Allow users to contact external Skype for Business users

Questions about this article? Email: Skype for Business federation

Use the steps in this article when:

  • You have users on different domains in your business. For example, Rob@ContosoEast.com and Ann@ContosoWest.com.

  • You want the people in your organization to use Skype for Business to contact people in specific businesses outside of your organization.

Enable business-to-business communications for your users

You must have admin permissions in Office 365 to do this.

  1. Sign in with your Office 365 admin account at https://portal.office.com/adminportal/home.

  2. In the Office 365 admin center, go to Admin Centers > Skype for Business.

  3. In the Skype for Business admin center, choose organization > external communications.

  4. To set up communication with a specific business or with users in another domain, in the drop down box, choose On only for allowed domains.

  5. Under blocked or allowed domains, choose + and add the name of the domain you want to allow.

  6. Now make sure the admin in the other organization does these same steps in their Skype for Business admin center. For example, in their allowed domains list, their admin needs to enter the domain for your business.

  7. If you're using Windows Firewall, Skype for Business opens the required ports automatically.

    If your organization is using a different firewall solution to restrict computers on your network from connecting to the Internet, ensure your client computers are able to access the following FQDNs. This may require adding the FQDNs to the outbound allow list in your firewall or proxy infrastructure configuration: *.api.skype.com, *.users.storage.live.com, and graph.skype.com.

    That's it! Now your users can IM, hold meetings, and share desktops. And they can see who's online and available just by checking their contacts list.

Tip: If you also want your users to be able to use Skype for Business to search for and IM with everyone who uses Skype, the free consumer app, choose Let people use Skype for Business to communicate with Skype users outside your organization. But, know that your Mac users won't be able to search Skype. To learn more, see Let users add external contacts from Skype.

Tips on setting up communications with federated businesses

  • To configure federation between Skype for Business 2015 and Skype for Business Online, see this TechNet article: Configure federation with Skype for Business Online.

  • To configure federation between Lync and Skype for Business Online, see this TechNet article: Configuring Federation Support for a Lync Online Customer.

  • When two Skype for Business users in Office 365 are communicating with each other on separate domains, they can only use Skype for Business features (for example, video conversations or desktop sharing) that are turned on in both organizations.

  • If a Skype for Business user in your organization is put on an In-place or Litigation Hold, any IM conversations between that user and other Skype for Business or Skype users will be saved in Recoverable Items in their mailbox. These conversations aren't saved in the Conversations History folder in their mailbox.

After you enable external communication for your entire business, you can turn it off for only specific individuals.

  1. Sign in with your Office 365 admin account at https://portal.office.com/adminportal/home.

  2. In the Office 365 admin center, go to > Users > Active users.

  3. In the list of users, choose the user, and then, under More Settings, click Edit Skype for Business properties.

    Choose Skype for Business

  4. In the Skype for Business admin center, choose External Communications.

    On the Options page, all of the choices will be checked. Unselect the communications you want to disable. The following image shows that Jakob will be able to communicate with people in other trusted businesses, but not with other Skype users.

    Choose External contacts

  5. Choose Save.

Note: You may have to wait for up to 24 hours for your changes to take effect.

See Also

Set up Skype for Business Online

Let users contact Skype users

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