Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Conferencing at CSU

There are various ways you can join or create scheduled or ad-hoc conferences at CSU. See the information below to find out more about:

  • Admin Video Conferences (including the VC Bookings page)
  • Personal Video Conferences (Virtual Meeting Rooms (VMRs) and Skype for Business)
  • Teleconferences
  • Managing your staff VMR host pin number

The CSU video conference (including admin video conferences and personal video conferences) and teleconference services use the same system. From 9 January 2017, if you are the host of a personal video conference or teleconference, a host pin number will be required to enter the meeting. Scheduled meetings using admin video conferences do not require a pin number.


To find out more about accessing your conference, please see http://www.csu.edu.au/division/dit/services/service-catalogue/conferencing-at-csu/conference-access. You can also check out this handy guide to find out how to search for an Admin Video Conference room at CSU.

For further assistance, please contact the IT Service Desk

Creating & Managing Bookings

How do I create an Admin Video Conference Booking?

Admin video conference bookings can only be created using Microsoft Outlook 2013. Click on the Video Meeting icon to ensure the Admin video conference room/s are booked correctly. This will generate a scheduled conference ID (44XXX) and ensure all scheduled conferences auto start. No other version of Microsoft Outlook can be used with the conferencing system.

For more information on how to create and manage your bookings, please see the User Guide.

Unfortunately, WebOutlook and Microsoft Outlook 2007 do not support the plugin required to create bookings in the conferencing system. If possible, DIT recommend that you upgrade to Microsoft Outlook 2013 by installing Office 2013 from the Install Software menu available on the desktop of your PC. 

Can I create an Admin Video Conference booking using Microsoft Outlook for Mac?

Unfortunately, Microsoft Outlook for Mac cannot be used to create Video Conference bookings at this time. A web-based interface that will allow the creation and management of conference bookings is planned for release in 2017.

Can I create Recurring Admin Video Conference bookings?

  • Once one instance of a recurring booking has been modified in Microsoft Outlook, all remaining instances can only be modified individually as attempting to update the entire series will overwrite all prior changes. 
  • The IT Service Desk have limited capability to modify recurring bookings in the event that the owner/organiser is away for any reason and changes are required at short notice.

Can I modify a booking once it has been created?

Yes, you can modify your admin video conference booking via Microsoft Outlook. However, we strongly recommend that you do not attempt to modify a booking at any time after it commences.

If you have one or more recurring bookings that require modification, these modifications must be completed in Microsoft Outlook. The IT Service Desk may be able to assist with certain changes, however it is the responsibility of booking owners to ensure that their bookings are kept up-to-date.

Do I need to create a booking to use my personal VMR for a meeting?

No, your personal VMR is always available for your use. If an admin video conference meeting room is required it should be booked correctly through Microsoft Outlook. You will receive a confirmation email that will advise the conference ID or the VMR of the conference you are joining.

Do I need to use a meeting room for my conference?

The admin video conference enabled meeting rooms will still provide the best experience for your meeting participants in terms of sound and picture quality. However, the conferencing system has been designed with flexibility in mind so it is at the discretion of the conference owner as to whether they prefer to have participants attend from a meeting room using a conference ID, or from their office using a personal VMR.

How do I find a list of Admin Video Conference rooms?

A list of VC rooms can be found on FMCentral. After logging into FMCentral, select the Map Enquiry option and use the search tool at the top of the page to search for 'VC'. Click on the name of your desired room to see specific room information including seating capacity and a location map. For more information - please see the VC Room Guide.

How do I request an external Video Conference booking?

Information on how to connect to CSU video conferences remotely is provided in the booking/meeting notification email that is sent to all meeting participants by the video conference system. Simply add your external participant to the meeting request to have them receive this email. If you wish to request a formal video conference booking including a test conference, please see the information below. 

External video conference bookings can be requested by contacting the IT Service Desk. You will need to give a minimum notice of 3 business days for any external conference involving participants from Australia or New Zealand. A minimum of 5 business days is required for overseas conferences.

