Thanks to May Jo Foley’s piece in ZDNet, I see Microsoft has just shipped a release candidate for Lync Server 2010. Lync, formerly known as Communications Server ‘14’ is the successor to Office Communications Server. The name, said to connect link and sync, is important in that it simplifies the branding with much shorter names for the constituent components.
Lync combines presence, instant messaging, conferencing and telephony – allowing you to simplify communications and in due course reduce the costs of running your legacy phone system. Presence enables your users to know what each other is doing thus simplifying communications. If I want to chat to someone, and I see they are in a meeting, I know the call would be wasted. Combined with presence, IM enables fast peer to peer and sometimes peer to multiple peer communication. Lync 2010’s voice capabilities should enable many companies to adopt the product as their main PBX.
At the time of writing, Microsoft has put up the RC for download here: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=29366ba5-498f-4d21-bc3e-0b4e8ba58fb1&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MicrosoftDownloadCenter+%28Microsoft+Download+Center%29#tm (don’t you love the snappy urls?). This page also has links to more Lync Server 2010 information, but these links do not yet exist. No doubt these will get put up shortly.
The download is just over 1.5GB and contains both the Standard and Enterprise Editions of Lync 2010. In keeping with recent platform changes, this RC (and the final product in due course) ships as 64-bit only which means you need to be running a 64-bit OS (and here I recommend running Server 2008 R2!).
Over the coming weeks, I’ll blog more about the functions and features of this cool product. Not least of which is the PowerShell interface.