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FAQ: Is it possible to only use 1 server to deploy Office Communications Server?

January 9th, 2008 by Jabez Gan [MVP]

I’ve received quite some queries about Office Communications Server (OCS) 2007. One of the queries is:

Can I use only 1 server to deploy Office Communications Server?

The simple answer is:

If you do not need external users to connect into the OCS service, then it is OK. The minimum setup is:
1 Domain Controller
1 Member server installed with OCS

The above will only give you simple MSN-like service within your corporate.

However, if you need to have external users to be able to connect back to the OCS, you will need to setup another server called an Edge Server (install the Edge Server roles).

For Audio/Video, you might need ANOTHER server for it, since it will be pretty processor/memory intensive.

So… Is OCS a feasible solution for small businesses? I would say – It depends. If their TOC outweights the benefits, then No. But if they do a lot of trainings and employees are scattered across the place and needs frequently web conference, then yes.

What do you think? Have you tried out OCS2007? Is that what you were expecting?

P.s: OCS2007 was formerly known as Live Communication Server 2003/2005. I’m also doing screencasts on OCS which can be found at (

More information of OCS can be found: If you need more information or guidance on OCS, you can contact me through this blog or send me an email over at mingteikg [ at    ] blizhosting-Dot-com.

Posted in Office Communications Server | 2 Comments »

This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 9th, 2008 at 7:32 pm and is filed under Office Communications Server. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses

  1. Lukas Beeler Says:

    I’m working for a Small Business, we’re 35 People spread across two Locations, with several people always at customer’s sites.

    I’ve deployed OCS Internally on our internal Sharepoint Server (an xSeries 330, PIII 1.1 Ghz, 2GB RAM, 2x36GB 10kRPM using Software RAID). Of course, external user access was a must for us. For simple IM functionality, an Edge Server is not needed (all you are a port forwarding, and a few certificate hacks – but for adress book download, you’ll need to establish a VPN connection).

    I hope to deploy VoIP and Exchange 2007 this year, but this is up to my boss, not to me.

    So yes – IM with OCS works without an Edge Server. Audio and Conferencing doesn’t. And you don’t need a very fast machine either. We never had any problems with Audio or Conferencing, even though our OCS machine is really, really slow and also runs sharepoint.

  2. Jabez Gan [MVP] Says:

    Thanks for the feedback Lukas.

    Glad to hear that an Edge Server is not needed to connect external users for IM service. However this is not a recommended solution by Microsoft though.

    For Audio and Conference, it will need a strong machine. IM isn’t that heavy tho.

    Thank for the feedback again! 🙂