Bug Report, Trigger, and Fix for BROWSER OUT OF DATE error

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  • Updated 2 weeks ago

Good afternoon,

We have been fighting with this issue for a while now, but after investigation, we have found the root cause, trigger for the problem re-occurring, and the fix.  My hope is the developers see this bug report and are able to implement a fix.

 

The TLDR is go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights

Delete this String value: Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation
Problem is solved until office updates itself.  Running outlook in safemode, then in normal mode will also solve the issue until office updates itself.

 

Environment:

Sharefile outlook plugin 6.1.1949.0
Office 2016 build 10827.20138

Windows 10 1803 with all current cumulative updates

Domain environment, user accounts run under user mode with no admin privileges

We have ruled out a possible cause in our environment as we noticed this behavior on a brand new windows 10 system with all windows 10 updates and office updates, but not joined to domain or with any of our software installed.

 

We have already seen the fix regarding modifying the following registry keys, this would provide a temp fix for the issue, but the problem would ALWAYS re-occur. 

 Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION \

Add Outlook.exe with 2af8

 HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION

Add Outlook.exe with 2af8

 

We also found that running outlook in safemode, and then opening outlook in regular mode would also temporarily resolve the issue, but the key in HKCU would keep coming back with the wrong value.  So, I exported everything under Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office on a broken install, then launched outlook in safe mode and then opened outlook in normal mode to make sure the pluggin worked and then exported everything in Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office again.  At this point, I compared the differences between the two files and imported changes back into HKCU until I found the change that broke share file.

 

Under HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights on a broken install, there is a bunch of string values.  Opening Outlook in safe mode removes all of these string values.  However, removing ONLY the string value Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation WILL fix sharefile AND resolve the issue as well.  When this String value is in place, it will automatically modify the string value outlook.exe under Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION  to 2711 regardless of what is in  HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION

 

So, what is the trigger for HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights to fill up with a bunch of sting values?  Its any time Microsoft office updates itself.  Then all of these string values are back AGAIN and need to be removed.

I recommend that sharefile implement a check on startup of outlook to remove the string value Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation under HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights

Again, this string value is so un-important that launching outlook in safemode removes EVERYTHING in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights so this seems to be a pretty safe fix. 

Here is the registry file that I used for testing.  Note, this registry file WILL break sharefile on outlook

 

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

 

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights]

 

"Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation"="Mso::ChecksumRegistry::Data|uint64_t|-4675097917049849213;bool|1"






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Tom Steingass

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Posted 3 weeks ago

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Kevin Glenn, Senior Technical Support Engineer

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Hi Tom,

We recently updated our article for this issue due to an Outlook update that would overwrite the previous registry we were utilizing when Outlook is launched.

We've outlined this fix in the following knowledge base article and community post:

https://support.citrix.com/article/CTX232021

https://community.sharefilesupport.com/citrixsharefile/topics/browser-out-of-date

The updated registry path is as follows: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION

Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions or issues when using this specific registry path. 
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Tom Steingass

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Hello Kevin, I gave this a shot.  If the string value Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights exists then it still overwrites outlook.exe value in Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION even if the outlook.exe value in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION has been set and modified to 2af8.  I did logout and login to verify this.  Basically, this means that share file will still break every time office updates.

See the registry file i put in my original post and import it into your test bench to verify,




(Edited)
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Douglas Goodman, Employee

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Hi Tom - Thanks for the feedback. This issue has come up recently and we've determined it is due to a change on Outlook's behavior. We have identified an workaround for it. There is no need to delete the value in the "ExperimentTas" key.

Please set the "outlook.exe=2af8" value in the following key (note "Policies" in the path):
HKCU\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION

Outlook will use this value even if the original one is set. Also it's important to note that the original value will continue to be overwritten by Outlook, but that's ok - outlook will respect the value set in the ".../policies/..." key.

Please take a look at the support article Kevin posted above for more info. Let us know if this works for you.

Thanks,
Doug

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Tom Steingass

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Correct, And I applied the fix mentioned, if the value I mention is present, then no matter what outlook.exe is set to in HKCU\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION

the value of outlook.exe in Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION always reverts to 2711
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Tom Steingass

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I should add, we still get the browser out of date error when Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION\outlook.exe is overwritten and we have outlook.exe set to 2af8 in HKCU\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION if the Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation string is set in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights

I was testing sharefile on every modification i made to the registry etc.
(Edited)
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Douglas Goodman, Employee

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Tom - Did you restart outlook between every registry change?
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Tom Steingass

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Yes, Process was close outlook, make requested registry edits, open outlook, attempt to login to share file.  Also, when adding the outlook.exe string to  HKCU\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION I logged out of the user profile and then logged back in as a extra step.
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Douglas Goodman, Employee

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Do you have another value added in HKLM that maybe be overwriting it?
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION

It's strange to see this behavior because adding the value in the "policies" key has fixed every instance of this we've seen so far.

Would you be willing to investigate this further using ProcMon?
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Tom Steingass

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In HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION outlook.exe is also set to 2af8  This was the original fix we attempted to apply.  When you try to import the below regedit on your system do you see the same behavior we see on our end?  I am willing to troubleshoot this more if we need to.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Common\ExperimentTas\outlook\Flights]

"Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation"="Mso::ChecksumRegistry::Data|uint64_t|-4675097917049849213;bool|1"



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Douglas Goodman, Employee

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I already have that value set and I do not see the behavior.
Let's use procmon to see exactly which values are being read from the registry at outlook startup. Do you have that tool available?

If so, include these two filters and start outlook:

"Process Name" is "outlook.exe"
"Path" contains "FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION"

You can save the result and upload here:
https://douglasgoodman.sharefile.com/r-r5f14d29d0bd4236a

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Tom Steingass

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Ok, I uploaded the requested files, included filter "Microsoft.Office.Outlook.FeatureBrowserEmulation" as well.
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Douglas Goodman, Employee

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I'm not sure what might be causing your Outlook to ignore the "policies" value when the "flights" value is removed (the fixed.pml file). I'm not able to repro what you're seeing. Mine consistently works when the policies value is set in HKCU (or HKLM too)

I'm running Outlook version 16.0.10827.20118, not 20138. It's possible that MS changed the functionality again.

Also, in both of the pml files you provided, it doesn't look like the registry value is being read successfully from the "policies" key in HKCU. Can you double check the value there, that it's a DWORD and set to the right value?

Can you try replacing the value under the flights key back to its original value, and removing all other "outlook.exe" values except a single one in "hkcu\software\policies\microsoft\..."? Use procmon to get another log of this.

Also an easy way to check if this worked is to open "Outlook Today" by clicking on your email address at the top of the folder tree. If it displays properly, the browser setting wasn't set properly. If it doesn't display properly, and it looks blank, then the registry values worked!
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Tom Steingass

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Yup, this looks to have resolved the issue, removed all the values and then just added in
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main\FeatureControl\FEATURE_BROWSER_EMULATION
and added back in the flights key to original values

It is now reading the HKCU key and respecting it. 

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Douglas Goodman, Employee

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Hi Tom - I'm glad that worked! Let us know if there are further issues.

Thanks,
Doug