Cloud Busting Part 3: Tackling those Pesky Migration Problems

Over the past two features on Cloud Busting we've looked at a variety of common problems that can arise mid-Office 365 migration. Some of these you may never experience, others may lurk in your peripheral vision, ready to pounce. Fortunately we have hunted down several experts in this field and asked them to give us solutions to these tricky problems so you only need find your answer and make that problem go away.

Issues Relating to SharePoint

Jasper Oosterveld is a SharePoint consultant with Wortell, who deals with common issues encountered with SharePoint and Microsoft Office 365 migrations every day. One of these problems has been connecting to SharePoint.

"A common issue we've come across is when our BPOS customers migrate to Office 365 they get an error message saying, 'Microsoft Online Services is unavailable from this suite for one of the following reasons:'," says Oosterveld, "Fortunately Microsoft sent us the workaround for this particular issue and it seems to work perfectly, I've been getting positive feedback from our customers."

To resolve this SharePoint connectivity problem just follow these simple steps. Begin by ensuring that the Microsoft Single-Sign On tool, the one used for BPOS, is deleted, then open up Internet Explorer, click on Tools and then on Internet Options. A pop-up box will appear and you need to click on the Security tab and select Trusted Sites. Click on the Sites box, which that sits on the middle right-hand side of the screen, and uncheck the box that says Require Server Verification.

Now add *.sharepoint.com and *.microsoft.com and close the pop-up window. Select Local Intranet and go to Sites and Advanced and add in the following to this list: https://*microsoftonline.com and https://*.sharepoint.com and then close the pop-up windows. Go to the Content tab and hit Clear SSL State and then to the General tab and hit Delete and then Delete Temporary Internet Files, Cookies, Form Data and Passwords. Now restart the browser and you should find that you are now able to happily connect to SharePoint Online.

Lync Attendee Certificate Error

Lync Attendee is the client tool that allows users without non-Lync clients to attend Lync Online conference calls. It's an extremely useful tool that ensures your business, given a Microsoft Office 365 implementation, can communicate and connect with customers or partners who are not hooked into Lync in the cloud.

Sririam Vaideeswaran is the Principal Consultant (Cloud and Productivity) at IOTAP, and he's got some brilliant pointers for issues with Lync Attendee. "There is a chance that users connecting to Lync Online meetings via the Lync Attendee tool can receive an error message that says there is a problem in verifying their certificate," he explains, "The reason for this error could be that the user is using the Google Chrome browser which is not supported for Lync Attendee, or that the SRV records required for Lync Attendee to connect to the server are not added correctly."

The issue of the missing SRV records in the DNS causing the error message is easily solved for Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise clients. You just need to add the necessary DNS records to resolve the problem. However, for Professional and Small Business clients, Microsoft has not yet found a resolution to this problem and is working to address it. You can find documentation on the issue and the workaround for Enterprise here.

It's All in the Licence

Migrating to Microsoft Office 365 does require a lot of planning and foresight. The more you plan, the better prepared you are for life's little mishaps and moments. Naz Ahammad, director of Nimbulus Consulting says, "At the planning stage you really need to work out what type of licences you need. The most common error is not getting the right plan in place. For example, many companies find that the P1 plan is quite an attractive proposition at 4GB per month, so they go for it and discover that they can't use BlackBerry devices and now need to look into another plan."

"Say you're a recruitment company and you need legal hold and compliance capabilities – don't expect to get this from the P1 or Exchange Plan 1," he warns, "This functionality is only available with the Exchange Plan 2 product. I advise customers to get someone who knows the different services inside and out involved in the project."

What's wrong with my PDFs?

The default behaviour of SharePoint 2010, when opening PDF files from document libraries, is to prompt the users to save them rather than opening the files directly in the browser and, for some, this may not be an ideal situation.

"You can change SharePoint's behaviour by disabling the Strict Browser file handling setting," says Vaideeswaran, "However, with Microsoft Office 365 SharePoint Online, the option for changing this setting is not available. Fortunately, as part of the second update to SharePoint Online the ability to view PDF files from the browser was added in."

In spite of this update, the new feature that allows users to view their PDFs directly online with SharePoint has some limitations. It needs the latest version of Adobe Reader installed onto the client machines and HTTPS connections.

"To avoid this becoming an issue," says Vaideeswaran, "We implemented a workaround for our Microsoft Office 365 customers by setting up a custom solution. We used the one that was developed by Joshua Bookerand you can simply follow his detailed instructions to do the same."

Conclusion

While there are certainly niggles and mishaps that we've not covered in these three parts of Cloud Busting, we hope that we've managed to give you quick and workable solutions that have saved the day. Of course, Microsoft's Office 365 Community is packed with advice, walkthroughs, and step-by-step guides to most of the questions asked by users of this cloud solution.