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I struggled for over a week trying to get my MacBook Pro to connect with the Live Meetings that were happening at work. I’ve been working from home a lot and needing to join the conversation remotely. After searching the internet high and low, it seemed that I kept running into the same dead ends, with people and supposed experts leading me to the same help pages, the same suggestions, and the same lack of results. Nothing worked. “How can this be?” I thought, “everyone providing ‘answers’ seem so sure of themselves and act like I’m an idiot. But it still doesn’t work.”

Well, today I found the answer (though not the solution), and it really boils down to semantics.

If the email you receive with the Live Meeting invite uses terms like these…

  • Microsoft® Office Communications Server
  • I am connecting from outside the network

…or when you try to connect you are getting messages like this…

  • Mac OS X doesn’t recognize Internet addresses starting with “meet:”

…you are in the same boat as me:

You are not connecting to a Live Meeting!

You are actually attempting to connect to a Microsoft Communications Server, which uses the Live Meeting interface for connection. The thing about Communications Server is that it is something installed by your organization and lives inside the firewall. Here’s where it gets frustrating…you cannot connect to Communications Server through the Live Meeting web interface. And, since there is no installable Live Meeting client for Mac, you have no options.

Here’s the explanation I received from a Microsoft Live Meeting support person:

Office Communication Server meetings are hosted on internal servers. If the address for your meeting is given as meet:sip, it is an internally hosted server address, and Live Meeting Technical Support does not have access to troubleshoot or diagnose issues with those meetings. An OCS meeting uses the Live Meeting client as an interface but it is not using the Live Meeting server.

So I recommend you do what I did and tell your meeting organizer that, because you are not on a Windows machine, you will join the meeting by calling in on your phone but that you do not have an option for joining the screen share.