In order to request an external conference, you will need the following information.

  • A confirmed date and time for the conference to commence
  • The name of a technical contact or liaison person at the remote site
  • A confirmed booking for any CSU Video Conference facilities that you wish to use

DIT will make contact with the external party and determine the best method for managing and connecting the conference. If necessary, a test conference will also be run.

Please be aware that the CSU video conference system will not connect to some older types of conferencing systems. DIT will advise you if a compatibility issue is noted.

Accessing an Admin Video Conference

Click for more information on Accessing your Conference. To find out how to search for an Admin Video Conference room at CSU, please check out this handy guide.

What is an Admin Video Conference?

An Admin Video Conference is any video conference that is scheduled through Microsoft Outlook 2013 and includes one or more video conference rooms. Click on the Video Meeting icon to ensure the rooms are booked correctly. This will generate a scheduled conference ID (44XXX) and ensure all scheduled conferences auto start. For more information about the different types of conferences, please see Accessing Your Conference

 How do I create and manage Admin Video Conference bookings?

All Admin Video Conference bookings are created through Microsoft Outlook 2013. For instructions on how to create and manage Admin Video Conference bookings, please see Creating and Managing Conference Bookings

 Can I connect to an Admin Video Conference from my desk?

Yes, you can access an Admin Video Conference from your desk using a web browser (Chrome is recommended), Skype for Business or via telephone.

Can I connect to an Admin Video Conference from home or while travelling?

Yes, you can connect from home by dialling into the meeting from a web browser (Chrome is recommended), Skype, telephone (STD rates may apply), or the Pexip Infinity Connect application on your mobile device. Please be aware that use of a mobile device may incur significant data charges. For more information on accessing a conference:

How do I control the equipment in an Admin Conference Room?

In many rooms, the equipment is controlled using one or more remote controls. Typically, there will be one remote control for the Polycom conference unit, and one or more for the room displays.

In large conference rooms (such as the designated Admin VC rooms found on each campus), a control system referred to as a Hydraport has been installed. This control system can be pressed down and latched when not in use.

Can I transfer an external call into a conference?

Yes, you can. To transfer an external call into a CSU video conference follow the steps below. If CSU are paying the call costs, you will need to call the external party rather than having them call you, but the process for transferring the external call into the conference is exactly the same.

  1. With the external caller connected, press the Transfer button on your phone. This will place the external caller on hold.
  2. Dial 37555 for the video conference system. You may need to press Send before the call will connect
  3. When prompted, enter the ID for the conference you wish to transfer the external party into and then press the hash (#) button
  4. You should hear an audible tone indicating that you have now been connected to the conference.
  5. Press the Transfer key on your phone again to complete the transfer and connect the external party to the conference. You will be disconnected from the call.

Will VMRs for scheduled conferences automatically disconnect?

Yes, the VMR generated for use with a conference scheduled via Microsoft Outlook 2013 will be disestablished or terminated once all participants have disconnected. Any VC rooms that have been booked for the conference will disconnect at the scheduled end-time of the conference. Participants connected via other methods will remain connected until manually disconnected.

Accessing a Personal Video Conference (VMR and Skype for Business)

Click for more information on Accessing your Conference

What is a Virtual Meeting Room (VMR)? 

A VMR is a virtual meeting room that is used for all meetings at CSU. Every staff member has a unique personal VMR assigned to them (this is usually your phone extension). A VMR number is used as a conference ID. Meetings created in Outlook where the Video meeting button is clicked will generate a unique conference ID or VMR starting with 44.

What is the difference between my Personal VMR and a VMR starting with 44? 

Meetings that have a conference ID starting with 44 have been created in Outlook with the meeting organiser clicking on the Video Meeting button and generating a unique conference ID (VMR).

