The older Polycom HDX unit in Library 145 has reached End of Life as defined by Polycom, and, after noticing a few minor issues, we’ve decided to replace it with a newer Group Series 500 unit. Functionally, there are very few differences — users can still dial the same numbers and can use the same virtual meeting room, 710145, when using Library 145, and the microphones and camera haven’t changed.
- New remote control — it’s much shinier and has fewer buttons. Take a look here.
- New user-interface — same functionality, different design.
- Content sharing is automatic — to share content, place your call and then connect the HDMI cable to your computer. Content will automatically be displayed.
If you have questions about using the new technology in the space, please feel free to check it out or send an email to email@example.com. The in room instructions will be updated to reflect the changes.
During our regular maintenance window this Sunday morning, December 11th, and continuing into the afternoon, the Polycom video conferencing systems will be down. Users will not be able to make outgoing or receive incoming calls until the work is completed.
For any video conferencing needs this Sunday, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss alternative methods.
Thank you for your cooperation as we continue to optimize our systems.
We have temporarily deployed two new Polycom units for testing purposes, one to Library 221 and one to Exchange Street 109. They both connect to the display via HDMI and are controlled with a remote control. The necessary testing will be done internally, but I wanted to give potential users of the spaces a heads up. Please feel free to use the equipment if you’re meeting in one of the rooms and would like to try it out!
One unit is located in Library 221, on top of the display. It’s connected via HDMI to HDMI 1. The number for this unit is 802221. Virtual meeting room (VMR) number is 710221 (this should be used when connecting to more than 1 remote participant). This is a new unit called the Polycom RealPresence Debut, which is specifically designed for smaller conference rooms. It will be in place for the next 2-3 weeks. For the trial, this unit will not be capable of sending content.
The other unit has been deployed to 109 Exchange Street, the small conference room next to the CSNS suite. The number for this unit is 802109. VMR number is 710109. This unit is to test specifically with the Skype for Business pilot but can also be used for other meetings taking place between Exchange street and remote locations. This unit will be in place for the duration of the Skype for Business trial. Content must be sent to this unit using the People + Content IP program, found here. Instructions on sending content using People + Content IP can be found here. The IP for the unit is: 184.108.40.206 (Directions for using the unit specifically with Skype for Business are forthcoming!).
Please email email@example.com if you have questions or feedback regarding either of these Polycom devices.
This Sunday evening, Oct 18th, at 11p ET, Adobe Connect will be upgrading to version 9.5. Here is information from Adobe Connect about with to expect in the new version:
- The first thing you may notice is the new Adobe Connect logo with a fresh updated look.
- New features include HTML content support for virtual classrooms, MP4 offline conversion, event registration on mobile devices, improved account usage reports and more.
- For more detailed information please visit the Adobe Connect User Community site, connectusers.com, for an overview of new features and tutorials.
- Adobe Flash Player 13.0 is now officially the minimum requirement for attending meetings. To receive optimal performance, we recommend that you get the latest version. Download the latest Flash Player.
- This update will require a new Adobe Connect Add-in (henceforth referred to as simply “Add-in”) for functionality specific to meeting presenters on Windows and Mac. You will be asked to install the new Add-in when:
- You try to start/join a meeting for the first time after the Fall release and have an older version of the Add-in installed
- You invoke screen sharing, application sharing, or share PowerPoint (PPTX format) files and do not have the new version of Add-in installed
You can register for a demo, hosted by Adobe Connect, here.
For more information on Adobe Connect 9.5, please check here.
For questions about using Adobe Connect at Middlebury, please e-mail the Helpdesk: firstname.lastname@example.org
I will be offering two workshops on how to use the Polycom videoconferencing system in DFL145. If you or your group are interested in using Polycom for meetings, or if you’d simply like a refresher, please sign up on the Google Doc here. The Doc can be edited by anyone at Middlebury with the link.
We will be going over videoconferencing basics, which number to call for meetings, how to send content to the remote participants and more.
The workshops will be on Friday, August 21st at 1:30p and Thursday, August 27th at 11a. The workshop should only take about 30 minutes maximum.
If you’re not able to attend either of the sessions but interested in learning how to use the system, please e-mail Mack Pauly (email@example.com).
- When you send the calendar invite for a meeting, include the Polycom number that participants should dial.
- Each room that has a Polycom unit also has a Virtual Meeting Room assigned to it. If you are having a meeting in a room equipped with a Polycom unit, use the Virtual Meeting Room number assigned to it (you can look it up at go/videoip). For example, if you are meeting in Davis Library 145, the local and remote participants can dial 710145 using Polycom.
- If you are holding a meeting that does not take place in a room equipped with videoconferencing, use your own Virtual Meeting Room number (you can request a Virtual Meeting Room just for you by creating a Web Help Desk ticket).
- If you are meeting one on one with someone using Polycom, you can look up the person’s number in the Polycom Contacts and click to call the person from there.
- If you are not the owner of a VMR and / or not in the room a particular VMR is reserved for, please don’t use it.
- Have a backup plan! Sometimes things don’t work as expected. We’re happy to work with you to resolve the problem, but if you have something like Skype ready, you’ll still be able to have your meeting.
- You can send content (a PowerPoint, website, etc.) using either the Polycom software or a Polycom unit. If you’re meeting in a room with a Polycom unit, you should send content to that unit instead of also calling in from your laptop. For directions on how to send content from the software and to a unit, please see #6 on our FAQ.
Calling Directly: Polycom Alias or IP Address
Other Polycom users can be called directly or call you using either their Polycom alias or IP address. Using the analogy of a telephone, the alias and the IP are both like a phone number. Other users can dial that number and you must manually answer to connect the call. When dialing directly, you are only able to connect to one other party.
- Each Polycom unit has a unique number which is called an alias. That number can be found on the home screen of any Polycom unit.
- For software users, the alias is a four digit number.
- For Polycom units, the alias is a six digit number, generally in the format of 802XXX with the Xs being the room number. E.g., DFL 145 is 802145.
- The IP address is also on the home screen Polycom units and looks like this: 140.233.18.XXX. There’s no need to give out the IP address rather than the alias — the alias is a shortened version.
Both of these numbers can be found on the home screen of any Polycom unit or in a laminated sleeve in the room where the unit is located. They can also be found at go/videoip
Virtual Meeting Rooms (VMRs)
Instead of calling another site directly, you could use a virtual meeting room. Back to the phone analogy, a VMR is like a phone conference room. Each participant in the call dials the same number.
There are benefits to using a VMR instead of calling directly:
- Both groups do not need to be ready at the same time. One group can call in at the beginning of the meeting and the other can call in 5 minutes later if they’re running late. In this scenario, if calling directly, you’d have to continually call the far side until they answer the call.
- More than one other party can join the call. We can allow up to 40 users on our “bridge” at any time. That could mean one meeting with 40 users or 8 meetings with 5 users each.