Using the Pidgin Instant Messaging Client with Lync

By now everyone should have their new Polycom CX600 phones installed. When the phones were installed, each department member was also registered to use Vanderbilt's Lync server. On Windows and Macintosh computers, the Lync client provides instant messaging and tools to manage phone functions such as voice mail, forwarding, conference calls, and so forth.

Lync client information (including installation instructions for Windows and Macintosh)
Polycom CX600 phone cheat sheet

On Linux computers the phone management features are not available. There is no Lync client for Linux. Voice mail, forwarding, etc. are all available, but they must be accessed and configured on the phone set rather than from the computer.

One Lync feature that is available on Linux computers is instant messaging with other Lync users at Vanderbilt. Connection to the Lync instant messaging servers can be made with the Pidgin client. Pidgin is an open source instant messaging client that works with many protocols. It is installed on all our Linux workstations.

Follow these steps to connect the Pidgin client to Vanderbilt's Lync servers:

  • Run pidgin on your workstation.

  • If you've never previously configured pidgin you will see the following window. Click the Add button.

  • The "Add Account" screen will appear. Fill in the boxes as below.
    • In the Username box put your Vanderbilt email address.
    • In the Login box put "vanderbilt\vunetid (where "vunetid" is your VUnetID.
    • Enter your epassword in the Password box.
    • Check the Remember Password box if you wish to avoid entering your password each time you start pidgin.
    • Click the Add button to complete configuration.
Topic revision: r1 - 21 Aug 2015, DalePlummer

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