Category Archives: Lync PowerShell

QuickTip: Disable Skype RGS Queue Time-Out or Overflow via PowerShell

Recently on the TechNet forums, someone was attempting to disable a response group queue time-out and overflow programatically within a PowerShell script.  In the control panel, there is an obvious check box, but in the PowerShell object, there is no obvious Boolean equivalent to enable/disable.


The simple trick is to set the TimeoutThreshold and OverflowThreshold values to $null instead of a numeric seconds value.

The following simple method will clear both of these checkboxes for you.

$My_RSG_Queue = Get-CSRGSQueue -identity [Your-Queue-Identity]

$My_RSG_Queue.TimeoutThreshold = $null

$My_RSG_Queue.OverflowTheshold = $null

Set-CSRGSQueue $My_RSG_Queue


Updated Tool: Lync Common Area Phone Management (GUI)

If you haven’t seen it or played with it, there’s a free tool available to you that I’ve developed that will help manage Lync Common Area Phones with a GUI interface.  There is nothing to install, it’s a pure PowerShell script you can run.  Read more about that here if you haven’t seen it:

What’s new is that it’s been updated again due to a request by a user.

Marcel writes:

“Hi Anthony, thank you for this great tool. It is very helpful doing maintenance on the common area phones.
I have a few questions/suggestions:
– You cannot select multiple cap’s to make changes. For example: I want to assign a new Pin Policy on 100 phones. I have to do it one by one now. Can you make it possible to select multiple phones?
– The company I work for has one the largest and complex installations. When I start this tool I see all (3300+ phones on 100+ pools). Is it possible that you add a feature to select the correct pool?”

Introducing Version 1.2!  These capabilities have now been added.  As you can see in the screenshot below, there is a Filter dropdown that allows you to filter by pool, or all pools.  The ability to select multiple phones and set the pin, make changes, or remove them is now available as well.  If you wanted to grab a selection of phones from pool1 and move them to pool2 with a new voice policy and dial plan, just select the phones on the left, change the relevant dropdowns, and click the “Save Changes” button.  Fields that do not have values selected will not change when the “Save Changes” button is pressed.   This way, you can modify only one or a few settings at a time.


If you have any thoughts, comments, bug reports, or feature requests, the Q/A section in the TechNet gallery is the best place, but I’m also watching here as well.

As with any free tool you find on the Internet, use at your own risk!

To download the program, please find it here in the TechNet Gallery:

If you like it, please give it 5 stars over at the TechNet Gallery.  If not, please drop me a line before you rate it and give me a chance at fixing whatever bug you may have found.   I might also be able to add a feature you’d like to see!

Thanks again and let me know what you think!

TL;DR Just Tell Me How to Edit Lync IVR from PowerShell

The previous article was a bit of a walkthrough on creating and modifying a Lync Interactive Response Group from the Lync Management Shell.  However, the meat of that and the reason it was written was really focused around how to modify an existing group.  The method to accomplish this isn’t clear at all if you’re just starting out and reading through TechNet.  As promised, here’s the short version for those who already know their way around.

To modify a workflow, we first need to pull it into a variable like so:

$workflow = Get-CsRgsWorkflow -Name “Our IVR”

To review settings, we can drill down into the object a bit at a time.  For example, we can see what the DefaultAction of the workflow is by typing $workflow.DefaultAction.  We see that the action is TransferToQuestion and there’s a Question attribute.  So now we can drill into the question attribute by typing $workflow.DefaultAction.Question.  We can also see there’s an AnswerList attribute, which is an array of answers.  We can access that array directly by specifying $workflow.DefaultAction.Question.AnswerList.


You’ll notice that the AnswerList is a variable, and we can access it as such.  To get at a specific answer we can use $workflow.DefaultAction.Question.AnswerList[2] the same way we’d access any array in PowerShell.


We can add responses by $workflow.DefaultAction.Question.AnswerList.Add($YourNewAction).  This allows us to drill down deeper into the new answer the same way.  In the example below, you can see me getting at an answerlist that is an option from a previous answer.


