Since its details were released, the email hosting solution Microsoft (News - Alert) Lync Server 2013 has piqued the interest of industry experts and consumers alike. The email hosting server is an enterprise-ready unified communications platform and currently is in public beta. With a plethora of new features ranging from multiparty HD video to seamless Skype (News - Alert) support, the solution has garnered overall positive reviews and is expected to emerge as an extremely popular email hosting server, just like its predecessor.
Lets talk in details about the features of Microsoft Lync Server 2013 and what makes it different from the other email hosting servers currently on the market. Designed to enhance overall productivity, the latest version has been redesigned from top to bottom.
For starters, the email hosting server has a unified server for monitoring and archiving and has been shifted into the Front End Server role as optional features. The A/V Conferencing Server is also now located in the Front End and the Director role is no longer "recommended" but optional; as according to Microsoft one can "safely exclude the Director with confidence that the Front End Servers will provide the same services in their place."
Chat has also undergone a change in the latest version of the email hosting server. Group chat is defunct and now PresistentChatService, PersistentChatStore, and PersistentChatComplianceStore modules are coming into play. Even the administration tools have been integrated with the Lync Server control panel and it also includes PowerShell cmdlets.
Additionally, long time users of the email hosting offering will also notice a new version of the Lync Web app, which now supports full conference support. However, one of the most important additions to Lynch 2013 is the support for IE10, Windows 8, Windows Phone, iOS, and Android (News - Alert).
There are more enhancements to the newest addition of Microsoft Lync, which further enhance the functionality of enterprises. A notable new feature is the addition of the Persistent Chat Manager to RBAC aka the role-based administrator console. RBAC also reintroduces the Response Group Manager role for managing response group queues, a feature which was dropped in the 2010 version. The server also includes new routing features, which have been designed to enhance enterprise voice and also improve intertrunk routing. Other enterprise voice features include support for manager/delegate simultaneous ringing, voicemail escape, and caller ID presentation.
Some robust improvements made to Lync Server 2013 include support for HD resolution up to 1080p and IPv6, as well as support for IPv4.
Hybrid deployment support for on-premise and hosted (cloud-based) Lync, a unified contact store with Exchange Server 2013, and the ability to use high-resolution photos for contacts enables Lync to work with the Legal Hold feature in Exchange for compliance and e-discovery needs.
Currently, Microsoft Lync 2013 is available to be previewed on the Microsoft website and for now only side-by-side migration and co-existence will be supported with OCS 2007 R2 and Lync 2010, but not OCS 2007 R1.
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Edited by Jamie Epstein