Igor Kromin |   Consultant. Coder. Blogger. Tinkerer. Gamer.
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Yes it is possible to Use normal Skype to connect to Skype for Business (Lync) contacts and it's been a feature I've heavily relied on. However, I noticed that some contacts always showed 'Offline' to me. I wasn't able to send messages to them and they weren't able to send messages to me. After lots of head scratching I found this article on Microsoft Support pages and decided to give it a shot, and it worked, though with some catches.

This is what I was seeing after adding a colleague on Skype... Offline, always offline.

Following the advise of the article above I had to ask that colleague to add me using a different email address. Example: if your Skype sign-in email address is [email protected], you should be looked up by cooldude(mail.com)@msn.com.

Doing that worked like a charm for one of the contacts I've added. However most of the others got this instead...

For some reason Lync (Skype for Business) was saying that I was blocked. Strange, but not a big deal. Right-clicking my contact and adding me to a group in the contact list seemed to have unblocked me.

After doing all that, I was able to see the added contacts as 'Online' and more importantly - communicate with them.

Remember this will only work if your Skype account is linked to a Microsoft account.


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