Where did my Recent Items go in Windows 8?

I come across many people that have been asking me where the recent items list has gone in Windows 8. While the recent items list in Windows 7 (and prior) was useful, it is no longer available for Windows 8. There are a couple reasons for this with the most obvious being that we don’t have a Start Menu anymore. Possibly another may be the fact that Windows 8 Modern UI Style applications (formerly known as Metro) are meant to be “isolated” from the rest of the system. All well and good for mobile implications, devices, and Modern UI apps, but it leaves the dedicated desktop/laptop users with legacy applications longing for the old ways.

Not to fret though, there is some of this functionality still available to us, however the focus to use it is a bit different. Primarily you will find that your pinned start menu items are now functionally mimicked in the taskbar pinning. Because of this you most likely will find yourself pinning your most-used apps to the taskbar just as you did with apps to the start menu in Windows 7. I have mixed feelings about this, but irrelevantly, lets show you how to get some of your recent items functionality back.

Application’s recent list (Jump List)

Recent Items for applications (Jump Lists) are located in the application shortcut , just like Windows 7 had from the start menu . The problem though is that the list is not accessible from the start screen, but it is available if you pin it to the taskbar. I will show you how to do this using Microsoft Word 2010 as an example.

  1. Press the Windows Logo key on your keyboard and type “word” (you can stop as soon as you see the application appear). You can also just open the start screen and find Microsoft Word 2010 from the list of shortcuts and tiles.
    Windows 8 Start Menu search
  2. Right-click on the application to make the options appear at the bottom of the Start Panel. Click on “Pin to taskbar” to add the application to the taskbar (Press “Esc” to exit the Start Panel and go back to your desktop). Windows 8 Start Menu shortcut properties
  3. Once the application has been added to the taskbar, you can now see a list of recent files (Jump List) that you opened by right-clicking on it in the taskbar.
    Windos 8 Recent Items or Jump List

Editing setting for the Jump List

OK, now that you have added an application and have access to its recent items, you may want to make some modifications so that you can expand or shrink the number of files listed. This list of files and settings are known as the “Jump List” for the application. The Jump List properties are in the taskbar properties, just like previously in Windows 7. To view or change the settings, right-click on the task bar and select Properties from the options menu. Click on the Jump List tab and adjust your settings according to your preferences

taskbar properties dialog

Recent Items List

Applications and Jump Lists are all fine a good if you remember which app you were using or have it pinned to the taskbar. However, there are times that you just need to find the file you just saved from your seldom used application and locating it in the recently used list would be nice. The great thing is that this still exists, you just have to link to it.

This symbolic link to the recent items folder is similar to the Recent Items in Windows 7, however this list is of everything you have accessed and is not filtered down to a limited number of items. That means that you will have a large number of items to sort through. However, this is still way less than if you were doing a search for a file from the Start Screen. To add the recent items to your start menu  perform the following (this is an object and therefore not pinnable to the taskbar as a menu folder or application):

  1. Open explorer and browse to C:\Users\<your username>
  2. Right-click on “Recent” and select “Pin to Start”
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  3. You can then find it in the start menu and rename it to something you find faster to type in Search or leave it as is.

Bonus Tip

Now that you have the recent items folder and see all the shortcuts, how do you identify which file you want? If you hover your mouse over an item, the item’s location is displayed and you can use this information to assist you in determining the file you want.

Recent Items shortcut location

Closing

Windows 8 does take a little getting used to. However, after using it since Spring, I have a hard time going back to Windows 7 or previous OS’s. Hopefully these tips will help you better utilize your system and make finding your recent files a little faster process.

Jason Condo
Principal Consultant, Systems Management and Operations

Leveraging SQL Server Profiler to troubleshoot 18456 Events

Many times I am brought in to assist in troubleshooting strange things that the client can’t identify easily on their own. In this particular occasion I was assisting in supporting a SharePoint solution and SQL Server kept generating the following 18456 event: “Login failed for user ‘NT AUTHORITY\NETWORK SERVICE’. Reason: Token-based server access validation failed with an infrastructure error. Check for previous errors. [CLIENT: <local machine>]”  every minute in the event log. The client was not sure why this was occurring and thought it may have been from an outage they had recently.

