The ten reasons I hate Microsoft Lync the most

Edit: I updated this in “The ten reasons I still hate Microsoft Lync” in October 2014.

I’m stuck with no Microsoft Lync connectivity again, and in my frustration I thought I’d give my top 10 reasons why I hate Microsoft Lync. Maybe someone from Microsoft gives a crap and will do something about their awful collaboration suite.

It’s worth noting that I’m a huge Lync user. I setup tens of calls a week with 1-100 people on them. I call it from my cellphone, from my Mac, from everywhere. And I hate it, unreservedly.

1) Unpredictability

This comes top. I never know if it’s going to work. Each time I set up a conference call I have a moment of Russian Roulette as I click the “join” button. And 50% of the time, there is some kind of problem (see below).

2) Wasted Time

It’s impossible to get a call started on time so you end up wasting an average of 3 minutes at the beginning of a call. That’s 5% of every call, wasted because of people joining late, technical problems etc.

3) Hello? Can you hear me?

This is the Microsoft Lync mating call. Because you’re never quite sure if the other person can hear you. Or whether groups of people can hear each other.

4) Regression Testing

Each time you get a Lync update, you can never be sure what’s going to break. With the current version, for example, I can’t join calls unless I quit and restart the Lync client. And every other call, I can’t hear the other person until I quit and restart the Lync client. Not minor things!

5) Call Quality

The quality of calls is so incredibly variable. Cellphones can play a part, but even with straight PC to PC calls, you never know what’s going to happen.

6) Dropped Calls & Messages

“No Response From the Server” when you send messages. Calls dropping randomly. All of this is a day in the life of Lync.

7) The need to spend time setting up Lync

If you’re an occasional user, forget it. You won’t be able to setup your microphone right, it won’t work, you have to download software to join calls. To use Lync effectively you need to spend time configuring and tweaking it.

8) Mobile Clients

These are abysmal. There is an iPad app but it’s got 2% of the functionality of the Skype iPad app. No calls. No video. No sharing. Why even bother?

9) Collaboration Features

These are the least reliable of all. I can share my screen if I’m on my company VPN and so is the other caller. Sometimes. For some of the call. Sharing PowerPoint? Why bother even trying. Send a file? Never seen it work. All of this stuff works flawlessly on other software like Adobe Connect.

10) Pace of Change

I sort of assume I’m not the only person that feels this way, but Microsoft don’t do anything about it. The rate of change with Lync is zero and it’s as if they don’t invest anything in it. Or care.

Conclusions

I don’t know what to conclude, to be honest, but Lync makes me miserable on a daily basis. So I’m thinking that the best thing to do is to get rid of it and use some other piece of software. But that means change and investment and we have already paid for Microsoft Lync.

It’s also worth noting that I came up with 10 reasons really easily. And probably forgot a bunch. So let me know your top reasons for hating Lync. Do you think Microsoft would give us our money back? 🙂

137 thoughts on “The ten reasons I hate Microsoft Lync the most

  1. Dave Simm

    It sounds as though your Lync install requires some serious post-installation best practice guidelines following. Please allow me (as an avid supporter, consultant and v.heavy user of Lync) to retort, as constructively as possible.

    Best practice guidelines recommend you should not run Lync via VPN’s, due to the complexities of double encrypting traffic and various NAT concerns. A split-tunnel VPN solution (directing Lync traffic outside of your VPN tunnel) is recommended. More info here….
    http://blogs.technet.com/b/nexthop/archive/2011/11/15/enabling-lync-media-to-bypass-a-vpn-tunnel.aspx

    To address a host of your other concerns i would be checking exact scenarios with your Lync monitoring server. Messages do not fail delivery randomly. Usually, it is due to the nature of one participants Internet connection (3g stick on a train anyone?), VPN issues (see above), or other. Your monitoring server will be able to reveal more on this.

    Microphone and audio issues the same, i have never experienced any of the issues you speak of above. However, i do always attempt to use a wired connection where possible, or my own personal home wi-fi, ie not contested 3g data networks or public hotspots. Lync is an excellent product, but it can’t work miracles digging your traffic through the crowded Starbucks wi-fi. If you’re forced onto these connections, stick with IM&P only, or use the intelligent feedback the Lync client provides. If it’s reporting “poor network quality”, it’s unreasonable to expect a perfect HD call. In which case, switch modality to a gsm call, or, as above, stick with IM&P.

    With reference to your comparison to the mobility clients vs Skype. Consider this… Skype can do it, we all know this. But Skype is free, and Lync is an enterprise grade product. It has to work well every time. Your company paid good money in licensing, hardware and implementation costs for Lync, so there should be no compromise. In short, if we cant guarantee a top quality call or at least report back on why it was poor quality, it wont be enabled.

    To an end, i agree with you, that maybe this functionality should be allowed, maybe with a disclaimer that it’s quality of experience cant be guaranteed, however, above is your bottom line reason it isn’t enabled.

    My overview. I’m a home worker, Lync is my lifeline, i use it all day, every day, and it never lets me down. It consistently provides significantly better audio quality calls than a GSM or landline call will, and at zero cost to me personally. The mobility clients allow me to keep in touch while traveling by IM&P and one touch meeting entry.

    1. rhythmninja

      {If it’s reporting “poor network quality”, it’s unreasonable to expect a perfect HD call.} – Agreed – on a Cisco Jabber Client, but not a Microsoft Lync Client… 720x 30 max, right?

    2. Dave L

      Dave Simm – have you had an issue of the calls not working with Time Warner Cable? The chat works fine but calls will not ring out. this is either in or out of company vpn and wired directly to modem (from home)

    3. Nathan

      Hi Dave, I love your enthusiasm and your willingness to offer your experience for free. However, I just need to pop in a bit of support for this post. I stumbled across this post because my newly-installed Lync messages simply stopped sending and I was Googling for a solution. I’ve just upgraded to Win 8.1/Lync 2013.

      As another heavy user of Lync (though, we aren’t using SIP) on MacOS, Windows, Android and iOS, I can relate to every single one of these gripes. Lync is simply (and always has been) inferior to Skype. The client is woefully behind in terms of feature-set and to suggest otherwise makes me wonder whether you are as familiar with Skype as you appear to be with Lync. I could not recommend Lync to a corporation in it’s current incarnation.

      In response to your solid setup advice, our organisation is on Office 365. If Microsoft aren’t using best practices for their own Enterprise environment setup that they charge over $200/year per SEAT, then a lot of corporations are seriously being ripped off.

    4. Dan

      Nearly two years later – I still find Lync to be absolutely abominable. That Microsoft describe it as an “enterprise grade” product is simply laughable. I can’t think of a single thing it does better than the competition (and for voice-only, that definitely includes Skype).

      1. James Frost (IComm)

        It seems that Gartner seems to disagree having just placed Microsoft Lync at the top of their UC magic quadrant for 2014 (that makes 6 top placements out of the last 8 years).

        Honestly this article is so biased as to be completely rubbish. As many people have stated in the comments, Lync is no different to another enterprise telephony/UC solution. If it’s not deployed properly and in accordance with best practice, you will run into the problems you’ve described. But I can assure you, I see those same problems in a lot more Cisco/Avaya/[Insert PBX name here] deployments then I do in Lync.

        Like anything else, there are no shortcuts. Lync needs to be implemented properly. I would suggest you chat to your Lync integrator who will answer all your questions… the types of problems you are describing simply sound like a shoddy implementation, and are not atypical of Lync in general. I work for a Lync integrator and have been across many successful deployments, you just have to know what you’re doing.

        Oh and to answer your question. Here is a list of things it does better then the competition:

        – The client. Any vendor that says they have a better looking, more integrated client UI then Lync is lying, period. Everyone has been trying to copy the Lync end user experience since it’s creation, but have failed. It’s still the best looking, most functional enterprise UC client on the market.

        – Mobility – multi-party, multi-video, multi-platform support, all from a free download

        – Remote access – full external connectivity (no VPN required). Sure Cisco finally got their act together (6 years late), boo-friekin-hoo, well done Cisco.. not.

        – Room based collaboration – Do I need to buy some stinking Cisco MCU or spend 1/2 million on a teleprecense suite that my user’s hate because you need a manual to operate… and only does video? Lync Room Systems cost a fraction, require no expensive third party MCUs, and offer a full collaboration experience (video, whiteboards, PowerPoint sharing) from the meeting room.

        Honestly, I could go on and on, but i don’t have the energy to address most of the non-nonsensical ramblings that this post if comprised of.

        My advice to the rational readers is to contact a good quality Lync integrator. Like any other enterprise grade UC solution, if you do your homework, and plan properly, you will be very happy with the results. No one is ever excited about getting some shabby Avaya handset on the desk that just makes phonecalls, but I can guarantee your end users will love Lync when they work it can make them more productive.

        1. GregP

          James – you need to learn when to use ‘then’ and when to use ‘than’. It makes reading your otherwise well-written response needlessly cringe-inducing.

    5. graneyc

      “Doesn’t work well through VPNs” is not acceptable. Anyone that works remotely and needs access to resources inside company networks (Lync is supposed to be an Enterprise application, right?) has to be working through VPNs very often. As a home work, I’m surprised that you aren’t driven completely mad by the shameful intermittent errors caused (supposedly) by Lync going through VPNs.

      1. Barry

        Actually, if Lync is setup properly, you don’t have to go through VPN to access internal users. Lync should be using Microsoft servers outside the internal network so being on the VPN is not necessary. At least that is how my company has it set up. Otherwise we, tech support, would have to use different options when remote users are having VPN issues. I like Lync very much. Granted, there are some changes I would make, but I like it much better than Sametime.

        1. Keith Miller

          My company has it set up so we don’t require the VPN to use Lync, but it’s still hopeless 50% of the time. I guess the internet is the problem (or Lync’s inability to use the internet properly).

