Microsoft has released CU5 for Exchange Server 2013 and RU6 for Exchange Server 2010 SP3

It seems like just yesterday that Microsoft released SP1 for Exchange Server 2013 and yet CU5 (aka as SP1 plus first cumulative update) is out in the wild. As with all Exchange 2013 CUs the update is a FULL install of Exchange 2013 so the download is approximately 1.5GB in size. The good news is, unless you require maintaining older copies/versions of Exchange you can discard previous version as the latest and greatest DVD can be used for updating an Exchange Server or building an Exchange Server (that’s right, read slipstreamed).

There is a known “issue” with the latest release and the built-in Managed Availability Probe. Basically, you will see that the Exchange Share Cache Service restarts often because of an overly aggressive probe.  Details of the issue may be found here but while the logging events are annoying, they are harmless. Your bigger issues may be where monitoring software starts to light up once CU5 is installed and if you do not want to modify the monitoring software, you can disable the probe (again in the KB article).

Be prepared for AD/schema updates when applying CU5 and as always, make sure the PS Remote Script Execution Policy is set unrestricted before installing the update (from an elevated PS prompt Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted). Beyond the OAB improvements in distributed environments and the Managed Availability Probe bug, the remaining updates are basic fixes/updates to the existing code.

For Exchange 2010 SP3, RU6 is a basic update of bug fixes and updates to improve overall system stability.

Both updates have been applied to my labs with no issue and I suspect if all goes well the 2013 CU5 will be in my production in the next few weeks.

Product

Version

KBs

Download

Cumulative Update 5 for Exchange Server 2013

15.00.0913.022

2936880

MS Download

Exchange Server 2013 CU5 UM Language Packs

15.00.0913.022

2872696

MS Download

 

 

 

 

Update Rollup 6 for Exchange 2010 SP3

14.03.0195.001

2936871

MS Download

 

Additional Notes: 
Lync Server 2010 build number is 4.0.7577.230
Lync 2010 Client build number is 4.0.7577.4445
Lync Server 2013 build number is 5.0.8308.577
Lync 2013 Client build number is 15.0.4605.1003

Lync Group Chat build number is 4.0.7577. 4409
Lync Group Chat Server build number 4.0.7577.4409
Lync Group Chat Admin build number 4.0.7577.4409

Lync Attendee build number is 4.0.7577.4356
Lync Attendant build number is 4.0.7577.4098
Lync Phone Editions build number is 4.0.7577.4444

Lync 2010 for Windows Phone build number 4.3.8120.0
Lync 2010 for iPhone build number 4.7
Lync 2010 for iPad build number 4.7
Lync 2010 for Android build number 4.0.6509.3001

Lync 2013 for Windows Phone build number 5.4.1087.0
Lync 2013 for iPad build number 5.4
Lync 2013 for iPhone build number 5.4
Lync 2013 for Android build number 5.3.1100

Lync Basic 2013 build number is 15.0.4420.1017
Lync VDI 2013 build number is 15.0.4420.1017

Microsoft has released CU April 2014 for Lync Server 2010 and Lync 2010

Microsoft released an update for Lync 2010 last week for both server and the client. The updates are part of the normal quarterly patching cadence and no “new” server features are included – but stability and bug fixes are.

The server patch lists a database update as required. It always states this but as usual you are free to run the Install-CSDatabase command a many times as you want without any issues.

Product

Version

KBs

Download

Lync Server 2010

4.0.7577.230

2493736

MS Download

 

 

 

 

Lync 2010 Client 32-bit

4.0.7577.4445

2953593

MS Download

Lync 2010 Client 64-bit

4.0.7577.4445

2953593

MS Download

Additional Notes: 
Lync Server 2010 build number is 4.0.7577.230
Lync 2010 Client build number is 4.0.7577.4445
Lync Server 2013 build number is 5.0.8308.577
Lync 2013 Client build number is 15.0.4605.1003

Lync Group Chat build number is 4.0.7577. 4409
Lync Group Chat Server build number 4.0.7577.4409
Lync Group Chat Admin build number 4.0.7577.4409

Lync Attendee build number is 4.0.7577.4356
Lync Attendant build number is 4.0.7577.4098
Lync Phone Editions build number is 4.0.7577.4420

Lync 2010 for Windows Phone build number 4.3.8120.0
Lync 2010 for iPhone build number 4.7
Lync 2010 for iPad build number 4.7
Lync 2010 for Android build number 4.0.6509.3001

