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Current Surface Hub Options for Skype for Business Online & Teams

The Microsoft Surface Hub has been a popular choice for a next generation collaboration device for Skype for Business & Teams with it’s immersive and feature rich meeting experiences. As organizations migrate to the cloud and look to upgrade their collaboration devices, this quick post addresses a common question – does the shipping version of Surface Hub support Microsoft Teams, and is it worth waiting for the newly announced Surface Hub 2.0?

If you are not familiar with the Microsoft Surface Hub collaboration experience, there are some quick videos here which illustrate the power of this device within a meeting room setting.

Surface Hub 2 Not Widely Available . . . → Read More: Current Surface Hub Options for Skype for Business Online & Teams

Office 365 Usage Location and Skype for Business Online

Questions often arise in Skype for Business Online (SfBO) administration regarding the a user’s registered “location”. In the SfBO admin center we see it as the location field in the user listing as shown here:

This subtle setting is important for the voice Phone System calling plan (PSTN) service configuration in SfBO because it restricts what phone numbers can be assigned to a user, and their associated emergency location. Specifically, only registered emergency locations (addresses) that belong to the same country as a users’ location can specified for that user. In addition, when assigning phone numbers to a user, only acquired numbers in the same country are available for . . . → Read More: Office 365 Usage Location and Skype for Business Online

DNS Records in a Skype for Business Hybrid Deployment

The DNS records for a Skype for Business (SfB) on-premises deployment can be somewhat complex, but are well documented (see Microsoft TechNet – DNS requirements for Skype for Business).  While working on a recent hybrid Skype for Business (SfB) deployment, I realized there is a lot of confusion. This was a classic hybrid deployment – some SfB servers and users on-premises, and some in SfB Online sharing one DNS namespace. This article aims to clear up some of this confusion.

The unique question that comes up in hybrid is where should I point my DNS records for clients to logon?  On-premises or online?

The general golden rule in a SfB . . . → Read More: DNS Records in a Skype for Business Hybrid Deployment

Key Skype for Business Online Policy Settings

As I work more with enterprises adopting Skype for Business (SfB) Online in Office 365, many questions arise about setting user policies which govern which features which compliance, security, and resource usage.

There are many policies (about 12 that applicable to individual SfB Online users), and each type of policy can have many settings (52 for the Conferencing Policy for example), and it is difficult to know what settings are available, what the individual setting enables/disables, and which ones matter the most.

In my experience the 4 most commonly used SfB Online policies are:

Conferencing External Access Client Voice

The importance of each policy type will depend on what features . . . → Read More: Key Skype for Business Online Policy Settings

The State of Lync Online – Features & Management Options

One of the advantages of the Microsoft cloud services (aka Office 365) is that it upgrades new features quickly – new service functionality is deployed to the cloud and available for consumption as soon as it is ready. Keeping up-to-date on what’s available can be a challenge, and I’ve been getting many questions lately about what management access is currently available in Lync Online (specifically PowerShell) and what Lync features are available (or are missing).

This blog post provides a quick feature overview of what is offered in the various Lync Online plans and dives into practical details and tips for managing Lync Online in the standard multi-tenant version of . . . → Read More: The State of Lync Online – Features & Management Options

File Transfers in Microsoft Lync Online

I was recently involved in an issue with file transfers failing between two Lync Online federated tenants. This had worked before, so I was surprised to read it was not supported. The Microsoft Lync Online for Enterprises Service Description (as of October 24, 2011) states:

> File transfer is not available with federated connections

With help from an engineer at Microsoft we figured out the issue was an older Lync client.

One peer had version 4.0.7577.280 of the Lync 2010 client instead of the latest version 4.0.7577.314. After upgrading the Lync 2010 client to the latest release (see Description of the cumulative update package for Lync 2010: July . . . → Read More: File Transfers in Microsoft Lync Online

Microsoft Shares Video Tour of its Cloud Datacenters

Ever wonder what Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure used to power Lync, Exchange, and SharePoint in Office 365 looks like?

Two resources have been made available which gives visibility into the technology, infrastructure and history behind it:

Microsoft TechNet: MS Datacenters (A Window into Microsoft Datacenters): http://blogs.technet.com/b/msdatacenters/archive/2011/07/25/microsoft-shares-video-tour-of-its-cloud-datacenters.aspx Microsoft GFS Datacenter Tour (Video): http://www.globalfoundationservices.com/infrastructure/videos.html

These Microsoft Cloud Datacenters are used to power all of Microsoft’s online efforts (including Bing, MSDN, Windows Live, etc…) including the Microsoft Office 365 services.

Ten football fields of server power in one location (Chicago)!