Skype for Mac GA – 7 ‘Other’ Known Issues not mentioned

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Good Evening All.

For the past 5 months I’ve been fortunate enough to be one of a few people/companies to test the in-flight builds of Skype for Mac. For the People who may be aware this used to be called TAP as in part of the ‘TAP’ program. These days its called the sprint program and like I say, myself and Modality Systems (the company I work for) are part of Sprint around various new and exciting elements of the Skype program. **there is lots coming down the line I promise 🙂

Anyway back to Skype for Mac. Today, Microsoft announced the release of the GA build .3638 of the Skype for Mac client. Also they also created a page of known issues with the GA build or rather issues that have been present in the builds for a long time while I’ve been testing/using. The list of public known issues is HERE

So why have I produced this blog post.? Well.. the list of public known issues isn’t the full story of issues.. yes there are more, so what I wanted to do was provide awareness and guidance around them. So in no particular order..

1, P2P desktop sharing still not available

Yes, desktop sharing today in the client isn’t available and will become a pain in the backside for you. Also to confirm this is both a two way issue as in if the other peer user tries to desktop share to you, that won’t work either.

Workaround is… bridge in a third person to your original P2P call and make it into a conference. In this scenario desktop sharing works.

2, Message from other IM users to you.? ‘Unable to send Instant Message’

For the past 5 months this issue has drove me to distraction, and has been reported many many many times to Microsoft product group but yet its still in the build including GA .3638. **note I’m running a newer build version to this .36xx and its still a bug in that as well. 

So what is the bug? Its hard to pinpoint to a actual sequence or task you are doing. A while back I thought it was linked to my Mac screensaver getting activated as I was always told from people who tried to IM me that the IM’s were getting bounced back AFTER say I’ve been for lunch or in a meeting i.e.: when the screensaver came on. However the issue is more wide spread than that and even in short periods of inactivity the same thing happens. At this moment what I do know is, if you actively using your Mac the bug won’t appear. However, if you leave your Mac for 10 mins the bug does appear. (its almost like the client looses connectivity to the server and therefore bounces IM’s back). NOTE: You still get the bounced messages as if there was never an issue, so you won’t know the person sending them is getting the undelivered message if they don’t tell you.

3, Skype for Mac is still a ring fenced entity within the office for mac suit. Other office products have no interaction with the client for things like click to dial etc

Not much to say about this apart from click to join, telephony numbers in word docs or sip names don’t automatically resolve and function within the Skype for Mac client.

4, Adding people to conferences from the Skype for Mac client, crashes the client

I think there is a slight underlaying bug again without good reason of activity or task, but what I still see from time to time is dragging a 3rd person into a P2P call or an existing conference will crash the client. **whats funny though, is the person you was dragging into the conference actually joins, but you get kicked out due to the crash of the Mac client.

5, No ability to mass delete IM conversations

Again not a big issue but certainly if your like me and have a gazillion IM’s going at once it is annoying that you can mass delete the IM history from the Mac client. It would be nice to ‘command A’ and delete all the IM’s in one fell swoop. Sadly you can’t.

ALSO, the ability to ‘command + del’ in rapid succession does not work either meaning you will have to select almost every IM thread before you can delete it from the IM window.

6, Headsets not certified yet (plantronics, Sennheiser and Jabra) randomly come off mute sporadically.

Headsets are a key part of the Skype for Business ecosystem, yet for all the ones I’ve used with the new Mac client (I would say 99% of certified endpoints) ALL suffer the same issue of when on mute in a conference call, the headset will whisper in your ear that you are no longer on mute. This can happen at random times, even when leaning back in your chair and not even touching the keyboard/Mac machine. What makes this bug even more of a challenge is that the Skype for Mac client onscreen visually has you still on mute.!! so the 64 million dollar question is. which ‘thing is right’ ?? the headset saying you OFF mute, OR the Skype for Mac client visually saying your still on mute.!! Arghh.. **to confirm the Skype for Mac client is always correct you do stay on mute even though sporadically the headset will tell you your not.

so the moral of this issue is, don’t believe everything you hear.. !

7,  Sound conflicts in calls when you get an outlook email through. **Makes the audible call appear robotic

Odd bug this one… You could be quite happy on a call of some type talking away, then you get a inbound email. What I have certainly found at this point is, my speech to the end user I’m talking to becomes robotic while I guess the sound notification from the email finishes. After this the audio in the Skype for Mac call becomes ok again, until the next email, then Robotic and so on……

The only workaround I’ve found is to turn of email notification sounds which then stops the interference with the Skype for Mac clients audio.


That’s all for now, I hope you have a great experience with the Mac client, and it is a good client, and will be even better over the next few updates.

Iain Smith

Skype for Business – Moving the Fileshare Error

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Hello All

This blog post is to share the experience seen with issues around moving the Skype for Business fileshare from one windows server to another.