          1. Matthew

            Lync has not be dependable for me. WebEx worked rock solid for conference calls then we got Lync… Now all my meetings require an extra 5-10 minutes if Lync works that day. Calls disconnect, can’t understand the audio. Same network with competitive product and then I have a clear call. Instant messaging status is always “old” (on purpose apparently read something about poor server performance if status is updated more frequently) Seems like MS just does not know or care how to scale applications or improve them once they have a substantial market share.

      2. Steven Jordan

        “Doesn’t work well through VPNs is not acceptable.” You misunderstand. Lync already uses TLS encryption. Also, clients choose the optimal path by default. Peer-to-peer communication is so much faster than a spoke-and-hub model. Know what you don’t know. Cheers!

  2. Pingback: One additional reason to hate Microsoft Lync | The Telepresence Site

  3. Chris Norman

    As a person that works for Microsoft I am disappointed to hear that you are having such a poor experience with what is a market leading solution. Like Dave, my own experience with Lync is nothing but positive (although I am already hearing you say well you work for Microsoft) which leads me to believe that there are issues present in your companies implementation of the product or you may be having network issues while remote. I hope you have vented your frustration to your support staff because venting on a blog may offer you some relief in the end its not going to fix your issues.

    Going by the issues you mention its sounds as though most of the work you do is remote. There are a few things you can do to ensure the best experience at your end:

    – Always use a certified headset. Certified headset will usually have a certified sticker on them some where if not check the link below for your headset . This link has a full list of qualified devices. http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/lync/gg278164.aspx (for MAC see next point). This probably covers 70% of issues people encounter. Just using any old POS headset is not going to yield the best results. My best advice is don’t use the PC speakers and Mic. They are not of the best quality or really designed for optimal experience for conference/voice calls.

    – MAC users generally have the hardest time with headset compatibility. Setting you headset as the default device at an OS may be helpful. Lync relies on the operating system for the device settings. Lync does not provide any controls for setting audio and video devices directly.
    Check this wiki article for help fro compatible devices:
    http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/4710.lync-for-mac-2011-devices.aspx

    – Plug USB devices directly into the PC and not a USB hub (like a docking station) if you are having issues. I have seen this be an issue from time to time due to USB driver issues.

    – Although Lync will work just fine over wifi (to use an extreme example – I have used Lync on 3g as a passenger in a car going up i5 on a conference call and it worked just fine), wired Ethernet is the best choice if possible. I know from experience that household wifi can be spotty at best of times so plugging into your network may dramatically improve your experience if network issues are causing you grief.

    Lastly I just wanted to address your last point. Microsoft has just released a preview of Lync 2013 which is the next version of Lync. Included are some of the updates that you mention in your post around mobile with voice, video etc. While this is not RTM yet its not to far off so be assured Microsoft is investing Lync as one of its mainline products and major updates are coming.

    http://lync.microsoft.com/en-us/Pages/Lync-2013-Preview.aspx

    Hopefully your support staff will work with you to resolve your issues and that my reply has to some extent showed that some really does give a crap:)

    Cheers
    Chris

    1. John Appleby Post author

      Thanks for the reply. I’m not too cynical about the fact you work for Microsoft and I appreciate the time taken. I’ve been working closely with our IT team indeed.

      Headsets. We do indeed have certified headsets but not everyone uses them, which is part of the problem. That’s very hard to police and even certified headsets sometimes pick up a lot of background noise. I usually use my iPhone mic/headphones which I think is great.

      Mac. The iPhone mic/headset work great and it’s not the problem. The feature/function lack of parity is not even so bad although the lack of being able to configure audio like you can in Skype is a pain. The biggest problem is the stability and bugginess of the Mac client. It crashes at least once a day, I often have to quit and restart it and often enough I can see the speaker thingy in Lync moving, but I can’t hear the call. Or can’t accept incoming calls. What I like most is when the Microsoft Crash component then crashes too! That’s just Bad Software!

      Network. The lack of control over network is part of the problem I’m sure and it can be a particular problem with even with ISP bandwidth if we have a very large number of active calls or a very big meeting. And yes, people do sometimes join over 3G which usually sucks. Plus, some countries have really poor internet especially at home, which doesn’t help.

      Configuration. I’m sure our architecture/configuration is part of the problem. I hear the call monitor is useful – and the IT team has used it to improve things lately which is good. Some things like the way we do call routing could be better but that stuff isn’t top of my agenda.

      Lync 2013. It looks interesting and Microsoft have packed in a pile of new features including what looks like proper mobile clients. Question is, have you focussed on the basics? Here’s the things I’d put top of the agenda:

      – Make all the features work reliably like they do in consumer-grade software like MSN or Skype. Test, test and tune.
      – Stabilise the Mac client. Microsoft software is the only software that EVER crashes on my Mac and this isn’t specific to Lync. Read your crash reports, I send you enough of them!
      – Focus on online/offline messaging so messages always get through – on ALL devices. I get too many returned messages. Apple’s iMessage is awesome for this, learn from them.
      – Focus on usability. All the clients have a different and non-native look and feel. Make the user experience excellent. I assume that Microsoft has design thinking and usability consultants but it doesn’t come through in the software.

      My bet is Microsoft focused on all the new stuff and didn’t go for reliability and usability first. Will see.

      1. Mikkel Tramm

        I am “happy” to hear that i am not the only one experiencing problems with the Mac Client… It really really sucks. Even with the latest update – that’s not even available unless you contact Microsoft Regional Services, the audio device needs to be selected at every call, and the audio stream is choppy. Oh yea, and you need to plug in the headset and open the client afterwards, otherwise the client wont recognize the headset.

        Please oh please Microsoft… Make it work! How hard can it be.

  4. Shane Martin

    Hi John,
    I concur with the sentiments that there must be some flaws in the configuration of your Lync infrastructure.
    We have Lync at our University and I would say the strongest part of it is the collaboration tools.
    Video calls, voice only calls etc. have all been good and I have seen/heard it run quite well on some pretty bad lines (ie. on my home ADSL connection which is down more times than it is up).
    That being said, we have not committed to using the enterprise voice portion of it yet, as we still have a sizable deployment if Cisco VoIP equipment. I am also told that enterprise voice is not as strong as the Cisco solution…yet.
    I agree with your comments about configuring a headset (or webcam) – this can be frustrating but I’m more likely to point the finger at the OS rather than Lync itself. There are still a lot of things to do with multimedia that Windows 7 doesn’t seem to be able to handle properly (much like XP’s original inability to handle multiple monitors without 3rd party software).
    I personally would not recommend a ‘USB headset plugged into a computer’ as a replacement for a handset device – it is too much of a jump to ask end-users to take.
    I have heard that the next release of Lync will add some strength to it’s enterprise voice capability and (fingers crossed) a lot of the Skype functionality you mentioned to the smart-device apps.
    I am surprised to hear such a negative attitude to Lync – most of the negatives things I hear are the usual waffle from people who are still sitting in ‘camp Cisco’ who haven’t even tried it.
    I hope my comments bring you some renewed hope that your experience will improve.
    Cheers,
    The boy from Oz

  5. mickrussom

    LYNC is used at dell. Its a sad pathetic piece of garbage. Call back doesnt work right (half the time), authentication issues and even on a 20 mbit line, meetings take forever to start. LYNC is the world piece of crap collaboration tool i have EVER used.

  6. Michael Lisi (@KonektedNetwork)

    I’m happy to announce that our new cloud-based solution for Lync video conferencing solves 7 of your 10 problems:

    1) It works great.
    2) It takes 6 seconds to join a multipoint video conference.
    3) Sounds great.
    5) Our solutions supports mulitpoint calls between Lync clients, iPads, iPhones and H.323/Sip endpoints in HD.
    6) If your Lync client doesn’t work, you can just join the same meeting using our free browser client…which also only takes seconds to initiate.
    8) Our mobile client is the most robust in the industry for video.
    10) Microsoft’s pace in the matter has made opportunity for us to develop a robust solution to fill up that which is lacking.

    So perhaps we can help downgrade your hatred to a mild disinterest?

    : )

    Michael

  7. E.W.

    as the guy that supports lync at my company i would say most of your problems are probably due to running the lync client on a mac. I have a macbook air and use bootcamp because of all the audio issues with lync (just recently been able to even USE a headset, cmon microsoft!)

    The mac client needs a lot of work, the bluetooth audio is choppy, and the headset ends up with connection issues in lync if anything other than lync sends audio through it.

    Using my same macbook but booting windows 7 via bootcamp is like night and day, the audio is FLAWLESS, no connection problems, no problems with any aspects of lync at all.

    Overall, Lync is one of the best products i think Microsoft has ever made, and it is probably one of the most popular applications in our company (we have about 2500 users on it right now). Microsoft just needs to spend some major time with the MAC client (and for gods sake make a linux client!)

  8. Lync Fan

    To be honest I don’t agree with any of the stuff you said about why you hate it. If you are having those problems then whoever set up Lync needs to make it right. Or you need to find someone else that can make it right. All of the problems you mentioned are to do with your set up. I know lots of people that are happy with it. If it is installed and set up correctly and the users are trained on how to use it properly it can be brilliant.

    Name another product that will do all of the things Lync can do TOGETHER on a single platform. Everyone has something that doers one thing, but none of them have anything that does more than one thing well.

    It is still early days with Lync Enterprise voice. If you are having problems then sort out your network, your PC and your phone.

    1. John Appleby Post author

      A number of comments on this blog say otherwise. I’ve learnt it’s not just me that’s frustrated by Lync. And yet there are a number of IT people who respond by saying “you’re doing it all wrong”. I’m not, I’m just a consumer of the software and everyone I speak to that uses Lync substantially, hates it – from many companies, large and small. And every time I talk to someone from an IT department, they say we’re doing it wrong.

      One of the major findings is that Lync is much worse on the Mac than on the PC, but why should I care? To my mind it is up to Microsoft to make software which works well on all platforms, for a product like Lync. I don’t care that the Mac version has fewer features – I just want it to do the basics half-well. Calls, conferences, sharing of screens.