To remove an answer, you’d use AnswerList.Remove() and specify which answer in the array you’d like to remove as seen here: $workflow.DefaultAction.Question.AnswerList.Remove($workflow.DefaultAction.Question.AnswerList[1]).

So far, we’ve only modified our $workflow variable, to write our changes back, we only need to type: Set-CsRgsWorkflow $workflow and we’re done!

Thanks for reading!

One Line: Apply Policies To Lync Users Not in a Group

A while ago I wrote about one line of PowerShell to bulk enable users based on group membership.  The question has recently come up, what if they’re not in a group?  That’s a little bit trickier, but not too rough.

Why might you want to do this?  Perhaps we want to set a policy for everyone but exclude certain executives or the sales department.  Another example, let’s say we have two mobility policies, MobilityEnabled and MobilityDisabled.  We could run a scheduled task that grants MobilityEnabled for all Lync users in a group, but for those who have been removed for the group, we want to turn it off by granting MobilityDisabled (if you don’t want any specific policy, use $null).

As I’ve suggested in my other article, there are scripts that can do this as well.  Those scripts will give you more flexibility to add additional commands, but I like personally also like to keep one-liners that I can quickly cut and paste during administrative work.

It’s easy to illustrate this with an example using the Grant-CsMobilityPolicy scenario above:

Get-CsUser | ForEach {$myuser=$_;if (-not (Get-ADGroupMember “Your Group” | Where { $_.samaccountname -eq $myuser.samaccountname } )) { Grant-CsMobilityPolicy $myuser.identity -policyname “MobilityDisabled“}}

Swap the Grant-CsMobilityPolicy command for anything you’d like.

Of course, if you like this command as the one-liner to add based on a group better than the method mentioned in my previous article, just remove the -not, there are always many ways to accomplish the same thing with PowerShell.


New Tool: Lync 2013 Contact Backup and Restore Tool (GUI)

I developed this tool simply because I realized when attempting a Lync 2013 contact restore that it’s difficult to tell which backup to use.  This is especially true when the user can’t quite remember when or how the contacts were removed.  I also realized that for some companies, not all of the staff is PowerShell savvy and enabling them to make easy backups and restores through a GUI would prove to be quite helpful.  What I’ve done is written a tool that allows for easy backups and restores of contact data, and also allows you to review the contents of your backup before you merge the data into your production system.  To run the tool, simply download the script from the TechNet Gallery and run it from a Lync server.  One item to note before we start, the PowerShell commands this tool uses do not work with the unified contact store (UCS).  What this means is you’re fine with this tool if you’re running Exchange 2010 or prior, or if you’re running Exchange 2013 but haven’t enabled the unified contact store to move your contacts out of Lync and exclusively into Exchange.

Run the script and right away you’ll see a form like below.  Click the Step 1 button to load up an existing backup file.  These backup files are created by running Export-CSUserData and should be included as part of a script that runs on your systems nightly.  If you don’t have one (you should), you can also create one by clicking one of the backup buttons at the bottom of the form.  Once you click the Step 1 button, a browse dialog will pop up allowing you to select your backup file.  The script will then load your users into the box above the button.


Once your contacts are loaded, you can then select a user by highlighting them.  If you know the data is good, you can proceed directly to Merge Selected User, which will be described later, or to review the contents of the backup file, you can click the Step 2 button.


This button should load the contact information for the selected user only and display it for you to see.  Again, if the appropriate information is selected, you can skip right to the Merge Selected User button, or if you’d like to compare the information to the current contact information, you can click the Step 3 button as seen below.


You should now see both the current and backup contact information displayed side by side for comparison.  In the picture below, I found a deleted phone number and distribution group.  I can now simply click the Merge button and the contacts will be merged into your current Lync contacts.  Once the user has logged out and back into the Lync client, the restored contacts will reappear.


Finally, there are two buttons at the bottom that allow for easy user level and pool level backups.  Simply enter the sip address or the pool FQDN when prompted, and select a save location for your newly created file.


To quit, please press the Quit button to allow the program to properly clean up after itself or you might see a temporary directory where the contents of your backups have been extracted.

