Join my full online day on how to design #Skype4B voice in a cloud first world

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Join me March 3oth for my full online day on how to design Skype for Business in a cloud first world. Because of the high score at the last IT/Dev Connections session I did october 2016 Penton asked if I could do a full day, and it is a huge honor to get the chance. I will focus on three topics

  • How to think when designing global voice solutions with Skype for Business.
  • Explore online, hybrid and on-premises deployments and how Azure MFA plays in to the mix.
  • Deep dive in to codecs, protocols, routing and the optimal media path

Skype for Business Online is a different kind of infrastructure technology than the rest of Office 365 and I will focus on helping you understand how to prepare for success. I will answer live Q&A during the sessions, so make sure you sign up!

 

Talking about #Skype4B design @NICconf

logoFebruary 2nd I have the honor of speaking at the Nordic Infrastructure Conference 2017 for the 6th consecutive year. This is a premiere event with a great expo hall and a list of world known speakers such as Johan Arwidmark, Sami Laiho, Wally Mead to name a few.

I will talk about how I design voice solutions with Skype for Business where I will share my three main design principles. Make sure you catch it if you are wondering about how to design in a cloud first world. Check it out and sign up here

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Office 365 Multi-Factor Authentication requirements explained

Short version

mf_authMulti-Factor Authentication (MFA) in Office 365 is dependent on Modern Authentication which is oAuth 2.0 via ADAL that authenticates the user in Azure AD

Longer version with links to deep dives

  • What is MFA?
    • Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) in Office 365 requires Modern Authentication (oAuth2.0 + ADAL) to be enabled for the clients and services that are going to use MFA
    • MFA, Two-step verification, is a method of authentication that requires more than one verification method combined with the Azure Authenticator App, SMS or phone call verification
    • Read more here
  • What is Modern Authentication?
    • Modern Authentication is oAuth 2.0 used via ADAL to enable newer applications (Outlook, Word, OneNote, Skype for Business and other Office applications) to authenticate to services such as Skype for Business, Exchange and SharePoint
    • In Office 2013 march 2015 update and later Modern Authentication is supported and in Office 2016it is enabled by default and will use an in-application browser control to render the Azure AD sign-in experience
    • Read more here
  • What is oAuth?
    • Open Authentication 2.0 (oAuth 2.0) is used as a component via ADAL as the web-based authorization flow between servers or clients and servers
    • Read more here
  • What is ADAL?
    • Microsoft Azure Active Directory Authentication Library (ADAL) is a tool in the .NET framework that lets client applications authenticate users to Office 365 and Azure AD
    • Read more here
  • Two options are available for SSO with on-premises AD that requires Modern Authentication
    • Pass Through Authentication (PTA)
      • Works with Office 365 only
      • Enabled on latest AADC with outbound connection only, no DMZ server
      • Just set up several AADC and it is automatically loadbalanced resulting in low operational cost
      • Does not store password in Azure AD, authenticates user in on-premises AD first and presents MFA after that if enabled
      • In combination with password sync you are not dependent on AADC uptime
      • Read more here and here
    • ADFS 3.0
      • Used for hybrid Skype for Business and Exchange environments
        • Skype for Business server Hybrid supports Modern Authentication, but will do NTLM authentication to on-premises AD and give MFA pop-up when authenticating to Exchange Online, read more here 
        • I recommend Pointsharp MFA for on-premises and hybrid Skype for Business deployments
        • Exchange Server hybrid requires MFA Server, read more here
        • For best Azure MFA result an Online only deployment is recommended
      • ADFS is best for larger organizations
      • More complex and requires proxy servers in DMZ with public IP and Certificate
      • Requires loadbalancer for high-availability
      • Is required when doing MFA with Smart Card, 3rd party tokens and certificate based authentication
      • Read more here
  • You can now use Microsoft Intune to control MFA options and turn of MFA for certain subnets and conditions, read more here
  • Read about conditional access, MFA with Intune Hybrid and SCCM
  • Use Azure AD Premium with automated password roll-over for business social media profiles protected by a MFA enabled identity with centrally controlled delegation, read more here

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Running the Skype for Business Partner Airlift in Norway January 2017

skype-for-business-weblogo16-18 January Microsoft has planned a Skype for Business Partner Airlift in Oslo and I am running it. For only 6 600 NOK you will get 3 days of technical training and 2 days exam prep. The airlift is designed to enable partners to understand and design the new workloads for Skype for Business in Office 365 with hands on. I will expand the content with my experience and I will share my thoughts on voice and video design in a cloud first world. We will cover

  • Cloud PBX
  • Meeting Broadcast
  • Hybrid Voice
  • Cloud Connector Edition
  • Network planning
  • Skype Operations Framework

Two days of exam prep for exam 70.334 is included as part of the airlift. Head over to the sign-up page today, limited seats are available: http://www.bouvet.no/Kurs/Kurskalender/Microsoft/Skype-for-Business/

Solved the auditorium style meeting scenario with Skype Meeting Broadcast

The challenge is to create a good experience in an audiotium and in the Skype Meeting Broadcast at the same time

When is this a challenge?

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When you want to have a conference talk, all hands meeting, training or product update with a good experience in the on-site auditorium and in the Skype Meeting Broadcast stream

Why is this a challenge for audio?

If you need to use a microphone in the room there is often no way to get the same sound in to the computer you are using to stream the meeting. You may be in a location where you can not integrate equipment that will solve this problem. Using a speaker device will often not give a satisfactory experience since it picks up sounds in the room, echo and the speaker may feel distant and if not speaking loud enough the speaker may be noise cancelled

Why is this a challenge for presentation?