Event 18456 - Login failed for user\

A quick web search of the event showed people who had problems with applications accessing a database, but none with this specific account. That is because this is a generic message showing that some account is accessing some database from some computer and doesn’t have the appropriate permissions to do so. Some of that information is provided, however it doesn’t tell us why it is happening. So how do we get more information so that we can suggest the correct path to resolve it?

On the surface, my first impression was that a service was trying to access a database within SQL Server running as the Network Service, and was not permitted to access it. I gathered this from the fact the login was listed as ‘NT AUTHORITY\NETWORK SERVICE’ and the client was defined as local machine, CLIENT: <local machine>. Going with my first thoughts, I opened the Services console and sorted by login to determine the services running as Network Service.

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This directed me to what I was pretty sure the problem was. If you look, there are two services related to SQL that were configured to run as Network Service. In addition, the client had all of the other SQL services configured to run with a defined service account, so these were anomalies to not also have been configured in the same manner. While confident this was most likely the source of the event generation, I needed to be sure.

SQL Server Profiler to the rescue!

This is where SQL Server Profiler comes in handy. This is a great tool to give you incite into your SQL environment and what is happening on a transactional basis. You can use it to trace events occurring in SQL to find stored procedures that are having problems, or long running queries, or any number of other problems that you just aren’t sure and need additional view of. In this case, we are looking for failed login attempts.

For this troubleshooting session, I knew that the logged event was only once every minute. This meant that if I configured the trace correctly, I would not be scrolling through a lot of event instances looking for my event. As well, I would not need to capture a lot of data, so outputting the profiler to a database or file wasn’t necessary.

Getting Started: Setting up the Trace.

imageTo get started, open the Start Menu and navigate to Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 > Performance Tools > SQL Server Profiler (also available from SQL Server Management Studio under the Tools tab). When you first launch SQL Server Profiler, it will prompt you for the trace properties. the first tab (General) defines the initial properties of the trace. The section ‘Use the Template’ is of most interest of us in this troubleshooting. This defines the most probable list of counters and columns that we want to start with for capturing information in the trace. This is because  the actual amount of information we can choose from is vast and can be overwhelming if this is your first look into tracing or if you are not a seasoned SQL admin. The additional fields for saving the output to a file/database and trace stop time are not relevant to our isolated troubleshooting. However they can be handy when you are trying to find an intermittent problem and want to run a trace for a long time or have a lot of events you are capturing. Again, not relevant in this particular instance.

SQL Server Profiler trace properties

For this troubleshooting let’s start with the Standard (default) template. Once selected, go to the Events Selection tab. This will show you all the events and columns that are selected to be captured and displayed in the trace.

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As you can see, we are capturing a lot of additional data that is probably not relevant to what we are looking for. Namely, we were looking for something associated with logins (remember: “Login failed for user ‘NT AUTHORITY\NETWORK SERVICE’…). With that, I removed the events that I didn’t think would be required. I also unchecked columns of data that I didn’t think would help me once I found the appropriate event (I don’t care about which CPU is being used, or the duration, etc…)

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Now I could run this trace as-is, and you can even do so just to see the amount of data being captured and the information in the trace session. However, this will not give me the event I was looking for. This is because my specific event is a failed login. This trace will only show me successful logins and logoffs. So how do we get the data I really want?

Finding Audit Login Failed

First, I select Show all events to show all the possible events that I can trace. From the selection above, you will see that Security Audit has some events already selected.

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I want to be more specific however. I unchecked the Audit Login  and Audit Logoff events and instead chose Audit Login Failed. This chose all the standard columns but won’t give us all the information we need. For that, I selected Show all Columns.

