Okay! Back to talking about Skype for Business 2015.
I attended a Lync Users Group Meetup 2 weeks ago, where we discussed Skype for Business Server 2015. I’m not able to share specifics yet, but I can talk about the Meetup itself. It was very well-attended–Lync partners, third-party vendors like Sonus, and UC industry experts.
The preparatory process for Skype for Business has clearly begun.
It was in this same vein – preparing for Skype for Business’ arrival – that I wrote today’s post. Last month Thomas Poett, a Microsoft Lync MVP, released a troubleshooting guide (free download). Both for Lync Server 2013…and for Skype for Business 2015!
Who’s the Guide For?
The guide is meant for systems administrators, Lync Server administrators and Exchange Server administrators. It isn’t spelled out exactly, but the subject matter clearly delineates admins for its target audience.
As you’d expect from the title, Thomas’ guide covers troubleshooting methods for resolving issues within Lync Server 2013 and Skype for Business 2015. It addresses topics like the following.
- Support tools to use, such as Snooper and OCSLogger
- Testing configurations for IM, Voice/VoIP, Conferencing
- Analyzing calls for session problems
- SIP troubleshooting
- And much more
Things to Consider
–This guide is focused on troubleshooting, NOT on setup. Please read it with that in mind.
For instance: 21 pages are devoted to analyzing SIP data from one Lync call!
–This is a low-level technical guide. Expect to see Snooper logs, PowerShell cmdlets and session diagrams. If you are not already familiar with the Lync Server infrastructure, I suggest saving this for later. (May I suggest previous posts on this blog instead?)
–More attention is paid to Lync than Skype. No surprise here – Thomas does have access to the TAP, but there are strict privacy controls on Skype for Business information right now. And will be for a few more months.
Thomas was clever; he wrote a “universal” Troubleshooting Approach on pages 7-8 which can be applied to Lync, Skype for Business, Exchange Server, and even Office 365. I do not want to take away from his guide, so I will only quote a small part of the Troubleshooting Approach:
4 Major Quality Issue Areas:
- Core Performance
Configuration/Environment Setup Regions to Check When Troubleshooting (in order):
- Voice Setup (Dial Plans, Normalization, Routes)
- Gateway Configuration
- Exchange Unified Messaging Integration
Speaking from our Lync experience, this approach holds up. Network issues affect Lync more often than its own Server Roles hitting a snag. Which happens more often than a gateway failing to communicate. Which happens more than a device outright failing (only had that happen a couple times).
Why You Should Read the Troubleshooting Guide
I’m reading this for one reason: Identifying similarities between Lync Server 2013 and Skype for Business Server 2015’s support processes.
Thomas has done some good work here. He’s provided details for troubleshooting a software platform, before it’s commercially available, using its currently-running predecessor. It’s a document intended to help you transition from one to the other.
I’m sure in time we’ll have more documentation, both for setup and for support. But right now, we have a Skype for Business 2015 resource available. Avail yourselves of it – after all, it’s free!
What steps are you taking to prepare for Skype for Business 2015? Please comment or email your thoughts. And join us back here next week for more!