Skype for Business Cloud Connector Version 1.4.2 Release

Skype for Business Cloud Connector Version 1.4.2 Release

This is an important update as it is the first update that will automatically update all existing installed Skype for Business Cloud Connector (Cloud Connector) 1.4.1 appliances based on the update schedule that administrators have configured for their Cloud Connector Hybrid PSTN Sites. For details please refer to Understanding the automatic update process for Cloud Connector Edition.

Be sure to read Prepare for Cloud Connector Edition Release 1.4.2 prior to your update schedule to insure a successful update.

If you are running version 1.3.8, please refer to the manual update instructions Upgrade a single site to a new version in the Cloud Connector Edition configuration guide. Also, be sure to export a new sample Cloud Connector configuration file after 1.4.2 has been installed and update your existing configuration file with new parameters, e.g., HardwareType and WSUS Server.

Thoughts and Motivations behind 1.4.2

As you’ll see in the sections below we have several fixes and improvements in this latest version of CCE. We’ve listened to your feedback and made the 1.4.X CCE easier to deploy, more robust and fixed many minor bugs.

There are several reasons why we decided to issue a release now:

  • 1.4.1 was about 9 months old. There were numerous improvements to the components of CCE and there were a pile of improvements and workarounds that were starting to cause deployment friction with our customers.
  • 1.4.1 introduced Auto Update (among other improvements) but we had not released an actual update to verify at scale. While we tested Auto Update as part of the 1.4.1 release process, it was important to have a real update work well across the wide diversity of live CCE deployments. V2.0 is coming later this year and it has some substantial feature updates and changes to the CCE architecture, so it was important to make sure the fundamentals of 1.4.X Auto Update were well in hand before we start automatically updating a big release like V2.0

There is another important point to make here: It is really important to enable Auto Update.

Unlike pure cloud offerings or pure on-premises offerings (like Skype for Business Server or Cisco Call Manager) the software needed to deliver CloudPBX and Hybrid PSTN separate into two distinct places. The other offerings have all their elements in one place and while there may be new releases or updates, the old releases are self-consistent and unchanging. If you can live with current features, you can delay updating. It’s not unusual for on-premises software to skip several updates.

For Hybrid PSTN, the software components split across the Skype for Business Online (SFBO) cloud service elements and the elements inside the CCE in your data center. In SFBO, all components are capable of updating globally every 2 weeks and some can be done as quickly as 2 days. Some changes in the cloud need an upgrade to the on-premises CCE. If CCE does not auto update there is a real chance that PSTN calling will cease to work, or work intermittently. Deferring or stopping all CCE updates does not stop the cloud parts of your solution from updating. Auto Update is needed to ensure your CCE stays in sync with the Skype for Business cloud.

Changes in Support Policy

Since the beginning the EULA required before downloading CCE software notified the customer that their SLA requires that they comply with recommended software updates to keep their financially backed SLA in force. In support of that the CCE team spent a lot of time developing and perfecting the Auto Update subsystem for CCE to make staying current painless and eliminate software mismatch induced errors.

Starting with CCE 1.4.2 we will be a little more prescriptive on updates and SLAs:

When we release version N (1.4.2 in this case) there is a 60 day window within which version N-1 (the prior released version, 1.4.1) will also be supported against the SLA commitment. After 60 days only version N is supported against the SLA commitment.

Many customers still are running v1.3.8. This version is the original version of CCE, and it will not automatically update but it will manually update to the current production version of CCE. Given how old this release is to the evolving CloudPBX software, the risk of failure or degradation grows day by day. Please update your 1.3.8 ASAP. No one wants users to lose the ability to make/receive phone calls. We have tested updating 1.3.8 to 1.4.1 and to 1.4.2.

If running 1.3.8, please manually update to 1.4.2 now.

Improvements in 1.4.2

Revised cmdlet

Added following two parameters to Set-CcExternalCertificateFilePath:

Target: Define the certificate target, either EdgeServer or MediationServer.

  • Set-CcExternalCertificateFilePath -Path <Path to Edge PFX Cerfiticate> -Target EdgeServer
    Set the path to the certificate that has private key which the script will import and assign to the external interface of the Edge server during deployment.
  • Set-CcExternalCertificateFilePath -Path <Path to PSTN Gateway Certificate> -Target MediationServer.
    Set the path to the certificate that has the certificate chain of the issuing CA for the PSTN Gateway which the script will import to the Mediation server certificate store during deployment.

Import: Import the certificate for the Edge server or Mediation server.

  • Set-CcExternalCertificateFilePath -Path <Path to Edge PFX Cerfiticate> -Target EdgeServer -Import. Used to both import new certificate to the Edge server and assign it to the external interface. This action will put appliance in maintenance mode.
  • Set-CcExternalCertificateFilePath -Path < Path to PSTN Gateway Certificate > -Target MediationServer -Import. Used to import new certificate chain of the issuing CA for PSTN Gateway certificate to the Mediation Server.

Defined certificate paths saved in "C:\ProgramData\CloudConnector\module.ini":

  • ExternalCertificateFilePath.
  • GatewayCertificateFilePath.

New cmdlets

Certificate Management

  • Backup-CcCertificationAuthority: Backs up the certification authority service to a file and saves it to the CA folder under the site share directory.
  • Export-CcRootCertificate: Exports the root CA certificate to a local file on the Cloud Connector host server.
  • Renew-CcCACertificate: Reinstalls the Certification Authority Service AD Server to create a new root CA certificate..
  • Renew-CcServerCertificate: Renews the certificates for Cloud Connector when they are near expiration or already expired.
  • Remove-CsCertificationAuthorityFile: Removes the certification authority service backup file "<SiteRootDirectory>\CA\SfB CCE Root.p12" in the CA folder under the site share directory for Cloud Connector.
  • Remove-CcLegacyServerCertificate: Removes legacy server certificates on the Central Management Store, Mediation Server, and Edge Server after you execute the Renew-CcCACertificate or Renew CcServerCertificate cmdlets.
  • Reset-CcCACertificate: Resets the certificate authority servers to install a new certificate authority certificate.

CLS Logging

  • Start-CcLogging: The Start-CcLogging cmdlet generates the incoming and outgoing call log for a Skype for Business Cloud Connector Edition instance.
  • Stop-CcLogging: The Stop-CcLogging cmdlet stops generating the incoming and outgoing call log for a Skype for Business Cloud Connector Edition instance.
  • Search-CcLog: The Search-CcLog cmdlet searches the incoming and outgoing call logs in the Skype for Business Cloud Connector Edition appliance log directory.

Cloud Connector cmdlet reference:

1.4.2 Resolves Following Issues