Category: Skype for Business

December 11th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

The Microsoft Network Assessment Tool provides the ability to perform a simple test of network performance to determine how well the network would perform for a Microsoft Teams or Skype for Business Online call. The tool tests the connection to Microsoft Network Edge by streaming a set of packets to the nearest edge site and back for approximately 17 seconds for a configured number of iterations.  The tool reports:

  • Packet loss
  • Jitter
  • Round-trip latency
  • Reorder packet percentage

Important: Starting around December 15 2017, older versions of the tool may stop working and will report an issue with the relay configuration. Please update accordingly.

Requirements

Supported Operating System: Windows 7 or later
PC must meet the requirements for Skype for Business Online systems described here.
For Windows Server edition, ensure the Desktop Experience feature is enabled.
For Windows N or KN versions, ensure the Media Feature pack is installed.
Only a single instance of the tool running on PC instance.

This tool is not intended for load/stress testing.

Installation

Download the latest version of the Network Assessment Tool over here

The tool in installed in the “C:Program FilesMicrosoft Skype for Business Network Assessment Tool” directory.

In the Usage.docx you can find more specific parameters to run the tool.

Usage

Browse with a command prompt over to “C:Program FilesMicrosoft Skype for Business Network Assessment Tool”

Default running the tool will forward you to Office365 (Skype for Businesss Online/Microsoft Teams). If you want to change the IP Address from the edge server you talking to you can open the “NetworkAssessmentTool.exe.config”. Line 27 will give you the oppurtunity to change the relay IP (If you want to talk to your own on-premises environtment this is your sip.domain.com IP address). You can also change the IP Addresses to for example Microsoft Teams, the IP Addresses you can find over here.

To change de number of calls you want to test change line 41 (Call will be made serially)

When executing the script you can add “/verbose” to display all of the output from the script.

Network performance

Run “NetworkAssessmentTool.exe” from the command prompt.

The tool is setting up a call (default configured 17seconds) and will display the status of the call.

Network connectivity

Run “NetworkAssessmentTool.exe /connectivitycheck” to test connectivity.

Results

The installation also contains a “ResultsAnalyzer.exe”, with this tool you can analyze the report from the command line:

To compare your values against the max values, you can check this blog article.

Posted in Skype for Business

December 11th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator
I received an email from a client this week that users at his site could not complete transfers from their Polycom CX or VVX desk phones. Tranfers using the Skype for Business client worked perfectly, but any transfer via the desk phone failed. The client said when they initiated a transfer from a desk phone, it would either transfer to dead air or reply with a busy signal. This happened when the phone tried to transfer to an extension or the full 10 digit DID.

I broke this problem down into several things I wanted to examine. First off, was there something on the phone that wasn't allowing the transfer? I've found Polycom phone configuration files to be a blessing and a curse. You can edit the configuration files to do almost anything, however, searching thru 60-70 pages of a configuration guide to find the one setting you need can be... challenging?

Yes, challenging. We'll go with that. 😏

As it turns out, there is a field that needs to be enabled for transferring. Feel free to copy and paste the line below into a config file (.cfg) and then upload it to a phone to test:

<CONFIG_FILES
call.BlindTransferSpecialInterop="1"
/>

The other side of this issue is in Skype for Business. The cleint's user dial plan allowed for international calling and I specifically configured normalization rules for multiple internal number ranges at his site. I assumed that the phone would use the same dial plan as the user. Dialing out through the phone worked, but when a user tried to transfer a call it would fail. Are the phones using a different dial plan for transfers, somehow? Spoiler Alert: Yes.

To get transferring to work (along with the configuration change above), I had to add the same normalization rules in the user dial plan to the global dial plan. Once the normalization rules were in the global dial plan in Skype for Business, transferring worked like a charm.

I have a small request for this article - if you are someone who is better than me at Polycom phones, please explain if this is normal. Most phones I've worked with have transferring enabled by default. As for using one dial plan for making calls and another one for transferring - why is this a thing?

