Lync 2013 with Lync VDI plugin

I’ve read a lot about using Lync 2013 with Lync VDI plugin for offloading video and audio, but how to configure it and how it really works is a little bit hazy in my opinion.

This blog describes how the Lync VDI plugin works and how to configure it on a domain joined computer and a standalone computer.

First let’s start with the download… you can find the 32-bit version here and the 64-bit version here.
note: when you have a Microsoft Office version installed on your client, you have to match the VDI plugin with the Office version, so a 64-bit version of Office requires a 64-bit version of the VDI plugin. When no Office version is installed, it’s recommended to use the 32-bit version.
When using Receiver you have to use 32-bit VDI plugin, that requires you to remove 64-bit office versions.

The VDI plugin setup is a next, next, finish installation, so this doesn’t require additional help.

After that you have a working VDI plugin…..!?!

No, not really, now you have to add 2 registry values with information about your Lync front-end pool.

This is current user based, so you have to import the values at logon on the client device.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


Next thing is to install the root certificate that matches the certificate on your front-end server.
Okay, all things are done on the client side for the VDI plugin.

To make a connection with a VDI and have the Lync stuff working, let’s take a look at the minimum requirements.

When using Citrix, it’s recommended to use Citrix receiver version 4.1.2 (download it here) this version has all Citrix updates for the Lync VDI plugin used virtual channels etc.
When using Microsoft RDS it’s recommended to update your Remote Desktop Protocol version to at least 8 with updates KB2592687 and KB2574819 installed.

Okay, all client side requirements are met and work.

Next… how does it work?

– A user logs on to the client device
– The registry settings will be set
– The Lync VDI plugin will be loaded and the registry settings will be used
– The user connects with a VDI (XenDesktop for example)
– The Lync 2013 client is started.
– Now the Lync 2013 client will try to pair with the VDI plugin, as the VDI plugin listens on a virtual channel.
– The VDI plugin logs on to the Lyncpool (defined in the registry) with domain credentials and when it’s a standalone machine, a popup will ask for the required credentials.
– As soon as the credentials are verified, the Lync 2013 client will show a icon with two computers with a green checkmark.
– The green checkmark indicates that offloading will now be done, when a user starts or joins a conference with video and/or audio.

I hope this was useful for you and helps you with your Lync 2013 deployments.

PS. @shaunRitchie_UK thanks for the comments regarding the receiver and root certificates.