As you all might know by now, Microsoft have started rolling out the Skype for Business client over windows update as well as a standalone update. The patch is called KB2889923 and once installed, the client UI can be switched from Lync 2013 in to Skype for business, There are couple of ways to get this update. One is to run windows update on the client PC which will pick the update up from Microsoft. Add the other method is to download the standalone update package and install it on the client. The update can be downloaded from here I took the long path and ran windows update on my PC that picked up the update as expected and updated the client.
Once the client got updated, it will immediately complained that the System Administrator only allowed to use Lync UI and not the Skype for Business UI. Upon restarting the client, it reverted back to the Lync 2013 client,
So, to allow the Lync client to work instead of Skype for Business client, it needs to be enabled within the client policy which the user is assigned with. To have the “EnableSkypeUI” policy entry, the Lync Server 2013 platform should be running on no earlier than November 2014 CU update. Since Microsoft override the current CU with the new one in official download page, the latest Lync Server 2013 update can be downloaded from here. Once the server is up to date, create a new client policy as “Enable Skype UI” by running the command “New-CsClientPolicy -Identity “Skype UI Enabled“. The reason behind not enabling the feature for the Default client policy is that, if it enabled for default, it will get rolled out for the entire client fleet and it will end up in massive confusion. It’s always better to create a new User based client policy and assigned to users who suppose to have the feature turned on. Once the new client policy has been configured, run the command “Set-CsClientPolicy -EnableSkypeUI $True -Identity “Skype UI Enabled“
Now we have the client policy configured to enable Skype for Business UI, the policy need to be assigned for the users who required to have the feature turned on. This can be done either from the Lync Server Management Console,
Or can be done from Lync Server Management Shell by running “Grant-CsClientPolicy -Identity “User Name” -PolicyName “Skype UI Enabled”
The user account is now enabled to have Skype for Business UI instead of the Lync 2013 client. It will take some time for client to pick up. Once it’s done. It will come up with an alert mentioning that the organization is rolling out Skype for Business and restart the client to enjoy the new features of the Skype for Business client.
Upon restarting the client. It will start as the Skype for business client and full features and functionality which designed to be delivered from client end will be available to use despite the fact that the back end server is still Lync Server 2013.
That’s all is there to know about rolling out the Skype for Business client within the organization that running with Lync Server 2013 back end servers. It’s all about planning the roll out properly and managing the client policies properly so that it will not end up in a confusion. The same setup is available for O365 Skype for Business (Lync) online. Please use the official Office Blog here which explains how to do the switch over from Lync 2013 to Skype for Business.
Thank you for putting this down in detail!
Thanks for the comment 🙂
-EnableSkypeUI is unavailable on my Lync environment is this because I need to update
You need to have at least last November CU installed in your Front End servers to have that switch in Client Policy.
FYI, you need to put $true after -EnableSkypeUI. May want to update your post. Thanks for posting this, this was a huge help.
Thanks for pointing that out to me. It’s fixed now 🙂
Good Article Mate – Cheers
Thanks Dean 🙂
Is there a way to force the UI on a local machine via the registry, etc? I have a dev machine so would be nice to test it on that and keep my normal laptop running without the SfB UI
It can. But, the registry is always overwritten by the client policy.
Thanks for the article:
Set-CsClientPolicy -EnableSkypeUI -$True -Identity “Skype UI Enabled“
Set-CsClientPolicy -EnableSkypeUI $True -Identity “Skype UI Enabled“
Thanks for pointing that out Thomas. I’ve corrected it.
Hey! Just wondering About the part where you said
“The user account is now enabled to have Skype for Business UI instead of the Lync 2013 client. It will take some time for client to pick up. Once it’s done. It will come up with an alert mentioning that the organization is rolling out Skype for Business and restart the client to enjoy the new features of the Skype for Business client.”
Is there is a time frame about for the change?
Do we need to set anything else about it?
If you get the end users to exit the client and open it back, it will immediately get effected.
Ok, Maybe I have missed something, I have create a new csclientPolicy named as EnableSkypeUI and set the parameter EnableSkypeUI $True.
After I change the csclientPolicy to one user, using the Control Panel or Powershell and restarted the client…, I still see the Skype For Business Lync Mode UI on my client…
I know I am missing something but, I cannot see it…
same for us. It takes some time, until the client recognizes the change. One time, we had to close the Lync client and start it up again, then the change took place immediately.