      1. Rich

        This is an interesting topic!
        I am partway through a global rollout of Lync 2010 and so far I have around 7,000 out of 25,000 users enabled. The business users love Lync! We are primarily using it as a conferencing and collaboration suite, so not as an enterprise voice solution yet, but that will come in time! The projected savings for the business for conferencing alone are in excess of €1m per year and we have a robust and stable deployment that has increased functionality over our previous conferencing solution.

        Most of the issues you talk about in your blog will be due to the way your IT Department deployed your Lync environment. The other issues, granted, are due to Microsoft’s inability to program decent software for the Mac and the poor excuse for a Mobility solution!

        So with the above in mind you shouldn’t be too put off by Lync as it is a fantastic product, IF it’s implemented right. Also, you should try switching to a Windows machine and a decent Lync optimised headset (like a wired Jabra headset) just to see what your user experience is like then to see how many of the issues are really due to the problematic Mac client.

        1. John Appleby Post author

          I’d suggest that Lync is pretty good for messaging and collab which may be part of your experience.

          It’s Voice that sucks the most, and Mac worse, and Mobile worse again – that seems clear from everyone I’ve spoken to.

          I’m not going to carry a PC around just to use Lync! That’s not a solution and Microsoft should just employ a couple of decent Mac programmers to stabilize it. They should learn from the Skype team, which is an awesome voice product both on Mac, iPad and iPhone.

          1. Roger

            “I’d suggest that Lync is pretty good for messaging”
            Hahahahahahahahaha please, spare me.
            We have recently had Lync deployed as part of an Office 365 rollout. It’s messaging is the worst we have ever experienced! Our old messaging system used to having issues every couple of months and we would whinge about how rubbish it was. It seems like a Rolls Royce now compared to Lync! Lync DAILY drops out and you sit watch it trying to log itself in again. 1-1 chats (which are supposed to be peer to peer get “Message cannot be deliverd” errors. Group chats constantly drop out (20-30 times a day – Just as I write this….. “Your connection to the IM conversation has been lost. Lync will attempt to rejoin as soon as possible. 11:41:18”). And this was installed by MICROSOFT’S own consultants raking in a massive daily rate.
            So, no, Lync is NOT pretty good for messaging!

    2. Rankin FIle

      Not quite. I work for HP and they work with MS a lot. I’m sure they work hand in hand on their deployments. We have Lync here and it drops, hangs machines and is spotty at best. Machines that don’t have Lync don’t have any issues.

  9. Catapult

    I use Lync exclusively at work for messaging, calling, conferencing and desktop/app sharing. It works consistently and with high QoS because the service is consumed from a cloud service provider that partners with Microsoft. That means the Lync setup is done correctly and managed correctly by experts – not by a few guys in the IT department. Lync will work wonderfully even in demanding enterprise organizations if the Lync environment is configured and managed by experts. If you purchased your Lync licenses with Software Assurance, you could port them across to a recognized cloud Lync provider…

    …or get your IT support team trained-up and Microsoft certified in Lync so that they can get your local deployment configured and managed properly.

    It’s your connectivity that causes issues with voice quality, not Lync. Lync 2013 will bring many improvements / enhancements for the user clients, especially mobile devices.

  10. John K

    Maybe I am diverting the conversation, but… We use Office 365. We try to use Lync, but the experience with voice and video, and especially desktop sharing can be horrible most times, while Skype works perfectly every time over the same connections. Skype is hard to manage in an enterprise, so we wait patiently for Lync quality improvements. So, could we forego the extra bells and whistles and prettiness and just get it to work as good as Skype?

  11. Dimple Stenquist

    Audio conferencing happens to be a technology that allows communication to happen between two or more persons who may be positioned at locations whose distance may vary from the next living room to another country or continent, and in the space setting, to a space station circulating the earth. The audio conferencing technology makes use of units similar to phones or computing applications.,

    Look at our own web portal too
    <,http://www.prettygoddess.com/

  12. Paul

    I have done a few deployments for Lync 2010 and 2013. I have also been called in to client environments where they were having issues with Lync like mentioned here. It has always boiled down to a poor design and implementation. Doesn’t matter if it is a big or small company, every environment is different and so are the requirements/expectations. Departments tend to spend least time in planning/design and press for deployments ASAP and this is what happens. I am sure if you get the right personnel in and have the environment assessed and/or re-mediated, you will have a better experience.

    Regards,

    Paul

    1. Andrew

      I agree with above. I’ve seen bad Lync environments; I’ve seen virtually flawless environments. It’s all a matter of if you have it configured right. I’ve helped clients replace whatever phone system with Lync Enterprise Voice, and they’ve had nothing but praise for Lync. Yes, some users have a hard time getting used to it, but most of that group of users are resistant to change in general. One client of mine was clever in anticipating that and forced the users to use the new application called Lync by not offering to users hard phones. It dramatically increased user adoption, and once we worked out any issues related to their network / Lync config and fine tuned, everyone was very happy.

      Mostly from my experience Lync EV poses fewer dropped calls or “can’t route call” issues, as long as the network configuration is done appropriately. There hasn’t been an issue in my experience that was so hard to fix (as long as you know where / how to get to the root cause), and often it’s not Lync itself, but on other layers such as your network. If you deploy Lync following best practice or best practice given constraints of your environments, you can expect Lync to behave well.

      Other phone systems that I’ve helped my clients move from to Lync EV, was in fact more troublesome when it came to troubleshooting. I haven’t had a single issue that couldn’t be resolved quickly.

      Also, Lync is not the absolute best out there for everything that Lync can do; one of the true strengths of Lync is its smooth integration with your other daily-used systems. Honestly, if you think Lync interface is “too complicated” to figure out, then… that might be a whole different issue 😉

      The most recent Lync deployment I’ve done, the users begged for them to be enabled because a few pilot users spilled the beans on how much they loved it. Of course, following initial deployment, there’s a period where you could see some issues, but that’s what PoC is for.

      Environments that I’ve been thrown into where they had many issues (like how you describe you have to wonder if it will work every time you try to do something in Lync), it was mostly, if not always, something that could’ve been prevented or reduced with proper planning and execution from the beginning.

      That’s my two cents on Lync or any other IT systems for that matter…

      1. Andrew

        But yes, I must say Lync and Mac do not mix well together.. at least yet. But that’s more of a battle between Microsoft and Apple anyway… you can’t really blame that on Lync application itself…

      2. Michael

        I disagree… I have experience with multiple phone systems including Mitel, Intertel, Shoretel, Avaya, Cisco, and Lync. Lync is by far the worst system I have touched. The GUI interface on the client is crap compared to Avaya or Shoretel and the voice side is just plain troublesome. We have all the issues listed above and more. I have had several Microsoft Gold partners evaluate our infrastructure and they all state it is set up and configured correctly but, we continue to have issues. This is also a 365 deployment. I love the MS integration but, as a phone system, Lync is garbage. Do yourself a favor and choose another system… Any system… rather than deploying Lync. You will save yourself tons of headache and unnecessary stress.

  13. H Starr

    I work from home and my employer has recently switched to Lync. I am using it on a Mac. I’ve found it to be subpar compared to Skype (which we were previously using) for a few reasons not mentioned above. If there are things I can do to fix these problems I would love a reply.

    1. The inability to expand the typing window for Instant Messaging. Sometimes I am typing a long message and would like to see all of it. The window is static. why? You can drag open the conversation window but not drag the bar above the typing section to make it bigger.

    2. If you close a Instant Message window, that’s it – the thread is gone to archive and can’t be reopened. If you want to reply to something in it you have to start a new message and can only view the thread as an archive.

    3. I have never been able to send or receive files via Lync. There is nothing I can do to fix it. I’m sure if I was on the same network as the sender/receiver it wouldn’t be a problem. But there must be something IT side that isn’t set right. Troubleshooting a problem like this is a huge time sink for both me and the IT people. It would be nice if the program could provide feedback (to the user) about why it isn’t functional.

    4. Once my usb headset is recognized by Lync it often kills operability of the headset in other programs like Adobe Premiere. Then all the audio input has to be reset in the program to the headset.

    5. Just buggy. Sometimes it says my name and sometimes it shows my email address for identity. Inconsistent.

  14. Robert Scarborough

    I agree with the original post. Lync is just a terrible piece of software.

    1. It is very very fragile. Easy to screw it up. Slightest thing misconfigured and it just dies with no easy way of reviving it.

    2. It is illogical. Menus and toolbars just don’t seem to have the things you need fix configuration problems when you can’t connect.

    3. Non recoverable error situations. Recently I tried to join a conference through an Office 365 account. I’d misstyped the password. It then told me I’d tried to log in too many times and I was blocked. No password reset capability, only “contact the administrator” who wasn’t available. I missed this important conference. I even tried to log in using my own o365 account. Counldn’t get in. Got all kinds of meaningless, unhelpfull error messages.

    Bottom line. This is a poorly designed, illogical piece of software. I’m sure that if you spend hours reading documentation you can get it set up to work. But in this day and age software should “Just Work”. And when it doesn’t work, there should be clear error messages telling you exactly what is wrong and how you go about fixing it.

    This is this kind of thing that Microsoft just doesn’t get and it’s why they are loosing the front-end battle to Apple. It’s not rocket science to know what is need. They just have to try harder. This is just a case of shoddy work and incompetent coding.

  15. Dan A

    The 14.0.5 Lync client for Mac released a couple weeks ago has resolved a number of issues for Mac users in our environment. There have been some interim updates that helped with some of the issues raised by the author, too. Desktop sharing choppiness and reliability in joining web meetings are the two biggest issues we have seen addressed with this latest update. Finally getting to “it just works” on the Mac, same as it has been on the PC for a while.

