Lync Server Integration with Other Microsoft Applications

One of the greatest strengths of a Microsoft product is that it is guaranteed to integrate with other Microsoft applications. Not only does it integrate in the sense that applications work with each other, Microsoft actually hooks the Lync Server technologies into other applications. This means that rich presence information can be shared with other applications and that one doesn’t necessarily have to switch to the Communicator client to interact with other users on the system. Not only do these integration points give other applications access to Lync Server, but in some cases, it also gives Lync Server access to information stored in other systems such as SharePoint or Exchange.

Integration with Exchange
Probably the coolest of the new integrations with Exchange is that Exchange 2010 Outlook Web App (OWA) now has Presence and IM integration built in. This provides useful features such as

. Presence for internal and federated Lync Server contacts

. The capability to start and maintain chat sessions directly from OWA

. Lync Server contact list integration, including adding and removing contacts and groups

. The capability to control the presence state from OWA

Lync Server also integrates into the meeting creation process, enabling you to create a voice and/or video conference at the time of the meeting creation. This gives users a onestop shop to service meeting needs. Lync Server also integrates with the Unified Messaging role in Exchange that enables Lync Server to use Exchange as the storage for voice mail messages.

Integration with SharePoint
Lync Server has taken an interesting approach to its integration with SharePoint. Like older versions of Communications Server, Lync Server displays Presence information anywhere a contact is shown in SharePoint and enables users to start an IM or audio conference with a click on the Presence icon.

What’s new is that Lync Server can read information from SharePoint to allow users totally new functionality. Probably the best example of this is the concept of a skills-based search. A Communicator user can search a company for “anyone who knows Exchange” as an example, and then Lync Server looks at data stored in SharePoint about users and identifies those who list that particular skill. It returns a list of users who do have that skill. This type of bidirectional integration opens up a whole world of possibilities for making it easier for users to connect with each other in a productive manner. Imagine being a new employee and having the option to ask Lync Server to show you a list of people in HR who deal with vacation requests and that are currently online and not busy. This is better than looking at a company intranet, searching for the HR pages, digging through documents to see who handles vacation requests, looking up the numbers, and then trying each of them until you finally get through to someone.

Integration with Office
Lync Server also integrates with some functions in Office 2010, including Backstage, a mechanism in Office 2010 that enables an unlimited number of people to concurrently edit a common document. Lync Server provides Presence information about other people working in the document, providing quick and easy IM collaboration between editors of the document.

Source of Information : Pearson-Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Unleashed

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