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To troubleshoot I then chose NTUserName, SPID (can’t uncheck that one), ApplicationName, DatabaseName, and Error.

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I then clicked Run to start tracing the events. Because this event only triggers once a minute, I only had to wait a short time to see the error captured. As you can see, it was the Report Server (Reporting Services Service) accessing the master database. You can also see that we have the matching 18456 event number.

SQL Server Profiler trace output

With that I had the information needed to take back to the client and inquire more as to why this service might have had access removed (not being defined in SQL security), be misconfigured (changed from a specific login to Network Service as in maybe it was recently added as a feature but misconfigured), or if there was some other explanation.

In this case, it turns out that the engineer troubleshooting an earlier problem wasn’t aware as to the state of the services and set SQL Reporting Services and SQL Integration Services from disabled to automatic and started them in an attempt to resolve a SQL problem that they were having. It didn’t solve their problem, but because they didn’t document their troubleshooting (or perform proper analysis as like above) they left those services running and in a state that caused additional work to troubleshoot and resolve.

While this is a very specific incident and resolution, I hope that this quick view into the SQL Server Profiler gives you an additional tool to properly research errors and resolve your problems. For additional information on the tool, please explore this MSDN link : http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms181091.aspx

Jason Condo, MCITP
Principal Consultant, Systems Management and Operations

Windows 2012 – Active Directory Basic Install

Below is a basic Active Directory installation for Windows 2012. The installation is a stand alone Active Directory infrastructure in which there is no current Active Directory domain in the environment.

Open Server Manager:

Select Add Roles and Features from the Configure this local server.

Select next:

Select Role Based Feature, Select Next

Select a server from the server pool, then select the computer name of the machine to install the Active Directory 2012, Finally, select Next>

Select Active Directory Domain Services, Select Next>

Select Add Features

Select Next

Select Next

Select Next

Select Install

Watch the task bar to completion

Select Close

Select Add a new forest, Enter <root domain name> then select Next

Select DNS, Enter the password and confirm password, then select Next

Select Next

Select Next

Select Next

Select Next

While it’s installing you can check the Dashboard and view the progress of the installation

After you select complete and the server reboots you will see all the new Active Directory tools installed in the Server Manager.

Windows Server 2012 Beta Essentials Post 3: The Client View

In two previous posts, I talked about the installation process for Windows Essentials Server 2012 Beta and some of the configuration process. In this post, I am going to show the same lab environment with configuring a pair of clients, a Windows 7 client and a Windows Server 2008 R2 server.

The Windows 7 Client

I started with the Windows 7 Client. When I set up the server, it configured a local IIS installation with three web sites:

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The default, primary web site includes a virtual directory for connecting to the server, like the earlier product incarnations. I was able to connect to it from the Windows 7 client:

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I clicked the Download link, and that gave me an EXE to run. Notice underneath the very large Windows link is a much smaller Mac link. I don’t have the ability to test this now (primarily because I can’t easily run an OS X VM), but at some point I hope to be at the office where a Mac Mini sits somewhat abandoned.

Moving on, I received the expected UAC prompt:

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Notice it shows as “Downloaded from the Internet”. Out of curiosity, I clicked No, then enabled Intranet settings as I had be prompted to by Internet Explorer:

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Then, I emptied the IE cache (to make sure the client really re-downloaded the connector), then clicked the Download link again. This time, UAC shows it as a local file:

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I admit I had never tried this before, so I didn’t really know what to expect; this is somewhat interesting I think. Continuing, the Connector searched for the server:

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The Getting Started wizard came up at that point:

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In this case the client was fully patched with all optionally offered components from Windows Update, so the client had everything the Connector wanted:

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That said, notice the Connector is going to install the recent .NET Framework 4.5, which in fact wasn’t even RTM’d until just a couple of weeks ago. Continuing:

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While that ran, I went ahead and started the server also, just to keep things moving. I had not done much on the server, so it still had the Internet Explorer Enhanced Security Configuration enabled, causing a warning when connecting to the Connect virtual directory:

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That gave an interesting prompt in the Connect site:

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“How do I…” is a link, although that’s not at all clear from the page. Someone went a little overboard on the CSS. Because of IE ESC, and because the Download link uses JavaScript to invoke the download action, it didn’t work. This struck me as silly, even stupid. There’s no excuse for using ASP.NET to make this simple web site doing a simple act. But because it is, I was faced with the choice of turning off IE ESC or adding the site as a Trusted site. I did the latter, although in real life I think I’ve disabled the IE ESC on almost every, if not every, server I’ve ever had to do anything on. I know that would work, but the page tells me to do it a certain way, so I did. When I refreshed, the warning went away, and the download and run worked:

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Same process, just without the client Aero/desktop experience UI touches.

At this point the client was ready for me, so I left the server going for the time being and went back to the client:

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I put in my account credentials for an administrator and was told, basically, “don’t do that!”:

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So I said Yes, and used a standard user account:

It would have been nice if the user login dialog made it clear that they would recommend a standard user account, perhaps saying something like “we recommend you do not use an administrator account for connecting…” but at least in this release it doesn’t.

At this point, I hit an error, and retrying didn’t help:

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So I decided I’d let the client go for now, and switch back to the server, where I saw something very interesting:

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So this was a surprising thing to see – server against server isn’t officially supported, but you can try it. Well, this is all about experimentation and learning, so of course I said “Continue anywhere”. At that point, I was told that I might need to have some server components added, which might require a reboot. I didn’t screen capture that because, well, I clicked “Next” like everyone normally does, so you don’t get to see that dialog here. But would I lie to you about what it said?

So that left the server doing the prerequisite work, so it was a chance to check the client out again. I put on my “normal person” hat again, and rebooted the client, because when in doubt, reboot, right? So I did that, and checked the server in the meantime to see that two automatic services had stopped – Software Protection and Remote Registry. I started them both and went back to the client. I logged back in to the client and restarted the Connector installation. The installation moved past the prerequisite check much quicker this time because there was no work for it to do, and then asked for credentials again. This time, there was a much longer wait, but again, the client couldn’t connect to the server. The troubleshooting link wanted to go online, which didn’t help me any as I had no Internet access. But looking at the server again, the Remote Registry service had stopped again! Software Protection had also, but I didn’t really care about that one. Remote Registry is a much bigger deal – lots of different weird remote connection scenarios fail without it. But still no dice.

So now, I had to figure out what happened there. I was able to ping the server by name through IPv6 but not IPv4, so I added the server as an IPv4 host to the local client HOSTS file. I have to do this with Windows Home Server, so I thought it might help here:

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And that’s why I figured out that DHCP actually wasn’t working in the lab, so I had no IPv4 address. What an idiot I was! Well, that was easy to fix – I just gave the client an IPv4 address and ta da, it worked. So then I commented out the HOSTS entry as I shouldn’t have needed it, and ran the Connector yet again. I should point out how interesting it was that IPv6 automatic addressing worked completely to access the server at this point including accessing IIS, downloading the Connector installer, and doing the initial steps to here, all of which shows that IPv6 pretty much “just works” for a lot of stuff in this scenario, but not everything.

This time, things made it slightly further:

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So I checked the date/time information and it was fine. But the server showed something more interesting:

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Active Directory Certificate Services denied request 7 because The revocation function was unable to check revocation because the revocation server was offline. 0x80092013 (-2146885613). The request was for CN=MIKEBAZ-PC. Additional information: Error Constructing or Publishing Certificate  Resubmitted by BLOGDEMO\BLOGDEMOSERVER$.

OK, well, let’s bounce Certificate Services. It is common for a VM save/restore cycle to break CS revocation checks, actually, and restarting AD CS solves it, so I did that.

And look, finally, more progress!