This means the conference has been scheduled in the conferencing system and will connect automatically at the meeting start time and disconnect at the meeting end time. Scheduled conferences that have a conference ID starting with 44 do not require a pin number for access. All participants will have host abilities and be able to mute or disconnect other participants. It is recommended that the chair of the meeting connects to the web browser (https://conference.csu.edu.au) to see who all the participants are in their meeting. These scheduled meetings will be listed on the VC bookings page.

Personal VMRs are assigned to all staff and always available for use. This conference type will require a pin number to be entered by the host to start the meeting (see VMR pin number information below). Personal VMR meetings can be used for ad-hoc meetings or when creating meetings in your calendars (do not click the Video meeting button). For more detailed information - see Personal Video Conferences Guide

Can I connect to a Personal Video Conference from my desk?

Yes, you can connect to any Personal Video Conference (using a VMR) from your desk using a web browser (Chrome is recommended), Skype for Business or via telephone. For more information:

Can I connect to a Personal Video Conference from home or while traveling?

Yes, you can connect from home by dialling into the meeting from a web browser (Chrome is recommended), Skype, telephone (STD rates may apply), or the Pexip Infinity Connect application on your mobile device. Please be aware that use of a mobile device may incur significant data charges. For more information on accessing a conference:

Why can't I access my Personal VMR?

First of all, try closing and re-opening your web browser. If you are still unable to connect or receive a message advising that the ID you have entered is incorrect, please try the alternate VMR ID. In most cases, staff VMRs will have primary and secondary IDs assigned:

Primary ID: emailprefix@video.csu.edu.au
Secondary ID: extension@video.csu.edu.au

If you do not have a CSU phone extension, your VMR will be assigned a unique numeric ID.  To find out your ID or if you are unable to access your VMR using either the primary or secondary ID, please contact the IT Service Desk for assistance.

Why do I need to set a VMR host pin number?

Virtual Meeting Room (VMR) host pin numbers are managed and activated by you via the online pin number portal.

A staff VMR host pin number provides additional security preventing unauthorised use of your VMR. Pin numbers also allow you to:

  • mute and disconnect participants,
  • lock conferences so others can't join, and
  • escalate participants' roles in the conference (for example - if a host wants to leave a conference, they can escalate one of the guests to host)

Before entering your VMR, you'll need to set your host pin number via the online portal.

When do I use my VMR host pin number?

All staff who host/initiate a conference must use their VMR host pin number.

Host pins are used to differentiate roles within the conference (e.g. Host or Coordinator) and facilitate call control.

Any participants who enter the host pin number will receive host privileges. The conference will not begin until the host/s has joined. If a host needs to leave a conference, they will be responsible for transferring host responsibilities to another participant. If a new host is not allocated, the conference finish two minutes after the last host has left.

All other participants have guest privileges and do not need to enter a pin number. Guests will see a holding screen/virtual lobby if they've joined via web browser, Skype for Business or Pexip Infinity Connect as well as hearing a voice message telling them they are the only participant in the conference until the host joins.

How do I set my VMR host pin number?

  1. Go to the online pin number portal and login using your CSU username and password
  2. Enter 4 digits (no alphabetical or special characters) as your pin number. Tip – choose a pin number that is easy to remember
  3. Your pin number will be activated within 30 minutes

Can I retrieve my VMR host pin number?

No. Unfortunately pin numbers cannot be retrieved and will need to be reset if you forget it.

To reset your pin number:

  1. Go to the online pin number portal and login using your CSU username and password
  2. Enter 4 digits (no alphabetical or special characters) as your pin number. Tip – choose a pin number that is easy to remember
  3. Your pin number will be activated within 30 minutes

How do I allocate VMR host responsibilities to another participant?

If you need to leave a conference early but would like the other participants to continue, you can grant host privileges to a guest participant in your meeting. In the web browser (Chrome recommended):

  1. Click on the guests name
  2. Change their role to host
  3. Click close

When all hosts have left the conference, the remaining participants will be disconnected within two minutes.

