Two new Lync tools! But my birthday’s not until August.

Both of these new tools popped up on my radar today. You know I love doing reviews…couldn’t pass up the opportunity! So for this week’s Lync Insider post, I have a Dual Tool Review. A new mini-app for calls through Lync and Skype for Business, and a handy “cheat sheet” for navigating the information-flood we call Lync Monitoring Reports.

Call Monitor Pro

Matt Landis gives us another Lync tool! This one is called “Call Monitor Pro”.

It’s an always-on-top window which lets you hold/mute calls, switch between 2 calls, and locate an active conversation window.

Call Monitor Pro for Skype for Business & Lync – TechNet Downloads

Call Monitor Pro

I’m testing out the free version now. My thoughts:

  • The app only deals with calls through Lync. Narrow focus often translates to good-quality apps. This one is no exception.
  • Zero configuration required. Download, install and run. Call Monitor Pro even auto-recognized my Jabra Motion Office headset.
  • You can configure your own shortcut keys!
  • It is always on top, which sometimes bugs me. But you can minimize it.  (EDIT: Matt says you can in fact turn off Always on Top.  It’s a checkbox in Settings > General.)
  • No call quality degradation at all.

An Enterprise version is also available for sale:  Enterprise Inquiry Page – Call Monitor Pro. It has more features, such as 1-click Call Park and an advanced Extensibility Platform for Lync 2013 & Skype for Business 2015.

If you have to frequently switch between incoming calls, this is a nice snappy little tool. Try it out!

Might have to spring for the Enterprise version myself, so I can do a full review. But before that, let’s review Tool #2.

Lync Monitoring Reports Decoder

I’m doing research on Lync’s Quality of Experience (QoE) for upcoming posts. While searching, I came across this recent post from The UC Geek:  Lync Monitoring Reports Decoder – UC Geek

In it, you’ll find a download link for the Decoder spreadsheet in Excel format. At first I thought it contained a bunch of scripting to process QoE data. Some custom version of a Monitoring Report.

I was way off—but in a good way!

What the spreadsheet does is give a detailed explanation of each element you’d find in a Monitoring Report – e.g., the Peer-to-Peer Session Detail Report.

Monitoring Reports Decoder

I like that Andrew called it a ‘decoder’ – makes me think of a Decoder Ring. That’s exactly what it’s meant for too. Not sure what a “Device howling event count” is? Check the Decoder. Trying to find out what’s causing Low SNR? The Decoder will tell you.

Right now the Decoder covers two reports:

  1. Peer-to-Peer Session Detail Report, and
  2. Client Visual Feedback Triggers.

(I’ll bet more reports are forthcoming shortly.)

There’s also a Reference sheet with a stack of relevant links. Hmmm, wonder if I could get a Lync Insider URL added…

Conclusion: Both Call Monitor Pro and Lync Monitoring Reports Decoder tackle one aspect of Lync Server, and add a little extra convenience. Which I think is a great strategy. These are both going in the “Lync Apps” toolbox.

Do you use third-party apps to improve your Lync Server experience? Share them! Please comment or email.

Call Monitor Pro and Lync Monitoring Reports Decoder: Dual Tool Reviews
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