Tip o’ the Week #113 – Add context to your Lync status

One of the biggest cultural impacts of using Instant Messaging and UC technology in a business context is the way that people tend to check the status of someone before contacting them. It’s a relatively rare occurrence to get an internal phone call out of the blue if both parties are online: usually, it would…

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Tip o' the Week #51 - Five Golden Rules for OCS & Lync

A tip this week concerning best practices for using Enterprise Voice in OCS or Lync for making and receiving voice calls… Participating in OCS/Lync Calls: Use a wired* connection when you are on OCS/Lync calls. (Performance over WIFI will not be as good) Ensure you use an approved OCS/Lync headset (available from the service desk…

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OCS Custom Status updates – another update

Some time ago, I wrote on OCS custom status fields and how to implement them… Custom presence states in Office Communicator Custom presence states in Communicator, reprise Custom presence states in OCS – revisited again Well, security changes in the way Office Communicator works mean that, by default, the client needs to download its configuration…

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Outlook 2010 beta and E.164 number format updater

Well hello again; it’s been a while. Normal service should now infrequently resume. I thought I’d update the instructions of a previous post, after I was showing someone how to use my old “Contacts updater” application to make all their Outlook contact phone numbers be E.164 compliant. (see blogs passim. eg here, here, or here.)…

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Microsoft Roundtable transitions to Polycom

Microsoft & Polycom announced yesterday that the Microsoft Roundtable conferencing device (used with Live Meeting or OCS 2007 to present a 360° view of the room to participants joining from elsewhere), will be replaced. Polycom are taking over the manufacturing and distribution of Roundtable and renaming it to the somewhat-less-natty “CX5000 Unified Conference Station”. In…

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Business continuity – it’s a people thing, not just a premises one

I had a really interesting discussion with a customer last week, when we were musing over the effects that the snow had on UK businesses. It was another example – like the floods which have hit parts of the country over the last few years – of a threat to business continuity which it’s easy…

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Custom presence states in OCS – revisited again

I posted a while back about custom presence states (here and here). Well it turns out that a change made to an updated version of Communicator, requires (by default) that the custom state XML file is downloaded from a “secure” URL (so ruling out the file:// URL type). I’ve posted my XML file to SkyDrive…

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When the weather outside is frightful…

… the UC technology is soooo delightful. OK, it’s cheesy as you can get, but very true. The weather forecast on Sunday night was for heavy snow, and sure enough we awoke on Monday to about 4-6 inches of fresh snow – something that many countries would take in their stride, but in southern England,…

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Updated LifeCam software

It’s not exactly “news”, since the Microsoft LifeCam web-camera driver & software package was updated a few months ago, but I only picked up the latest version the other day and it brought a few smiles when playing with it today, during a call with James Akrigg. The LifeCam software does real-time manipulation of the…

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Bulk update Outlook Contacts' phone numbers to be E.164 compliant

Here’s a quick & dirty tool I put together for Outlook to be able to update all the phone numbers of contacts to make them E.164 compliant. It relates back to a post a while back around the challenges of formatting numbers ‘correctly’, particularly important once you get into using click-to-dial technologies such as Office…

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