Understanding the BPOS OCO to Lync Online Transition Process and Usage

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As BPOS tenants start to Transition into Office 365, tenants using the BPOS Office Communications Online Instant Messaging services ma have heard that in certain conditions users can start using Lync Online 365.  This thinking is primarily due to BPOS and Office 365 Transition emails which state that users can start upgrading their Communicator clients to Lync 2010, so they can be ready for the Transition and to provide the ability to use Lync Online, which requires the Lync 2010 client.

Depending on where you are in the BPOS Transition process, you may be able to use Lync Online today.  Please review the below scenarios to determine whether you are a candidate for using Lync Online now or whether you will need to wait until the full BPOS to Office 365 Transition process completes:

Scenario 1: Not Scheduled for Transition

  1. Condition:  BPOS tenant has not been scheduled for Transition, so their BPOS objects are not synchronized into Office 365, therefore usage of the Lync Online Services is not yet available. 
  2. Result:  In this scenario users can only use the BPOS Office Communications Online (OCO) Instant Messaging services.

Scenario 2: Scheduled for Transition

  1. Condition: The BPOS tenant has been scheduled for Office 365 Transition with the tenant’s objects, such as users, contacts, groups and domains synchronized into Office 365.  The BPOS users have access into Office 365 using their synchronized accounts, however the tenant has not yet been upgraded into Lync Online.
  2. Result:  In this scenario users can connect to either BPOS OCO or Lync Online.  If users connect to Lync online, they can only chat with others using Lync Online. Similarly users continuing to use BPOS OCO will only be able to chat with other OCO users).  Note that any users who use Lync Online will find their contact list will not be populated.

Scenario 3:  Scheduled for Transition and Lync Upgraded

  1. Condition: The BPOS tenant has been scheduled for Office 365 Transition and the tenant’s objects, such as users, contacts, groups and domains synchronized into Office 365.  The BPOS users have access into Office 365 using their synchronized accounts, and they have been upgraded into Lync Online environment.
  2. Result:  In this scenario users can use either the Lync 2010 or Communicator2007 client in the Lync Online environment.  User contacts will be populated in both clients, and they can communicate with users regardless of what client they are using, with all users now using the Lync Online service.

Scenario 4:  Transitioned to Office 365

  1. Condition: Fully transitioned into Office 365
  2. Result:  In this scenario the Lync 2010 client is the only supported client, now using Lync Online 365.

Net-Net: As BPOS tenants are moved from the OCO to Lync Online environment, they can start using the Lync 2010 client.  Lync Online supports the Lync 2010 client and the Communicator 2007 client, however Communicator will be blocked from connecting into Lync Online ~5 days after the BPOS tenant transition has completed.  If users move forward into Lync Online BEFORE the OCO to Lync Online upgrade has been performed, Lync Online Users will not have their contacts and will need to recreate them, at least until the OCO to Lync Online upgrade has completed, at which point the BPOS contacts now show up in Lync Online through the client.  If tenants and/or users manually move into Lync Online ahead of the official OCO to Lync Online Service upgrade, BPOS OCO and Lync Online users are considered in a separate island, meaning OCO and Lync Online users cannot communicate with each other.  If a BPOS tenant admin wants to allow users to move forward into Lync Online ahead of the service upgrade, all users should make the move, otherwise they will not be able to communicate with others, those who may have stayed in the BPOS Office Communications Online (OCO) environment.

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