Please note
– if you leave a conference and DO NOT transfer host responsibilities to another participant, all remaining conference participants will be disconnected within two minutes of you leaving.

I have joined a conference but can't hear anyone?

The VMR host must join before guests can participate in a conference.

If the host hasn't joined yet, you'll hear a voice message telling you that you are the only participant in the conference.

If you are the host and wish to leave the conference, you can escalate one of the guests to become a host.

What are my responsibilities as a VMR host?

  • Ensure you advise participants that the meeting will be rescheduled if you are unable to attend a scheduled meeting or if you have a stand in host for your meeting, advise the participants of the alternative VMR that will be used. If you are unable to update your meeting details, your delegated host should send out a new invite using their own VMR details to the participants
  • Arrive on time for your meeting. Meeting invitees will be placed in a waiting room unable to communicate with others on the conference until you arrive and enter your host pin
  • It is not recommended that you join more than one VMR at a time
  • When using an Admin VC room for a meeting, please continue to book through Outlook 2013 and click on the New Video Meeting icon to ensure the rooms are booked correctly. This will generate a scheduled conference ID (44XXX) and ensure all scheduled conferences auto start. Scheduled meetings using Admin VC rooms do not require a pin number. It is not recommended to use your personal VMR as the conference ID in Admin VC rooms. For more information – see Accessing your Conference

Can I use Skype for Business to enter a conference as a host?

Yes, you can use Skype for Business to enter a VMR conference as a host. After connecting to the conference:

  1. Click the Call Controls button (bottom right of the call window)
  2. Enter your VMR host pin number using the numeric keypad

Mobile Devices

Can I use my mobile device to access a CSU Video Conference?

Yes, you can use Apple and Android mobile devices to access CSU conferences. The preferred method for doing so is to download the Pexip Infinity Connect application from the relevant App Store for your device. Once downloaded and installed, you can enter the conference ID provided in the meeting invitation to access the conference.

The conference ID needs to be entered in the app interface in the ID@video.csu.edu.au format.

For instructions on joining a CSU conference please see the Mobile Device Guide.

The sound or video quality from my mobile device is poor?

Unfortunately, the hardware installed in most mobile devices will not match the sound and video quality that can be obtained using a desktop browser or Skype. The quality can be improved somewhat by ensuring that you have reasonable mobile coverage or are connected to a wireless network. However, due to the limitations of mobile technology the improvement will still not result in sound or picture quality equivalent to other connection methods.

Will use of the mobile app impact my data use?

Yes, it will. Because the mobile app is using mobile data to stream information it will result in significant data use and possible excess data charges. Use of the mobile app is only recommended when connected to a wireless network. 

Video Conferencing for Teaching

Will my class still automatically connect?

Yes, any class that has been identified as having an IVT (Interactive Video Teaching) component with a corresponding activity on another campus will automatically connect. DIT work closely with the Division of Student Administration Timetabling unit in order to ensure that as many as possible of these timetabled classes have a Video Conference booking created.

Do I need to advise DIT if my class should be recorded?

Yes, with the exception of classes provided by schools who have moved to an 'opt-out' model for recording of lectures. If you require a Workshop or Tutorial session to be recorded, please log a CSU Replay booking request, as these types of sessions are not recorded unless specifically requested.

I've noted a call quality issue or a technical fault during a class. Who should I contact?

Any technical issue should be reported to DIT as soon as it occurs. If it is possible to do so without causing significant disruption to your class, please contact the DIT IT Service Desk and select Option 1 for priority classroom support. It is important that you call from the classroom affected, rather than asking another member of staff to call IT on your behalf. This will enable us to respond and assist you as quickly as possible.

Have any of the classroom controls changed in the conferencing system?

No, none of the controls have changed. The conferences will still connect automatically, and the presenting site will be required to select Transmit Mode and the appropriate buttons to send the desired content and camera view to the receiving site.

