Making the most out of toast

What is this “Toast” thing anyway?

Toast, as the OC team calls it, is a notification that appears near your desktop’s systray (i.e. the thing with the clock in it). Toast’s primary goal is to let a user know that there is an incoming communication request and to give as much context about the request as possible. Toast is divided up into two regions:

  • Contextual information:
    • Caller Identity
    • Conversation Topic
    • Invitation modality
  • Actions

What does context mean for the me, the user?

Context is everything! The more information you have about the caller and the invitation, the better you can utilize your time. After all, it might be Bill Gates calling via video conference about your annual raise. Bet you’d want to take that call.

Let’s start with the “Caller Identity” region.

 Info that might be seen in this region includes:

  • Name
  • Company
  • Job title

How do I make the most of the Caller Identity region?

Posting your information on the global directory helps identify you by displaying useful info such as your name, your phone number, the location associated with the phone number and your job title. Even if you don’t recognize the name of a caller, you can still see whether he/she is a co-worker or partner, a fellow team member or a manager from another company.

Next, let’s take a look at the “Conversation Topic” region.

Info that might be seen in this region includes:

  • Subject line (populated by the sender of the invitation)
  • First line of instant message
  • Phone number

How do I make the most of the Conversation Topic region?

When you want people to take your conversation seriously, try using the subject line before initiating the invitation. That way the recipient will know what you really want to talk about. Adding a subject line helps scope the nature of your call, especially if this is an on-going conversation from a previous session. If this is in fact a brand new conversation, OC will auto-populate this line with either:

  • IM only: First instant message of the conversation
  • Voice only: Phone number
  • Default: Incoming <modality> call

Finally, let’s check out the “Invitation Modality” region.

Modality is the type of invitation you are receiving, i.e.:

  • Instant message (IM) / File transfer
  • Voice/Video
  • Conference

This helps a recipient to know whether or not the incoming invitation is of an appropriate method. For example: If you’re conducting a meeting, you might accept IMs but not video sessions.

How do I make the most of the Invitation Modality region?

Just start your conversation by any modality. OC will take of the rest.

I just received a toast. What can I do with it?

Toast is a great way to triage your communication and can help you keep on top of news in a snap. Try out some of these actions today!

Vivian Lim
Program Manager

Published Friday, April 25, 2008 1:27 PM by octeam
Filed Under: Tools and Addins

Comments (7)

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi, and thanks for the great information! Strange request: one of my users asked whther he could disable Toast in Lync, as MS Outlook allows you to do. I see where this can be done in Do Not Disturb status, but what about others?

  2. @firecrackerjim

    Setting Do Not Disturb is the way you disable the Lync Toast.  Because Lync is a real time communication client, disabling the toast means others are essentially blocked from reaching you.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I too would love the 'toast' notifications to be optional, for many reasons:

    – They are a distraction

    – They cause other applications to break

    – They show through fullscreen applications

    This used to be an option, in prior versions of communicator. This:

    "Setting Do Not Disturb is the way you disable the Lync Toast.  Because Lync is a real time communication client, disabling the toast means others are essentially blocked from reaching you."

    holds no water whatsoever. Disabling toast does not block people from reaching you. The window is still created, still shows up in the taskbar, noises may still be heard. The key is to decouple these two features so that those who wish to be in the DND state can do so, and those that find toast to be a nuisance (I am forced to use DND mode to do my job, not for the state but to disable toast) can disable it with no other effects.

  4. Roy says:

    Hi Vivian,

    We are using Lync 2010 and desparately require the Toast to show the incoming caller Company name.

    In your blog above you mention that this is available:

    Info that might be seen in this region includes:



    •Job title

    But we don't get this information! Any help would be appreciated

    Cheers Roy

  5. rs says:

    How can you change the settings on the toast so that for IM messages it only shows "xyz is inviting you to a conversation" instead of the actual first message of the im?

    See further description of the issue here:…/a4c46b1e-7001-437d-8de5-1c318d29055f

  6. gd says:

    How can I adjust the pop up to make it bigger or move it to another part of my screen?

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