Lync 2013 for Windows Phone build number 5.4.1087.0
Lync 2013 for iPad build number 5.4
Lync 2013 for iPhone build number 5.4
Lync 2013 for Android build number 5.3.1100

Lync Basic 2013 build number is 15.0.4420.1017
Lync VDI 2013 build number is 15.0.4420.1017

Microsoft has released SP1 for Exchange Server 2013 Rollups for Exchange 2007/2010

Microsoft has released updates for Exchange Server 2013, 2010, and 2007 as part of their quarterly release cadence. The 2007 and 2010 RUs are bug fixes to the product and not introducing new features (well techincally 2007 a few) while the Service Pack for 2013 adds a load of function and features. Like all past updates and future updates the download is huge as it is the entire bit-set rolled up into the distributable so don’t be alarmed to see a 1.53GB file coming down the pipe.

Information regarding the releases and new features may be found on the TechNet Exchange blogs and the links to the downloads may be found below. The TAP program these past few go-arounds have included the Exchange MVPs as well as external client which means the most critical set of eyes were looking at this 2013 release.

Released: Exchange Server 2013 Service Pack 1

Released: Update Rollup 5 for Exchange 2010 Service Pack 3 and Update Rollup 13 for Exchange 2007 Service Pack 3

Windows Server 2012 R2 and Database Availability Groups

Product

Version

KBs

Download

Exchange Server 2013 SP1

5.0.8308.577

2926248

MS Download

Exchange Server 2010 SP3 RU 5

5.0.8308.577

2917508

MS Download

Exchange Server 2007 SP3 RU 13

5.0.8308.577

2917522

MS Download

Lync Server Design/Planning and Policies

Microsoft Lync Server 2013 has been designed to be a simple install and it is not unusual that the install is not what the client is looking for. Too often an install happens without ever considering the multitude of polices that exist allowing the client to control the features and configuration of Lync. Sure, the client, conferencing, and external policies are looked at but what about the call park configuration or mobility policy and all the others?

Understandably there is confusion as there are tons of polices, options, and configuration that should be reviewed. It does not mean that the defaults need to be changed just simple they should be reviewed. To assist me in the process I have created an Excel template that lists the common policies I review and (for both client and my sake) the explanations of the options placed into comments. While this is not an exhaustive list, it is a great place to start the discussion with clients and yourself when designing a Lync system. Remember – it is always easier to take away/disable features before the users have it.

Microsoft has released CU January 2014 for Lync Server 2010/2013 & Lync Edition Phones

Microsoft has released updates for Lync Server 2013 and Lync Server 2010 on time for their quarterly release cadence. The updates are bug fixes to the product and not introducing new features (none of the 2013 databases are updated in this release). If this CU is being applied to RTM, then follow the instructions here to update or check your version level using Doug Deitterick’s blog post.

In addition to the server patches, the Debugging Tools and Resource Kit has been updated. Unfortunately the updates are actually full installs so you will need to uninstall any previous versions before the apps are “updated”. The good news is the Debugging Tools contain the correct updated TMX file from the January 2014 CU so there is no need to manually replace it with the locally installed copy.

Finally, Lync Edition phones have been update which include the entire line of Aastra, HP, and Polycom phones. Updating them is the same method it has been so no news there.

Product

Version

KBs

Download

Lync Server 2013

5.0.8308.577

2809243

MS Download

Lync Server 2013 Debugging Tools

5.0.8308.577

2905051

MS Download

Lync Server 2013 Resource Kit Tools

5.0.8308.577

2905053

MS Download

 

 

 

 

Lync Server 2010

4.0.7577.225

2493736

MS Download

Lync 2010 Client 32-bit

4.0.7577.4419

2912208

MS Download

Lync 2010 Client 64-bit

4.0.7577.4419

2912208

MS Download

 

 

 

 

