Topic Last Modified: 2011-04-04

After installing and configuring you internal deployment of Microsoft Lync Server 2010, internal users in your organization can collaborate with other internal users who have SIP accounts in your Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS). Collaboration can include exchanging instant messages and presence information and, if configured, participating in conferences (also known as "meetings"). By default, only users who are logged on to your internal network can log on to Lync Server 2010. You enable and configure external user access to control whether supported external users can collaborate with internal Lync Server users. External users can include remote users, federated users (including supported users of public instant messaging (IM) service providers), and anonymous participants in conferences, depending on how you configure external user access.

Deploying an Edge Server or Edge pool is the first step to supporting external users. For details about deploying Edge Servers, see Deploying Edge Servers in the Deployment documentation.

After completing the setup of an Edge Server or Edge pool, you must enable the types of external user access that you want to support and configure support for the external users that your organization wants to support. In Lync Server 2010, you enable and configure external user access using the Lync Server Control Panel and the Lync Server Management Shell. For details about these management tools, see Lync Server Control Panel in the Operations documentation, Lync Server Management Shell in the Operations documentation, Lync Server Control Panel in the Operations documentation, and Install Lync Server Administrative Tools in the Operations documentation.

To support external user access, you must do both of the following:

You can configure external user access settings, including any policies that you want to use to control external user access, even if you have not enabled external user access for your organization. However, the policies and other settings that you configure are in effect only when you have external user access enabled for your organization. External users cannot communicate with users of your organization when external user access is disabled or if no external user access policies are configured to support it.

Your edge deployment authenticates the types of external users and controls access based on how you configure your edge support. In order to control communications across the firewall, you can configure one or more policies and configure other settings that define how users inside and outside your firewall communicate with each other. This includes the default global policy for external user access, in addition to site and user policies that you can create and configure to enable one or more types of external user access for specific sites or users.

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