If you want to present a PowerPoint and combine with a demo you may encounter scenarios where application sharing may break if you are in the meeting from you presentation computer, You may want to demo Skype for Business that will disconnect the meeting or you want to show multimedia with a good experience in the room and a good enough experience in the stream

Two devices are part of the primary solution

  1. Zoom H4n Recorder with two mic in and two audio outh4n
    • 2x XLR inputs from the existing microphones in the room or a system you bring with you
    • The second input can be audio from your presentation computer when you want to show multimedia
    • One USB output that you can set as the audio device in your Skype for Business client with good quality and no interference
    • One line out mini jack that you can plug in to the speaker system to get good sound out in the room
    • Supplementary devices
      • DMS 70 Quattro
        • XLR mic output
        • Two wireless microphone for two speakers or QA in the room
        • Supports up to 4 microphones
        • Update: Seems like the DMS 70 is discontinued
          • An alternative can be the Shure BLX14 Dual Wireless Lavalier Microphone System With 2 x WL185 with a XLR merger like the
            Millenium SML 21.
          • I have not tested this setup, but it has the right attributes for it to work
      • Shure A15LA Line Adapter
        • Converts computer line out to microphone sound for a good audio experience in the H4n recorder
        • Regular audio sounds terrible without this adapter
        • Now you can output sounds from your presentation computer in to the stream
  2. Magewell USB Capture HDMI devicemagewell
    • Converts HDMI output from your computer to USB webcam input for your streaming computer
    • Requires two computers, one presentation computer and one production computer which is best practice for Skype Meeting Broadcast
    • Supplementary devices
      • Standard HDMI splitter for splitting the presentation computer HDMI signal and send it to the projector and to the Magewell device

Afterthought: You may want to have a separate production computer for webcam video of the speaker, then it will be a simple task for the producer to switch between the presentation video or the speaker video

Bringing it together

Below is a gif illustrating the devices connect

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Speaking av TechDays Sweden 2016

November 16th 2016 I had the pleasure of talking at TechDays Sweden about How to get started with Skype for Business Meeting Broadcast. This is the second time I have the honor of attending as a speaker and this is a really great conference with a good expo floor and great keynotes.

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Heard about Meeting Broadcast in Office 365? It is available for all Enterprise licenses. You can use your regular Skype for Business client to stream your meeting to any device without any client requirements. After the meeting it will be available on demand and you can get statistics on how many have consumed your broadcast. New features even include a QA module for two way communications with your attendees. This session will walk through how to get started, best practices and how to look professional doing it.

Watch the recording

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Video: https://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechDays-Sweden/Techdays-Sweden-2016/How-to-get-started-with-Skype-for-Business-Meeting-Broadcast–Level-200
Date: 16 Nov 2016
Time: 11:00 – 12:00
Room: M6

Read more and sign up here: http://tdswe.se/session/how-to-get-started-with-skype-for-business-meeting-broadcast-level-200/

My unbiased review of Skype for Business Unleashed

Nevermind! My name is in it!

With 15 other awesome Skype for Business subject matter experts. 1001 epic pages on everything you thought you did not need to know about Skype for Business. It just has to be a great book, run out and buy it :)

Also look up my chapter on VDI, cool stuff is happening there. Was an honor to be part of it, thanks Pat Richard for involving me :)

Scored a 20 minutes theater session at Microsoft Ignite 2016

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Due to big demand my session is now set up three times in the Community Hub area. Make sure you catch a run

Check out my profile on the Ignite site as well: https://myignite.microsoft.com/speaker/15895

I am happy to announce that I will return to Microsoft Ignite as a speaker. This time I will do a 20 minute theater session on how I design a global Skype for Business voice solution. There is not much I can dive in to in 20 minutes, but if you want an overview of what your options are and what I think about when talking global voice with customers and partners, make sure you attend this theater community session at Microsoft Ignite. Hope to see you there :)

Check out the other Skype for Business sessions at Ignite

I’m Speaking at IT/Dev Connections 2016 in Las Vegas!

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For the first time I will have the honor to speak at IT/Dev Connections, being held at the ARIA Resort in Las Vegas from October 10th to 13th. ARIA is a great venue where I had the opportunity to talk at the 2014 Lync Conference, and it works well for a more intimate conference like this.

IT/Dev Connections stands out from the usual vendor mega-conferences by focusing on real world technology and experiences from subject matter experts. I am really proud to be part of this group and looking forward to share my lessons learned.

I’ll be delivering two sessions in the Enterprise Collaboration track:

How I design global voice solutions with Skype for Business – A two way session where we get to dive in to global voice design best practices and going outside the comfort zone of what is recommended but still works as long as you know what you are doing :)

Succeeding with Skype for Business Meeting Broadcast – I will share my experiences using Meeting Broadcast since preview. Will share tips and tricks, hardware advice and how to scale it in larger networks

You can see the full event schedule and more details at http://www.itdevconnections.com/

I hope to see you there!

Launching #Skype4B Survival Guide on Technet Wiki

I created a Technet Wiki called Skype for Business Survival Guide. The survival guide holds a collection of important downloads, documentation and whitepapers for Skype for Business. I hope you will join me in maintaining this wiki with new resources and community tools and activities.

I also created a simplified link for the page and a logo. Check it out, it has over 17 community made tools listed! Gotta love the Skype community :)

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Use this link when linking to the page http://bit.ly/Skype4bSG

Check out my OCS, Lync 2010 and Lync 2013 download pages as well: https://msunified.net/category/lync-server-2013/downloads/