Comments and questions are always welcome.



Posted in Skype for Business

December 10th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

A new Tech Communities post from William Looney highlighted that Microsoft has updated their free network test tool.

image

Version: 2017.1.0.51

File Name: MicrosoftSkypeForBusinessNetworkAssessmentTool.exe

Date Published: 12/8/2017

Download link: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=53885

I previously looked at the tool in this blog post if you want an overview.

The tool tests the connection to Microsoft Network Edge by streaming a set of packets to the nearest edge site and back for approximately 17 seconds for a configured number of iterations. Testing:

  1. Network performance – Test the connection to Microsoft Network Edge by streaming audio packets to the nearest edge site and back for approximately 17 seconds for a configured number of iterations. The tool collects, packet loss, jitter, round-trip latency and packet reorder percentage from each call. The results from set of test calls can be analyzed to determine if it meets the media quality and performance targets described here: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Media-Quality-and-Network-Connectivity-Performance-in-Skype-for-Business-Online-5fe3e01b-34cf-44e0-b897-b0b2a83f0917 . These targets and testing apply for both Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business Online calls.
  2. Network connectivity – Verify network and network elements between the test location and the Microsoft Network are correctly configured to enable communication to the IP addresses and ports needed for Microsoft Teams calls. The addresses and ports are described here: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Office-365-URLs-and-IP-address-ranges-8548a211-3fe7-47cb-abb1-355ea5aa88a2#bkmk_teams. These tests are performed using UDP and TCP transport protocol.

17 seconds seems like an oddly specific amount of time, I’m not sure why that is.

This new version has the following new features:

  • Perform connectivity test to all of the IP addresses and ports used in Microsoft Teams calls/meetings. This enables you to ensure the firewalls or other network equipment are correctly configured. The tool auto updates the list, so if any addresses or ports changed, the next time the tool is run, the new addresses will be included.
    Previously the tool did a simple relay test to the Microsoft Network edge. It’s explicitly noted these are Teams services not Skype for Business, so this is only a valid test for Microsoft Teams.
  • Tool is now delivered as an .exe which will install the appropriate runtime dependencies. This should help ensure the tool runs as expected. As part of this, the default path the output files are written to has changed.
  • Updates to support changes in relay management

Note, the old version will stop working so please update to the latest version.

The new version has a nice installer. It Installs to this path:

image

It’s still a cmd exe, by default it runs the network test:

image

Output in the same Tab separated table format.

image

“NetworkAssessmentTool.exe / connectivitycheck” runs the connectivity check

image

Output:

image

We can see through Netmon it does indeed go and grab a config file from the service telling it what to test and tests against a whole range of URL’s and IP’s. Service names tested:

  • ConversationService on [various].conv.skype.com
  • ChatService on [various].msg.skype.com
  • TrouterService on [various].trouter.io
  • PresenceService on presence.[various].cloudapp.azure.com and [various].presence.teams.microsoft.com
  • BrokerService on [various].broker.skype.com
  • TransportRelayService  on various IP’s, ports: “relayPortUdp”:3478, “relayPortTcp”:443, “relayPortUdpAudio”:3479, “relayPortUdpVideo”:3480, “relayPortUdpVbss”:3481

This will be really useful for testing in environments where firewalls are tightly locked down.

image

The post Updated Free SfBO and Microsoft Teams Network Assessment Tool, Added Connectivity Tests to Microsoft Teams Services appeared first on Tom Talks.

From Tom Talks UC at http://tomtalks.uk
     

Posted in Skype for Business

December 10th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

I’ve finally finished it! After my last script for 2106/2017 I decided to make a fully automatic Australian Response Group holiday sets for 2018 and beyond.

I had planned to release a 2017/2018 version in October.. and after actually writing it all. I figured it would be heaps more reliable to use a proper Government source instead of my dodgy so re-wrote everything from the ground up to support XML

Then I had to re-write it AGAIN to stop it removing the association with existing response groups. So really hope someone finds this useful.

