Is it live or is

It Memorex? Oh, never

Mind: It's Lync Server.

 

Many years ago, back before the dawn of recorded history, the Memorex corporation aired one of television's most-memorable commercials. In the commercial, you heard Ella Fitzgerald's voice, then you saw a wineglass shatter. And then came the tag line: is it live, or is it Memorex? In other words, can you tell the difference between someone singing live and in person and someone who's been recorded on a Memorex audio cassette? Now, admittedly, either way you were listening to a voice that had been recorded on video tape and then transmitted over the TV airwaves, which kind of muddled things a bit. Nevertheless, the commercial was pretty impressive, although its impact is somewhat tempered by the fact that, within 10 years, Memorex would be bought by the Burroughs company and most of its assets sold off. So much for creating classic, memorable advertising, eh?

 

Note. But fear not: Memorex is still alive and kicking (although we did have to look that up to be sure). The company makes MP3 players, televisions, and DVD players, and sells things like docking stations and iPod accessories. As for Ella Fitzgerald, well, sadly, Ella died in 1996, the same year that the world's last remaining audio cassette player also died.

 

As a Microsoft Lync Server 2010 administrator, you probably don't have much problem determining whether that Front End server you're looking at is a real server or just a recording of a server. However, you might have a somewhat-similar problem: is that Front End server running a real copy of Lync Server 2010 or the evaluation copy of Lync Server 2010? Of course that leads to an obvious question: does it matter which version the server is running? No, not at all.

 

Well, except for the fact that the evaluation version expires after 6 months, which means that, at that point, your whole unified communications infrastructure will grind to a halt. But other than that ….

 

Or, to put it another way, unless the world ends sometime in the next 6 months, you're going to need to upgrade the evaluation version to the real version of Lync Server 2010.

 

Note. At the moment, the world is scheduled to end on December 21, 2012. That's a bit of a bummer, but there is a bright side: at least with that date, one of the authors of this article will be able to squeeze in one final birthday before the apocalypse.

 

For those of you who like to do your shopping in advance, that birthday will fall on December 18, 2012. And if you're looking for gift suggestions here's one: don't bother getting him anything that will take more than 3 days to put together.  

 

Of course, if you're already running the real version of Lync Server 2010 then you don't have to worry about any of this. (Or if the Mayans miscalculated and the world actually ends on December 21, 2010. If that happens you probably won't need to spend much time worrying about the evaluation version of Lync Server.) So how can you tell if you're running the real version or the evaluation version of Lync Server? Here's how: Get-CsServerVersion.

 

As help writers, Get-CsServerVersion is by far our favorite PowerShell cmdlet: Get-CsServerVersion only does one thing, and it doesn't even have any parameters we had to document. To use the cmdlet, all you have to do is start of the Lync Server Management Shell (on a Front End server, Director, or Edge Server) and then type the following:

 

Get-CsServerVersion

 

In turn, Get-CsServerVersion will take a peek at your installation of Lync Server and tell you one of the following:

 

·         That the evaluation license key has been installed. That means you're going to have to upgrade to the RTM version of Lync Server.

·         That the volume license key has been installed. That means that you've already upgraded to the RTM version of Lync Server.

·         That no license key is required for the components installed on the local computer. Licensing is required only for computers functioning as a Front End Server, a Director, or an Edge Server.

 

See why we didn't mind doing the help for Get-CsServerVersion? See you tomorrow!

 

Well, unless the Mayans really miscalculated, that is.