iOS Bug Impacts Exchange Service

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iOS Bug Impacts Exchange ServiceiOS Bug Impacts Exchange Service

Apple’s latest iOS 6.1 release has a serious bug when connecting to a Microsoft Exchange account resulting in increased network activity, reduced battery life and even server blocking iOS devices.

Apple’s iPhone and iPad, for now, may not seem like the perfect business devices for professionals working in Exchange environments. Last week’s iOS 6.1.1 release continues to give users networking and security bugs that have resulted in some companies disabling event management on users’ iOS devices altogether.

The Exchange bug is affecting iOS 6.1 based devices connected to Microsoft Exchange 2010 SP1 or later as well as Office 365 Exchange Online. The problem is stemming from syncing Exchange mailboxes on iOS devices. Microsoft has identified the problem as “rapid growth in transaction logs, CPU use, and memory consumption in Exchange Server”. According to Apple, this excessive communication with Exchange apparently occurs only when responding to changes in single instances of recurring calendar events, also known as exceptions.

Apple’s temporary fix is for users to avoid the bug by not responding to exceptions in recurring events and has outlined steps to disabling and re-enabling Exchange on iOS devices on their support page. But some companies, including AOL, have simply disabled meeting management on their users’ iOS devices until the bug has been fixed.

However, the Exchange syncing problem is just the tip of the iceberg. Reportedly iOS 6.1 users are also experiencing security and Wi-Fi connection issues. The Verge reported issues with the lock-screen security on iPhones running iOS 6.1 that allows anyone to bypass the four digit password lock by “making (and immediately canceling) an emergency call and holding down the power button twice.” ZDNet wrote about the Wi-Fi connectivity bug, which has been around since the iOS 6.0 release from last November and has persisted through the 6.1 release.  Attempts at fixing this error, including restoring and resetting the devices, have worked for some but for many the problems persist.

Apple has promised to solve these issues in an upcoming software update that has yet to be scheduled.

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Update: Apple just released the iOS 6.1.2 software update that will fix the Exchange calendar bug; the update does not fix the lock-screen security vulnerability and Wi-Fi issues. http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1639

Kasia LorencKasia LorencKasia Lorenc is a contributor to Tom's IT Pro. Combining her love of IT and marketing, she currently serves as the Director of Technology and Search Marketing for Zacuto USA in Chicago.

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