Lync Phone Edition: Aastra 6721ip / 6725ip

4.0.7577.4420

2918033

MS Download

Lync Phone Edition: HP 4110 / 4120

4.0.7577.4420

2918035

MS Download

Lync Phone Edition: Polycom CX500 / CX600 / CX3000

4.0.7577.4420

2918038

MS Download

Lync Phone Edition: Polycom CX700 / LG-Nortel 8540

4.0.7577.4420

2918036

MS Download

Additional Notes:
Lync Server 2010 build number is 4.0.7577.225
Lync 2010 Client build number is 4.0.7577.4419
Lync Server 2013 build number is 5.0.8308.577
Lync 2013 Client build number is 15.0.4551.1007
Lync Group Chat build number is 4.0.7577. 4409
Lync Group Chat Server build number 4.0.7577. 4409
Lync Group Chat Admin build number 4.0.7577. 4409
Lync Attendee build number is 4.0.7577.4356
Lync Attendant build number is 4.0.7577.4098
Lync Phone Editions build number is 4.0.7577.4420
Lync 2010 for iPhone build number 4.7
Lync 2010 for iPad build number 4.7
Lync 2010 for Android build number 4.0.6509.3001
Lync 2013 for Windows Phone build number is 5.2.1072.0
Lync 2013 for iPad build number is 5.2
Lync 2013 for iPhone build number is 5.2
Lync 2013 for Android build number 5.1.0000
Lync Basic 2013 build number is 15.0.4420.1017
Lync VDI 2013 build number is 15.0.4420.1017

Help! I cannot join an external company’s Lync meeting!

Recently I was involved with an on-premise Lync 2010 deployment that ended up 'breaking' the ability for users to join an externally hosted Lync meeting. The issue arose once Lync was deployed internally and users found they could join their own meetings, external participants could join those same meetings, but if an external company sent a Lync meeting invite - the meeting join failed. My business partner John Lockett and I worked out a matrix to help describe the issue which is found below.

In a nutshell - if on-premise Lync 2010 is deployed with an Edge server, federation is enabled for both the Lync pool and the user, open federation is not utilized (with the external company NOT listed in their allow list), policy kicks in and prevents the meeting join from being successful.

The logic - as far as I can tell - is that an organization and user are authorized to federate, yet the external company the federation is attempting to communicate with is not on the allow list. Therefore, by policy, the join is denied. As a small step-back if you are internal to your LAN - i.e. you can reach your Edge server's internal network card - Lync will proxy your communication for you to the external party. Imagine a meeting join is started, the SIP communication is sent to your front-end server where it asks to communicate with the external SIP meeting. Your Lync server checks/validates that the communication is allowed and if not, the ability for the Lync server (and thus the Edge server) to join on your behalf is denied. Ideally the Lync client would then try the alternative route of joining the external meeting directly but that logic does not seem to currently exist. I have yet to test this same join behavior with Lync 2013 but will do so shortly.

Below is the flowchart that details the logic. A solution for the issue may be one of many:

·          Disable federation for the effected user

·          Disable federation for the pool

·          Add the external company to the SIP Federated Domains in the Lync Control Panel under Federation and External Access

·          Enable Open Federation (Enable partner domain discovery) in the Lync Control Panel under Federation and External Access | Access Edge Configuration

 

Creating Holiday and Business Hours in Lync 2010/2013 Response Groups

How to create hour sets

It is a common question – I see in Lync Response Groups the option to use a pre-configured hour set but I don’t see an interface to create them…how do I add them to Response Groups? Creating pre-configured hours for Business Hours is convenient when creating multiple Response Groups and a requirement when you want to set Holiday Hours. The trick – Lync Management Shell is required.

BUSINESS HOURS

The process is not difficult and requires limited skills to complete. We start by building a variable of dates and times and then apply the variable to a new Hours of Business or Holiday object.

If your business had hours of 8-5 Monday through Friday we would create the set as follows:

$weekday = New-CsRgsTimeRange -Name "Weekday Hours" -OpenTime "8:00" -CloseTime "17:00"

Again, this is simply the data set in our variable and has not actually created anything. Once this variable has been set we must use it to create the CsRgsHoursOfBusiness object. To create the object we would use the following command:

New-CsRgsHoursOfBusiness -Parent "service:ApplicationServer:lyncpool.domain.com" -Name "Business Hours" -MondayHours1 $weekday -TuesdayHours1 $weekday -WednesdayHours1 $weekday -ThursdayHours1 $weekday -FridayHours1 $weekday

As we can see, the options listed indicate the application pool where we are creating the object. The Name is the display name as we would see it when creating the Response Group; the MondayHours1, TuesdayHours1, etc. indicate the time block we are associating the previously defined variable. There is also a ‘2’ option for all days – helpful if your day is split such as open 8am – noon, closed for one hour, and then open from 1:00pm to 5:00pm.

