Conversation history, contact cards, Free/Busy, and Out of Office information are unavailable when Lync fails to connect to Exchange

Applies to: Skype for Business Online


When you try to sign in to Skype for Business Online (formerly Lync Online) by using Lync 2010 or Lync 2013 on a computer that's running Outlook, you may experience the following issues:

  • Conversation history
    • Conversation history isn't saved to Outlook.
    • Conversation history tab is empty in Lync 2013.
  • Office contact cards
    • Contact cards display incorrect information or nothing at all.
    • There's no availability or Free/Busy information in contact cards.
    • You can't open or view contact cards.
  • Notifications
    • Out of Office messages aren't displayed.
    • You don't receive voice mail notifications.
    • You don't receive Missed Conversation notifications.
In the Lync client, you may receive one of the following error messages:
  • Lync cannot connect to the Exchange server. Lync will attempt to retry the connection. History, voice mail and Outlook-related features will be unavailable.
  • Cannot connect to Exchange Web Services to retrieve Calendar and Out of Office Information.
  • Lync is in the process of determining the location of Exchange Web Services. This process may take a few minutes.
  • Lync is experiencing connection issues with the Exchange server. Lync will attempt to repair the connection until it is fully restored. History, voice mail, and Outlook-related features might be unavailable or out of date until the connection is restored.


Solutions for Skype for Business Online users

Solutions for Skype for Business Online Administrators in Office 365

Where are the users’ mailboxes located?

Many of the deployment requirements for Exchange and Lync integration depend on where the user’s mailbox is located.

The following articles cover deployment requirements. These include DNS configuration, Exchange Server configuration, and Lync Server configuration.

Is the user part of an on-premises Exchange Server organization, or are they in Office 365 Exchange Online? 
  • If the user’s mailbox is located in Exchange Online, see the following Knowledge Base article:
    2614242  How to integrate Exchange Server 2013 with Lync Server 2013, Skype for Business Online, or a Lync Server 2013 hybrid deployment
  • If the user’s mailbox is homed on an on-premises Exchange server, see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article: 
    2614614  How to integrate Exchange Online with Skype for Business Online, Lync Server 2013, or a Lync Server 2013 hybrid deployment


These issues occur when Lync can't determine the user’s email address, can't locate the user’s Exchange server, or can't connect to the user’s Exchange server.

When the Lync client tries to discover the Exchange server of the Skype for Business Online user, the Lync client references the Active Directory WindowsEmailAddress attribute (or the MAIL attribute). Lync then tries to connect to the Exchange server through the Autodiscover process by using the domain suffix of the email address in the WindowsEmailAddress AD attribute. If the Skype for Business Online user doesn’t have an Exchange Online mailbox, or if the necessary attributes aren’t being synced from on-premises, Exchange integration with Lync fails.

After Lync determines where it should look for the Exchange server, it uses Autodiscover to find the user’s mailbox server and connect to it. If the Autodiscover service on whichever Exchange server the user’s mailbox resides is unavailable, the integration between Exchange and Lync fails.

As soon as Lync has the correct mailbox server to connect to, it tries to authenticate by using the Skype for Business Online user credentials first. If those credentials fail, Lync prompts for credentials after you sign in. If the wrong credentials are entered, or the user clicks cancel, the integration between Exchange and Lync fails.

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