Its worth noting that this was a real life issue seen on a clients site so elements of the image are blackout to hide the clients identity.

Below is the details and scenario seen

I followed this set Microsoft procedure to move the actual file share:

  1. Create the new file share and configure the correct permissions;
  2. Stop all Skype for Business services across all FE’s in the Enterprise pool;
  3. Configure topology to include new file store and associate with the Enterprise pool before publishing changes;
  4. Run bootstrapper on all FE’s;
  5. Copy data from old file share to new one using robocopy;
  6. robocopy \\OldServerFQDN\OldShare \\NewServerFQDN\NewShare /S /R:10 /W:10 /XF Meeting.Active /MT;
  7. Start the Skype for Business Enterprise pool using Start-CsPool commandlet;

After following each of the steps about, all services started successfully however after a basic health check it appeared that there was an issue with the backup service (pool pairing), see below:Image1

Image2

So go figure….?

My next steps was to de-configure the pool pairing and re-configure it, however the error same occurred.

I then proceeded to reboot each Frontend in turn, same error occurred after rebooting all Frontend’s.

Everything looked good at this point in terms of File Store association with the Enterprise pool. The old file share was not referenced anywhere.

THE FINAL PART OF THE FIX

The fix was to move the WebServices* directory on the old file share into a temp directory, very bizarre as the old share was not referenced anywhere in Topology/PowerShell. 

After moving this directory and restarting the backup service again, all the errors cleared and the backup service returned to normal state.

 

UC Day – UK 28th September. Not to be missed.

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Unified Communications Day is now only 6 weeks away and if you work in or with Unified Communications (Skype for Business, Office365 and Exchange) it really is an event you don’t want to miss. Andrew J. Price one of the Contributors of the UC Architects Podcast and Founder of Unified Communications Birmingham User Group has teamed up with fellow UCBUG organisers and other well know UC Professionals based in the UK to bring a very special event to the UK Conferencing calendar. We will be focusing on the “Real World and True Techie” sessions you don’t really get to see outside of Microsoft Ignite, TechEd and other Microsoft based Conferences.

We boost an impress line-up of speakers which includes;

  • • 13 Microsoft Valued Professionals
  • • 4 Microsoft Certified Masters
  • • 3 Microsoft Employees
  • • 4 Book Writers
  • • 4 Community Leaders

So I says it safe to say the guys that will be speaking at UC Day really know there stuff when it comes to Unified Communications.

So who are the speakers?

Skype for Business Speakers Exchange Speakers Office 365 Speakers
Stale Hansen (MVP) Brian Reid (MCM, MVP) Gary Steere (MVP, MCM)
Tom Arbuthnot (MVP, MCM, Community Leader) Steve Goodman (MVP, Community Leader) Ed Baker
Tom Morgan (MVP) Michael Van Horenbeeck (MVP) Jon Maunder
Iain Smith (MVP, Community Leader) Dave Stork (MVP) Martina Grom (MVP)
Ben Lee (Community Leader) Nathan Winters Toni Pohl (MVP)
Alessio Giombini Nick Parlow (MCM) Justin Harris (MVP)

So how much does this event cost?

This event is completely free to attend, all you need to do is head over to the UC Day Website to grab a ticket and then turn up on the today where you will be presented with a badge. On your badge will be a barcode which will be used by sponsors to obtain your contact information. This process is pretty standard across most events run in the UK.

Agenda

The flow of the day will be very simple and affective kicking off with morning coffee for Network with other Attendees, Sponsors, Organisers and Speakers from 07:30 the moving to the Britannia Suite for the opening morning welcome from Andrew J. Price and Keynote (Speaker to be confirmed)

Once we have completed the Keynote session there will be 15 minutes break before we kick off with our first 3 sessions from Stale Hansen, Ed Baker and Steve Goodman. Each session will run for 45 minutes with a 15 minutes break in-between during the sessions you more than welcome float around the venue and we will have an excellent Expo Hall which will have all our sponsors setup and waiting to answer any product related questions you may have.

There will be longer break after the second session of the day for attendees to get lunch and network.

You can find the running Agenda over on the UC Day Website at www.ucday.co.uk/agenda

The UC Architects will be UC Day

As a member of the UC Architects Team, we will be hosting a Pre Event on the 27th September at The Windmill Village Hotel in Allesley. The order of the evening will be Curry Buffet and Quiz hosted by the UC Architects, as this is an additional event to UC Day there will be slight cost involved to cover the Curry Buffet but why not come and network with some of the best guys I know.

Tickets cost ÂŁ14.00 with a ÂŁ1.49 Eventbrite fee

We have got a discounted room rate for attendees of the Quiz, just call or email The Windmill Village Hotel and quote “Unified Communications” to obtain your discounted room