To download the program, please find it here in the TechNet Gallery:

If you like it please give it 5 stars over at the TechNet Gallery, if not, please drop me a line before you rate it and give me a chance at fixing whatever bug you may have found.   I might also be able to add a feature you’d like to see!

Thanks again and let me know what you think!


Lync Quick Tip: Disable Pre-Population of Contacts

You may have noticed when enabling a fresh Lync 2010 or Lync 2013 user, upon first login they already have some contacts in their favorites or frequent contacts.  Sometimes these contacts are odd and show up as a phone or mobile number.  Where do they come from and how do you get rid of them?

Well, it’s actually been around and is a feature introduced in Lync 2010.  From the article: we read:

“The Frequent Contacts group shows the 10 contacts a user most frequently has conversations with (not necessarily the most recent). Lync pre-populates the group with the user’s team members. Users can pin their favorite or important contacts to the top of their Frequent Contacts group.”

In Lync 2013 of course, Frequent Contacts was renamed to Favorites.    These team members can be found in the Organization tab of the Active Directory User:


So, how do we turn this off?   Well, we can remove the direct reports in AD, but it’s probably there for a reason (we don’t want to go head to head with whomever in HR may have published them).  Enter the AutoInitiateContacts  parameter within the privacy configuration.  We can set this with the Set-CSPrivacyConfiguration command:  From the article: “If True, Lync will automatically add your manager and your direct reports to your Contacts list. The default value is True.”

To disable this for all of your privacy configurations, run the following command:

Get-CSPrivacyConfiguration | Set-CSPrivacyConfiguration -AutoInitiateContacts $False

To set it for a specific site, you’ll want to run the Set-CSPrivacyConfiguration with the identity parameter pointing to your site if you have this configured.


New Tool: Change Lync Conferencing Dial-In Number Display Order (GUI)

I wrote this for the last blog post, Reviewing and Reordering Lync 2013 Dial-In Conferencing Numbers.

Basically, I realized that if you have quite a few numbers to display, swapping the order around can be a pain.  So, I wrote a PowerShell GUI to do all the heavy lifting for you!

From the link to the TechNet Gallery at the bottom:

If you ever have more than a few Lync dial-in conferencing numbers but the order is off, you know it can be a pain to rearrange them.  That’s the whole purpose of this GUI.  It’s a simple PowerShell script that can be run from your Lync server or anywhere the Lync Management Shell is installed.  No parameters to specify, just pick your region in the dropdown box and move your numbers up, down, to the top, and to the bottom.

I have noticed that the change may take a few minutes to take effect and users may need to restart Outlook before the change is seen.  This is a function of Lync, not the script itself.

If you like it, please give me 5 stars!  If you don’t, please let me know why before rating (in the Q/A section, or find me on Twitter or LinkedIn via my TechNet profile).  I can make that bug fix for you, or possibly make the additon you’re looking for depending on complexity.

Before you run any script from the Internet, please back up your data as you agree to run this at your own risk!


Try it here:

Reviewing and Reordering Lync 2013 Dial-In Conferencing Numbers

You’re using Lync 2013, you’ve entered several different conferencing numbers for your region, and now when you go to create a Lync meeting invite the numbers are out of order or just aren’t logically arranged.  How can you change the order?  Well, there’s a setting for that and the trick is of course in PowerShell with the Lync Management Shell.  This can be a bit tricky at first because if you simply run Get-CSDialinConferencingAccessNumber you won’t see the priority list.  Well, there’s a trick to that too, you have to specify the region and also specify that you want to see all parameters as shown below:

Get-CSDialinConferencingAccessNumber -Region “Illinois” | format-list *


You’ll see the a priority 0 and a priority 1 entry.  The lowest number is the first to be displayed in the meeting invite.  In our example above, this means that 312 666 1212 is displayed before 312 555 1212, and that CAN NOT HAPPEN!  So, the simple trick to make the change with Set-CSDialinConferencingAccessNumber.  To run this command, you’ll need to specify two settings, the first is the Priority, the second is the ReorderRegion.  In our example, I effectively want to move our 312 555 1212 to the top of the list.  To do this I’d run:

Set-CsDialInConferencingAccessNumber -Identity – Priority 0 -ReorderedRegion “Illinois”

Notice here that I set the priority of temp1dialin (which matches the 312 555 1212 number we want to move up) to 0, which is the lowest number.  However, isn’t this number already specified as the priority of the other number?  Not to worry, Lync figures it out and reorders appropriately.


