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Durham University

Computing and Information Services

Frequently Asked Questions

List of FAQ categories

Skype for Business

+How do I add Contacts to Skype for Business?

In the Windows 7 client

  1. In the Find someone text box, type the Surname of the user you wish to add as a contact
  2. Click the appropriate user account to display a list of options
  3. Click the More Options icon ...
  4. Add the user to the appropriate Contact group

In the Windows 8 client

  1. Click the Contacts tile then the Search icon to the right of the word Contacts
  2. Type the Surname of the user you wish to add as a contact
  3. Click the appropriate user account to display a list of options
  4. Click the More Options icon ...
  5. Add the user to the appropriate Contact group
In the Mac client
  1. In the Find a contact text box, type the surname of the user you wish to add as a contact
  2. Select the appropriate user then click the + icon and select the group to add the user to

+How do I add Skype for Business Contact Lists?

If you are using the Windows Skype for Business client
  1. From the client click the Add a Contact icon (to the right of GROUPS | STATUS | RELATIONSHIPS | NEW)
  2. Select the option to Create a new Group
  3. Add a name for your group and press Enter
If you are using the Mac Client
  1. From the client Meno Toolbar, click Contact | Create New Group
  2. Select the New Group you have just create and click the title to edit
  3. Add a new name and press the Enter key on your keyboard to save the changes

+How do I change my status in Skype for Business?

In the Windows 7 client

  1. Click the drop down menu below your name
  2. Select the Status you wish to use

In the Windows 8 client

  1. Click the existing status e.g. In a meeting to display presence awareness options
  2. Select the appropriate Status from the drop-down menu

In the Mac Client

  1. Click the exisiting status e.g In a Meeting to display the presence awareness options
  2. Select the appropriate Status from the drop-down menu 

+How do I communicate with a Skype for Business contact?

For the majority of users, the main method of communication with other Skype for Business or Lync users will be Instant Message (IM). However, if you have the required hardware, you can communicate via video or voice.

To send an IM to a contact, right-click the appropriate name and select the option to Send an Instant Message. To end the IM session, close the conversation window.

To start a video session to a contact, right-click the appropriate name and select the option to Start a Video Call. To end a Video call, click the red Hang Up icon.

To send an voice session to a contact, right-click the appropriate name and select the option to Call | Skype for Business Call. To end a Voice call, click the red Hang Up icon.

You can have multiple conversation sessions running at once. For example, you may start off with an IM then add video for a short while and then switch to voice. You can also have conversation sessions with multiple people, either as a one to one or a conference session.

+How do I communicate with external Skype for Business or Lync users?

The Durham University Skype for Business service is configured for open federation, this means that any other institutions with a Skype for Business or Lync service with the same configuration can communication with Durham users.

To add an external contact via the Windows Client

  1. Click the Add Contact icon
  2. Select the option to Add a Contact Not in My Organisation | Skype for Business
  3. Add the users IM Address - this may be the same as their email address, if not you need to contact the user to ask them what their Skype for Business / Lync username is
  4. Select the appropriate contact group and privacy settings and click OK

+How do I communicate with Skype users?

You can connect directly with Skype using the Skype for Business client. For Skype for Business users to communicate with Skype users, both parties need to add the user to their Contacts and the Skype user must be signed in with a Microsoft account.

The following features are available with Skype users:

  • Presence
  • Person to person Instant Messenging
  • Person to person Audio calls
  • Person to person Video calls

The following features are not available with Skype users:

  • Mutiple user Instant Messaging or Audio calls
  • Desktop and program sharing

Adding a Skype user to the Windows Skype for Business client

    1. Click the Add User icon then select Add a Contact Not in My Organisation | Skype

The add user icon is on the right of the application, just below the 'find someone' box

  1. Add the users Microsoft account email address
  2. Select the Approriate contact group and privacy settings
  3. Click OK

Add a Skype user to the Mac Skype for Business client

  1. In the Find a contact or dial a number tect box, add the users Microsoft account email address then click the + icon to add them to your Contacts list

For more details, see Microsoft's own advice.

+How do I configure a Windows Mobile 8 phone to connect to Skype for Business?