  16. UC Bob

    I also use Lync in a Global Org of 98000 and it works flawlessly, i think most of the above are bad implementations, or true signs of selling 0365 without proper scope of Infrastructure. I think personally, if the company or team that did it, learn how to do it correctly you will also have a great experience. Its just sad when they go wrong, people are first to point the finger at the product and not the fabric it runs through.

    You will also get Cisco lovers joining the argument, but in essence, Ciscos product are poor also, CuciLync as Cisco call it i quote ” the bastard child ” and Jabber also, demos well, but not one Global deployment of either only small sporadic deployments, ive asked many time for case studies and Cisco admitted there are none.

    The fundamental thing is Lync will Dominate in time, we may not like it, but as always it will pull through because its Microsoft . I remember the days when Novell lovers pointed out NT was rubbish and the directory in Novell was the best, maybe but not anymore, Novell is dead. I have over 1million seats of Lync lined up for the next 4 years, since 2013 dropped, Avaya and Cisco will watch as they slowly creep over into the corner with betamax and novell, and i hazard a guess in Time they will succumb to the fight they all have and work together properly :). They both have there places in the PBX world but for true Integrated Unified Coms, Microsoft is slowly but surely winning, the others are now treading water.

    1. John Appleby Post author

      Does your org use Lync for Enterprise Voice? I know plenty of companies that use it for messaging successfully. Interested to see if you can successfully use 98k users for Enterprise Voice.

      “It will pull through because it’s Microsoft” – are you serious? I think history will show you wrong here.

      1. Colin

        I guess you are still using WordStar or WordPerfect on a CP/M machine with Novell Netware as your file server. Perhaps a bit of VisiCalc thrown in for your spread sheets. Maybe you even have UNIX file servers running Tru64 from Digital Equipment or maybe you even use CEO from Data General and a network built on 3Com Lanplex 6000s or Netcomm routers. These were all dominant in their time (perhaps not Data General’s CEO) but where are they now? For good or bad the original commentator was right. MS will win in the end for servers/desktop software and Cisco for networking. No doubt there will be Linux as well. Don’t get me wrong – I wish that were not the case: I long for the days when Data General, DEC, Sun and all the others that have gone were operating but those days are gone. If Microsoft have decided that they want to dominate the PBX world then they will and all the rival software will go the same was as VisiCalc, WordStar and the rest.

        In reply to all the people who have problems. The reality is that Lync is installed in thousands of companies and it works. Several people have described their situations in the comments and have said they have working installations. I too have installed Lync in various companies mostly at the low end (up to 800 users) not the huge installations that some people have described. In every single case it has installed and worked without any significant problems. Now it could be that Microsoft have the magic working version that they sell to their favoured people and the version with the “DONT-WORK” switch turned on for everyone else but I think that is unlikely:-) Therefore the claim that it doesn’t work in the manner that has been described is just wrong. It may not be working at your installation but if it is working somewhere else then it can’t be Lync that is the problem. If I fill my Car’s tank with water and put sawdust in the oil filler it is not Jaguar’s fault that it doesn’t go very well. Identify the differences between the working installation and the non-working one and there are the causes of the problems you are experiencing. As several people have said it is likely to be down to bad design in the first place either of the Lync installation or the network but it could also be PC issues I suppose and I bet there are a dozen other reasons why it isn’t working but it is not Lync as it works in other places. The only way it could be Lync is if you subscribe to the “DONT-WORK” switch idea.

        Finally on the Apple Mac issue. I have never seen or used Lync on a MAC mainly because I rarely if ever see a MAC being used in a business. I have seen it working (and have used it) on an iPhone though and that worked fine.

  17. Mo Fin

    I’ve got to agree. Lync is a piece of garbage. Every single day when I come into work, I have to open and close it a dozen times (at least) until it decides that it is going to magically find the server and actually connect randomly. It’s extremely frustrating.

  18. IGnatius T Foobar

    The worst thing about Lync is that it’s from Microsoft. And because of that, support for anything other than Windows is abysmal, and they use lots of proprietary technologies and protocols to prevent third party software from interoperating with it properly. (Yes it uses SIP, but in a completely nonstandard way.)

  19. Anthony Maes

    So, Lets finish this in style. For all of you that responded to each other on previous comments now listen to this.

    Lync Good or Bad ?

    It might not be the best thing out there, but there is a reason it is so commonly used. Its Microsoft, everything works together. You might not like it and you might think its not true and that is your problem, but in the end of the month Time equals money.. and the more time an employee wastes having to go from one software to another is major. ( they whole wasting time with Lync ) That’s probably going through your head.. yeah.. No.. your wrong. other software fails just as bad. Skype was good for a while, MSN Messenger was great for a while too.

    Would I buy it… Yeah, The dude with the whole implementation was your problem thing. please don’t make me laugh.. Microsoft even when everything is state of the art hardware it does some really awkward things. And I say that best in my company office all my computers where custom built. More horse power than a mac will ever have. and still I have issues, Apple people.. go deal with your own apple problem..
    In the end Lync save me time saves me money frustrated Yes unhappy yes.. but its what increased my revenue..

    Dave Simm, did you read that from the troubleshooting guide of Lync Server 2010.. its what it sounds like.
    John Appleby, history does not care, I am sure,

    Apple is just as close minded as Apple..

    Im not posting anymore..

  20. Doug and/or Dinsdale Piranha

    Lync sucks on the Mac. And ALL I USE is the messenging, never ever ever tried to make a meeting, join a meeting, share a file, share a screen, nothing, just for instant messeging. And it SUCKS at that simple, simple task.

    I’m using a brand-new top-end Mac Mini and the other people are using Windows 7. I’m showing as available, but people have to send me an EMAIL asking if I got their IM, which I probably didn’t get.

    BTW, the person trying to IM me is 30 feet away, I’m on a hardwired Ethernet and they are wireloess on the same network, but they still can’t be sure I got an IM. And I might never ever see the message either.

    I’ve changed my Lync status to read, “DO NOT use Lync to send me an IM. It doesn’t ever get to me. Send me an email instead or just call.” and set my status to BUSY.

    There, that’ll work. Crappy software, and it doesn’t even notify me if it fails to deliver an IM.

    So don’t give me this “it’s set up wrong” crap either. It has worked, sometimes, but then it fails to work. Explain that based on a poor setup.

    FYI, this is still just for MESSAGING. With people 30 FEET AWAY. ON THE SAME NETWORK.

    It just sucks, unreliably.

  21. Friggin Frustratred

    Ok, so let’s add more fuel to this fire!

    I installed Lync at my company. Simple really – just a single server instance for 20 people in IT only. Initially, we have about 10 people “testing”. Results:

    I ran into MULTIPLE errors during the install, and there were several steps that aren’t documented in the official Microsoft Deployment Guideline (…hell yes, I read it and studied for 2 weeks before installing!)

    I finally gave up, and contacted Microsoft Support. The engineer installed it, BUT, she had the same problems that I had run into. Eventually, she was able to get it working, but it took 8 hours (over 2 day timeline) for her to get it working. …just when I thought things were going well…

    I came in on Monday morning. Lync had been installed on preceding Friday, and some of the services had stopped. Well, I got the engineer on the phone, the support case bounced to IIS support, because for some STUPID reason, the IIS Application Pools had stopped and wouldn’t restart. He was able to fix it…it had something to do with and encrypted password in the application.config file. …strange…MS couldn’t figure out or explain how it happened. So, he “fixed it” and the application pools started. BUT…

    The server was rebooted, and the services failed to start (again). Turned out, the first MS engineer had to reload the Core Components and the URL Rewrite. Then there was a certificate error, and after reloading the certificates?? …it worked.

    So – in the course of 1 week, I spoke with 3 MS support engineers and we have a system that half-ass works. It works internally, but not externally. But because that is a different symptom, I have another case open.

    For anyone that has a smart-alek reply about it being installed correctly. Have you ever installed Lync 2013? It isn’t a step-by-step installation process. It is horrible, and it isn’t well documented. When MS installed it, they had problems and the post-result was still unreliable and required more MS support engineers. …good-going Microsoft…

    Would I buy it again? sure…I like pain and agony, and I can’t seem to get enough with Sharepoint, so I think I’ll add Lync just so I can keep the frustration level high for everyone else in IT that wants to test another POS MS product.

    So, you ask…am I bitter. You would be too! I’m still trying to get it working, and I haven’t given up. But – it shouldn’t take a certified Lync guru to install and manage it. I’ve worked in IT for 15 years, and been through numerous Exchange and SQL upgrades and installations. Those seems to be a cake-walk compared to Lync. (albeit, Exchange is getting its share of more complicated installs).

    Lync – you suck. Sorry to hurt your feelings, but you need a lot of attention, and it is completely unreasonable. Maybe, we have to continue using Google Chat for our IM. I can tell you one thing for certain – IT WORKS EVERY TIME!!!!!!!!!

    -kb

  22. Steve Salmon

    Hello,

    As this is almost a year old, I’m interested to know if you are having the same frustrations? We utilise Lync here, and although we’ve had some connectivity issues from time to time, generally the feedback is good. We are now on Lync 2013 and the latest update.

    Just wondering, a year on what your view is?

    Thanks

    Steve

  23. IL

    I have to agree with most things on here.

    We are 100% Lync using all/most features, voice, video, conferencing, IM, etc…

    -Lync Mac client sucks. Crashes all the time, half the features don’t work properly.
    -It shouldn’t be that hard to get good quality audio quality.
    -I have made test calls between two laptops, on the same LAN subnet and switch and the call quality sucked. MS qualified laptops and usb headsets. How can this happen??? The audio traffic goes directly between the two laptops, how can you have poor audio quality. The “poor audio quality” bar doesn’t come up. compared to the likes of Shoretel, Cisco, Avaya, etc.. the audio quality just doesn’t compare. This makes me think that Lync’s audio RTP codecs just aren’t great.

    To those that say, “this version” fixes this. This is a phone system guys. Performing upgrades takes time, and interrupts the system. This is the backbone of a companies communication. If it doesn’t work then your loosing money. MS has to stop playing guinea pigs with their customers!

