TechNet Radio Community Corner Interview

Last November, I was interviewed by Sr. Technical Evangelist John Weston on the MVP program, Office 365, Cloud Computing, Business Intelligence, and how these things all tie together. The entire interview was conducted online using Lync online, available in Office365. It’s now online, and can be seen below.

You can see other Technet Radio episodes by visiting the Edge site here

Lync For Windows Phone 7: Unable to sign in. Can’t connect to the server

The Lync 2010 client for Windows Phone was released in the Windows Phone marketplace today. Being a big fan of Lync, I eagerly downloaded and ran it, only to be presented by the error :Unable to sign in. Can’t connect to the server”. I went into the manual configuration on the phone and tried to connect and still no dice.

Given that we are using Office 365, I checked in the community hub and found this post that indicated that there were were other users experiencing the same problem, but in their case, it was related to the fact that they were using the default “onmicrosoft.com” domain. However, there were some DNS instructions in the post that gave me a clue. Unfortunately, once I added the indicated DNS entry, I still had the same problem.

I decided to check the DNS settings for my domain in the Administration panel. and as it turns out, the DNS instructions have been updated since I had originally set up our Office 365. There are two CNAME entries that are required for the WP7 Lync application to work with Office 365:

Type Host Name Points To TTL

CNAME

sip.yourdomain.com

sipdir.online.lync.com

1 Hour

CNAME

lyncdiscover.yourdomain.com

webdir.online.lync.com

1 Hour

Obviously, yourname.com should be replaced with your actual domain name.

Once I set these up, I was off to the races with my mobile Lync client.

How to Add the SRV Records for Office 365 to a DNS Provider

The documentation provided with Office 365 combined with the new interface make configuration of it much simpler than with BPOS. However, it isn’t without a few small bumps. I ran into one of these when I was setting up our own organization to use the Lync features. One of the requirements was to add two SRV records to our external DNS, as per the image below:

image

There are actually some great guidelines and walkthroughs for setting this up with specific registrars, such as GoDaddy. However we’re using DynDNS, which is not one of the ones documented. Fair enough, I can find my way around a configuration screen, but the problem was that our DNS provider is somewhat old school. The SRV records are considered advanced (and therefore assume that I know what I’m doing with DNS), so instead of giving me nice, clearly defined fields like TTL, Port, and weight, I am presented with a single TXT field entry screen.

image

This is fine if you’re a DNS expert, and know how to construct the strings, but I’m not. After a fair bit of hunting around, I was able to sort out the following syntax for adding the requisite SRV records:

Host TTL Type Data
_sip._tls.mydomain.com 60 SRV 1 100 443 sipdir.online.lync.com.
_sipfederationtls._tcp.mydomain.com 60 SRV 1 100 5061 sipfed.online.lync.com.

 

Take special note of the period at the end of the data field – this is in fact required. Once these values were added, we were off to the races with Lync – which is awesome by the way…

Your mileage may vary depending on your DNS provider, but hopefully it will help if you’re in a similar situation.