Considering Office Communications Server 2007 R2

I've been asked to deploy OCS 2007 R2 and I'm looking for a little advice on the installation.  I don't know much about the product and I am just beginning to research.  I'm aware of the miles of detailed technical documentation available out there, however, I would like to get the perspective of someone who has deployed it in a similar environment and what I would need to get it up running.

We have about 100 users and growing steadily.   Here are my questions:

1. Our current environment is Active Directory,  Server 2003.  Exchange 2003.  We will be looking to upgrade our environment to server 2008, SP 2010 and Exchange 2010 this year.  Should we upgrade those first or does it matter as far as OCS is concerned?

2. I know this product can be used for Instant Messaging throughout the office. What are the other main features that will benefit us knowing that we use SharePoint and Outlook heavily?

3.  For the amount of users we have, should I deploy Standard or Enterprise?  What is the main difference?

4. Does OCS need to be installed on the Exchange server?  On the domain controller?  Or does it need to be on it's own server?  Is a VM ok?  Can it run on a server that is serving another purpose or is it best for it to have it's own server?

Those are my initial questions. I appreciate the feedback..

LCGS-CorpAsked:
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BusbarSolutions ArchitectCommented:
Hi,
1 - the upgrade will not affect OCS, if all of the DCs will be running windows 2008 R2 then there is a hotfix that you should apply to OCS.
2- OCS can provide you with IM/presence/Video-Audio COnference/ Call Center/ Voice mail integration/Web Conferencing/Group Chat.
3- No you cannot co-locate OCS with domain controllers or Exchange, it will require a server of its own.
4- If you don't need high availability, then you can go safely with standard edition
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Jian An LimSolutions ArchitectCommented:
just addon to busbar,

the only thing i would suggest is to plan your whole strategy before installing.

ocs2007 r2 has alot of hotfix and the minimum requirement hardware spec is high as well. you need at least 4GB of ram, 64bit platform.
OCS2007 r2 Standard is not support in virtualization

 
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BusbarSolutions ArchitectCommented:
OCS 2007 supported on virtualization for workloads that doesn't provide Voice and audio, like GCF and Archiving.
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LCGS-CorpAuthor Commented:
What are the hotfixes exactly that need to be applied when upgrading the dcs to 2008?

 We are planning to go with the Standard installation on a VMware ESXi virtual machine with all roles on one server for now.  Does anyone see a major problem with that?

Can the SQL database be on a different server, or does it need to be on the same server?  If same server, can it be 2008 express or does it have to be 2008 standard?
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Jian An LimSolutions ArchitectCommented:
SQL non express only. you can use SQL 2008 (non-r2) and 2005.

HOTFIX like

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/977349
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=968802


if you want OCS 2007 r2 standard with voice and audio, then forget it.


http://blogs.technet.com/ucedsg/archive/2009/05/13/ocs-2007-r2-virtualization-announcement.aspx
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BusbarSolutions ArchitectCommented:
OCS needs the following hotfix to work with 2008 R2 DCs
http://www.kbalertz.com/redir.aspx?kbs=218013
you can use SQL express with STD edition, you can use SQL ent or STD with OCS 2007 R2 ENT edition
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ipinvaderCommented:
Can OCS 2007 run on a server running Sharepoint services 3.0?
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