How to connect the Microsoft Surface RT to SBS 2003

Microsoft Surface RT and SBS 2003

In this post we’ll look at how to connect the Mail app on the Surface RT to SBS 2003.

SBS 2003 comes to the end of its support lifecycle in April 2014, for my one remaining customer on SBS 2003 we have a plan in place to migrate to SBS 2011 in the next couple of months, which will be supported until 2020, but in the meantime they have purchased a Microsoft Surface RT and would like to use it with Exchange 2003 on the SBS server.

For the Mail app on Surface RT to connect to OWA we need to use an SSL certificate.

Currently they do not use the OWA feature of SBS so their self signed certificate which was created during the original configuration has been left to expire. To renew the self signed certificate on SBS 2003, the easiest thing to do it re-run the Connect to the Internet Wizard.

Once the certificate has been created we will need to copy the .cer file to the Surface RT and import it into the Trusted Root Certification Authorities. The Mail app will then use SSL and connect to SBS 2003.

Here are the steps in detail:

1. On the SBS 2003 server start Server Manager. Expand Internet and E-mail and click the Connect to the Internet Wizard.

2. For the Connection Type page, select Do not change connection type.

3. On the Configure Web Services page, select the web services you would like to configure.

4. On the Web Server Certificate page select the top option to create a new web certificate, enter the same Web server name and click next.

Web server certificate

5. On the Internet E-mail page, select Do not change Internet e-mail configuration.

6. On the final page click finish.

7. Open OWA and check the certificate to confirm a new one has been created.

Next we need to copy the new certificate to the Surface RT and install it in the correct location.

1.  On the SBS server browse to \servernameClientAppSBScert

2. Copy the sbscert.cer file to the Microsoft Surface RT tablet.

3. Double click the sbscert.cer file, and click the Install Certificate button.

4. Choose Current User or Local Machine, for local machine you will need to be logged in with an account with Admin privileges.

5. Select the option to Place all certificates in the following store, click browse and select the Trusted Root Certification Authorities store.

6. Click Next and Finish. Click yes to confirm, and then OK to complete the import.

Finally we need to configure the Mail app

1. Open the Mail app.

2. Swipe from the right, or move the cursor to the bottom right hand corner and select Settings.

3. Click Accounts, then click Add an account.

4. Select Outlook (Exchange, Office 365,

5. On the Add your Outlook account page, select Show more details, fill in the name, email address Server Address (OWA address), domain, username and password, and click Connect.

6. The Mail app will now connect and start to synchronise.

Related Articles:

How to configure an Exchange account and how to troubleshoot Exchange account connectivity issues in the Mail app in Windows 8 and Windows RT

Related Posts:

1. Microsoft Surface & Windows 8 getting started guide

2. Free ebook: Introducing Windows 8: An Overview for IT Professionals (Final Edition)

3. SBS 2003 no network access after a reboot!

0 thoughts on “How to connect the Microsoft Surface RT to SBS 2003

  1. Mark

    Have you tried this with a Windows phone running Windows 8? I ask because my father’s having problems on his SBS 2003 domain after replacing his android (worked perfectly) with a new Windows phone. Also note same problem on a Win 8 PC…

      1. Mark

        I tested with importing the cert on a Win 8 PC and it didn’t work. Unfortunately, I’m unable to test on the phone at the moment…

  2. not giving this

    What a complicated process… Samsung and Apple don’t need this. We IT departments cant just give settings to our users we have to add the cert , some users cannot do, … very poor design.