Adam Gartenberg's Blog

Business Analytics and Optimization, IBM and Social Marketing

Sametime Quick Tip: Installing Plug-ins

One of the great things about Sametime is that you can use the Eclipse-based plug-in model to integrate new functionality. When done right, this puts the information and people you need at your fingertips when you need them. For example, Genesys's UC Connect allows employees outside the call center to update customer records, add interaction notes and more, right from Sametime. They don't have to learn how to use (yet) another tool. Meanwhile, customers get better service because the call center agent can involve the right subject matter experts in real time. Another example is UnifiedEdge's RadioConnect, which embeds one or more radio endpoints into Sametime. State and local emergency response centers can direct first responders from Sametime - regardless of the radio devices or frequencies the field is using. Of course, plug-ins can also offer some entertainment value. Maybe you'd just like your contact list to have a background picture or play tic-tac-toe. To borrow a phrase, "there's a plug-in for that". (Check out the Solutions Catalog for some examples. And look at Epilio's free plug-ins here.)

Installing plug-ins is fairly simple. First, you need to obtain an "update site". These come in two forms:

  • a Remote Site. This is just a URL that points to a server that contains the plug-in files.
  • a Zip/Jar file. An archive you downloaded containing the plug-in files.

With the URL or Archive in hand, go to Tools->Plug-ins->Install Plug-ins. (Note, your admin may have disabled this feature. If it's not visible in the menu, you may have to ask.) On the next screen indicate that you want to install new features. Then, tell Sametime where the update site is by clicking on the buttons for a new "remote site", "zip/jar file" or "folder." (The folder option is useful if you have expanded the archive.)

Image:Sametime Quick Tip: Installing Plug-ins

Then simply follow the wizard's instructions. Sametime will warn you if there are any incompatibilities before it installs the plug-ins. When it’s done, Sametime will ask you to restart (Sametime, not the computer) and you're on your way!