Next up in my series of homebrewed software is CCS — Communicator Custom States, a simple standalone tool for adding your own status messages, or, presence states to Microsoft Office Communicator. Many corporate offices use Communicator, and this is a great tool for anyone willing to get a little creative!
Note: This tool needs to be run with administrator privileges and works only for Communicator 2007 and later versions.
What does this do?
Communicator supports the default status messages Available, Busy, Do Not Disturb and Away. From Communicator 2007, support for custom states was added. Documentation on how to do this manually is documented on TechNet here. Since it requires cooking up an XML file and making changes to the registry, I decided to write a tool that provides a nice GUI for users to create their own states and does all the heavy lifting backstage.
- Works on R2, unlike another similar tool – Communicator 2007 Custom Presence Tool.
- Nice & intuitive UI.
- Option to reset (rollback) the changes to the registry.
- Detects system’s language and automatically uses the corresponding LCID in the XML file.
- Tons of validations before making attempting to make any changes to the system – administrator rights, valid XML, restart Communicator if running & text length of custom states.
- Bonus feature: Option to enable the ‘Appear Offline’ status!