How to Use the Teams Meeting Add-in for Outlook

A Rather Useful Add-in

The Teams Meeting add-in for Outlook is installed automatically when Outlook starts if:

  • The user account is licensed to use Teams in the same Office 365 tenant.
  • Outlook is configured to use modern authentication. Exchange Online enables modern authentication by default for Office 365 tenants. It might be off (but shouldn’t be) for tenants created before August 1, 2017.
  • The Teams meeting policy assigned to the account allows the user to create personal meetings. All meetings created through Outlook are personal (rather than channel meetings, Meet Now meetings, or Live events). The Teams meeting policy for the account must also permit Outlook to load the Teams Meeting add-in.

If an account meets these criteria and Outlook desktop does not load the add-in automatically, the usual solution is to sign out of both Teams and Outlook, then restart Teams and connect to the home tenant. Finally, restart Outlook. The add-in should now detect the correct Teams configuration and load properly.

Meetings Created by Outlook

Teams personal meetings can be created by Outlook desktop (Windows and Mac), Outlook mobile, and OWA. Like a previous add-in for Skype for Business Online, its function is to allow users to create online meetings without having to use the calendar app in the Teams client. When Outlook creates a Teams meeting, the add-in creates the Teams thread for the meeting and populates the properties of the meeting to identify it as an online event, including the connection URL needed by participants to attend the meeting.

Administrators can configure a policy to create online meetings as the default for OWA, Outlook for Mac, and Outlook Mobile. Users of Outlook for Windows can configure client settings to make Teams online meetings the default.

Add-In Files and Registry Setting

Teams updates the Meeting add-in when it updates the desktop client. You can find information about where the add-in files are installed on Windows and how the add-in is launched in this post.

Updating Meeting Options

Until recently, the Teams Meeting add-in was only used to create new online events. The latest version of Outlook in the Current Channel (Preview) supports the ability to alter the settings for an event after it is scheduled (Figure 1). As I write, I am running build 2010 13328.20292 of the Microsoft 365 apps for enterprise, but the feature worked in the last released build too. The same capability doesn’t seem to be available in OWA or Outlook Mobile (yet). I haven’t tested Outlook for Mac.

Teams meeting options in the Teams Meetings add-in
Figure 1: Teams meeting options in the Teams Meetings add-in

To set meeting options, select a Teams meeting from the calendar and open it. You should see a Meetings Options choice in the menu bar (the icon might differ from that shown in Figure 1). Outlook opens the Teams meeting options dialog to update settings like who can bypass the lobby and join a meeting without being explicitly allowed in or if participants can unmute themselves during a call. The same web page is used as when meeting options are set from the Teams calendar app.

Setting options for a Teams meeting

Teams meeting add-in for Outlook
Figure 2: Setting options for a Teams meeting

Behind the scenes, Outlook uses a URL like that shown below to open the meeting options page:

The URL includes:

  • Display language (en-us = U.S. English).
  • GUID to identify the Office 365 tenant (tenanted).
  • GUID to identify the Azure AD account of the meeting organizer (organizerid).
  • Thread identifier for the online event.

The URL for the meeting is among the properties stored by Outlook for the calendar event.

A Logical Change

Updating the Teams Meeting add-in for Outlook to support changing meeting options is a good change. Even though Teams is the Office 365 app getting most focus from Microsoft today, many people prefer to use Outlook as their fulcrum for work (and personal activity). And while they might use Teams for online meetings, it doesn’t make sense to disrupt their workflow and force them to open the Teams calendar app just to update a meeting setting.

There’s tons of useful and insightful information like this in the Office 365 for IT Pros eBook. Best of all, we update the information when Microsoft changes something. That way our subscribers always have the latest insight at their fingertips

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