Sending and receiving Skype for Business messages through Teams

Kyle Hikalea
Occasional Contributor

I was under the impression it would be possible to receive / send messages to Skype users via Teams chat functionality. After logging into my personal email account and attempting to message my Office365 address, no notification / message was received in Teams.


How do I go about configuring this to work?

41 Replies
I've successfully sent / recevied messages with a co-worker on the skype for business app and teams, but am not having any luck with a regular skype account to Teams.
Skype personal isn't supported, only Skype for business. It's on the roadmap for H2 I beleive.

I chat every day with users who are on Skype for Business while using the Teams client. It does work, with caveot: If they have logged into Teams before then you'll get their Teams account and not the Skype4Biz account


However, if you don't open Skype4Biz/Lync and they try to message you, it will show up in Teams and you can reply to them, which will give you two chats per user.

The original request is for Skype consumer not S4B, it doesn't support Skype consumer communication.

I just wanted to confirm. My team is using Teams, they leave skype closed. We show offline to skype users. If they message us thru skype for business, we should get it in Teams correct? We seem to be having an issue with skype for business users messaging us when we are signed out of skype but we have Teams open. 

What is the answer for this?



I'm trying to confirm but to my knowledge you can't go from Skype to Teams, only Teams into Skype to start conversations.

Also is your Skype for Business on Prem or Online?

Our Skype in online. 

I would much appreciate a confirmation so that I ensure my team is not missing anything.  

So the online presence is working as intended since the Interop for presence hasn't gone live yet. Soon Teams users should show as online from Skype for Business. Did you ever try messaging from Skype to Teams users that show offline? if you can't it's cause someone changed your chat defaults for the tenant to Teams, and this causes the "skype chat" option in Settings to be disabled by default. If this is the case this can be changed back to default to allow users to change this option if they want to be able to be chatted with from Skype for business.


Anyway, it should work both ways, but that policy can block it in some ways. The presence as stated isn't live yet, but soon it should work so people can use S4B and see if Teams users are online and send them messages regardless of if they are on S4B or not.


So try to see if you can message and receive in Teams, if you can't then you might have to look at the chat policies. But the presence will be launching soon. 



Did you find any solution for this regarding sending IM to users whos been logged onto Teams but not using Teams and SfB client instead?

Interested in this as well. I have a lot of people who I haven't transitioned to Teams so I need to IM their Skype account through Teams, but it only gives me their Teams account to IM.

Any updates here. Thanks

Teams and Skype for Business interop should now by fully working for everyone, but it relies on the use of the upgrade modes. Read here about how to set them




The mode set for the recipient defines where their messages go so ...


Teams Only -> All messages from Skype go to Teams

Skype Only -> All messages from Teams go to Skype

Islands -> Teams messages go to Teams, Skype messages to Skype

Legacy -> Like Islands unless a users has never used Teams in which case like Skype only


It should also be considered that all messages from people outside your business are considered Skype messages at the moment, that's how the federation works, so even if the sender is in teams it will follow the route of a Skype message, and end up in Skype unless you are in Team Only mode.




It seems to me after reading that link and this one, that there does not seem to be a way to facilitate an environment where you have some users in Teams and some users in SfB only where message can be sent from SfB only users to the users in Teams and vice versa. Would that be a correct assessment?


Basically need an Islands setup where the Islands can communicate, but that doesn't seem possible.

This is a good summary, but unfortunately my tenancy doesn't show Teams-Only as an option in the list (I can only choose Skype-Only or Islands). I've used PowerShell to set it instead (bases on other forum posts) but that hasnt helped re Skype to Teams messaging.

@Deleted Have some users in Teams Only, the others in Skype Only, then each can communicate with each other or people in other companies via the interop service.


The defining feature of islands is that each clients messages stay on the island.

I was on the Teams Tuesday call this afternoon and someone mentioned their take on having Teams users message their Skype counterparts. More specifically, these are Skype users that don't have access to Teams yet but If they message me, it would come through on Teams.  I'm assuming in this instance, that if I respond, they would receive it through Skype on their end.  I reached out to my Organization admin and they sent over a few picture of their current setup. 

Based on our current setting of Islands, it does not look like what was discussed during today's meet-up is not possible in our org because of the coexistence setting.  If they did change it to Teams Only, all SFB messages would be sent to Teams.  The obvious downside is that some users are have been provisioned Teams but they are not using it as a daily driver; they're still using SFB.


The downside to all of this is that it significantly slows down the rate of acceptance of Teams. I'm trying to onboard some of my team members for testing but they are still not willing to make the jump over to Teams for a Driver for testing purposes.


Any suggestions/comments would be appreciated.  

Hi Steven, Our Teams only users cannot communicate with out sfb users. Based on what you write in this post, this should work. Our setup is the following: We are two users set in Teams only mode, others are in Skype only mode. We can receive messages from sfb user and we can reply to it, but if the conversation is initiated by a teams only user, sfb users will never receive it. Is there something I am missing ? I would like to promote the adoption of teams in my business, but for now this is a real show stopper for us.
I'm have the following problem:

Some users in my organization are set to TeamsOnly and some are SfBOnly.
When TeamsOnly users try to use the Teams client to send messages to SfBOnly user, the message never goes to the Sfb Client of the SfBOnly user, it appears that the messages are being sent to the Teams of this user, which is something that shouldn't happen as he's set to be a SfBOnly user.