HOLIDAYS

The same concept is used for creating a holiday set. The main difference for the holiday set is that it most likely will be created per year – so managed as a yearly object. Again, we start with creating our variables. Assuming there are multiple holidays you are observing in a single year there will be multiple variable we set; as an example of 2012 US expanded bank holidays we would set the following:

$newyearsDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "1/2/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "1/3/2012 12: 00 AM" -Name "New Year's Day"
$civilRightsDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "1/16/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "1/17/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Civil Rights Day "
$presidentsDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "2/20/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "2/21/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "President's Day"
$memorialDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "5/28/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "5/29/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Memorial Day"
$independenceDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "7/4/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "7/5/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Independence Day"
$laborDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "9/3/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "9/4/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Labor Day"
$columbusDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "10/8/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "10/9/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Columbus Day"
$veteransDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "11/12/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "11/13/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Veteran's Day"
$thanksgivingDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "11/22/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "11/24/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Thanksgiving Day"
$christmasEve = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "12/24/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "12/25/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Christmas Eve"
$christmasDay = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "12/25/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "12/26/2012 12:00 AM" -Name "Christmas Day"

The variable names set are completely arbitrary and up to you – as well as the duration of the holidays. You can add/adjust/modify as required for your business. The holiday set object is then created using these variables using the following command:

New-CsRgsHolidaySet -Parent "service:ApplicationServer:lyncpool.domain.com" -Name "2012 Holidays" -HolidayList($newyearsDay, $civilRightsDay, $presidentsDay, $memorialDay, $independenceDay, $laborDay, $columbusDay, $veteransDay, $thanksgivingDay, $christmasEve,  $christmasDay)

In this command you can see we are calling the variable previously set and adding them to the holiday set list named 2012 Holidays.

MODIFYING A HOLIDAY SET

By creating the Business and Holiday sets we can now reference them when creating or modifying a Response Group. It also means, with a simply update to either set all Response Groups referencing the time and date sets take on the new schedule (preventing us from needing to update all Response Groups one-by-one which would be a tedious task if there were numerous Response Groups).

To modify a holiday set we would set a variable and then apply the variable to the holiday set. This is a multiple step process and starts with defining the variables.

$y = Get-CsRgsHolidaySet -Identity "service:ApplicationServer:lyncpool.domain.com"  -Name "2012 Holidays"
$newyearsEve = New-CsRgsHoliday -StartDate "12/31/2012 12:00 AM" -EndDate "1/1/2013 12: 00 AM" -Name "New Year's Eve"
$y.HolidayList.Add($newyearsEve)
Set-CsRgsHolidaySet -Instance $y

The first variable calls the Holiday Set in we wish to modify. The second variable defines the holiday times just as we did when we were creating the holiday set originally (in this case we decided to be closed the day before  New Years 2013 or December 31, 2012). We then build the command and commit it using the last two PowerShell statements.

e911 for Lync now available from IntelePeer

IntelePeer has recently begun offering Enhanced 911 (e911) services which diretly integrate with Lync Server 2010. Enhanced 911 allows the Lync Location Information Service to query your on-prem database (LIS database) for known locations and publish that information to the 911 service. In addition, when the information has been entered manually the 911 service is aware the address has not been verified and an operator assists the process.

The e911 service is an optional service that incurs an additional fee per month. Contact your IntelePeer sales representative today and extend your Lync services to include emergency. For those that are not using IntelePeer for their voice services, consider trialing their 30-day free/no obligation service and see how you can use VoIP services for a fraction of the cost of traditional PSTN (tell them BriComp sent you!).

http://beforeitsnews.com/press-releases/2012/09/intelepeer-expands-sip-trunking-service-with-nomadic-911-capabilities-for-microsoft-lync-users-2498262.html

Automating Lync 2010 Backups

The backup procedure for Microsoft Lync Server 2010 can be a little daunting as the process is extremely manual. When working with clients I typically deploy a scheduled task on a front-end server to help automate where possible. Backups of SQL (either with a SQL aware backup program or locally to disk) and of the Lync Share are still required as well but at least this covers the rest of the items.

