In certain deployment scenarios where OCS is deployed with multiple remote locations connected by WANs, the need for an alternate URL for the GAL files to be downloaded from is preferred.  OCS R1 does not allow for this configuration by default.  Settings need to be changed in two areas on the Office Communications Server.

1. WMI setting MSFT_SIPAddressBookSetting.

2. IIS setting for Require secure channel (SSL) on the Abs virtual directory and the Files directory within the Default Web Site.

The default setting for the MSFT_SIPAddressBookSetting is to HTTPS (https://Pool01.contoso.com/Abs/Int/Handler).  This value is configured during the initial deployment using the OCS installation wizard and cannot be changed.  In order to change this value, a change in WMI is required.  WMI entries can be modified by using a native tool within Windows OS called WBEMTEST.  These steps are as follows.

1. Log on to a OCS Front-End server

2. Click Start, click Run, type wbemtest, and then click OK.

3. In the Windows Management Instrumentation Tester dialog box, click Connect.

4. In the namespace box that appears in the upper-left area of the Connect dialog box, change the root\default to root\cimv2, and then click Connect.

5. Click Enum Classes, click Recursive, and then click OK.

6. Locate the MSFT_SIPAddressBookSetting entry, double-click MSFT_SIPAddressBookSetting, and then click Instances.

This action displays one instance for each pool that is configured in the forest.  You must select the correct instance based on the back-end server of the pool that you want to modify.  The back-end server is listed in the instance title as follows:

MSFT_SIPAddressBookSettings.Backend="Back-end_Server_Name"

7. Double-click the correct instance based on the appropriate back-end server.

8. Locate the internalURL entry, and then double-click internalURL.

9. Change the default value with the desire URL value, and then click Save Property.

10. Click Save Object, and then click Close three times.

11. Click exit.

12. Allow for sufficient time to let the Active Directory directory service to replicate the changes to the other domain controllers in the environment.

13. Restart the Front End server on each pool server.

Just like the default setting for Address book URL, the default setting for Directory Security on the Files directory is set to Require secure channel (SSL).  This value too is configured during the initial deployment using the OCS installation wizard and cannot be changed.  In order to change this value, a change in IIS is required.

1. Log on to a OCS Front-End server

2. Launch Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager

3. Within the IIS Administrative MMC, expand Server_Name(local computer), expand Web Sites, expand Default Web Site

4. Right-Click on Abs and click properties

5. Click the Directory Security Tab

6. Under Secure communications, click Edit

7. Observe that by default, the check box for Require secure channel (SSL) is checked, uncheck this tic box and click OK

8. Click Apply if needed

9. Repeat steps for Files directory

10. Perform an IISRESET by clicking Start, click Run, and type IISREST

11. A command prompt window will displaying the IISRESET process

Attempting stop...

Internet services successfully stopped

Attempting start...

12. Once the start is successful, the command prompt will close.

Testing and verifying the settings changes were successful.  To test if the Communicator is able to download the Galcontacts.db for the new location, we'll need to force a new download of the Galcontacts.db.  This is accomplished by deleting the current Galcontacts.db.  When the MOC client logs in after the deletion, it will download a fresh Galcontacts.db and thus verifies all is functioning as expected.  This can be tested by preforming the following steps.

1. Completely exit out of Communicator by killing the Communicator.exe from the System Tray on the desktop.

2. Delete the Galcontacts.db. Depending on what Windows OS your client is running, the location of the Galcontacts.db may differ. On XP/Windows 2003 Server, the location of the Galcontacts.db is: C:\Documents and Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Communicator

3. Launch Communicator

4. If successful, the Communicator client not show any ABS sync error and the client will be able to search for contacts. You can also verify that the Galcontacts.db is downloaded successfully bt checking the above directory for the actual Galcontacts.db file.

 

This has only been tested within a lab scenario and is not officially supported by Microsoft.