Disable Edit or Remove Picture in Lync 2013

While going through several posts on Technet Forum, I found that there is a lot of confusion over this topic and there isn’t a detailed article which explains this.

Lync 2013 came with an additional button under “Show my picture” – “Edit or Remove Picture”

This button is active only if the user’s mailbox is on Exchange 2013.

Lync 2013 when installed along with Exchange 2013 allows users to change their corporate picture saved in Exchange/AD. Some organizations however do not want users to change their picture and want this option disabled. If you are one of them and tired of searching various policies and configurations in Lync, you are looking in the wrong place. This is an Exchange 2013 feature and whatever changes you have to make, have to be done on Exchange.

If you have observed, when users click on this button it takes them to an ECP page where they can browse and upload a picture of their choice.

There is no way to disable the actual “Edit or Remove Picture” button in Lync but you can perform the following steps to at least make the Browse button above disappear.

In the Exchange Management Shell run the following commands.

Get-OWAMailboxPolicy | set-owamailboxpolicy -setphotoenabled:$false

Use the -Identity switch if you want to do this for a specific policy. Then, apply the mailbox policy for the specific user or all users.

Set-CASMailbox <user> -OWAMailboxPolicy Default or

Get-CASMailbox -ResultSize Unlimited | Set-CASMailbox -OWAMailboxPolicy Default

You might get a message – “WARNING: The command completed successfully but no settings of ‘theskypeguy.com/Users/<User’s Display Name>’ have been modified.” This can be ignored as it only means the user already has the policy assigned and any changes to the policy have been already applied to the user when we ran Set-OWAMailboxPolicy command.

Once done, go back to your Lync client and click on Edit or Remove Picture. No need to Sign out and Sign back in.

Let me know in the comments section if this works for you. I will be happy to answer if you come across any issues.

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