    My belief is a phone system must have five nines plus uptime. For the modern phone system, reboots, updates should not affect peoples current calls or collaboration. It also must be simple in design. Lync has way too many moving parts. Why are there soo many roles, why is it that MS doesn’t provide HA as the norm. I have to buy my own Load balancers just to get HA.

  24. Esa Immonen

    I can understand the frustration as I’m hearing a lot of similar complaints in my own company. I’m responsible for the Lync service and for us Lync is provided by Microsoft Online Service as a SaaS.

    After using Lync for over 3 years and having 99% service level I must say that Lync saves money and time for us. It works and does what is promises. The issues come from our infra. People who whine the most are using poorly setup VPN and often WiFi that is a mess.

    I’ll dig into the issues as that is the obvious agenda. Let’s start from the core, network. It is complex. There is no QoS and the is no quality monitor. WiFi access points are placed with “as much coverage as possible for many users” basis. Many of the AP’s were removed after we pointed out that it is causing issues for Lync and yet all the office workers are able to connect. Sometimes much is just too much.
    There is a lot of bandwidth to consume but it doesn’t really help with Lync. It’s other than that which makes the difference.

    User end points have to have proper hard ware including the latest drivers. I’ve personally fixed so many connectivity problems in general just by updating the drivers. IT is really failing with this basic task.
    I have seen Windows shoving full bars for WiFi connection and quality and yet Lync client shows bad network quality.

    Service provider has the Lync quality monitoring and in 99% of the incidents it can be shown that the amount of jitter and packet drops etc. are causing the issues described also in blog. So I’m here that Lync is the interface for the problem but the problem it self.

    How can I prove that? Simply by getting out of the office with my 3G/4G dongle or by sharing my cell phone data connection or by having any kind of pure internet connection I can connect to the service and everything works. Even when Lync says that the network quality isn’t that good I can use all of the tools in adequate level. Surely there is some distortion with the voice when driving a car and laptop is using shared data connection from the phone.

    All in all, Lync works when everything is in good condition in your office, end-to-end. IT is an investment that will pay back when it’s well managed.

  25. Paul B

    Nothing has changed. Lync still is a poor program. Taking control of some ones desktop is so slow that you are lucky to get 20 minutes of work done in 6 hours. It takes so long to refresh that it is a waste of time and resources. Is there a better program out there or do we have to wait for the revamped Skype program role out that replaces Lync? Yes I got this from a Microsoft guy that said they are not spending time or resources to fix Lync as Microsoft bought Skype and the effort is being applied there instead.

  26. Aleah

    As someone in the IT field who just started at a company that uses Lync on Macs and Windows….it sucks! It’s crap and my team and I just roll our eyes when someone comes to us with a lync issue.

    all the people claiming it’s perfect and we’ve set it up wrong need to just be quiet cause that’s crap too. And to the dude who said it will pull through cause it’s microsoft….HA HA HA HA.

  27. John

    lol. All I read here was “I don’t know how to set up and/or configure Lync properly!”.

    If it makes you feel any better, I don’t get any one of these issues. Works flawlessly.

  28. R W

    There’s plenty of other reasons why I hate Lync.
    I’ve been using it for almost two years now. I suspect my usage is a lot like many small business users who primarily interact with the phone network and outside numbers.

    PSTN recording: Call recording is pretty awful. As a user needing to record a call to the PSTN you have to invite someone else and make your call a conference meeting in order record it. There’s no built in functionality to record a call to the PSTN number and record as you would expect. It really makes no sense to me why a call can’t be recorded. To me, that’s a basic feature of a phone system.

    Blocking numbers: Try to block an incoming call. It’s a pain in the ass for me. There’s no way to do this as a user and it has to be relayed to the IT department. It’s considered functionality of the gateway as best I can tell – and that’s just a stupid feature to exclude. There should be a simple option to block caller-id numbers in the Lync client.

  29. Drew

    Another comment about how incredibly awful Lync is, For those saying it’s great… I have to wonder.. have you used ANY other similar application? I guess not. Lync call quality is the worst I’ve ever dealt with. Connectivity is unstable. Connections drop all the time. Video/screensharing is unreliable and a complete mess. Short of it is.. Lync is the absolute worst collaboration application I’ve ever seen. It ranks right down there in the bottom with Sharepoint (another abomination).

    Why do I use Lync? Because some idiot at the company I work for seems to think that Microsoft is god and everything they make is perfect. They’ve taken away all out POTS phones and we all have to use Lync. The usual conversation is “Can you hear me? Hello? Hello? Hello? You sound like a Cylon from the 1970s Battlestar Galactica… Hang on, I’ll call you with my personal cell phone.” Yes, that’s right… we have defaulted to using out personal cell phones now because no one can make a call and be heard or understood through Lync… and no we’re not using Macs.

  30. ap

    I had to laugh when I saw the suggestion about qualified headsets. Seriously? Qualified headsets? You think that one-way audio is the fault of an unqualified headset?? Audio and video have worked reliably for peer to peer calls for 20 years. My girlfriend and I had video calls over dialup before broadband was even cool. Of course they were choppy, but they were reliable and predictable. If we were both online, the call was successful. And we never had to hang up and try again, because audio and video are basic needs and mature computing elements. They aren’t complicated, and for God’s sake, they don’t require certified devices. Any basic Mic and speakers should suffice. Which is why Skype also always works. Because why wouldn’t it?? All these BS errors with Lync and the ludicrous suggestions about how much server and network engineering must be done to assure that Lync will work ‘correctly’ are infuriating.

    1. Keith Miller

      I agree with you there. Back in 2003 I was having good quality Skype calls on a 1.2GHz Pentium 4 laptop using inbuilt speakers and mic and ISDN connection (256kbps) from Australia to the USA. In 2014, now that I have a 20Mbps broadband connection and Lync, I have issues just sending text messages just interstate, let alone trying to actually speak to someone. But you IT folk keep telling us it’s the implementation. 🙂

  31. Sarbjit Singh

    I have personally setup Lync as PBX for companies with 24 x 7 business operation e.g. oil and gas. Lync has worked from day one. Over 100K IMs per month with over 7,000 PSTN calls. Lync is used on drilling rigs as far Africa over MVSAT (1MB/1MB) and it is all working.

    Conferences and Skype integration has all worked.
    Now we are thinking of writing applications which run as BOT Contacts in Lync contact list. This will integrate with stuff such as SAP.

    Seriously, if you ask me, your installation needs a detailed review. You don’t just put a CD and install. There are many considerations.

  32. Sarita

    Lync is just terrible on a Mac. The new issue I am seeing you plugin hdmi cable lync crashes, you are sitting with a room full of people, there goes precious minutes. You start it again, you have no way to join a voice less call on Mac so that when you rejoin you will be unmuted and there will be ghastly echoes all around until you scramble to mute yourself. Some times in between it will crash by it self, and the same process and pain repetition.
    And after you are done you unplug the hdmi cable, there lync has crashed all over again.
    It is the worst collaboration tool in the world, and I wish our org switch to a better tool.

  33. Swayzie

    if I may add my two cents…..Remote control over Lync is terrible. If the access control pops up during a remote control session I have to ask the user to click ‘Yes’ to continue and then the remote control is lost. Whats the use? Hasn’t Microsoft figured this out yet. So Frustrating. Anyway..thanks for letting me vent! Lol. I use Netviewer for remote control sessions. So much better.

  34. Thomas Olesen

    Well the quality of your LYNC environment reflects directly the quality of your preperation and quality in implemeting technical requirements like firewall ports, DNS records a.s.o

  35. anonymous

    Lync 2013 is even more slower than the previous version of lync. Few more issues that I have faced.

    (1) Does not allow multiple ad (Active Directory) to be selected.

  36. Shazan

    Well, Lync is a nightmare. This shit should be free considering its poor usability. Microsoft is very famous for doing very poor products when it comes to usability. That’s why Apple is dominating more and more …

  37. JohnFY

    Thanks for this blog post. Good to see that it’s high on Google results for Lync problems.

    My company (fortune 100) with >120K installs is suffering from of Lync 2013.
    While there are some nice features, the implementation is horrible. Talk about bloatware!

    Try to close a window with 5 or move conversation, you can visually see Lync close each tab one by one taking 1-2 seconds per tab. This on a recent core i7 8gb ram with Intel SSD laptop.

    Random freezes (Grayed out (Not responding) windows, lost messages.
    So many copy pastes of missed messages sent by email by the person on the other end.

    And the worst of all.. un-focusable app from the taskbar- click on Lync on tabbar, hover over one of the small popups and the corresponding Lync window show up on top of all other apps, click on it and it disappears!! Try again a dozen times – curse MS – lather rinse repeat.
    Kill lync from taskmanager and try to rejoin things from outlook conversation history. This happens at least once a day.

    I live in a region where voip calling is prohibited, so we’re not allowed to use Lync voice and video features. From this thread it lsook like that’s saving me from a lot of grief.
    Never thought I’d be thankful for this luddite voip law.

  38. Zachary Loeber

    Sounds like you just like to whine. Your opinion or Lync would matter if you had any knowledge or experience in setting it up. Unfortunately you are just an end user of a poor implementation. Complain to your company to spend a few euro on some qualified consultants for your network and Lync (yes, a healthy network is a bit of a prerequisite for a network based collaboration solution).

    1. John Appleby

      So because I’m a user and not an admin, I’m not allowed to have an opinion? Yes, this makes perfect sense.

      That’s pretty much the message the Lync advocates have been giving to me.

      By the way, we have invested heavily in Lync since this blog was written, and Lync 2014 was released. I should write a follow-up.

        1. John Appleby

          I should update this post when I get a moment. Yes, our company’s investment paid off to some extent, but Lync is still a pain point every day for anyone that uses it.

  39. Bison Dele

    I hate my Lync/Polycom phone system.

