Don’t you hate it when you send a Skype for Business meeting invite out to external guests and they have trouble connecting to your meeting? I see this all the time in our day to day activities of troubleshooting issues. Often times it’s because the attendee also has Skype for Business and for some “mysterious” reason the client will not connect. There is a slew of potential reasons why the Skype for business client won’t connect but that isn’t going to help you when someone needs to connect to your meetings.
If someone can’t connect to a Skype for Business meeting our recommendations is to the web application ie. Use the browser to connect.
Help is on the way…
To help prevent this or mitigate the connection issue , you can provide your users with the “trick”. By instructing users on how to add ?sl=1 at the end of the meeting url users can use the web application to join Skype meetings. Users can manually add a hyperlink in the meeting invite that includes the ?sl=1 or follow the instructions below:
- In the meeting request, right-click or tap and hold the Join Skype Meeting link, and select Copy Hyperlink.
- Paste the meeting link into a browser address box, and add ?sl=1 at the end. For example: https://join.mymeeting.com/meet/pschmitt/ABCDEFGH?sl=1
- Press Enter to join the meeting with Skype for Business Web App.
NOTE: Follow your browser’s instructions for installing the Skype for Business Web App Plug-in, which is required for audio, video, and screen sharing. If you are still having trouble your system maybe blocked from installing plugins and you may need elevated rights to do so. If you can’t even hit the page your corporate web filtering may need to whitelist the domain, you are trying to reach.
This isn’t the ideal solution for users because it can be confusing. Besides, something like this should simply work without having to manually update links into a browser right?
Well, after much demand Microsoft finally listened and realized that this was a pain and put a permanent solution in place. As if January 3, 2017 an update to the Skype for Business client was released that would update all clients with a link to the web app to join meetings. This is like a belated Christmas present for all the Skype admins out there. No more tickets about users unable to join meetings. No more explaining on how to add the “special” characters to the browser of the meeting link. It would already be added into the meeting invite automatically when the invitation is generated. How genius!
The January 3, 2017, update for Skype for Business 2016 (KB3128049) can be found here as well as all the fixes it includes. Once the update is applied new Skype meeting invitations will look like this:
Either solution will work however applying the update will ensure a more permanent solution. If someone is unable to apply the update adding ?sl=1 at the end of the hyperlink and into the browser will still force the meeting into the web app.