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What was really going on here, although it wasn’t completely telling me, was that it was migrating local user profiles for domain user use, much like a tool like Quest Migration Manager’s VMover tool would do. I chose the simplest option of setting up for myself and letting it migrate. Note that I had placed the Connector installer on the desktop at this point, so that would be a way to see if the Desktop migrated correctly. At that point, it was time to reboot:

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After the reboot, there was an automatic login, then a prompt for the computer’s description:

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This is not that different than the previous product releases. This is also true of the backup wake prompt:

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I was then asked about the CEIP:

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The user profile was migrated:

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There was a quick “configuring the computer” step I didn’t get a picture of, then a download of the full Connector software:

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The computer was then “connected” to the server:

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In the previous Windows Home Server releases this was a relatively light operation but in this case, it was a domain join operation. It then finalized:

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And told me it was done:

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I chose not to run the Dashboard at this time. I was logged off as promised, so I logged in with my domain credentials – noticing the machine was indeed now configured to log in to the domain as would be expected:

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The login worked, and my Desktop came back correctly, with the new look of the Launchpad showing up:

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The three complaints were about lacking virus and spyware protection and not having Windows Update configured, all of which is accurate:

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But one interesting thing in the viewer that I didn’t expect was this:

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This computer is not connected to the server.

This was a little odd. I clicked Shared Folders in the Connector, and I could connect fine:

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So I don’t know what was up with “not connected” message. I’m thinking it’s a beta bug but I don’t know that for sure.

For now, that’s far enough – I’ll come back to it later in the post, but I want to get back to the server and finish it. When I went back, it was waiting for login credentials, which I gave it just like on the client machine. I then had to restart the server:

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So I restarted, and again I got the screen for profile configuration:

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Notice this time I did not get the “I do not need to migrate..” checkbox. I don’t know if that is because there was only the local Administrator on the server or because it was a server OS – there’s likely a good investigation point there – but in any event I chose just the one account again. The remaining steps were exactly the same as on the client, as you would expect.

That said, something odd next happened. Because the migrated account was Administrator, I couldn’t log in with it, because by default that account is disabled in the domain. It seems there’s a small edge case gap here; the Connector should probably warn about this edge case.

Anyway, the server was joined to the domain when it came up. So let’s look now at backing up a machine. I brought up the Dashboard, and was prompted for credentials:

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Why was I prompted for credentials when I’m logged in to a domain account in the domain for the Essentials server? Well, after I entered credentials, I was told I wasn’t an administrator… so that’s why, it wanted administrative credentials. It didn’t say explicitly that’s what it wanted, but of course it makes perfect sense.

I closed the Dashboard because I just wanted to see it came up. What was not available though was Launchpad. It wasn’t in the Start Menu at all:

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The executable was there, it just didn’t launch:

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I tried Windows 7 Compatibility Mode but no go. So there’s an issue there – can’t run the Launchpad on a server. Doing it is not supported, so it’s not 100% surprising, but in a small business environment I can see it being a nice thing to have.

After seeing that, I launched the Dashboard again, to see if I could manually launch a backup, but I couldn’t, so I’m going to have to let it run long enough at some point to hit the scheduled window and see the backup work.

However, I could go back to the client, and try to back that up, and I did:that just to see that it worked, and it did. No screen shots here as it’s the same as it was before, so nothing remotely interesting here. Just enough to say that it works like it did and that’s that.

A coworker (hi, DNC) had asked me about backing up a server that was in another domain or a workgroup, but I haven’t run this test because he actually found this:

http://tinkertry.com/windows-server-2012-essentials-fine-with-pcs-in-domain-or-workgroup/

And that answers the question, for the odd edge cases where it matters, so that’s good. In real life (not lab or enthusiast environments) I would think this would only matter for integrating a new server for media/backup into an existing full environment, but even that is a bit of an edge case IMHO.

So at this point, I’ve covered all of the basic stuff except media and remote access. Unfortunately, I don’t know if I will have time to revisit this piece, but I will certainly try.

Thanks for reading!