    It’s great when it works, but that only seems to happen directly after setting it up.

    However, most of my interactions are through e-mail or in-person, so I only deal with a phone call every three months, and by that time, my phone and I forget how to work together and it demands I reset it… which means I need to e-mail Exec IT to come upstairs and fart around with it, because if I follow the on-screen directions it just sits there and acts like nothing is happening.

    I guess my complaint is more about the polycom phone.

  40. Stephen D

    I pretty much rely on Lync for communicating company-wide. When it works, it’s great, but it crashes randomly and takes forever to restart (or even start for that matter). Also, if I start Lync before I start Outlook, Outlook doesn’t sync with it for status. The call forwarding has never worked. I found this forum after another crash, by typing the search “Lync is a piece of shit”

  41. JimC

    I read this and felt the need to just throw this out there. First my background is I am a system engineer with 22 year experience in IT with a very diverse background in technology.

    First I want to say is that any technology has many different contributing factors to its success or failure. I have used or managed every iteration of LCS, OCS, and Lync. There have been marked improvement in every release. As much as people love to complain what better product is out there with the feature set Lync has today as well as the consideration and ability to interconnect with so many different apps, products, and platforms.

    Now lets focus on issues. First and foremost you must have the correct infrastructure and properly configured to support it. Second (which applies to the first as well) you should have a qualified and competent Architect or Engineer design, build, and implement the technology. Third you need to train your end user community on how to use the tools and set expectations of what it does and can do as well as what it cant. So most of the problems come from bad decision making. Bad infrastructure decisions related to cost or lack of understanding as well as the systems themselves.

    Comparing a standalone client (Skype) that has no enterprise offerings (security, audit, ability to manage 10’s of thousands of clients calls conferencing) to an Enterprise product is not a very educated comparison kind of like comparing a camper to a house. How many people can you share a PowerPoint presentation with simultaneously with Skype? Lync up to 1000 people at once, same thing with your desktop or any other application as well as white boarding, polls, and Q&A. What kind of reporting is available with Skype? How does Skype communicate to other platforms like AOL, yahoo, and google. How does Skype integrate with Web apps, office tools, and is there any development tools so you can customize it to do exactly what your business wants it to do?

    Keep in mind that Microsoft owns Skype now and you will see a lot more synergy between the products.

    I think Lync is a great Enterprise tool, not perfect but every release makes great improvements. The issues you have can be varied but if they are so prevalent in your environment I would start by looking at the decisions made for implementation and the quality of the Architect\Engineer

    1. Dan

      I still don’t see anything that Lync does better (or more simply) than Webex or GoToMeeting – not that I particularly rate either of those tools, but for me they both beat Lync hands-down. It’s marginally easier to use than OCS, but that’s hardly a huge achievement.

  42. Pingback: My Consumerization Culture eats your Enterprise Security Strategy | People, Process & Technology

  43. Jonathan Booth

    Every single thing that Micro$oft does makes our lives harder. I was programming PCs when Bill first nicked PC DOS from IBM. Since then they have stomped on so may great companies – remember WordPerfect for example. What a great system and company. Since Bill then decided to nick Windows from Apple everything has been going downhill. Their technology simply can’t compete.
    \
    I built a career on Microsoft software – because there wasn’t anything else on the platform and I’m glad to say that I sold my company for more than a few million but since then they have driven me mad.

    Then they started making their applications harder to use with every release – so that you needed training to use a word processor to write a simple letter?

    Let’s not mention the expense and the ‘not fit for purpose’ thousand updates to the buggy software’ every week/month/year. I must have spent over USD 1 million on software and upgrades over my lifetime.They are ripe for a good, well-funded lawsuit.

    What a bunch of ***eholes

    I am now Mucrosoft FREE thank god!

    Android and Linux and freeware will bring them to their knees – they will go bust in 2018 – mark my word and sell your stock.

    They forgot about the customer – goodbye Micro$oft x – actually no kiss – just goodbye and good riddance. You are going the same way as Kodak, Nokia and the other behemoths who failed to change their business models to cope with a changing environment – check out the Harvard Business School case studies – you will be there soon.

    Jonathan

    1. Colin

      Just a slight correction to your comments. Apple didn’t invent windows although they did try to steal the idea with a patent application. The credit for the GUI interface has to go to Xeroc PARC I think.

  44. Garry

    I found some really good answers at http://www.LyncSucksAssMy90YearOldMotherCouldMakeABetterApp.com
    Never in my days of having to be immersed into Microshafts tools and applications have I seen a more useless stroppy application that fails to install the same way, has woolly install/uninstall guides and gives more headaches
    Well done Microshaft you have exceeded my expectations on why I should avoid you as much as possible

  45. James

    I want to love Lync (it’s part of the 365 rollout I’m doing for my org), but I keep having the same problems as others here. Either there are 2 version of Lync out there (the crappy, disconnecting one or the superduper one) or maybe the Emperor actually has no clothes, but people are too afraid to admit it?

    I’m hoping there’s a 3rd option and I just need to jump through a whole load of hoops to get it working properly, but ideally I want it to work like skype and just worked straight off the bat. I know! Maybe Microsoft should buy Skype and get them to help make this work? ….oh wait a minute…

  46. kerry

    Right on Dan. I use by Lync and WebEx a ton. Lync because I have to when someone else set up the meeting and WebEx because I want to when I control the meeting. There is no way as of today Aug 22 2014 that one can compare the video update rates, i.e. end-to-end effective bandwidth, of Lync to WebEx. WebEx blows the doors off of anything I’ve ever used. WebEx is like being there looking over the presenter’s shoulder. It’s real time. Lync is like watching paint dry. Lync is like looking at stars in the sky. The light from them took so long to reach your eyes that they aren’t even there anymore. Again I’m referring to dynamic presentations over the internet (not intranet) where the screen is changing and the user is mousing around a lot. With Lync, it’s over. You’ll have to keep warning the presenter, “Uh, I don’t see what you’re talking about …can you wait for my screen to update please?” What a time killer in a market obsessed with efficiency.

    At the same time, WebEx is owned by Cisco and Cisco owns the network. In other words, Cisco can optimize the network for WebEx packets and shall we say let everyone else bottom feed. I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s the case. But I’m not really interested in reasons or excuses. I just want something that works with crisp screen updates. And that is WebEx.

  47. Jim

    TL;DR all the comments. As I am typing this … my lync doesn’t work on MAC OSX 10.9.4. It seriously sucks balls. I never know if I’m able to log in. Enterprise should never implement Lync especially on prem. I hope the implementation on O365 gives a better experience. btw.. I work for a large company that has a whole team dedicated to Unified Communication.

    In the mean time… i’m receiving messages via Slack, HipChat, Adium (Google Talk), iMessage. Just not Lync

  48. carl

    Just as previous replies have confirmed, Lync has no consistency for functionality, its a toss of the dice. WebEx and GoTo knock it out, and those are the only current ones I’d use if the conference was of any importance.

  49. Vikas

    whenever I open any chat in lync 2013 it displays as I’m typing a message for the other person, pls give a solution for this

  50. Pepe

    I tell you why I hate LYNC. why my boss or any member of the team need to know where I am at every minute? it is stupid. I am giving away too much information about my whereabouts so there is not privacy. I feel like monitored and controlled at all the times. Why I need to know if my boss is on his way from home to the office? Honestly I don’t give a fcuk. In the past we didn’t have this crap. I understand the purpose of the status, what I don’t understand is people “abusing” the technology . In my opinion it should be only 2 statuses, online and offline. That’s all you need to know. If you are in a meeting then you are offline, period. I feel like updating my status “be right back, I am in the toilet”, “i am washing my hands now”, “i am walking back to my seat”, “i am in front of the computer”. “I am ready to change the status”, “I AM HERE”

  51. Pedro Rodrigues

    Came here when I googled Lync sucks in a fit of rage. Deployed Offfice 365 in my organization. E-mail works ok and I am quite happy with it. Now, started implementing Lync. Oh boy, what a piece of garbage. Slow to start up, the iOS client is lousy, QOS is unpredictable, and there are frequent messaging problems where presence is unknown or messages are not sent with a “no response from the server”. Oh and that Skype “integration”? A joke. And to the Microsoft useful idiots that populate this place, stop saying it must be a problem with the deployment, implementation, or whatever. Are you that intellectually dishonest? Have you seen the pre-requirements? They’re a child’s play to anyone with half a brain and some networking experience. We’re in 2014 for Christ sakes, and it if is being sold as simple to deploy and implement, it should be simple to deploy and implement. Period.

  52. ucc dude

    I seriously think the many users with the issues have a badly configured lync environment. I’ve deployed them at three company’s I’ve worked at and it’s works near flawlessly. The audio problem is usually from crappy windows drivers. The network hiccups is from bandwidth shortage to connectivity issues accross the networks. Hiccups in IMs, usually a load balancer misconfigured. I’m glad I don’t have those problems.

  53. ucc dude

    I”m right there with you. I’ve deployed this at three big enterprises I’ve worked for…on my own. I have not ever had the issues these guys have had. They need to cleanup there environment is what I see based off of these post.

  54. Mark

    My biggest issue with Lync, is it seems to randomly ‘freeze’ a shared desktop. I’m doing some work on someone’s machine and suddenly, nothing! The window still says their desktop is shared, but I have no control over anything.
    Personal experience I find TeamViewer, WebEx & even VNC (excluing chat, but for desktop sharing) all more reliable.

  55. Hanne

    couple of things I struggle with.
    1. Why can I not call my customer and then at the same time join a meeting. Phone is challenging with customers and most of my customers have to both call in AND join the meeting to show screen. Really annoying when I already have them on the phone over Lync and have to disconnect. to share screen.
    2. Why can I not have two meetings at the same time????? Often have issue with this, as I often need this capability
    3.most annoying feature EVER. Why do I have to log in to lync at 11PM just to change a meeting in Outlook?????
    Thanks

    1. Bryan Marks

      You can have two meetings at the same time. You have to change your to use a new meeting space instead of dedicated meeting space.
      Because you are probably changing a lync meeting, and lync needs to be connected to the lync server to update that.

