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Skype for Business Server 2019 Public Preview, What’s New, What’s Gone?

Published 24/07/2018 - 5 Comments

Good news, Skype for Business Server 2019 Public Preview is here. The final generally available release is due before the end of the year. This release is for lab testing, not production.

Download Link: http://download.microsoft.com/download/2/0/9/209372AB-F64F-4F04-8BDA-FBAB1C685BA3/W17_2044.76_Eval.iso

Documentation: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/SkypeForBusiness/whats-new?branch=SkypeServer2019

Exchange Server 2019 public preview was also released

 

What are the new features?

  • Cloud Voicemail – Have SfBS on-premises user voicemail routed to Azure cloud voicemail which can then deliver voicemail to Exchange Online or Exchange Server. This is important for those moving to Exchange Server 2019 as Exchange Server 2019 has no Unified Messaging Option. If your Exchange team are moving to 2019, and you want to stay on SfB Server, you will be forced to move to SfB Server 2019 to maintain voicemail functionality. SfBS 2019 still supports sending voicemail to Exchange 2013 or Exchange 2016
  • Cloud Auto Attendant – again, auto attendant functionality is being depreciated from Exchange 2019 Server, SfBS 2019 now supports Cloud Auto Attendant

image

 

What’s Deprecated?

The following features are gone:

  • XMPP Gateways – rarely used so not likely missed by many
  • Persistent Chat – will be missed by some niche customers, but not used by most.
  • SQL Mirroring support. AlwaysOn Availability Groups, AlwaysOn Failover Cluster Instances (FCI), and SQL failover clustering methods are supported with Skype for Business Server 2019.
  • In-place upgrades – SfBS must be deployed on new servers side by side with an existing installation
  • Mobility Service (Mcx) – Mobility Service support used by legacy mobile clients. All current mobile clients us Unified Communications Web API (UCWA) so this shouldn’t be a big deal

Deprecated/unsupported tools

The following tools will not be available for use at the initial release of Skype for Business Server 2019:

  • Skype for Business Server Capacity Planning Calculator
  • Skype for Business Server Debugging Tools
  • Skype for Business Server Resource Kit Tools (some tools will be removed)
    • Call Parkometer
    • Lookup user console
    • Unassigned number Announcement Migration

The following tools are not supported with Skype for Business Server 2019:

  • Call Quality Methodology Dashboard
  • Microsoft Call Quality Methodology Scorecard, v1.5
  • Skype for Business Server 2015 Planning Tool
  • Skype for Business Server 2015 Stress and Performance Tool

Price Increase

Office 2019 commercial prices will increase 10 percent over current on-premises pricing. The price increase will include Office client, Enterprise CAL, Core CAL, and server products. So all the Office 2019 Server products, not just Skype for Business Server.

Announcing price adjustments for on-premises and cloud products

System Requirements

Standard Edition: 6-core, 2.4 gigahertz / 32 GB RAM / 8 or more 10000 RPM disks or SSD / Gig NIC

SfBS Enterprise Edition Front End: 6-core, 2.4 gigahertz / 64GB RAM / 8 or more 10000 RPM disks or SSD / Gig NIC – big bump in recommended RAM, it’s not really clear why.

Edge Servers, standalone Mediation Servers, and Director: 6-core, 2.4 gigahertz / 16GB RAM / 8 or more 10000 RPM disks or SSD / Gig NIC/ dual Gig NIC for Edge

Windows Server 2016 (no older OS’s supported), no sign of support for Windows Server 2019 yet

Microsoft SQL Server 2016/2017 Enterprise (64-bit edition), and you must run with the latest updates, and with AlwaysOn availability groups.

domain functional level: 2012 or higher

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/SkypeForBusiness/plan/system-requirements

 

Deploying in your lab? Be sure to use Pat Richards Set-CsFeatures.ps1  for the prereqs– Use the -skype4b2019 option https://www.ucunleashed.com/3600

 

Links

Microsoft Official blog post: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Skype-for-Business-Blog/Announcing-the-Skype-for-Business-Server-2019-Preview/ba-p/218435

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/SkypeForBusiness/deprecated

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/SkypeForBusiness/whats-new

Dedicated Tech Forum for the preview: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Skype-for-Business-Server-2019/bd-p/SkypeforBusinessServer2019

Tom Arbuthnot

Tom Arbuthnot

Principal Solutions Architect at Modality Systems
Tom Arbuthnot is Principal Solutions Architect at Unified Communications specialist Modality Systems. He is a Microsoft Certified Master and MVP, blogger, has a regular podcast with UCToday at tomtalks.show and is a regular speaker at events including Microsoft TechEd and Ignite. He co-runs The Microsoft UC User Group London.

5 comments

Installing Skype for Business 2019 Server – Blog.Chiffers.com - 31/07/2018 Reply

[…] big thanks to Tom Arbuthnot who’s article outlines Microsoft’s recommended server requirements for running Skype for Business Server 2019 […]

Tadas - 31/07/2018 Reply

Wow, that’s a big step in killing on-premise solutions. Apart from huge requirements and deprecating important features will be nice to find why it should be worth to upgrade. Apparently there won’t be any rush with upgrades.

Vitaliy - 31/07/2018 Reply

I’m not sure why MS lists Cloud VM and Cloud Auto Attendant as “new features” as this is available in Lync Server 2013 (our current environment that we plan to migrate to S4B 2019 from).

Quality of Experience reports added to Microsoft Call Quality Dashboard - Tom Talks - 12/08/2018 Reply

[…] good resource for driving improvements your Skype for Business Online (soon Server with SfBS 2019) and Microsoft Teams session quality, Microsoft Call Quality Dashboard recently added new Quality […]

Office 2016 connectivity support for Office 365 services extended to 2023 - Tom Talks - 17/09/2018 Reply

[…] Office Server 2019 products also align with this new 7-year term. […]

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