Will my class have an associated VMR?

All Video Conferences, including those set up specifically for teaching, will have their own VMR. If you wish to have a guest presenter join the conference via a software client, web-browser or telephone, please contact DIT for the VMR ID.

Teleconferencing

Where has the teleconferencing page gone?

The video and teleconference systems at CSU are a unified system. Previously, while it was possible to dial into a CSU video conference by phone, this was a completely separate system and relied upon different infrastructure to teleconferences run by dialling 37555 and entering a conference ID.

As these two services are now merged into a single service, the old teleconferencing page has been removed. Information on how to run a teleconference can be found on this page.

Has the dial-in number for teleconferences changed?

No, the number is still the same. For all teleconferences, or to connect to a VMR for a scheduled or ad-hoc conference, dial extension 37555 from your CSU phone.

How do I book a teleconference?

You don't need to. The system is always available and is accessed by dialling the exact same extension (37555). When inviting participants to a teleconference, simply ensure that you use your phone extension as the conference ID. When a participant dials in and enters your phone extension, they will be connected to your personal VMR which acts as the 'bridge' for all participants.   NOTE - Only ONE conference can be setup on a specific ID at any given time.

How do I book an academic or research teleconference?

The internal academic teleconference service has now been retired. DIT recommend the Greymouse Global service for academic and research conferences. This service is supported by Greymouse directly. Information on this service can be found on the Teleconferencing System for Teaching Page.

Alternatively, you may host a conference using your personal VMR. This has the advantage of being completely flexible and allowing dial-in via a web-browser, telephone or Skype.

Do I need to use my VMR host pin number for a teleconference?

All CSU staff who host/initiate a conference (video and teleconference) must use their VMR host pin number.

Host pins are used to differentiate roles within the conference (e.g. Host or Coordinator) and facilitate call control.

For more information - see the Accessing a Personal Video Conference section above.

How do I set my VMR host pin number?

  1. Go to the online pin number portal and login using your CSU username and password
  2. Enter 4 digits (no alphabetical or special characters) as your pin number. Tip – choose a pin number that is easy to remember
  3. Your pin number will be activated within 30 minutes

How does an external participant dial in for a teleconference?

External callers simply need to dial the full STD number for the conferencing system. The call rates may vary depending on the service provider and whether a mobile or landline is used.

The STD number for the conferencing system is 02 6933 7555 , or + 61 2 6933 7555 from overseas.

Can I transfer an external call into a teleconference?

Yes, you can. To transfer an external call into a CSU Teleconference follow the steps below. If CSU are paying the call costs, you will need to call the external party rather than having them call you, but the process for transferring the external call into the conference is exactly the same.

  1. With the external caller connected, press the Transfer button on your phone. This will place the external caller on hold.
  2. Dial 37555 for the video conference system. You may need to press Send before the call will connect
  3. When prompted, enter the ID for the conference you wish to transfer the external party into and then press the hash (#) button
  4. You should hear an audible tone indicating that you have now been connected to the conference.

Press the Transfer key on your phone again to complete the transfer and connect the external party to the conference. You will be disconnected from the call.

How do I view the participants connected to a teleconference hosted in my VMR?

To view a list of participants, log into your VMR at http://conference.csu.edu.au. A list of participants is displayed on the left side of the page.

Where do I find the dial-in number and conference ID?

The dial-in number and conference ID for your conference can be found on the VC Bookings page.

Troubleshooting

Can I use Skype for Mac to access a CSU Video Conference?

Unfortunately, Skype for Mac processes and sends video and audio very differently to Skype for Windows. Currently, Mac users can only access meetings via a web-browser. Alternatively, a desktop client can be installed on your PC. Contact the IT Service Desk for assistance.

Can I run a test call before my meeting?

Yes, you can. DIT provide a test VMR that can be used to run a test with both internal and external participants.

Feel free to download a copy of the guide and email it to any non-CSU participants invited to your meeting.

