That can cause problems such as you are seeing. Do you know what version of Exchange server you use?

  7. Daniel Hernandez says

    I'm having a similar issue, I sent a recurrent meeting request and it seems like it was resent several times, the difference here is that I'm not included as an atendee. The original meeting request was sent from the outlook web app, I'm using an iphone with iOS 6.1.2 and a macbook wit OSX 10.8.2. Is there any known issues with Mail? do you know if the iphone issue persists?

    • Diane Poremsky says

      The original iphone issue was fixed by a hotfix on Exchange server but it seems to come and go with various ios updates.

  8. Steve C says

    Hi Diane, thanks for the post. any idea which hotfix addressed this? I'd like to contact our hosted Exchange and see if they have applied this patch.

    • Diane Poremsky says

      Offhand, no. There were several issues similar to this, some were fixed client side or on iOS. I'll see if i can find it in my notes- i need to update the article.

  9. Mark Hansen says

    Hi Diane, if you find any hotfixes for this I would very much appriciate it. We are running Exchange 2003 SP2, iOS 6.1.3, and Outlook 2007 SP3. We are having the same problem with our system, I haven't found a good fix for this yet.

  10. Mark Hansen says

    Oh, I have been able to stop these automatic updates by disconnecting the iPhone being used from the exchange server. That stopped it but I would still like to know how to prevent it permently in the future.

    • Diane Poremsky says

      I am not aware of any fixes for Exchange 2003, sorry. There have been some updates to later versions of Exchange, that are supposed to address the issue, and iOS has some updates that are supposed to reduce the problem. If the devices were not updated, try that.

  11. Forrest says

    Yeah, this really isn't that helpful. And honestly if a user is inviting themselves to an appointment they create, then that really IS user error.

    • Diane Poremsky says

      This bug should be not be a problem if you've have a newer iOS. updates to some versions of Exchange address the problem as well.

    • ADW the Schema Czar (@SchemaCzar) says

      I am seeing this error on a fully patched iPhone today in May 2015. Can we get an update on this?

      Re "inviting yourself to a meeting" - I should not have to fish myself out of an invite I send to the team I work on. Not acceptable. Lots of calendar software has handled this successfully for twenty years.

  12. John Wilkins says

    I had this issue happen for our organization sporadically on the new IOS 8.4. In this instance it sent duplicate meeting updates to a recurring calendar event.

  13. Andy says

    I've had a similar issue. I create the meeting invite, i DO NOT include myself as an invitee. Other invitees have told me they get invites repeatedly. I'm using Outlook 2015 15.13.1 and an iPhone.

    • Diane PoremskyDiane Poremsky says

      Yeah, it's something with ActiveSync, so its iPhone & Exchange mailbox, not specific to the desktop client.

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