Deploying Exchange Server 2007 and Office Communications Server 2007 R2 (Part 8)

If you would like to read the other parts in this article series please go to:


In the previous article of this series we started the deployment phase of the OCS 2007 R2. Now, we need to finish up the certificate portion of the deployment, start the services, validate the deployment and at the end we are going to see an overview of how to enable users to use OCS.

Assign The Certificate On IIS

The OCS 2007 R2 Deployment Wizard assigns the certificate to the OCS Server however it does not assign it to the IIS Server and a manual step is required. This step is really important otherwise your Office Communicator clients will not be able to download the Address Book. In order to assign the certificate that we have just created on IIS 7, these steps can be used:

  1. Open Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager.
  2. Expand <Server Name> item, then expand Sites and click on Default Web Site (Figure 1).
  3. In the Toolbox Actions, click on Bindings…


Figure 1

  1. In the Site Bindings window. Click on Add… (Figure 2).


Figure 2

  1. Change Type to https, make sure that Port is 443 and SSL Certificate is the same cert that we have just created using OCS 2007 R2 Deployment Wizard, as shown in Figure 03.


Figure 3

  1. Click OK and Close.

Starting The Services

Now that we have our Certificates in place and configured properly we can finally start the OCS services. In a production environment we should wait a little bit and wait for the Active Directory replication to take place. We can force the replication using Active Directory Site and Services or Replication Monitor, however, in our current environment we have only two Domain Controllers in the same site and the replication should be an issue. In order to start the services, let us go back do the OCS 2007 Deploy Wizard, and click Run at Step 6: Start Services, and follow these steps:

  1. In the Welcome to the Start Services Wizard page. Click on Next.
  2. In the Start Office Communications Server 2007 R2 Services page. A list of all services that will be started will be listed, as shown in Figure 04. Click on Next.


Figure 4

  1. In the final page, probably you are going to receive a message saying Start Services Wizard has failed (Figure 5) but don’t worry just make sure that the View the log when you click Finish is selected and click on Finish.


Figure 5

If you look a little bit closer you will see that all services were started with success however the Office Communications Server Monitoring Agent failed, as shown in Figure 06. In order to enable Monitoring in an OCS environment we need an extra OCS role in place, and also the Message Queuing component installed on the Front-End Server, and because that is not the case of our current environment we can move forward in our deployment process.

Figure 6

Validating the Installation Process

After installing the Front-End Server the OCS 2007 R2 Deployment Wizard there are still a series of tests that can be performed to validate the new server. In order to validate the server installation, just click on Step 6: Validate Server and the entire list of available tests will be displayed (Figure 7).

Figure 7

Besides the several tests listed above, we have also the Step 6: Validate Application Functionality on the same page that will open a new page which has an extra 4 (four) tests designed to be performed against the applications. Remember that we have not installed any application during the setup process.

Figure 8

A common question is; “what if I don’t do the validation during the setup but want to perform these tests afterwards? How can you do that?” It’s a simple task, just right click on your OCS server and click on Validation (left side of Figure 9) or expand Validation underneath Available Tasks column on the right side (same Figure 9).

Figure 9

Installing Administrative Tools

By default, a new OCS 2007 R2 deployment does not install the Administrative Tools which means that your server will be up and running but you cannot enable users for OCS. In order to install the Administrative Tools these steps can be used:

  1. Open OCS 2007 R2 Deployment Wizard, and on the first page click on Administrative Tools link on the right side (Figure 10).


Figure 10

  1. In the License Agreement page. Click on I accept the terms in the license agreement and click OK.
  2. That is all we need, now we can check the new two items that we have under Administrative Tools groups, as shown in Figure 11.


Figure 11

You can do the same process in any machine that you want to manage either Communicator Web Access or OCS, and this process also adds integration with Active Directory Users and Computers, when we have it installed, just right click on a user and you will see the OCS options, as shown in Figure 12.

Figure 12

Managing Users

Now, it is time to start playing with our new environment. At this point we have Exchange Server and OCS up and running and we can start enabling users on both services. There is no right or wrong here where we should be creating our users however creating the users first on Exchange Server and then enabling them for OCS seems to be easier. Why? First of all when you try to enable OCS users the wizard will ask you about the sign-in name which by default is the User’s e-mail address, as shown in Figure 13.

Figure 13

However the user’s e-mail address attribute is not populated by default (Figure 14) but if you enable the user mailbox the e-mail address attribute will be populated by the Reply address of the user as show in Figure 15.

Figure 14

Figure 15

So, if we create the mailbox first, then the e-mail attribute will be populated and the default settings on the OCS Enable user wizard will work without any additional configuration.  Now let’s enable an OCS user using the suggested order, these following steps can be followed:

  1. Create the new users using either Active Directory or Exchange Management Console, make sure that the user is mailbox enabled.
  2. Logged on a Server where you have the OCS Administrative Tools installed.
  3. Open Active Directory Users and Computers.
  4. Right click on the designated user and click on Enable users for Communications Server…
  5. On the Welcome to the Enable Office Communications Server Users Wizard page. Click Next.
  6. On the Select Server or Pool page. Select the OCS Server that we have just installed and click Next.
  7. On the Specify Sign-in Name page. If you already created the mailbox just leave default settings and click on Next.
  8. On the Ready to Enable users page. Click on Next.
  9. On the Enable Operation Status page. The user name should be listed on the first box and besides its name the SIP URI. Click on Finish.

After going through the entire process (create user -> enable mailbox -> enable OCS user), then we can check its E-mail Address tab using Exchange Management Console. We will be able to see the SIP address (used by OCS) and the SMTP address (used by Exchange Server), as shown in Figure 16.

Figure 16


In this article we finalized and tested the OCS deployment process. We also saw how to manage OCS Users and a good way to create them when we have Exchange and OCS working together. In the next article we are going to play with the client side of things, mainly; Office Communicator, Live Meeting and Outlook integration.

If you would like to read the other parts in this article series please go to:

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