How to Log in to Outlook Web App (OWA)

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Outlook Web Access is a full-featured, web-based email client with the look and feel of the Outlook client. With OWA, users can access their mailboxes from any Internet connection regardless of whether or not the computer is equipped with Outlook.


OWA provides most of the same functionality found in Outlook, including the familiar, easy-to-use interface, and the essential tools needed to create a professional email (spell check, signatures, HTML support and more).

In addition to email, OWA allows users to access their calendars, contacts, tasks, and folders through a secure connection, just like they would in the office. Users can also search their old email, set up or edit out of office notifications, manage junk mail settings, and more.

OWA also supports a wide range of file types including Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint slides, PDF files and more. With OWA, users can access these file types even if the program the file is derived from isn’t installed on their computer.

Getting started in Outlook Web App

In a web browser, sign in to Outlook Web App using the URL provided by the person who manages email for your organization. Enter your user name and password, and then select Sign in.

Notifications, navigation, and settings

At the top of Outlook Web App, you’ll find notifications, links to each of the types of information stored in your mailbox, and links to your personal information and options.
  1. Icons will appear on the taskbar when you have a new message, or a calendar or task reminder. You can select the envelope to see a preview of the latest new message, or the calendar to view and manage calendar and task reminders. The icons appear only when there is a new message or an active reminder.
  2. Select Mail, Calendar, People, or Tasks to switch to other modules in Outlook Web App.

How to sign in to Outlook Web App (OWA)

  1. Open a web browser
  2. Go to the URL provided by the person who manages email for your organization
  3. Enter your account User Name and Password
  4. If required, put in your time zone.
  5. You will be brought to the main page, Which is your mailbox.

Outlook on the web owa (on Office 365)

  1. To access Outlook on the Web App (OWA), go to the URL provided by the account manager.
  2. You will be prompted to sign in with your  Username and Password.
  3. The first time you sign in, you will be prompted to select your Language and Time Zone.
  4. Then you will be redirected to the Outlook web interface. 
  5. Click on More, just below Folders to see all of your mail folders.
  6. Click on the waffle icon in the upper left corner to access other Office 365 apps, including Calendar, People, OneDrive, etc (the apps you see will depend on your role in your organization).
  7. To adjust your mail settings, click on the gear icon in the upper right corner of the window and choose Options.

A light version of Outlook Web App

If Outlook Web App is missing the “settings” (gear) icon in the upper right and only says “options” instead, it may be opening in the light version instead of the standard version. Although the light version of Outlook Web App is optimized to support users who are blind or who have low vision. Additionally, it supports older web browsers. But If you're using an older web browser, or have a slow Internet connection, you may want to use the "Light" version, which provides a simplified webmail interface.


When a user opens Outlook Web App in a Microsoft Office 365 environment, Outlook Web App opens only in the light version. Therefore, the user doesn't have access to the comprehensive set of features that are available in the standard version of Outlook Web App. This occurs even though the user has a web browser that supports the comprehensive feature set in the standard version of Outlook Web App.

Other users in your organization don't experience these symptoms. When other users open Outlook Web App, they have access to the comprehensive set of features that are available in Outlook Web App.


This scenario occurs if the user unintentionally selects the Use the blind and low vision experience option in Outlook Web App.


  1. To resolve this issue, follow these steps:
  2. Make sure that the user is using a supported web browser. For more info about the system requirements for Office 365, see Office 365 system requirements.
  3. In Outlook Web App, click Options.
  4. In the navigation pane on the left, click Outlook Web App version, and then clear the Use the Light Version of Outlook Web App check box.
  5. Click Save at the top of the page.
  6. Sign out of Outlook Web App. The next time that the user signs in to Outlook Web App, the user is presented with the standard version of Outlook Web App.

The light version of Outlook Web App OWA in Office 365

Follow the below steps to set your default OWA experience to the Light version:
  1. Once you have signed into the Office 365 portal.
  2. Click the gear icon in the upper right corner and select Mail options.
  3. Under the General options, select the Light version. 
  4. If you want to open the light version by default each time, check the box labeled "Use the light version of Outlook".
  5. Then click Save.
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