Microsoft KB Archive/256385

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XWEB: Creating Folders with Special Characters in the Name Is Not Allowed

Article ID: 256385

Article Last Modified on 10/25/2007


  • Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q256385


When you create a folder by using Microsoft Outlook, there are no character restrictions on the folder name. However, if you use certain special characters when you create a folder by using Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA), you receive the following error message:

The folder name entered contains illegal characters.

In Outlook Web Access, when you try to view any existing folders that were created in Outlook (MAPI client) that have names that contain these special characters, you may receive the following error messages:

The page cannot be found HTTP 404 - File not found

HTTP/1.1 423 Locked


This problem occurs because in Outlook Web Access, you cannot use the following special characters to name a folder:

  • Brackets ([])
  • Forward slash mark (/)
  • Backward slash mark (\)
  • Ampersand (&)
  • Tilde (~)
  • Question mark (?)
  • Asterisk (*)
  • Pipe or vertical bar (|)
  • Angle brackets (<>)
  • Quotation marks (")
  • Number sign (#)
  • Semicolon (;)
  • Colon (:)
  • Plus (+)
  • Period (.)
  • Two periods (..)


To resolve this problem, avoid using special characters when you create a folder in Outlook Web Access or in Outlook (MAPI client). Do not use special characters in private stores or in public stores on an Exchange server.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.

Additional query words: exch2kp2w

Keywords: kbbug kberrmsg kbpending KB256385