Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Planning Tool

Customers that need a tad of help when it comes down to getting ready for the deployment of the latest iteration of Microsoft’s unified communication solution can leverage a free tool released by the Redmond company.

As the official label of the resource implies, the tool is designed to help customers start planning their topology.

In this regard, the Microsoft Lync Server 2010, Planning Tool offers guidance to customers that are looking to adopt the UC offering.

“The Microsoft Lync Server 2010, Planning Tool will asks you a series of questions about your organization and the features that you are interested in,” reveals Microsoft’s Feras Mustafa.

“The planning tool will then use your answers to recommend a topology based on the tested Microsoft Lync Server 2010 user model.”

The software giant recommends that customers adapt the topology to fit the needs of specific organizations.

Mustafa also offered a few highlights of the new additions to the Planning Tool for Lync Server 2010:

“•You can select virtualized server roles for your topology.

•The Planning Tool offers more granular capacity guidance than in earlier releases.

•You can customize individual branch site information.

•The topology pages display site information, such as number of users and number of enabled users for various modalities.

•The Planning Tool invites you to participate in the Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP), helping make the planning tool better.

•You can view your edge network diagram and enter FQDNs and IP addresses and view the certificates, DNS settings, and firewall settings for your edge network in the central sites when using DNS Load Balancing or Hardware Load Balancing for Edge Servers. You can also import this information to Topology Builder. You can also export the diagram and the data to the Microsoft Visio drawing and diagramming software.

•You can export your topology file to Topology Builder for a faster, easier Lync Server setup experience.

•You can export the global topology, with its corresponding branch sites, as well as the number of concurrent calls connecting each central site, to the PSTN into Visio. The Visio output contains improved drawings for each of the site topologies.

•The Planning Tool exports a list of the hardware for all sites, including branch sites, to a Microsoft Excel worksheet.

•The Planning Tool accommodates more supported topologies for Enterprise Voice and dial-in conferencing.

•Navigation between topologies and server information has been improved.

•You can resize or maximize the Planning Tool window to better accommodate your screen resolution.

•The Planning Tool provides a menu bar and a toolbar for available actions.

•The Planning Tool incorporates new Microsoft Lync Server 2010 features and topology recommendations.

•Users are now evenly distributed among the Front End pools.”

The Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Planning Tool is available for download here.

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