The test VMR ID is vmrtest@video.csu.edu.au

The sound quality in my conference is poor

There are a number of things that can contribute to poor sound quality in a conference. To resolve this problem, follow the steps below:

  1. Ask all meeting participants who are not actively talking or presenting to mute their microphones. This will ensure that the only sound heard is coming from the presenter and is the most common cause of sound issues.
  2. If the sound from a particular participant is echoing or distorted, it is possible that they have selected the wrong microphone when connecting to the conference. If possible, ask them to disconnect and then re-join the conference.
  3. If the poor audio seems to be coming from a conference room, please contact the IT Service Desk. DIT staff may be able to resolve the issue remotely or disable the incoming audio from that room.

The video quality in my conference is poor

Video quality is impacted by a number of things including the web browser used for web-based connections, internet/network speed and the relative quality of the camera used. To attempt to resolve video quality issues in a conference, follow these steps:

  1. If you or the person who is reporting poor video quality are connected via a web-browser, disconnect from the conference and re-join using a different browser.
  2. Check the web-cam being used for web or Skype and Skype for Business connections. Smudges, fingerprints and dust can all affect the video quality.
  3. If the poor video seems to be coming from a Video Conference room, please advise the IT Service Desk immediately. DIT staff may be able to remotely resolve the issue.
  4. Check what type of internet connection you are using. Non-CSU internet connections may have slow upload/download speeds that can severely impact video quality.

The Video Meeting button is missing from Microsoft Outlook 2013

To resolve this issue, please follow these steps:

  1. Verify that you are using Microsoft Outlook 2013. The button and associated plugin are not compatible with older versions of Microsoft Outlook. If you are unable to install Office 2013 due to a software compatibility issue, please contact the IT Service Desk for advice.
  2. If Microsoft Outlook 2013 is installed, open the Install Software shortcut on the desktop of your computer. You will need to locate and run the VC Scheduling Add-in from the list of available software.
  3. If the button is still missing after installing the add-in and closing and re-opening Microsoft Outlook, please contact the IT Service Desk.

The Skype Meeting button is missing from Microsoft Outlook 2013

To resolve this issue, please follow these steps:

  1. Verify that you are using Microsoft Outlook 2013 and have upgraded your account to Microsoft Skype for Business. The button and associated plugin are not compatible with older versions of Microsoft Outlook. If you are unable to install Office 2013 due to a software compatibility issue, please contact the IT Service Desk for advice.
  2. Open the Software Centre shortcut on the desktop of your computer. You will need to locate and run the Skype for Business installer from the list of available applications.
  3. If the button is still missing after re-installing Skype and closing and re-opening Microsoft Outlook, please contact the IT Service Desk.

An error message is displayed when the Video Meeting button is clicked Microsoft Outlook 2013

To resolve this issue, follow the steps below:

  1. Verify that you only have one active network connection. This can be done by mousing-over the V icon at the bottom right of your desktop. If more than one sequence of numbers is displayed, turn the wireless adaptor on your computer off and try clicking on the video meeting button again.
  2. If step 1 does not resolve the issue, try re-installing the add-in from the Install Software menu. You may need to close and re-open Microsoft Outlook after completing the installation.

If these steps do not resolve the issue, contact the IT Service Desk for assistance.

I don't have a CSU phone extension. Does my VMR still have a numeric ID?

If you do not have a CSU phone extension assigned or share an extension, a random numeric ID will be generated for you to access your VMR. To receive your numeric ID, please contact the IT Service Desk.

Additionally - phone handsets and extensions can be requested by logging a request through the CSU Computer Shop. Your school or section administration staff will be able to log this on your behalf. Approval from your cost-centre manager will be required.

I don't have a CSU phone extension or email address. Will I still have a VMR?

If you do not have a CSU phone extension or CSU email address assigned - a random numeric ID will be generated for you to access your VMR. To receive your numeric ID, please contact the IT Service Desk.