Forcing Lync Web App Client
I learned a neat trick the other day. Let’s say you have a meeting you need to schedule with Lync Online (this works on-premise too) that you need to force the attendees to meet over the browser (Lync Web App Client). Well this is actually pretty simple, all you need to do is modify the meeting URL. Just add ?sl=1 to the end of the URL.
So your URL may be like the following - https://meet.lync.com/tenantname/jsmith/XYZXYZ
All you need to do is change it to be - https://meet.lync.com/tenantname/jsmith/XYZXYZ?sl=1
When a user clicks on the link, they will be forced into the Lync Web App Client. They will not be prompted to install the Lync client.
There are some considerations for the presenter on the type of web meeting you are planning to give.
- Sharing Slides - If the meeting the presenter is showing some slides instead of sharing your desktop or PowerPoint as a Program try using the PowerPoint option. This uploads the PowerPoint into the Lync Online service versus running the slides locally. This has two advantages first you will get better performance. Second no browser add-in is required; a browser add-in is required if you are sharing your desktop or a program. This may be important to you of the meeting audience is outside of your organization and you may not know what computer lockdown requirements they may enforced.
- Audio - In the web meeting you will most likely need to support audio; an add-in is required and the user will be prompted to add it if it is not there. Like I mentioned, your meeting may be with an external audience that may not support add-ins because they have lockdown requirements on their computers. This is not a problem for Lync Online. You can purchase Audio Conferencing Partner (ACP) that will provide an integrated 1-800 call in service. This will allow anyone to call the 1-800 number be integrated into the Lync Online meeting. The person attending the meeting can simply select the option that they will call the 1-800 number for the meeting versus installing the add-in.
- Other Stuff – Many of the other features of such as polling, whiteboarding, IMing in the meeting, sharing files, etc. do not require an add-in. If you need to share you need desktop or do a video sharing session, and you must force the web meeting with the browser, an add-in is required. I have provided some references below.
Here are some good resources.
- Lync Online Clients - http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/lync-online-clients.aspx - this shows you all the clients that can connect to Lync Online.
- Lync Comparison Tables - http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg425836(v=ocs.15).aspx#Conferencing – There is a good table here that will give you more details on what is supported through the browser and what is not.
- Lync Web App Supported Platforms - http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg425820.aspx - This is a good reference that gives detailed support of browser types.
- Interoperability with Third-Party Dial-in Audio Conferencing Services - http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/lync-online-meetings.aspx - Read ACP providers for the Lync Online service.