The script is simple but two part – it starts in the command prompt and then calls out PowerShell modules and a PowerShell script to wrap things up. Some manual purging of previous backups is done first and then the current backups are performed (where necessary). The example uses the following variables:

  • Scripts are located in D:\Scripts

  • Backups are dumped to D:\Backups

  • Create Subfolders under Backups - Config, DBIMPEXP, LIS, RGS

  • Lync 2010 Resource Kit is local and installed to D:\Program Files\Microsoft Lync Server 2010\ResKit

LYNC_BACKUP.CMD

del D:\Backups\Config\config.xml
del D:\Backups\LIS\lis.xml
del D:\Backups\RGS\rgs.zip

"C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Lync Server 2010\Support\DBImpExp.exe" /hrxmlfile:D:\Backups\DBIMPEXP\Backup.xml /sqlserver:YOUR_SQL_SERVER_FQDN_and_INSTANCE

C:\Windows\system32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\powershell.exe -command "cd $env:UserProfile; Import-Module 'C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Lync Server 2010\Modules\Lync\Lync.psd1'; Import-Module 'D:\Program Files\Microsoft Lync Server 2010\ResKit\RgsImportExport.ps1'; D:\Scripts\lync_backup.ps1

Exit

LYNC_BACKUP.PS1

Export-CsConfiguration -FileName D:\Backups\Config\config.xml;
Export-CsLisConfiguration -FileName D:\Backups\LIS\lis.xml;
Export-CsRgsConfiguration ApplicationServer:YOUR_POOL_SERVER_FQDN –FileName D:\Backups\RGS\rgs.zip;
exit

To automate the tasks create a Scheduled Task on a Lync Front-End server and schedule the task with a service account that has full NTFS permissions to the D:\Backups folder (and subfolders/files), is a member of the RTCUniversalServerAdmins group, and has Log on as a batch job rights.

Create Scheduled Task

  1. Launch from the Administrative Tools Task Scheduler

  2. Click the Task Scheduler Library and right-click to Create a Basic TaskName the task – Lync Backups (as an example)

  3. Create a schedule – this needs to mimic your local backup jobs so that the daily/weekly/etc. backups gather the backups you create (in the example we used Daily at midnight

  4. Select to Start a program and select the CMD file created above

  5. Finish the task creation and then double-click the task to edit it further

  6. Modify the Security

  7. Set to run whether user is logged in or not

  8. Set the user execution task to the Lync Service account created above

  9. Save the task entering the password when prompted and you are done

Testing of the task may be completed by right-clicking on the task and selecting Run. Don’t forget to backup the D:\Backups directory as well as the SQL databases and Lync share to gather all Lync info.

Additional References

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh202170

Receptionist 'Night-mode' in Lync 2010/2013

During deployments of Lync we are often asked to mimic existing PBX solutions where possible. Initially deploying Lync as near identical to the existing solution reduces adoption rate and allows new and exciting feature to be slowly introduced. One of the features that are often requested is 'night-mode' by the company's receptionist. It is not uncommon that at the end of the day the receptionist will simply dial a specific code diverting all incoming calls to the afterhours message and the reverse at the start of their business day.

A similar solution, ideally utilizing a response group for added functionality (although a simple voicemail box would work as well), can be setup within Lync. The changes are visual rather than a calling code but otherwise the solution works as it did.

The original call flow would be something like:

During Business Hours
PSTN caller à Main Number à Receptionist Phone Rings

After Business Hours
PSTN caller à Main Number à Afterhours Message/ACD

For this solution to work as expected we start with a few simple requirements:

  1. Lync 2010 is deployed with Enterprise Voice

  2. The Lync Attendant or Lync Client is utilized

  3. Exchange 2010 Unified Messaging is deployed

  4. A Lync Response Group, Exchange Auto Attendant, or Exchange Unified Messaging Mailbox is the destination when calls are not answered.

That’s it! Nothing too fancy! Now we get to configuring the client.

We will the assumption that there is a Lync Response Group that exists to field unanswered calls to the main number. This RGS is configured as follows:

Internal caller à Main RGS à Decision Tree à Exchange Unified Messaging

Alternatively we could use an Exchange Auto Attendant or a Lync Announcement Service but for this example we will stick with the Lync RGS.

To create the Lync RGS we start with the Lync Control Panel and J work Right-to-Left.

 

The Group may contain one or more ‘real’ users but as long as it contains a user this will work. I typically will provision a dummy user – an EV enabled user without a TEL URI that I can place in this group. The purpose of the dummy user is to simply have them always signed out so that the RGS moves through its logic quickly.

We start by clicking on the Response Group section within the Lync Control Panel, then Group, the New.

 

Select the Application Server that the Group will be hosted on and click OK. Within our new Group we must give it a name and configure the settings. For this example we will configure it with a name of NightModeGroup with a dummy agent.