Michael C. Bazarewsky
Principal Consultant, Server and Security

Lync-to-Phone for Office 365, First Look

We were recently asked to pilot Lync-to-Phone in Office 365, which is going through a soft launch in the US. It’s not a secret or anything – you can find it at http://pinpoint.microsoft.com/en-us/applications/jajah-voice-for-office-365-12884930736 as a public offering. But, it’s being kept off the radar somewhat as the service ramps up. Because we are a major Office 365 partner, we were asked by Microsoft to go ahead and try it, so we are. This blog post is about our ramp-up experience.

I started with the single provider available, JAJAH, which is from a Spanish telephone company. That got me to here:

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I accidentally picked the wrong plan, but I was able to close, sign in, and was prompted to reselect my plan and move forward.

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Or at least I tried to move forward:
Something went wrong

Did a customer support call – took six tries (I am not exaggerating) for them to get my e-mail address right, even with phonetic spelling, which was a rough start, but after about three minutes they had it. Their answer? “Try a different browser with cleared cookies and browser history and try again.” Well, I had been using Firefox because IE 10 RP wasn’t making it past the first screen, but I went over to an IE10 Porn Mode In Private session and tried again. Yet again, I could not take any button presses to register, and they had set their site to not allow compatibility mode. So, I used F12 to force the browser to IE10 Compatibility Mode:

Compatibility Mode

And then tried again to log in. This time, the sign-in button worked, but the login failed. Great. So I tried to register again from the beginning. That time it said I was already registered. More great… So I did a “forgot password” on the sign-in page (even though I know I had it right because I had signed in with Firefox using the same password pasted from the same entry in my password management application). This caused a generated password to be sent by e-mail, in theory at least.

I never got the e-mail, and the original login still worked in Firefox. So then it’s a question of what browser I’m supposed to use. Firefox doesn’t work, IE 10 doesn’t work… so now I needed to install another browser. I guess it’s time to install Chrome… so 20 minutes lost…

Nope… no luck there either. Of course doing anything in Chrome that’s not on a Google site or using WebKit custom proprietary stuff is a coin toss but still, WTF? Then I remembered that I could look up the password that continued to work in Firefox by looking at its stored password list… and it wasn’t the password I set; it was truncated. No idea what was up there – a bug in the registration process I guess… only the first ten characters were taken. Now that I knew that, I could try to sign in using IE again (again using F12 to set compatibility mode)… and that failed again.

So I went back to Chrome again… logged in successfully. And that failed to add the location again. So now I’m back to calling customer service again.

This time, they got my e-mail on only the second try, without use of a phonetic alphabet.. Oops, no, third try… that failed again, so we went to phone number. That seemed to work – I was put on hold again while they looked at the account. It might be part of this goes back to bailing out partway through as described above, but decent QA should have caught this. This offering has been in development for months – some basic testing would have been useful I think… anyway, that led to a 24-48 hour delay while the case was escalated to an engineer… so now we’re in a holding pattern…

… insert multiple days of hold music …

OK, so it was some kind of error on the JAJAH side, but it’s been resolved. How do I know? Because “Yahoo! Voice by JAJAH Customer Service” wrote me and told me it was.  (Aside: I am forced to assume that this is key insider trading information about Microsoft buying Yahoo! now that Jerry Yang turned down a jillion dollars to get the company worth the $3.12 it’s worth today [a steal at half the price!].) So let’s go back in, remembering that Internet Explorer 10 doesn’t work. I went to the site again, sign in again, and again re-select my calling plan and initial account information. This time, adding a location works:

Adding a Location

I just did one location for now – it will make sense to add others later but this is good enough to get started. Clicking Continuegets me to phone line selection:

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So more “good” news here – there’s only two area codes available for all of Ohio (luckily the one we probably want – 216 – is here), and there’s at least one grammar error (“request addition phone numbers“) on the page. Okay, so let’s take 216 and see what we get:

Line quantity

We get forty-nine lines available. I don’t know if that’s meant to be for 216 or for our account alone. For testing I’m going to take two but I definitely don’t like such a small number showing. You can actually add numbers to multiple locations as part of the order all at once, which is nice – each time you “ADD TO ORDER” it shows up on the right-hand order summary:

Order summary

Moving on, it’s payment time!