I’ve put everything over on GitHub if your interested in forking the code for your own purposes. Otherwise a download is available over on Technet.

Run this script to have it pull data direct from the Aust. Gov. website and update your Skype4B for Lync on prem instance accordingly.

Also big shout out to Greig Sheridan for testing.

Don’t have internet access? Thats ok. The script allows you to manually import the XML file.
More details: http://www.skype4badmin.com/australian-holiday-rulesets-for-response-group-service/

Posted in Skype for Business

December 8th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=53885


Filed under: Uncategorized

Posted in Skype for Business

December 8th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

Enjoy:

Reminder: you can also subscribe to the audio-only version of these videos, either via iTunes or your own podcasting tool

Posted in Skype for Business

December 8th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

I noticed on tech community there was an update for the Skype for Business Mac client released yesterday on 7th December. Yet again so great to see the Mac client being invested in and updated for fixes and new features. The previous update from October which had a lot of good stuff in and Decembers looks like a goodie as well! tech community blog post is here

Lots of new awaited features and improvements! lets check it out.

Updating

  • New version – 16.13.184
  • Manual Download URL here
  • For updates you can use Microsoft AutoUpdate or download and install manually from the above URL.

Client requirements (Same as previous updates)

  • Skype for Business Server 2015 or Lync Server 2013 or SfB Online
  • OSX 10.11 (El Capitan) or OSX 10.12 (Sierra)
  • Outlook Mac build 15.27 (161010) required for Outlook integration

SfBO / Lync Server 2013 / SfB Server 2015 requirements (Same as previous updates)

 

First off lets have a little look at what’s new ?

  • Status from your Outlook calendar
  • Manage people in your meetings and calls
  • Know when you are offline
  • See your missed IM messages
  • Automatically close the window when you hang up a call
  • Monitor the quality of your audio and video calls

Also how about Improvements?

There’s some performance improvements and yet another regarding E-911 so best to get this update out

  • Fixed an issue that prevented a user from seeing a security desk notification when they dial 911.
  • Improved the performance of opening chat conversations.
  • Changed the position of notifications so they do not cover action buttons when you leave a call or meeting.
  • Improved the performance of displaying the Devices window.
  • Improved the visibility of Next Slide and Previous Slide buttons when sharing a PowerPoint file in a meeting.
  • Fixed issues around sending IMs when a presenter enables or disables all IM in a meeting.
  • Fixed an issue with how HTTP proxy passwords were stored.
  • Fixed an issue that caused users with an Alternate ID to be prompted to sign in multiple times.

 

But don’t forget about Known issues!

Please don’t forget to make note of these as well, this was last updated 23rd October 2017 with the latest issues listed as below.

E-911 still mentioned not supported! but is mentioned as improved above so not fully sure on this support yet, i would trend carefully.

One new addition since 27th September which is the first one regarding access settings when using Outlook on Mac so a new to watch out for.

For the full list see below.

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Known-issues-Skype-for-Business-on-Mac-494ac5d5-50be-4aa7-8f5a-669c71c98c9a?ui=en-US&rs=en-US&ad=US

Lets dig in to what’s new : ) !

  • Status from your Outlook calendar

Wohoo! the SfB Mac client will automatically update your status to indicate when you are in a meeting or busy based on your Outlook calendar. You can also turn this off by clearing the Update my status based on my calendar information in General page of Preferences dialog box.  

 

  • Manage people in your meetings and calls

We can now manage people in meetings as well !! Wohooo !

You can mute someone’s microphone, promote them a presenter or attendee, or remove them from the meeting.

Manage people in your meetings and calls

  • Know when you are offline

Now we have a notification at the top of the window when you aren’t Online, and the buttons to start conversations and join meetings will be disabled.