 

We then move to then next tab on the left and create a Queue. The Queue defines what happens when a call is received in the Queue, to whom, timeouts, and next hops. Again we start by clicking New on the Queue tab, selecting the same Application pool we selected when making the Group and clicking OK.

We called the Queue NightModeQueue but you can name it whatever you wish. Click select under Groups to bring up the dialog box with the groups and select NightModeGroup. Because we want the call to eventually terminate somewhere we have enabled the queue time-out and selected voice mail as the destination. A previously Unified Messaging enabled mailbox would need to be setup and in this case I have identified the mailbox as Main (sip:main@domain.com;opaque=app:voicemail). As shown below.

 

Now that our Group and Queue have been created we can move to the Workflow or RGS itself. Moving along the tabs at the top to the left we select Workflow and then click Create or edit a workflow (you can bookmark and go directly to this link). This selection launches a web browser where the workflow is actually created. Again, make sure the application pool that is selected is the same pool where the Group and Queue were created.

The Response Group Configuration Tool is where workflows are created, modified, and removed. A fancy Interactive workflow could be created but for the purposes of this example we are going to do a simple hunt group. Click Create next to Hunt Group to launch the wizard.

 

The Hunt group can be used to play a message and hold music while it attempts to locate a person. In our use, the person in question is offline so it will immediately flow to voicemail after the 10 second timeout. Had this been an Interactive it could have presented options for calling someone by name (passing the call to Exchange Unified Messaging), ringing a department, or even an afterhours operator.

We filled out the form with basic information giving the TEL URI a non-DID so that it could not be reached from the outside, and placed our main number as the Display Number. Remember, do NOT use the main number here as that number will be assigned to an account name receptionist – this workflow is only a rollover number.

 

Next we select our main language and configure a Welcome Message. Ideally the welcome message is a pre-recorded WAV file but in this example we are utilizing the text-to-speech engine. You may also skip this step and simply record the message on the Voice Mailbox if that is where the call is going.

 

You will also notice we left our business hours as working 24x7. This is important as we want the workflow to run anytime it is reached and it should never be reached unless we are unavailable. Because of this, we can also skip the holiday hours settings moving us to the queue selection.

 

From the drop down select the NightModeQueue and click Deploy to create the RGS. The process is near immediate, but may take up to 5 minutes to become functional. If the number you entered was not a valid routable number you can call the number by normalizing the number manually within Lync – simply enter +5000 within Lync and you should be able to call into the queue.

Now that we have the afterhours destination configured we can move to the client settings. There are two main configurations that we will want to make within the Receptionist client. As a reminder the receptionist account has the following properties:

  1. Usually a shared account that all users who cover the front desk know how to login/out OR the computer the Receptionist is logged into is never logged out.

  2. The computer where the Receptionist is logged into with Lync is dedicated. This is especially true when the Lync Attendant Console is used

  3. The main number is set to the Receptionist within Lync Control Panel

 

The configuration for the night mode is completed under the call forwarding section of Lync. This can be accessed in multiple ways but the simplest is to simply click the drop-down Call forwarding settings here and select Call Forwarding Settings.

 

 

With call forwarding turned off, we want to set the unanswered calls to the RGS previously created. To do so, simply click the hyper-link next to Unanswered calls and select new Number or Contact. Enter +5000 as the new number and click OK. The default timeout is 20 seconds or approximately 4 rings – adjust as necessary. With this setting, should the Receptionist not get to her phone within the 20 second timeout, it would ring to the afterhours number. This also ensures that if the evening forwarding is forgotten calls will still reach the afterhours greeting (with an additional 20 second delay).

 

With the +5000 number being entered as the unanswered number it is now quickly available for forwarding. This allows the Receptionist, at the end of the day to simply quickly select the Night Mode from the call forwarding settings. Simple drop down the call forwarding option, select forward calls to and select +5000. In the morning, selecting Turn Off Call Forwarding turns off the ‘Night Mode.’

 

There are all types of scenarios that can be addressed with Microsoft Lync when it comes to voice and the PBX replacement – knowing the features and maximizing their options is where things are key. In this example we used the power of call forwarding, Response Groups, and Exchange Unified Messaging. Remember, Interactive Response Groups and the Announcement Service could be used as well as a simple forwarding to a voice mailbox.

Joel Smith on June 9th, 2015 commented "Is there anyway around the 10 second queue delay?"

Brian responded : "@Joel - unfortunatley no, there is a hard 10 second queue limit."