  56. Doug

    How do you disable Microphone Auto Levelling Option in Lync client 2010? It is the #1 problem I have, and need this functionality. If not now , when will this be availble?

  57. Moo

    I hate Lync because it runs like shit and takes up a lot of laptop resource. I have to cycle through the various views to make it ‘see’ everyone. Typing is heavily lagged in real time. It can take 20 seconds+ for my text to appear in the window after pressing Enter. It feels like using a badly specced up thin client platform. The UI is apalling. I could go on.

  58. Pingback: The ten reasons I still hate Microsoft Lync | People, Process & Technology

  59. Joe User

    Our company just rolled out Lync to the US operations, and it’s been an epic mess. Having a phone system that won’t work when the power goes out or your computer won’t boot is an incredibly bad idea. Lost calls; people being dropped from conference calls; customers unable to hear you speak or getting dropped in the transfer; and on and on and on.

    I get it, you need a certified expert in Lync deployment to get it to work reliably, and you need to train everyone to use it properly; but when you make a giant investment like that, and everyone is still dead-in-the-water with a power outtage…that’s a dumb solution.

    Spending millions of dollars on a deployment, which then generates millions of dollars in trouble-tickets and lost productivity on an ongoing basis, is not a smart way to save millions on your phone bill. Even in the long run, the cost savings of this VOIP solution is minimal when you look at all of the actual and hidden costs.

  60. Keith Miller

    Could not agree more. My company and I have been enduring Lync for a number of years now. It never fails to amaze me at how unreliable it is. All of your points ring true. In fact I am in a meeting right now and no one (except the meeting organizer) could connect manually, so the organizer had to send out invites to everyone individually. It took us 10 minutes just to get the call connected to everyone. This is for a call we do 5 days a week at the same time with the same people. Every time we call it’s a different drama. Microsoft don’t seem to care. If my company (a 2,500 employee IT company) cannot get Lync to work, then there is something not right with it. I like the features it has, and if they all worked it would be marvelous, but it just does not work properly and is a constant PITA. One of the most hopeless pieces of software going around to date, IMHO.

  61. gibberish

    microsoft makes alot of marketing for that piece of shit called lync….you better be trying the soluion from 3cx they do offer uc software

  62. Keith Miller

    Did I say how much I hate Lync?

    Yet another meeting totally screwed up due to this piece of crap. This time, just me though. Lync claimed my “Audio device is not configured”, yet it was configured and working just fine according to device manager. I could hear sound. My microphone was responding just fine. After closing Lync I noticed a “communicator.exe” that was still running. Would that fricken thing die? Not a chance. 15 minutes later after rebooting and loading everything back up again, I missed my meeting. Woohoo! Thanks Lync!

    Yesterday screen sharing failed just in a two way call. Couldn’t get it to work.

    Tomorrow it will be something else. Lync is forever a thorn in my side.

    BIGGEST PIECE OF CRAP, EVER.

  63. Shane

    When we were looking at a VoIP solution for project I was managing, it was interesting to take into consideration the end-user perspective.
    Regardless of the solution make/brand, the end-user was always partial to using a dedicated hardware device (rather than a ‘softphone’).
    This begs the question – would dedicated hardware devices work better for Lync? Has anyone tried Lync desk phones and had the same problems as being experienced using the software?
    We all know that software can affect other software on the same computer, and maybe this is the issue…perhaps a common factor is happening here?
    Could we safely assume that ‘IT techies’ keep a cleaner OS than ‘end users’?
    (Let’s not forget about network bias too – it is easy to assume that everyone providing input on this blog is an accurate and diverse representation of Lync users)

    1. John Appleby

      So we have Lync phones and also the Polycom conference phones for Lync in our offices. They’re fine from a usability perspective and also link to your PC account at the desk your in, which is neat.

      I spend all my time on the road so they’re not much use to me, but I interact with people using them. The call quality is never great, but I put that down to Lync.

      As an aside, one of my customers uses Cisco Webex for collaboration, and I am extremely pleased with it. There is a link in the meeting invite, which opens either an iPhone/iPad app or a Mac/PC app. This then automatically dials my cellphone, whilst leaving the app available to view a desktop. I find it extremely easy to use and reliable.

    2. Drew

      We have official Lync/Polycom phones where I work. They are terrible (not the phones, but the Lync part). The call quality is very poor at best (audio noise, cannot hear the other party, dial one person/number and get someone else/number, etc.) The Lync UI is weird and complicated/unusable for most employees… the whole thing is one of the biggest communication farces I’ve ever had the misfortune of working with. Dedicated hardware does not make it better.. it doesn’t make it worse either.. it’s still the single most broken system you can choose regardless of how you try and use it.

      To ANYONE considering Lync.. RUN AWAY. DO NOT USE IT! It is the biggest pile of crap on the market. There are so many other products that perform the task so much better than Lync. A string and two tin cans would be an improvement over Lync

      1. Keith Miller

        Right! End-user hardware does not seem to be the issue. No matter whether I run Lync on my desktop, laptop, over a VPN, not over a VPN (my default), external to the company network, internal to the company network, with a Lync approved headset, without a Lync approved headset, on a clean Windows system, not on a clean Windows system, it’s the same horrible Lync experience.

        On Monday Lync told me that my microphone was muted, yet my audio device was not configured. How can both items be true at the same time? I either have a microphone that works and it’s muted, or I don’t have a configured audio device! Yet Lync finds a way to come up with contradictory information almost every day.

        On the topic of contradictory information, one goodie that I recall from the past is when a colleague was presenting a meeting, talking and everyone could hear him OK (we got lucky that meeting), yet Lync was showing him as off-line for 20 minutes! After the meeting I sent him the Lync Achievement “Ghost Talker”.

        I have to stop coming back here, but I have nightmares about Lync. It’s going to send me around the bend.

  64. wim-bart

    Not Lync sux, only the designer of the infrastructure sux and is incompetent. Using Lync for many years over various type of lines, as a complete repleacement of handsets (nothing more nice then a BT headset only or a USB headset). Meetings with video, no problem, and compared to Cisco, its great.

    And yes I recogninze the problems with dropping connections, but only a fool connects multi-site Linc implementations over VPN. It’s a no-go. And yes, Cisco can do that, but how weak is Cisco’s security if they support VPN. And on the client side, I have no experiënce with other clients then Windows, Windows Phone (8/8.1), Android, iPhone, but not on OS/X or Linux, but all work good. I also don’t recognize the issues with multi call’s or setting up conferences within existing call’s.

    I don’t know the Cisco Solution, but with Lync used together with Exchange and Office is something great, special when you use the calendar function and journalling options.

    And yes, there are some things in Lync what are not good. One thing is annoying, when you don’t have an Lync enabled account and you get the client wanting to sign in at login, but with the right policies it’s fixed in an instance.

    1. John Appleby

      I see that you work for an implementation partner. There is a fascinating correlation between those that implement the system, and those that use the system – just read through the comments.

      Implementors and Administrators seem to love Lync.

      End Users seem to hate it.

      I’ve never experienced a product where the gulf between users and implementors is so huge.

  65. Shane

    Feedback from our users is that they preferred the Lync UI over Jabber – so much so that the take-up of Jabber is considerably less than what was for Lync.

    That being said – that implementation was for an IM/collaboration tool, rather than a full VoIP replacement.

    A personal comment: The Cisco UI is horrible, buggy and clearly designed by a technician, not a UI/UX specialist.

  66. Frank Inselbuch

    Friends,

    I have been struggling with Lync on Mac for two years. There was a brief period where it was relatively stable… perhaps it was 14.0.6, not sure. Ever since then the product has gotten consistently worse. I’m not talking about inconvenience, I’m talking about fundamental flaws that make the product unusable. This includes: 1) spontaneously crashing during a call. 2) crashing when connecting a device 3) crashing when disconnecting a device 3) crashing when just sitting there 4) unable to go off mute 5) unable to share 6) unable to see what is being shared 7) unable to join from a browser at all 8) only joins after several attempts… on and on and on.

    I am an advanced user and have taken extreme measures to improve reliability: complete uninstalls per Microsoft’s instructions, testing with different versions, using only a single USB device, installing a clean version of the operating system and then installing ONLY Lync for testing… I even suspected a hardware issue on my previous Macbook and upgraded to a brand-new Macbook Pro 15… did a clean install of the operating system and installed Lync and the one and ONLY application.

    All of these tests have failed and prove to me, without a shadow of a doubt that the Lync client for Mac is a very low priority for Microsoft and a very poorly written/tested piece of software.

    Microsoft doesn’t even pretend that this piece of software is important. Pick any recent version of Lync and examine the issues “fixed” in that version and you will notice that these are fundamental functionality issues that are being resolved… not minor nor obscure things. Some examples:

    2963364 Update adds the ability to select the video camera device…
    3007886 Update enables users to view call history …
    3007879 Computer shutdown is not processed when Lync for Mac 2011 is running
    3007877 Dial pad disappears …
    2909659 Update enables users to interact with a contact from the call history…
    2963355 Audio stutters in a conversation … every 20 to 30 seconds
    2963362 Slow screen updates during application sharing or desktop sharing…
    2844262 Error message when you enter a plus sign on the dial pad…
    2851281 You cannot join an online meeting on a Lync for Mac 2011-based device
    2837048 Desktop sharing or video sharing session disconnects

    Seriously?

    This is like:

    Automobile stops moving forward at times.
    Air can become unbreathable when sendind a text message
    Wife will burst into flames when connecting to a meeting
    A rash will develop on your balls when adding a contact

    This should be such an embarrassment for Microsoft but it doesn’t seem to be.

    Bottom line use Skype which has good interoperability with Lync. Enjoy it for a while because Microsoft will f**k that up soon enough.