Nice little touch with the “No internet connection prompt”" as well.

Know when you are offline

  • See your missed IM messages

Another must awaited feature.

When you miss an IM conversation, you can see the message text in the chat window even if your organization has disabled automatic archiving of IM messages.

  • Automatically close the window when you hang up a call

Now the SfB Mac client will automatically close the call window when you hang up a peer to peer phone call BUT its as long as no one has sent IMs in the conversation.

  • Monitor the quality of your audio and video calls

Only for mac OS Sierra or later, your admin can monitor the Quality of Service (QoS) of users audio and video calls which is awesome to have.

 

References

Tech Community Post

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Skype-for-Business-Blog/Skype-for-Business-on-Mac-December-release-16-13-184-is-out/ba-p/135232

Whats new with SfB 2016

https://support.office.com/en-gb/article/What-s-new-in-Skype-for-Business-cece9f93-add1-4d93-9a38-56cc598e5781?ui=en-US&rs=en-GB&ad=GB#OS_Type=Mac

Download

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=54108

Known Issues

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Known-issues-Skype-for-Business-on-Mac-494ac5d5-50be-4aa7-8f5a-669c71c98c9a?ui=en-US&rs=en-US&ad=US


Posted in Skype for Business

December 8th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator
By Gary Audin
From the Smithsonian to shifting corporate strategies, Polycom is on a roll.

Posted in Skype for Business

December 7th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator

I often get asked "Matt what does a typical day in the life look like for you when using Microsoft Teams"? While that can certainly be a loaded question (because how and what I use Teams for can be different than others) I wanted to share with you my typical work flow as it may inspire you to look at your own workflow in a new way and how you interact with others on your team(s).

7:30am (Morning coffee activities)

The day starts off browsing my Activity Hub in Microsoft Teams and checking to see if there are any new @ mentions where someone on any of the teams I subscribe to, needs me for any specific actions (i.e. review a document, add my comments to a status deck, etc). I also peruse to see if there are any team announcements from my leadership. Lastly I check the channels that have Yammer connectors that are related to the projects I am working on to see what others in the company are saying about the project. If there is a topic of interest, within the channel I may @ mention someone to then triage that Yammer message

8:30am (Team meetings)

I attend my daily stand up meeting with the project team to discuss status of tasks. Depending on the circumstance I may join the meeting from the Microsoft Teams smartphone app while commuting into the office. The project manager uses the Planner tab to record tasks and assign owners and due dates. She will facilitate the meeting around the Planner tab by sharing out her screen and moving tasks between buckets (In-Progress, At Risk, Completed). Someone on the team is taking notes in the OneNote tab as shared meeting notes that will be visible by all team members.

9:30am (Data analysis)

Using the PowerBI tab in my team channel, I review the project budget and spend data for the project and on another tab I check how much time each team member is spending on the project. I start a new conversation on the PowerBI report and @ mention the team to ask a few questions on hours and budget. I also @ mention the project manager to let her know the report is up to date and she can copy/paste it into the weekly executive status deck.

10:30am

A lively email conversation is occurring among team members where the review of a proposal is taking place. I noticed team members are editing the document and making comments and as a result, multiple versions are in the email thread. To ensure we have a single version and can all collaborate on the same thread and avoid forking, I forward the email to the team channel in Microsoft Teams and @ mention the channel to let everyone know to continue the conversation here.

 

11:30am (On-boarding)

We are having new team members join us tomorrow, so I need to up date the team wiki using the Wiki tab in the team channel. This is where all general information about the project is stored, acronyms/definitions, team contact information, project goals and objectives, etc. Once the new members join the team we will direct them to the Wiki tab to get started.

12:30pm

As part of this particular project, we need to professionally record videos of product demos and presentations. After working with the studio, I upload the raw footage to Microsoft Stream and then I create a Microsoft Stream tab in Teams that provides access to the video right within Teams. I announce to the team via an @ mention the footage is now available for their review and comments.

