Friday, 23 May 2014

Lync Contacts Problems on O365

It's been bugging me for a couple of months, when I left my previous employer I bought an Office 365 subscription to keep in touch with my colleagues with Lync. This should have been straightforward as I had put Lync in and enabled 4228 Enterprise Voice users and it was. I was able to call and message my former colleagues and with the benefit of presence not bug them when they were busy.

Then they turned off federation with Office 365!

Oh well, no biggie, they weren't that nice anyway and the decent guys I had mobile numbers for anyway. So I went to clean up my Lync contacts and I couldn't, right click remove from contacts and nothing happened. I thought it might be a glitch and tried again a few weeks later but no, same thing remove from contacts - no joy still there, mocking me with 'presence unknown'.

Tried again a month later, nope, still there. So bit the bullet and logged a service request with Office 365. I got an email almost straight back from MS introducing the engineer asking me to let him know when I was ready to work on it. I must admit to dreading this, never having used MS support on Office 365 I had no idea what to expect. I sent a reply saying I could work on it now and within 5 minutes I had a call.

Well, I was pleasantly surprised, nice chap who while obviously in Hyderabad spoke great english and started a 'logmein viewing session, together we stepped through a few of the obvious things, clearing the local cache from app data, deleting a couple of registry keys but despite that and a few restarts of the Lync client no joy. The damm contacts refused to be deleted.

This bamboozled my illustrious technical support friend as well and I was put on hold for a few minutes while he consulted.

Once he came back we tried a few other things, deleting / adding a new Lync Contact, him, and deleting it, no probs. Deleting the contacts from OWA using the remove from 'Lync Contacts' no joy, they were still hanging in there. More consultation.

Eventually we got to looking at the contact in OWA -

The clue here is that it is a 'linked' contact that comes from more than one source i.e. outlook, linked in, Facebook etc.

Step 2 click on manage -

 and we see there are actually 4 Stephen Jessiman contacts.

Next -

we select the first one and then click the 'unlink'

after that you MUST click 'OK' up at the top 

then step through each of the contacts making sure each is 'unlinked'

now when we go to 'Lync Contacts' in OWA we can see there are three Stephen Jessiman, note we still want to have Stephen as a contact in Outlook so make sure its 'Lync Contacts' that the next step is in.

right click and 'remove from Lync Contacts'

Next step is to sign out of Lync and then sign back in, the contacts will be loaded in from OWA and voila Stephen should be missing.

Unfortunately I have to go through all that for each contact that is linked. I suspect the linking happened on my Windows Phone when rationalising contacts.

Good one to know if you ever come across this and my thanks to MS Office365 support.

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