Microsoft Exchange Server provides a foundation for shared address lists through the global address list; enter outside addresses as custom recipients. If everyone is using Microsoft Outlook, you can also create public folders for sharing contacts.
If you don't have Exchange Server, beyond the tools listed below, you might consider using:
- An LDAP server -- especially if you have a Windows 2000 server running Active Directory, which is Outlook can access with its LDAP service. See Shared address book with Active Directory.
- Net Folders (Outlook 98 and Outlook 2000 only and not fully reliable)
- A web-based contact list with a synchronization feature
- Using the Briefcase to Share Microsoft Outlook Folders
As noted above, for Exchange Server users, the Global Address List or a public Contacts folder provide a built-in means for Exchange Server users to tap into a shared address list. These tools can take it one step further by synchronizing the GAL or a Contacts folder with other contact databases or synchronizing user Contacts folders with a public folder.
Tools in the Spotlight
UnitySync provides organizations with a synchronized view of their disparate directories. UnitySync can scale from small directories with hundreds of objects to enterprise directories consisting of hundreds of thousands of objects without requiring extensive training or installation/configuration time. All major directories and databases supported (including Office 365 Exchange).
Add2Exchange Enterprise Contacts with GAL Sync syncs Exchange global address list to users so they have a local copy of your corporate address book contacts and on smartphones and mobile devices. Global Address List synchronization allows you to treat the GAL as the 'source' public folder of a relationship to be synchronized one way with one or more users' mailbox folders. Supports small attached photos and Outlook fields which are not in the GAL. Sync 1-way, not bi-directional. Can sync Calendars, Tasks, Posts, Notes, and builds relationships with the Relationship Group Manager. 21 day trial.
The Bynari AddressBook is a fully LDAP 2 and LDAP 3 compliant query tool designed to integrate seamlessly with Microsoft Outlook (2003-2013). The Bynari AddressBook is capable of querying any OpenLDAP, Active Directory, or LDAP2/LDAP3 compliant database.
Tool for two-way data transfer between Outlook and Microsoft Access (or through Access to any ODBC data source), including custom fields. Handling of contact links and appointment recurrences. Automatically creates Access tables based on Outlook fields. Updates can be run on a scheduled for automatic synchronization.
Directory Search is an easy-to-use web application that turns your Active Directory in to a corporate phonebook. The administrator defines which fields are visible and the search criteria that can be used. Features include displaying each user's photo (from the thumbnailPhoto attribute) and exporting search results to CSV or Excel.
Exclaimer Address Tagging for Microsoft Exchange 2013/2010/2007 is the only software of its kind to allow users to create any number of disposable email addresses for Exchange. This feature is currently available in Gmail, Yahoo Mail, iCloud and Outlook.com, but has never been a part of Exchange. Address Tagging for Exchange lets users create and manage any number of temporary email addresses without involving the Exchange System Administrator. Easily identify who you are giving your email address to. 30 day trial.
Modifications in Microsoft Exchange will not take effect immediately as address lists only update once every 24 hours unless the action is carried out manually using the update-globaladdresslist and update-addresslist cmdlets. G/AL Update takes away the need to spend time in a shell by updating both address lists, needing just the
Insight AddressBook is an Outlook plug-in that has the same look and feel as Microsoft's Global Address List, from an LDAP server. Insight AddressBook provides customers with instantaneous lookups when using the "check name" feature in a new mail message. The AddressBook integrates completely with Insight Connector and Outlook. The browsable GAL can lookup and display the name, email, phone numbers, fax, and more for each user. In addition, the schema can be changed to work with other mail servers. Free trial available.