Integrating OCS 2007 R2 and Polycom Telepresence

A quick tip to anyone integrating the Polycom HDX 8000 video conferencing unit with Microsoft OCS 2007 R2.
When you create the OCS 2007 R2 user to be used for the Polycom HDX 8000 (aka Conference Room User), a key requirement is that this OCS 2007 R2 user CANNOT be fully enabled for Enhanced Presence (by full enabled, I mean that the OCS R2 has the “Enabled enhanced presence” checkbox enabled on their account AND have logged in at least once with Office Communicator 2007 or Communicator 2007 R2).
The user can have the Enhanced Presence checkbox enabled, they just must not have signed into OCS 2007 R2 with a Communicator 2007, 2007 R2, or Communicator Web Access (in OCS 2007 R2).
When you create a new user in OCS 2007 R2 this Enhanced Presence checkbox is enabled by default. The state that the OCS user is in before they sign into OCS at least once with Communcator 2007 or 2007 R2 is referred to as “Stage 2″ in this blog article which describes the 3 stages an OCS account can exist in regards to enhanced presence: http://blogs.technet.com/b/lync/archive/2008/03/06/differentiating-between-stages-of-enhanced-presence.aspx.
For the adventurous spirits out there, I attempted to ‘revert’ the OCS 2007 R2 Conference Room User from Stage 3 to Stage 2 by changing the associated “RichMode” value to False for the user in the OCS database, and this did not work. I believe signing in the first time with Communicator 2007 or 2007 R2 also changes some other settings.
Also, if you encounter this error “The registrar has rejected the system’s attempt at registration”, Jeff Schertz has a good blog write-up on why this could be happening and how to resolve it: http://blog.schertz.name/2011/01/hdx-sip-registration-with-server-2008-r2/.
For more on integrating the Polycom HDX 8000 with OCS, see the
Polycom® HDX and RMX™ Systems Integration with Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 Deployment Guide
http://downloads.polycom.com/bridging_collab/rmx/relnotes/OCS_Deployment.pdf

A quick tip to anyone integrating a Polycom Room Telepresence solution (e.g. the HDX series) with Microsoft OCS 2007 R2.

If you are having trouble signing into OCS 2007 R2 with the OCS conference room user on the Polycom unit, read-on, and consider upgrading the software on the Polycom.

Older Polycom software had a requirement that the OCS 2007 R2 user used with the Polycom unit (aka ‘Conference Room User’) COULD NOT be fully enabled for Enhanced Presence. By “fully enabled” I mean that the “Enabled enhanced presence” check-box was enabled on the OCS account AND the account has been logged into at least once with Office Communicator 2007, Communicator 2007 R2, or Communicator Web Access.

Once the OCS 2007 R2 conference room user was enabled for enhanced presence and had logged into OCS 2007 R2 at least once, the Polycom unit could not sign-in.

Enhanced Presence is supported on newer software releases for the HDX units (for awhile now). Recent Polycom support guides and software downloads can be found at the bottom of this page: http://support.polycom.com/PolycomService/support/us/support/strategic_partner_solutions/microsoft_software_download.html.

The latest version of the Microsoft UC Integration Guide that covers both Lync and OCS is available here: http://support.polycom.com/global/documents/support/setup_maintenance/products/video/Deploying_Visual_Comm_Admin_Guide_WV4.pdf.

Some older Polycom guides still show in Internet searches and are out-of-date, such as this one:  the Polycom® HDX and RMX™ Systems Integration with Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 Deployment Guide.

A Refresher on the Multiple States of Enhanced Presence: When a new user is created in OCS 2007 R2 the Enhanced Presence checkbox is enabled by default. The state that the OCS user is in before they sign into OCS at least once with Communicator 2007 or 2007 R2 is referred to as “Stage 2″ in this good blog article which describes the 3 different stages an OCS account can exist in regards to enhanced presence: http://blogs.technet.com/b/lync/archive/2008/03/06/differentiating-between-stages-of-enhanced-presence.aspx.

Tip: For the adventurous spirits out there, I attempted to ‘revert’ an OCS 2007 R2 Conference Room User from Stage 3 to Stage 2 by changing the associated “RichMode” value to False in the OCS database, and this did not work. I believe signing in the first time with Communicator 2007 or 2007 R2 must also change other settings which cannot be reverted.

Also, if you encounter this error “The registrar has rejected the system’s attempt at registration“, Jeff Schertz has a good blog write-up on why this could be happening and how to resolve it: http://blog.schertz.name/2011/01/hdx-sip-registration-with-server-2008-r2/.

For more on OCS 2007 R2 Enhanced Presence see the InsideOCS blog post: Enhanced Presence and Upgrading Communicator Clients.

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