If we wanted more granular control, perhaps we have many numbers, we could execute the command repeatedly with priorities starting from 0 and moving higher like so:

Set-CsDialInConferencingAccessNumber -Identity -Priority 0 -ReorderedRegion “Illinois”

Set-CsDialInConferencingAccessNumber -Identity -Priority 1 -ReorderedRegion “Illinois”

Set-CsDialInConferencingAccessNumber -Identity -Priority 2 -ReorderedRegion “Illinois”

That’s pretty much it.  It’s not difficult, but it’s also not something you might just stumble across.  Good luck and if you have any questions, remember the best way to reach me is via LinkedIn or Twitter so find me and ping me there!  Also, stay tuned because in the next post I will reveal a simple GUI that does all of this for you!


Difficulty removing a legacy trusted application pool.

I ran into this issue when I found myself trying to remove a server from the topology and realized there was no delete option. It turns out that there was a trusted application pool hanging around tied to this server, no big deal, I’ll just delete it.

PS C:\Users\acaragol> Get-CsTrustedApplicationPool -identity |Remove-CsTrustedApplicationPool
Remove-CsTrustedApplicationPool : Cannot remove legacy trusted application
pool. Use the legacy tools to remove the pool, then run Merge-CsTopology.
At line:1 char:89
+ … |Remove-CsTrustedApplicationPool
+ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
+ CategoryInfo : NotSpecified: (:) [Remove-CsTrustedApplicationPo
ol], ArgumentException
+ FullyQualifiedErrorId : System.ArgumentException,Microsoft.Rtc.Managemen

Today, I’m ashamed to admit I made this much harder than it had to be. The merge-cstopology usually reserved for OCS migrations triggered legacy thoughts of OCS 2007 R2 admin tools. OCS has been long gone in this environment. Rather that stopping to think about it, I was in a rush and ran to the search engines. There’s not a lot out there on this error at this time, perhaps because most figure it out more quickly than I did and don’t actually need to search. What does exist are references to exporting the topology and manually editing the XML (which is not a good idea in this instance). There is also a reference to hacking it out using ADSIEdit and some other handy tools which can be daunting. How did I get rid of it? I used the Lync 2010 PowerShell. This is my legacy tool, nothing to do with the old OCS implementation or a partially created object, nothing hard. Just rerun the command from a Lync 2010 server’s PowerShell and you’re done.

PS C:\Users\acaragol> Get-CsTrustedApplicationPool -identity |Remove-CsTrustedApplicationPool
One or more application or external servers have been deleted.
When you delete an application or external server, you delete all configuration state for the hosted applications. Do you want to continue?
[Y] Yes [A] Yes to All [N] No [L] No to All [S] Suspend [?] Help
(Default is “Y”):y
PS C:\Users\acaragol>

Bulk Lync User Addition via Powershell

When enabling users for the first time in Lync, we get a lot of requests for bulk enabling based on group membership or other factors.  If this is something you would like to do, you don’t need a tool, just check out the powerful get-csaduser and get-adgroupmember commands in Powershell:

Here’s a sample command to get you started on enabling users by group:

get-adgroupmember -identity “your group” |foreach {get-adus
er $_.samaccountname | foreach {enable-csuser -identity $_.userprincipalname -re
gistrarpool -sipaddresstype samaccountname -sipdomain}}


If you wanted to enable all users by OU try this:

Get-CsADUser -OU “ou=Your OU Name,dc=domain,dc=com” | enable-csuser -registrarpool “” -sipaddresstype emailaddress


(Note: Edited June 6, 2014 because I found a group enablement command that I liked better)