  1. Download and install the Skype for Business client from the Windows Store
  2. Start the Skype for Business App and accept the user agreement
  3. Add your Durham email address in the Sign-in Address box
  4. Add your CIS password
  5. Click More Details and add mds\username in the User Name box
  6. Set the Auto-Detect Server to On then press the tick icon at the bottom of the phone screen
  7. Press the Next icon (right arrow) at the bottom of the phone screen
  8. Turn the Require Wi-Fi for VoIP calls option ON and press the Next icon at the bottom of the phone screen
  9. Add your mobile number then click the Next icon, followed by tick icon then opt to turn on Skype for Business push notifications
  10. Press the next icon to complete the configuration

+How do I configure an Android device to connect to Skype for Business?

  1. Download and install the Skype for Business client from Google Play
  2. Start the Skype for Business client and press OK to start the configuration
  3. Add your Durham email address in the Sign-in Address box
  4. Add your CIS password
  5. Click Show Advanced Option and add mds\username in the User Name box
  6. Set the Auto-Detect Server to On then press Sign In, then Next
  7. Turn the Require Wi-Fi for VoIP calls option ON and press Next
  8.  Add your mobile number then click the press Next
  9. Uncheck the option to sync Skype for Business contacts to your mobile device then press Next, then Done

+How do I configure an iPhone/iPad to connect to Skype for Business?

  1. Download and install the Skype for Business App from the App Store
  2. Start the Skype for Business App
  3. Add your Durham email address in the Sign-in Address box
  4. Add your CIS password
  5. Click on Show Advanced Options and add mds\username in the User Name box
  6. Set the Auto-Detect Server to On
  7. Click Sign In, followed by Next
  8. Turn the Require Wi-Fi for VoIP calls option ON
  9. Click the Next button
  10. Add your mobile number then click the Next button, followed by the Done button

+How do I configure Pidgin GNU/Linux to connect to Skype for Business?

  1. Using your distro's package manager, install Pidgin and its SIPE plugin, e.g. yum install pidgin-sipe
  2.  Find (ps ax | grep pidgin) and kill any Pidgin process that you own and start Pidgin.
  3. Configure a new Microsoft Communicator account with the following values:

Username = your.mailname@durham.ac.uk
Login = mds\loginname
Password = MDS password
Local alias = your name
Connection type = Auto
Authentication scheme = NTLM

Leave all the other fields as they are.

Pidgin supports Instant Messaging (IM), Contacts and Presence Awareness. Video and Audio Conferencing are not available.

+How do I configure Skype for Business on a Mac?

In order to use Skype for Business on a Mac, you need to have Microsoft Office 2011 or 2016 installed.

  1. Start the Skype for Business client via the Launchpad or Finder | Applications
  2. Enter your email address
  3. Set the Sign in as: Automatic
  4. Enter your CIS username in the User ID text box in the format mds\username
  5. Enter your CIS password and opt to Remember my password
  6. Sign in to start the Skype for Business application

+How do I use my mobile phone to communicate with Skype for Business or Lync users?

  1. Select the contact you wish to communicate with
  2. Choose the appropriate option using the four icons available
    • Instant Messaging - type your message and click the Send button
    • Voice call - click the phone icon to make a call to a contact and the red phone icon to end the call
    • Video call - click the camera icon to make a video call to a contact and the red camera icon to end the call
    • Email - click the email icon to create a new message to a contact, add the appropriate text and click the Send button

+I am a Skype user, can I continue to use it?

Skype and Skype for Business are very similar tools and they are also compatible - i.e. a Skype for Business user can connect to a Skype user (see our FAQ to find out how to do this).

Skype for Business is the tool that CIS recommends and supports to connect for your University business - it is configured for your University account and so quick and easy to use. However, there are instances where it is not possible, or appropriate to use it. In this case we recommend Skype as an alternative.

+What devices can I use Skype for Business on?

Skype for Business supports several types of client software that will be available to Durham, including computer-installed client software, web-based clients, and mobile devices. For a detailed comparison of the features provided bySkype for Business clients, see Microsoft's Client Comparison Table for more details. Skype for Business is available to our users on the following operating systems;

  • Windows
  • Mac OS
  • iOS (iPad and iPhone)
  • Android
  • Windows Mobile

Despite no Skype for Business client being available for Linux, we have tested interoperability with a number of other clients that are federated with Skype for Business, including the Pidgin chat client for Linux. This provides Linux users with Instant Messaging (IM), Contacts and Presence awareness, but does not support audio and video conferencing between the clients. See our FAQ on Pidgin for instructions on how to set it up.