1:30pm

A task on the project involves creating a lab environment for our customers to learn new features of a product. This task is owned by a vendor/contractor and I realized they need access to the team so they can participate in conversations and collaborate on lab manuals and instruction documents. As a result, I validate they meet requirements set by my IT department to gain access to any proprietary information that is in the team, and I add the trusted individuals as a guest to the team in Microsoft Teams. I then @ mention the team welcoming them to the team.

2:30pm

Using the Microsoft Forms tab in Microsoft Teams, I create a survey that will be used with a pilot group of customers for the project to gather their insights and feedback. Of course, this is a draft of the survey so I will start a new conversation in the tab and @ mention several team members to gain their input on the survey.

3:30pm

There's an upcoming team offsite next month in Redmond that requires us to carefully coordinate flights and hotels. Using the Kayak Bot added to the team channel, we can agree on flights and hotels and coordinate our travel schedules. I setup the bot, and start looking at flights and hotels.

4:30pm

At the end of the week on Friday there will be an executive review meeting of the project. To aid in putting together the deck required for the meeting using search in Microsoft Teams I look for updates from team members on various project tasks that stretch across conversations and files. Once I finish creating the draft PowerPoint deck I add it as a tab to the team channel and @ mention the team to ask for their input and review prior to the meeting.

5:00pm

To end the day, I have a 1:1 meeting with my manager. I place a private video call to him using Microsoft Teams and make the video feed full screen. I do this so he can see that I am not multi-tasking and that he has my complete attention (he also does the same). If needed we keep action items and talking points recorded in a shared OneNote notebook that we will reference throughout the meeting.


 

Posted in Skype for Business

December 7th, 2017 by Skype for Business News Aggregator
Have had a long running issue with a single user at a customer where I was unable to IM them or see their presence:


However they could IM me and see my presence fine.

The customer has on-prem Lync servers. I am on Office 365 which is setup in a Hybrid with our on-prem servers. Other people in Modality who are on-prem (Response Group users) could see this person fine (you want a name - okay, it's Leon).

It should be noted that I used to be able to see the presence and IM with no issue, also, after I moved to O365 I could. Something changed later* Anyway - back to the story....

When Leon IM'd me I would get errors like this in my event logs:

504  Server Time-Out
ms-diagnostics:  27002;reason="From-Uri Domain is not in the receiver-tenant allow list";source="Office365ServerName.INFRA.LYNC.COM";appName="IncomingFederation";OriginalPresenceState="0";CurrentPresenceState="0";MeInsideUser="No";ConversationInitiatedBy="6";SourceNetwork="5";RemotePartyCanDoIM="Yes"


A search on that error didn't really bring anything up of value as it was talking about the whole domain needing white listing and that couldn't be correct as it was a single user issue. We tried moving to different PC's, different networks, investigated policies that Leon had but all came up nil.

The issue wasn't a big enough pain for Leon to want to spend too much time troubleshooting but eventually while discussing about their customers Office 365 plans a light bulb went off.

"Leon, have you got your user account in Office 365 as well"

After confirming he had it was as simple as turning off of Skype for Business for his user account in the customers O365 tenant and we were back in business:



So what happened?

My account is in Office 365. Leon's account was on-prem. He also had an account in Office 365 but Hybrid was not setup.

Therefore, when Leon IM'd me, his client talked to his on-prem Edge, resolved the DNS for Modality Edge, and got proxied to me in O365.

However, when I attempted to IM Leon, my client talked to O365, who saw that there was a matching O365 tenant for the domain and sent the IM there. Simply turning off Leon from having an Office 365 Skype for Business account allowed the Modality Office 365 tenant to ignore looking up his details in the cloud, I found the customers Edge server and all was well in the world.

Simple when you know how!

*what changed? The customer got Office 365 but had not setup all the hybrid integration (as they didn't want to use it all at that time).

Posted in Skype for Business