[This is pre-release documentation and subject to change in future releases. This topic's current status is: Milestone-Ready]

Topic Last Modified: 2010-07-15

In this topic, learn about what “device” means in a Microsoft Communications Server 2010 environment, the types of phones this release supports, and the key device-related tools.

Definition of “Devices”

In Communications Server 2010, “device” can refer to any unified communication (UC) device, including headsets and webcams, but the primary UC device that is discussed in this chapter is the phone. Phones running Microsoft Communicator “14” Phone Edition allow users to interact with the Communications Server 2010 communication and collaboration features. They provide basic and advanced phone features, including new voice features such as Enhanced 9-1-1 (E9-1-1) and the Call Park Service, as well as voice connections to Microsoft Communicator "14" and Live Meeting sessions. Communications Server 2010 supports IP, USB, and analog devices.

Support for analog devices is new for this release. For more information, see What's New for Devices.

For more information about the new voice features, see Enterprise Voice, in this guide.

Mobile phones are outside the scope of this chapter. For information about how to use Office Communicator Mobile, see the Microsoft Office Communicator Mobile 2007 R2 version Overview, at the Office Online website.

Types of UC Phones

Communications Server 2010 supports three types of phones:

  • Desk phones are handset IP, USB, or analog phones that are designed to be used by employees at their desk. Desk phones are also known as information worker or knowledge worker phones.

  • Conferencing devices are hands-free IP or USB phones that are designed to be used in meeting rooms.

  • Common area phones are handset IP phones that are designed to be used in shared areas—such as lobbies, kitchens, factory floors, and shared workspaces—and that can be customized to provide different sets of Communications Server features.

For details about all three phone types, see Choosing New Devices.

Support for analog phones, the IP conferencing device, and common area phones is new for this release. There is also a newly released IP desk phone. For information about all the new phones, see What's New for Devices.

Tools for Managing Devices

When you use devices with Communications Server 2010, your primary tools will be any of the following:

  • Communications Server Control Panel , the new web-based user interface (UI) for Communications Server features. For devices, use the Control Panel to prepare to deploy phones, manage the Device Update service (that is, to deploy new versions of software to IP phones), and modify phone-related settings, policies, and plans.

  • Communications Server Management Shell , the command-line tools for Communications Server features. For devices, use the Shell to prepare to deploy UC phones and to manage them.

  • Gateway Management Console, for preparing to use analog devices with Communications Server. Use this console to configure analog gateways to enable analog devices to make and receive calls by using Communications Server 2010.

  • IP Phone Inventory Report, for monitoring IP phones. Use this tool to monitor usage and to generate usage and inventory reports for the IP phones in your organization. For more information, see “Improved Monitoring Capability,” in What's New for Devices.