+What is Skype for Business Conversation History and how does it affect me?

What is Conversation History?

Skype for Business saves Instant Messaging (IM) chats via Conversation History.

Each IM session you start will be captured and can be viewed in the Skype for Business client, Outlook (or another email client of choice) and Outlook Web App.

Please see https://goo.gl/49jcsq for further details about Conversation History in the Skype for Business client.

For Outlook and the Outlook Web App, your IM chats can be found in the folder Conversation History. This folder functions in the same way as any other email folder.

How does Conversation History affect me?

All IM chat sessions are captured and stored in your Office 365 mailbox and as such may be subject to Freedom of Information Requests, Subject Access Requests and/or the Data Protection Act.

All Durham Skype for Business users have Conversation enabled and all parties of an IM session will have the chat history stored in the Conversation History folder of their Office 365 mailbox.

Conversation history with external Skype for Business users is also captured, but users external to Durham may not have Conversation History enabled - they can manually captured IM sessions via the keyboard shortcut Ctrl | S.

Further information about the Freedom of Information Act and how it affects you can be found at https://www.dur.ac.uk/foi/

Further information about Subject Access Requests and how they affect you can be found at https://www.dur.ac.uk/data.protection/subject_access_requests/

Further information about the Data Protection Act and how it affects you can be found at https://www.dur.ac.uk/data.protection/

+What is Skype for Business Meeting Recording and how does it affect me?

What is Skype for Business Meeting Recording?

When you record a Skype for Business meeting, you capture audio, video, instant messaging (IM), screen sharing, PowerPoint slides, whiteboard activity, and polling. Only meeting presenters can record a meeting and save it on their computers and all members of the meeting can see it is being recorded.

How does meeting recording affect me?

If you are the presenter of the meeting the recording is stored locally and you would need to choose what to do with the recording - please see https://goo.gl/CVaRuZ for further details about using Recording Manager.

Recorded Skype for Business recording may be subject to Freedom of Information Requests, Subject Access Requests and/or the Data Protection Act. 

Further information about the Freedom of Information Act and how it affects you can be found at https://www.dur.ac.uk/foi/

Further information about Subject Access Requests and how they affect you can be found at https://www.dur.ac.uk/data.protection/subject_access_requests/

Further information about the Data Protection Act and how it affects you can be found at https://www.dur.ac.uk/data.protection/

+What is the right Instant Messaging/presence/conferencing tool for me?

Use the table below to help you make sure you're using the right tool for the job:

I'm using a... Recommended tool Alternative option
CIS Managed desktop/laptop (Windows) Skype for Business client
Non-CIS Windows desktop/laptop Skype for Business web app is an alternative way to join the meeting if you don’t have Skype for Business installed. It opens automatically to connect you to the meeting. (external link)
Linux PC Pidgin - for instant messaging and presence only If you're looking to hold an audio or video call, we recommend you use Skype
Mac Skype for Business client Skype for Business web app (external link)
Mobile phone/tablet

Windows 8

iphone/ipad

Android

+What is the Skype Directory and how do I use it?

The Skype Directory feature in the Windows Skype for Business client gives you the ability to search for Skype (the free service from Microsoft) users. Once you have found the Skype user account you are looking for, you can add it to your Skype for Business Contacts.

You will not find Skype for Business contacts via the Skype Directory as these details are only stored on a Skype for Business instance i.e. either on Skype for Business Office 365 or an on-premise install of Skype for Business.

To use the Skype Directory, simply click the Skype Directory tab and type the name of the you are looking for in the Find Someone search field - if they have a Microsoft Skype account, you should see their details.

 Additional information about the Skype Directory and how to use it can be found at https://goo.gl/P8j1bQ

+Where can I download the Skype for Business client from for use on non-managed (standalone) PCs?

The Skype for Business Basic client can be downloaded from the URL below.

https://products.office.com/en-us/skype-for-business/download-app?tab=tabs-3

The Skype for Business Basic client provides much of the same functionality as the as the full Skype for Business client, with the exception of the following:

Calendar delegation
Gallery video view
OneNote sharing
Recording