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A client (whose email setup we weren’t managing), was unable to receive their emails on a mobile device. IONOS had suggested the client upgrade from Exchange 2016, which made the issue worse, allowing them to only access emails via the web portal or their phones. A friend of the client had also tried to resolve their issue, but accidently wiped all their email data then reuploaded it to an incorrect account.
At first, we noticed that when trying to sign in using outlook, it kept redirecting to Office 365, even though their emails were on Exchange. We double-checked the Autodiscover record in the DNS (it's like an auto email server detector), and that was fine. Then we started looking at the devices themselves.
After some digging, we found out that the client had connected their domain to Office 365 for licensing and Teams. Even though there was no Autodiscover record, when they tried to add the email account, it insisted on going through Office 365, showing an empty Outlook account.
In Office 365, you can turn off the email service for individual accounts. Since they weren't using it, we turned it off, thinking that re-adding the account would set it right. It did for one device, but the other still had issues.
After further investigation, we discovered there was an identity clash hidden in the system registry (when you sign into an Office 365 account, your login info is saved in the system's memory, like a token). In this case, the saved info was causing problems.
With the saved info deleted, the client is now able use their email account within outlook and all the email data is intact.