Payment Info

The complaints about blank fields weren’t there when I started, it’s an artifact of my forgetting to screenshot before entering something. So no bug there. I put in my work-issued credit card that I’ve already had cleared to use for this, and get a confirmation:

Almost there!

Still not sure about the $13.99 to $18.99 range here, but after all this, if I didn’t Submit then that would be silly, right? So time to click. And …. It failed again:

Another error? Inconceivable!

Great, another call to customer service so I can spend twenty minutes spelling out my e-mail address… this time I told them to use cell number to look it up, and they fail, so we spend more time with going through my e-mail address, reading it multiple times, and convincing them it’s not a browser issue (everything with them seems to start with assuming you don’t know how to use a web browser), and then finally opening another escalation, which means another 24-48 hours. I wish I was kidding.

Okay, so about 36 hours later, it was “fixed,” so time to try again. I again had to walk through the whole process. This time the final screen showed different results, which suggested it was going to work:

Final screen again

And yay, it did:

It's alive!

I also received a line confirmation e-mail:
Confirmation e-mail

So time to activate! This one at least didn’t reference Yahoo! in the Fromaddress, so there’s that. Moving on, it’s activation time:

Activation

So time to activate my line and assign it to me, starting with the first of the two Activate links (nice use of a little DHTML here):

Activation details

I put in my e-mail address, left the location alone for now, and entered my name, then hit Save. This changed the icon in the front to indicate the line was active:

Activated!

I also received a confirmation e-mail on my location change with some slightly off sentence structure:

Location confirmation

Now I had to assign it to myself. There are instructions on the JAJAH site so they must work, right? I started signing in to the Office 365 Portal (I have administrative access). I located my User information, went to Details, and uh oh, we’re syncing our user information, so my office number wasn’t able to be changed. So the instructions are wrong in our case and lots of other cases. That’s fine, I can go to our on-premises Active Directory and set the number, then wait, which is what I did.

The office phone number replicated, so now it was time to set the provider in Lync Online. I went to the Admin Portal and selected Lync, Manageto get to the Lync Online Control Panel. I located my user account on the Users tab, and clicked my name. And then I… did nothing, because our Office 365 plan is E1 and you must have Lync Plan 3 to do Lync to Phone. So I enabled the 30-day trial of Lync Online (Plan 3) and tried again. Provisioning the plan required a very short wait (under one minute), then I was able to go into Licenses and assign myself one of the trial licenses. Then, I went back into the Lync Online Control Panel, and went into my user properties. This happened:

Unknown application error

Yay! Yet again a step breaking. This is getting fun.

So I waited about 21 hours and tried again, and this looks better:

Selecting a provider for the user

OK, so what difference did this make? Well, the Lync 2013 Preview Release client has all kinds of weird bugs, some of which I think impact this work, so I’m going to do it in Lync 2010. First noticeable change is that I have PBX functions showing in the client now:

PBX Functions

The location I was forced to add and had so much trouble with before didn’t show up anywhere, but whatever. It would be wrong as I’m typing this anyway as I’m in the United Club in Seattle, which is very far away from the location they have on file.

So I attempted to place a call, and it was successful! But could I receive a call?

Hellllooooo?

Yes, yes I could. This is exciting, we have phone calls! So of course I could leave an Exchange voice mail, right? Well, no, actually, I just get a busy signal when I decline. So that is awful. Time for more delay as I wait on an SR with Microsoft. But that’s going to take some time, and I think it’s too much time at this point, so I’m posting, and I’ll do another post when it’s resolved.

Michael C. Bazarewsky
Principal Consultant, Server and Security