Manually Update the Global Address Book

Note for Mac Users: Mac versions of Outlook do not connect to the Exchange server in the same way as PC versions. Every time a Mac checks for new mail, it also updates the GAL. Therefore, there is no need for equivalent instructions for the Mac operating system.

If you're having issues with your Outlook address book, such as a new employee's information not showing up, there may be a simple solution. This article shows how to manually update the Global Address List (GAL) in Outlook (version 2010 and above).

The Global Address List is a directory of contact information that is stored in a central place called the Exchange Server. As a faculty/staff member, your Outlook program automatically syncs with the Exchange server on a regular basis.

But issues can occur with the syncing. For example, say a new person joins your workgroup. You are unable to see his information in your address book. It may be that the information from the Exchange server has not yet flowed to your local Outlook program. So to force your Outlook to sync with the Exchange server you can manually update the GAL.

To manually update the GAL, do the following:

  1. Click File in the top ribbon.
  2. Click Info.File - Info
  3. In the Info section, click Account Settings.
  4. Click Download Address Address Book.Account Settings

    The Offline Address Book dialog box appears.

  5. In the dialog box, uncheck Download changes since last Send/Receive.
  6. Select Full Details.
  7. Select Global Address List within the Choose Address Book: section of the dialog box.Offline Address Book
  8. Click OK to begin the download.
  9. Once the download is completed, your Outlook will have the most current address list from the Exchange server.