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Skype for Business (Windows) Problem: Server is Temporarily Unavailable

This article applies to: Skype for Business (Windows)

We believe that changes made to Cornell authentication earlier this year have resolved this issue for all users.  If you do encounter this problem, particularly on a recurring basis, please contact the IT Service Desk to report this issue.

User Experience

You try to sign in to Skype for Business, typically with saved credentials. The application sits at the Sign in page for some interval. Eventually an error message opens, “Can’t sign in to Skype for Business. The server is temporarily unavailable. If the problem continues, please contact your support team.”

Solving This Problem

  1. Open Microsoft Word and create a new blank document.  
  2. From the File menu, click Account, then Switch Account, then Add Account.  
  3. Sign in using your NetID and NetID password.

NOTE: If prompted, select work/school account. If you see "there is a problem with your account" on the Account screen, do NOT click Fix me. You can safely ignore this error.

Once you are signed in to Office 365, go back to Skype for Business and try to sign in. If it still fails, click Cancel Sign-in and try again. If that doesn’t do it, try closing all applications and restarting the computer, then try to sign in to Skype again.

Alternative Solution

The problem may be cached login data. This can be corrected by deleting three folders on your local drive, then editing the registry to delete another folder, but the registry is Very Important and you don't want to make a mistake in editing it. 

You should contact your technical support provider before attempting this fix. If you feel we haven't explained this procedure fully enough, then we strongly recommend that you contact your technical support provider for assistance.

In the following steps,

  • %userprofile% refers to the folder for the user.
  • [version] refers to the version of Microsoft Office.
    • 14.0 is Office 2010
    • 15.0 is Office 2013
    • 16.0 is Office 2016
  1. In Windows File Explorer, navigate to and delete these three Lync folders:
    1. Local Disk C > Users > %userprofile% > Appdata > Local > Microsoft > Office > [version] > Lync
    2. Local Disk C > Users > %userprofile% > Appdata > Roaming > Microsoft > Office > [version] > Lync
    3. Local Disk C > Users > %userprofile% > Appdata > Roaming > Microsoft > Office > [version] > Crypto > Lync
      (This folder may not exist. That's okay.)
  2. In Regedit, delete this Lync folder:
    HKEY_CURRENT USER > Software > Microsoft > Office > [version] > Lync
  3. Restart the computer.

Now try to log in to Skype again.

If more than one user has stored Skype credentials on this computer, you may need to delete the credentials for each user before the problem is resolved. You will need to log in to the computer using an administrative account in order to see/delete another user's items.

About this Article

Last updated: 

Thursday, August 23, 2018 - 7:16am

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