Tom Talks Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business thoughts and news

Microsoft Teams On Linux, What’s the Story?

 

Update 22nd October: The UserVoice is now over 5,500 votes and has just moved to “on the backlog”. That means it’s an ask that’s more seriously being considered for being given engineering time. Keep your votes coming if you want a Linux client:

https://microsoftteams.uservoice.com/forums/555103/suggestions/16911565

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Right now Microsoft Teams in not supported in Linux, even in a web browser. It will load in a web browser and appears functional but without audio/video support.

This is on Ubuntu in Firefox:

Microsoft Teams on Linux

There is a request for a native Linux client on user voice with over 2,500 votes: https://microsoftteams.uservoice.com/forums/555103-public-preview/suggestions/16911565-linux-client. As of the 30th January 2018 it was “on the backlog”.

The windows client is actually Electron, Tom Morgan explains the client architecture well here. There was hope from a lot of people that as the web experience on Windows and Mac full-featured, the same would be possible on Linux at a minimum, or that there may be a native Linux client.

There are some unsupported community projects that have attempted to create a native Electron client. Note I have not tried any of these, and they are not supported by Microsoft in any way.

https://github.com/ivelkov/teams-for-linux

https://github.com/sportradar/ms-teams-linux

https://github.com/NightsPaladin/msteams-linux

Architecturally this is less effort than creating a Skype for Business client, so hopefully, at some point, this makes it to the top of the priority list.

Are you interested in a Linux client? I’d like to hear your thoughts

Tom

About the author

Tom Arbuthnot

Tom Arbuthnot is Principal Solutions Architect at Unified Communications specialist Modality Systems. He is a Microsoft Certified Master and MVP, blogger, has a regular podcast with UCToday at tomtalks.show and is a regular speaker at events including Microsoft TechEd and Ignite. He co-runs The Microsoft UC User Group London.

15 comments

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  • I would love to see a native Linux client. The electron apps do nothing for me since they only wrap the web interface with no added support for video, although I appreciate that they exist. How are the Windows/Mac apps supporting video if they are also electron apps?

    I did notice last week that audio support is now available in the web client. Still no video, but I was able to join a meeting and participate. If the official Windows/Mac app is electron-based, why is there no Linux client yet? Aren’t they already 95% of the way there?

    • Correct they are nearly there with the Electron platform. All they have to do is compile the Linux version. Voice, video and content is done on other clients that are similar.

  • asked that to microsoft few months ago. How in 2018 you publish a company app without cross platform working… look like a micorsoft 2000 app.

    In the worst case we don’t need a fat client, but add voice/video to the browser…. :( So yes my compagny follow that evolution of a client or browser work).

  • Meeting join via browser is available in Chrome (Audio) and Edge (AV), so your best bet would be to use Chrome on Linux. Teams is always just a web app wrapped in something, on Windows that’s currently Chrome wrapped in electron.

  • Lack of Linux support for teams (which really means testing in a Linux browser) , is quite surprising when you think that many developer teams using other platforms like Asana or Slack use Linux. For example while basic functionality works in Chrome, the web app lacks desktop notifications which is really bad as you risk missing your colleague or boss messaging you or posting a resource. In my case I came up with a tapermonkey script hack, but really Microsoft can’t keep up with current trends and still bee always about 5-7 years in delay? If I were in a buying position that would sound an alarm bell…

  • “Steven Collier – 09/03/2018 Reply
    Meeting join via browser is available in Chrome (Audio) and Edge (AV), so your best bet would be to use Chrome on Linux. ”

    Are you saying you’re able to join a Teams meeting with Audio on Linux? If so, I’m doing something wrong because I just get a popup that that feature isn’t supported yet (with an invitation to download the .EXE client… sigh…)

  • It’s easy Tom.

    MS just have to make a fork for Linux and open it for the community and there will be the native client. And in no time will be better than the official for windows.

  • I guess it’s more important to have a fully implemented web version; and then, the Linux app will be easily packaged as an Electron app.

    I prefer to use my web browser instead of a standalone app.

  • Teams on Chrome is quite good. The lack of desktop notifications is the biggest drawback. If desktop notifications were implemented our Linux team could join in 90% of the activity. Video and Audio would be good, but as a tech team we have little use for them. Text allows us to interact asynchronously, which is paramount in a hectic environment.

    Desktop popups are a common feature for many websites. I have to deny them all the time. But, for Teams I would jump fast to enable them Surely Microsoft could add them relatively easily if they want to enable a full experience in a browser.

  • Srsly, I’ve never seen a web app THAT platform-dependent as ms teams. It’s nearly 2020, never been easier than before to write web apps which adhere to fucking web standards, but MS still have not learned from their 1990s IE non-standard solo implementations.

  • To me, Teams in a browser fails because it’s in a browser. I can cope with that if using it only for meetings, where I open it and use it for a bit and then close it again. Given how CPU-hungry some browser-based real-time stuff can be, it’s not something I’d want to leave running. I also constrain what web stuff can do in my browser for security reasons and I’m not relaxing that for Teams if there’s conflict.

    This means that it’s not such a good on-line chat client as Slack or Telegram or Skype, which largely behave themselves, unlike web clients. I don’t strictly need it for work, because I have a Windows machine there, but it does mean that I will not be responding to queries from home where I run Linux. At the moment I have Slack and will answer quick questions if I see them during the evening, but that’s not going to work with Teams.

  • I think should be better to release the protocol itself than the app, once released the community will add it to pidgin,empathy, etc.

Tom Talks Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business thoughts and news