When the SfbOnly user sends a message to a TeamsOnly user, it works completely normal, and the TeamsOnly user can even successfully reply those messages, but never create a conversation from Teams.
I'm having the same issue.

Are these new threads, or did the thread start at some  point earlier perhaps when you were in Islands mode ?

For some, it definitively began in Island mode, but there are others users I never contacted before, and it does not seem to work either.
We used to be on Islands mode, and some of the users were set as TeamsOnly. We then saw that the users the were utilizing Sfb were not receiving messages, sent from TeamsOnly users, in their SfB clients. So then we disabled the Microsoft Teams license for the Sfb users and changed the configuration of the users to SfbOnly and TeamsOnly, but apparently this was not able to solve the problem. Everytime a TeamsOnly user searches for a SfbOnly user on the Teams client in order to start a new chat, he only find a Teams chat from that user and the message is unable to be routed to their SfB client. But the SfBOnly user can successfully send messages to TeamsOnly users.

I would suggest opening a support ticket then, the only known limitation I know is on old conversations that continue to follow the previous route, not new conversations.

Islands is the plague, but it should still be recoverable from this after changing after the fact but it doesn't seem to be the case these days. How long ago did you make the org change to S4bonly? Have you tried setting it to a specific user and also, try using the web client instead of desktop as that cache can stick around for 30 days.

Hi Chris, Valuable info here, I am still learning my way with office365 and its apps. I would say I changed it more than 30 days ago, and yes I set the users also, but I will definitively test it with the web client. Is there a way to clean that cache you talked about?
Thanks for your answer Steven, I will try Chris suggestions and if not successful, I guess I will have to open a ticket.
Def. need some tickets going, because I think that this interop is just broken if you start out in islands for any amount of time then switch. Which is unfortunate.

As for clearing desktop cache, usually signing out and back in is enough, but there are ways to completely clear it via file system, but try via web as last ditch effort, then go from there.
Ok thanks for your help, I appreciate. Being alone in IT for my company, sometimes it makes me pull my hair trying to follow the rates of changes in Microsoft products lately !

We also have the same issue.  my users who are using the Teams client and users who are using the S4B client can't see each other presence or even chat with each other.  I thought "Island" mode was supposed to allow this for migration purposes?  Communication between the two clients while everyone get migrated to the Teams client?

Na, islands is more like it sounds like! Separate ! Teams - teams and Skype - Skype! When you start mixing it’s a mess! Set people to Skype only and teams only instead


So how cant I get my employees to be able to chat/call and screen share with each other during the migration?

I hand this over to @Chris Webb who got much more experience regarding this matter
I'm still working on a fix, but I think this has something to do with the policies applied to the user via PowerShell. If somehow I'm able to figure this out, I'll definitely update this thread. I will have to troubleshoot my client's environment this afternoon so we'll see from there.
From my testing you can't go from Teams to Skype, but you can initiate Skype to Teams conversations, then Teams users can use those recent chats to talk. The issue is if a user types someone in on Teams and they only use Skype, it will go into a black hole. I still haven't had a chance to find a way around this yet. If I get some time later I'll let you know if I figure it out but you can start with these video's when it comes to migration.

For now thou you can brush up on your upgrade knowledge with this playlist, it's everything you wanted to know about coexistence and upgrades: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7zKlscXOt8&list=PLaSOUojkSiGlxbdgrAjx5iWFOM-4XeO8N

The issue is, it doesn't exactly work as it's supposed to :).
On my side, I set all users to S4b for those who are only using Skype. Those who are using both Skype and teams are set to Island mode and for myself Team only. I though it wasn't working properly at first, but after posting here, someone suggested that we could not use in teams a chat already started with Skype. That was it for me. Did not realised that I had to start new conversations. Add to that that I was also trying to reach a user I have never chatted with before, and it wasn't working neither. So I was sure there was an issue. But the thing is, that user was saying "No didn't get your message" but her skype wasn't even connected to her account ! Doh ! Now I can say that it is working, from Team I can reach a s4b user and vice versa. But if you are in Island mode, s4b will go to s4b and teams to teams.

So which mode do I need to switch it to, if I'm on Teams and want send messages to S4B users and vica versa?  Also can I switch back to Island mode if needed?

If I get it correctly, it should work better if you set the teams users to teams only and the Skype users to Skype only!

Yes, you can revert back to islands if desired afterwards!


In my experiment,  if the message is started from a S4B user, it will come in to Teams. They even have the S4B logo close to their name and at the top, shows this person is using Skype for Business.  However, as others mentioned, if I send a message from Teams, to do not go to the user and just to a black whole.  I even changed from the default "Islands" to Skype for the user, and that did not solve the issue. 

I posted about this on another post and finally sat down and started testing all the scenarios. I was experiencing the same thing and the only way I was able to get the coexistence to work properly was setting my users to Skype Only that needed it and setting my org upgrade mode to Teams Only.

This after a bit switched it so my teams users when they would start a new chat would then let you know they can’t chat in teams and would then switch the chat over to the skype icon for that user and let you chat to Skype etc.

Obviously you might want to set up some test tenant for this and try it out for yourself I’m just explaining how I finally got this to work as documented. It seems having your tenant in islands or Skype only won’t allow teams chat to Skype for business. (Islands shouldn’t anyway).

Anyway just passing on what I’ve discovered recently in my testing and experiencing these same issues you guys have been having during testing and what worked for me.
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