Friday, April 15, 2016

Skype for Business Cloud Connector Edition

This Friday night (9:00 A.M. Pacific = 18:00 in Sweden) I listened in to the live video broadcast about the Skype Cloud Connector Edition.

A nice 45-minute conversation about what Skype CCE is, how to deploy it and feedback from early customer testing.

During development Skype CCE had the nickname "minimal Topology", so the on-prem component can be seen as a very minimal Skype for business system. It consists of a domain controller, edge and mediation server and Central Management Store.

The mediation server is the same "bits" - the same software - as the mediation server in a normal on-prem S4B system. The installation is configured using a "ini file", CloudConnector.ini. The installer will read this file and can restart a stopped installation in case prerequisites are not met or other issues occur. Skype CCE can also be installed in a High Availability configuration.

Both Sonus and Audiocodes have already announced packages with CCE included in a hardware appliance box.

Some questions and answers from the webcast:

Can we use Express Route with CCE and get QoS on the calls?
Yes, Express Route does work with CCE.

On the CCE "no existing S4B" requirement - can the AD be prepped for, but have OCS/Lync/S4B servers decommissioned, or is a green field AD required?
Yes, AD can be prepped for S4B/Lync. You just cannot have S4B/Lync running on-premises.

Are there any plans to support VMware hypervisors for CCE in the future?
No plans currently.

If we would like to move certain group of users to cloud and use telephony on-prem. Can we do that?
Correct. CCE is for folks in the cloud who do not have S4B on-premises.

How would using Skype in the cloud use E911 and meet the mandates of 911?
It really is no different to on-premises configuration. When you give an Office 365 user a PSTN Calling license, you must configure their E911 information before we allow you to complete the configuration and give them a number.

If a customer has existing investment in S4B On-prem but want to move subset of users to S4B online and keep PSTN on-prem, does Cloud Connector fit in this scenario?
Your on-premises deployment currently supports being connected to the cloud. CCE is currently targeted to those who do not have S4B deployed on-prem.
Microsoft hope to enhance CCE over the next few months to support more complex topologies.

If you want to find out more about Skype CCE:

The next live video broadcast will be about S4B and MACs!


  1. With Cloud Connector Edition, you deploy a set of packaged VMs that contain a minimal Skype for Business Server topology—consisting of an Edge component, Mediation component, and a Central Management Store (CMS) role.
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  2. Is it possible to remove CCE after deployment and Deploy SfB Server on-premise in Hybrid with Office 365 E5?