Migrate to Skype for Business 2015 – Part 2 – Perform the migration

Migrate to Skype for Business 2015 – Part 2 – Perform the migration

There are a couple different ways to upgrade to Skype for Business Server 2015. In part 1 of this series we had a look at what these options are. Today we will actually go through the process of an In-Place upgrade. You can only use this method if you have a Lync Server 2013 deployment as a starting point. In this case I am using a Lync Server 2013 environment with one Standard Edition Front End.

This is a two part series of posts:

  • Part 1 – Your Options (this part focusses on the theory and your options from which you can choose for the migration)
  • Part 2 – Perform the Migration (this part takes a closer look into the actual steps you will perform while migrating)

For the upgrade we will follow these steps:


Step 1: Install Prerequisites

You want to start with installing the following prerequisites:

  • CU5 and latest hotfix for Lync Server 2013
  • Windows PowerShell 3.0 (at least build version 6.2.9200.0)
  • At least Microsoft SQL Server 2012 SP1
  • And also one of the following:

Also, you want to have 32 GB of free disk space before you start the upgrade. If you forgot any of the prerequisites, don’t worry the upgrade UI/setup will remind you.

Step 2: Upgrade and publish the topology using Topology Builder

Note: You have to perform this step on a server that does not have the Lync OCSCore or any other Lync components installed. This server doesn’t have to be in the topology necessarily – you just have to able to download the topology from there.

Start setup.exe (SfB 2015 installation media –> Setup –> amd64) from the server you picked for this step. Click install and accept the license agreement. The Skype for Business 2015 Deployment Wizard will open.


Install the Administrative Tools and open the Skype for Business 2015 Topology Builder after. Download the exisiting topology from Central Management Store.


Right-click on the Front End you want to upgrade (In my case: FE01.lab04.net) and choose “upgrade to Skype for Business Server 2015”. If you use Enterprise Edition Front Ends, you should upgrade all members of one pool at the same time.


Publish the topology.


You now have a Skype for Business Server in your topology.

Note: Make sure replication is complete before you move on. 

Step 3: Stop the services on the pool members you are upgrading

Because I’m just using a Standard Edition, this is done pretty quickly.

Note: Most of the time we would use “Stop-CsWindowsService” for stopping all the Lync Services. In this case Microsoft recommends using “Disable-CsComputer -Scorch”, because you may need to reboot during InPlace upgrade and using the first cmdlet some services might start automatically after. This may cause the InPlace upgrade to fail.

Step 4: Launch InPlace upgrade UI (run setup.exe)

Start setup.exe (SfB 2015 installation media –> Setup –> amd64). This time directly from the server you want to upgrade. Again, click install and accept the license agreement. After that the upgrade UI will appear. As a first step it will check your upgrade readiness and if all the prerequisites are installed. If that is not the case, the setup will most likely stop and you will have to install the missing parts manually.

If all the prerequisites are installed, it will take some time for it to do its thing, so go get a coffee.


Upgrade completed successfully.

Step 5: Start Services on all upgraded servers at the same time (Start-CsPool cmdlet)


After you clicked ok within the update UI, you will be reminded to start your services again. Microsoft recommends using “Start-CsPool” to start all Services within a Enterprise Edition Front End pool at the same time. This way you can avoid problems due to quorum loss. If you are using a Standard Edition Front End, you can just use “Start-CsWindowService”.


Your services are running again and therefore you are done with the process. Repeat these steps, if you want to upgrade another pool.


Further reading:




My name is Simone Liebal and I’m working as a Cloud Solution Architect at Microsoft in Germany with the focus point on Cloud Voice.
I support partners with their Skype for Business projects and offerings following the Skype Operations Framework.

Opinions displayed on this blog and my social media pages are my own and do not express the views and opinions of Microsoft.

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