    Frank Inselbuch

    1. Shane

      That’s a fairly emotive response and assumptions being made, and understandably so, considering you cannot perform the basic functionality promised.
      My first thought (with my systems engineer hat on) is that the common factor to your problem is your underlying infrastructure (servers etc.) – if that isn’t right then you’ve got no hope of the client working.
      I know, this thread has been down that argument road before, I’m just highlighting what the next logical steps would be, right or wrong.
      Also, Apple is continually making changes to their OS which have negative effects to 3rd party applications and hardware.
      A classic example is where Apple released an OSX update which no longer connected to our Cisco branded wireless access points. We were in discussions with Apple but they refused to acknowledge that there was even a problem. Cisco, investigated the problem and said that whilst the problem existed with OSX, they were attempting to provide a firmware fix as it affected many customers across the World.
      Cisco couldn’t deliver on the firmware update, so we had to drop several wireless functionalities to get OSX connected. It wasn’t until the next OSX update came that the problem was resolved.

      This highlights my biggest issue with Apple – it’s their way or the highway. They want to take a piece of the enterprise market but they want to use the same support model they apply to consumers – that is unacceptable.

  67. John

    After my Lync crashed in the middle of me typing a rather large message, I just googled ‘Why is Lync so awful?’ and this was the main result.

    Thank you for brightening my workday with a summation of actual reasons that, factually, prove Lync is just crap. Get your shit together Microsoft, and stop overcharging for an under-par service.

  68. SVA

    Lync is a junk piece of software, that’s my experience as well.
    And it has not been improving at all.

  69. James

    Lync like anything is as good as your implementation and underlying infrastructure.
    The problem is that 80% if Lync environments are configured by graduates of 70-336 with little other experience, it gets hosted on physicals in a datacenter *cough* server room, and underpinned by second rate gateways and SBCs. Try using the phone client for your (almost definitely going to be an) apple I-phone – admittedly the mac client sucks but the skype for business client will arrive soon so I hope for some improvements for you, but just like Shane says, OSX is a moving target.

  70. Juan Carlos

    Similar story here, google “how to fix problems with lync” and ended up here. We’re a large company, with a system engineered by MS Professional Services.

    I had no problem for years with the old Communicator system, and the Communicator client still works flawlessly with a Lync back end. I also had no problems with voice functionality in Communicator. As far as I can tell the Lync client is just garbage, the latest and greatest “Skype for business” iteration of the client is not much better.

    As for the mass collaboration tools, every time I get a meeting invite from a Lync system I cringe. They never work right, and the presenters spend way too much time fumbling around with it trying to get it to go, if you were able to get your client to join correctly in the first place. These are big companies too, with names you’d recognize. WebEx hasn’t been perfect, but it’s always been better than Lync, and the current edition of WebEx is really solid.

  71. grnadeh

    As someone who’s worked years in an enterprise IT environment, I’m going to tell you this though I know you won’t believe or care:

    There is no better solution. And compared to Lync, most programs suck even worse.

    Skype for Business will be the next iteration and it MIGHT be better, but don’t hold your breath. PS Lync literally is the same program as Office Communicator. MS didn’t suddenly replace Communicator with this terrible program.

    Obviously as IT, my experience with Lync is different. I’ve never seen file transfers not work. I’ve rarely ever personally seen any collaboration issues, Cisco UDPC integration issues or CUCI Lync, or presentation issues.

    The only problems I’ve ever seen with Lync are magical moments where it refuses to connect to a server, or the entire contact list for 2013 won’t render correctly.

    Most of your problems, all of you, stem from trying to connect to external networks and contacts. Lync was never meant to do this, and this is why people mistakenly think Citrix or Adobe or even WebEx offer better solutions.

    Trust me I have my own horror stories. I routinely have 50+ message windows open both from my own department, other IT departments, and clients all around the world. Pinging the bejesus out of me. I’ve had my Lync eat my entire CPU for breakfast before, or make using it utterly miserable to the point where I just rage and don’t re-open it. I’ve dealt with plenty of other asinine problems with Lync dating back to OC 2007. But I would pay to not use Sametime ever again, or gotomeeting, or Skype, or IRC or many other horrid programs.

  72. Chris

    reason #1…you don’t understand the technology and your environment is misconfigured…So why not post an article bashing the product?

    1. Keith Miller

      A) A user just trying to have a Lync/Skype meeting shouldn’t have to understand the technology. That would be like requiring every driver of a car to understand internal combustion thermodynamics.

      B) How do you know the OP’s environment is misconfigured? Did you inspect it personally?

      Meanwhile, my company has now been using Communicator/Lync/Skype4B now for 8 years and it’s still a piece of shit, no matter how many times M$ changes the name of the software to try to break the links with previous criticism.

      I suppose though, some random IT guy will come along and just tell me that my company still hasn’t got it configured right even after 8 years of trying. Either my IT department is full of idiots, or there’s something wrong with the software.

      I will say though, that over those 8 years, some of the problems have reduced in frequency or been improved, but I am still to this day, amazed at how Skype4B whines that “internet connectivity is pretty bad” even for end-users on top of the line fibre optic connections. It makes me wonder which version of the internet the software was designed to operate on? One in a utopian parallel dimension perhaps.

      1. Frank

        You still need a driving licence to drive a car and honestly there should be an equivalent for computers. I can understand your opinion to a certain point (LCS, OCS and lync 2010 had its troubles) But fully patched Lync 2013 and even more Skype for Business works just perfect if you got it set up right.

        1. Jonathan Booth

          Nothing micro$oft makes works as the evidence of continuous updates proves. They will go bust within two years. A failed business.

          1. Frank

            Show me one other product from whatever company that doesnt need updates?! Bugs can accour with new features aswell as changes in common technologies used in the product or used in your environment.

            Its your responsibility to keep products up to date as an IT admin. And if you do so, and got it set up right, lync/sfb will just work perfectly. If you dont like the fast paced style IT changes nowadays you should consider to change your job.

            And with the thing about microsoft going bust in two years… I hold that bet anytime

    2. Frank

      I can only agree with you, if you follow microsoft guidelines, Lync/SfB will work perfectly. If its not working fine you did something wrong period.

      1. Keith Miller

        Frank, up above, you mention “fast paced IT style changes”. The problem with such changes is we are talking about tools required to work to do a job. A tool needs to work and be robust, else it’s useless as a tool. So either the IT department in my company needs to be fired because they are the most incompetent set of individuals ever to walk the earth (having failed to get it right for the last 8 years or so), or there is something fundamentally wrong with Skype4B/Lync/Communicator. Somehow I can’t fathom how a large software development company can conspire to hire the most useless set of IT individuals and then retain them for 8 years unless there was overwhelming evidence that they do know what they are doing and they have done their best to make a broken tool, limp along.

  73. Robert J Birkett

    An interesting blog with some interesting viewpoints. It seems that a lot of people either love or hate it (Microsoft employees are exempt, they love everything Microsoft for good reason) but I’m not in their camp, I’m of the opinion that like most enterprise solutions rushed to market, it is really not the be all and end all of SIP telephony. There are many issues that still have not been addressed although Polycom is finally coming around to the realization that just because your devices are Microsoft certified doesn’t necessarily make them any good. VVX phones that lock out when a user changes their password on their PC? Great idea. I’d like to meet the guy who though that was a great idea along with BToE. One way audio is still a constant thorn in my side since (as usual) there are no real standards. G711? Oh no, Microsoft only supports G729, you will have to pay for media conversion hardware and licenses on the gateway, unless your provider supports it, at a price. EWS autodiscovery failures? IOS devices, why would Microsoft support Apple or Vice Versa? The list of incompatibilities, cost overruns, problems and general dissatisfaction can be seen wherever you search. Want to record SIP Lync calls for QA, customer service etc? That’s fun with SmartTAP. Either way, love it or hate it it is here to stay. 95% of the calls and meetings usually work. The rest, you just have to be creative in answering the angry customers you have to deal with. After all you can only please some of the people some of the time. It is not perfect but what is? Most decisions to go Lync are not based on judgement, they are based on execs who think the interface and integrations is amazing. Right up until you hand them the bill for hardware and licensing SQL server and Lync itself. Then they look rather uncomfortable……..

  74. Kevin Dondrea

    The file sending part, you must not be doing something right, I’ve never had it fail for me. Everything else you said sounds like a Comedy act. I was laughing the whole time saying, “YEAH I’ve had that problem too BAHAHAHAHA”. Great article! 2 thumbs up!

    1. John Appleby

      The sad thing is that years later, this post still holds true 🙁

      I’ve used Skype for Business dial-ins for many of the largest businesses in the world, including Redmond-based software companies, and none of them work.

  75. Jake Jones

    Too bad this guy didn’t know what he was doing when he setup Lync. Maybe he should have hired a professional. It takes training and experience to setup Lync correctly. You can’t cut corners, and you can’t just press “next, next, finish”. You might get IM and Presence to work by accident, but you won’t get calling and conferencing to work unless you know what you are doing. This isn’t an issue with Lync, it is an issue with the “engineer”. This guy would have struggled with any other solution that has the same feature set.

  76. AlterEgo

    Hello,

    I use skype for business 2016 32-Bit, on Windows 7 64-Bit , 8GB RAM Laptop. When I am connected via my own Wireless 4G Hotspot Portable Router, the lync calls within my company or other company’s network (which are federated trusted networks) , always face the audio quality issues in terms of stuttering and robotic voice quality. When i switch to my company wifi network, the call quality becomes better and doable.

    The data plan on my personal 4G hotpsot is also pretty reasonable in terms of speed and volume however I don’t seem to understand what could be the issue. I am usually on business trips and customer visits and always need to connect via my personal 4G router, hence it is becoming a bottleneck for me now.

    I have noticed that this problem only exist with my laptop and probably not with others. So is a fresh windows installation the only solution or there could be some other remedy applied to it.

    Thanks.

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