ATA Selection and connection for voip.co.uk

Discussion in 'UK VOIP' started by Roger Mills, Aug 4, 2007.

  1. Roger Mills

    Roger Mills Guest

    I currently don't use VoIP but am considering it, and am looking for advice.

    I currently have a broadband (PlusNet) internet connection over a BT phone
    line, and make most of my calls (predominantly UK geographic) using 1899 or
    18866. This works fairly well - except that the price per call has gradually
    risen from 1p to 5p. Although we don't make that many calls, my wife and I
    (both retired) are increasingly finding that we're competing for the phone
    at the same time - plus one of us is often engaging the phone whilst the
    other is waiting for an important incoming call.

    My current thoughts are that a VoIP solution with two virtual phone numbers
    would be the way to go. We could have a phone-line each for making outgoing
    calls, leaving the BT line free for incoming calls. The offerings of
    voip.co.uk would seem to fit the bill - going for the £2 per month (or £20
    per year) option, providing 2p (per call) peak-rate and free off-peak calls.

    So far so good - but I'm now faced with a decision as to what kit to use. I
    have read threads such as "Voip.Co.Uk but with which ATA?" - which are very
    informative but still leave some outstanding issues.

    I don't *think* that I need (or even want!) to be able to access both voip
    and BT from the same handset. The vast majority of our outgoing calls are
    originated from my or my wife's study - so a handset dedicated to VoIP in
    each location is all we need. We have BT extensions all round the house (and
    garage!) so we can continue to answer incoming calls wherever we happen to
    be. I do not *think* that I would need to be able to use the equipment with
    more than one VoIP provider.

    The cheapest solution would appear to be voip.co.uk's generic ethernet MTA
    for £50 - which includes £20-worth of 'UK pack' making the hardware
    effectively £30. This appears to require an ethernet input from an ADSL
    modem. Presumably connecting it to an ethernet port of an ADSL modem/router
    is ok? I currently alternate between ZyXel Prestige 650H-E 4 port wired
    modem/router, and a 3Com 3CRWE754G72-A wireless (+4 ethernet ports)
    modem/router. Are there any issues with using either of these routers? Am I
    likely to have to muck about with the router configs to get VoIP working?
    Looking at the setup instructions for the MTA, you ain't supposed to connect
    PCs directly to your router, but rather to the output of the MTA -
    presumably via a hub or switch if more than one. Is this really necessary?
    If you do this, does it mean that the MTA is getting the first bite at the
    bandwidth for phone use, passing what's left for internet browsing etc.? Is
    this what's known as QoS?

    Another - albeit more expensive - solution is to go for voip.co.uk's
    Speedtouch 716v5WL for £90 (effectively £70). This would presumably replace
    my existing router(s) and do it all in one box? It appears to have 4
    ethernet ports, so I assume that I could connect my PCs directly to it?

    In the other thread, the SPA3102 seems to come highly recommended. However,
    that seems to me to need an ethernet input and downstream hub/switch in the
    same way as as voip.co.uk's MTA. Does the SPA 3102 do anything useful -
    relevant to my stated requirements - which the other ones don't?

    I would greatly welcome your comments.

    TIA.
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored..
    Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks. PLEASE REPLY TO
    NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 4, 2007
    #1
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  2. Roger Mills

    Graham. Guest

    "Roger Mills" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >I currently don't use VoIP but am considering it, and am looking for
    >advice.
    >
    > I currently have a broadband (PlusNet) internet connection over a BT phone
    > line, and make most of my calls (predominantly UK geographic) using 1899
    > or 18866. This works fairly well - except that the price per call has
    > gradually risen from 1p to 5p. Although we don't make that many calls, my
    > wife and I (both retired) are increasingly finding that we're competing
    > for the phone at the same time - plus one of us is often engaging the
    > phone whilst the other is waiting for an important incoming call.
    >
    > My current thoughts are that a VoIP solution with two virtual phone
    > numbers would be the way to go. We could have a phone-line each for making
    > outgoing calls, leaving the BT line free for incoming calls. The offerings
    > of voip.co.uk would seem to fit the bill - going for the £2 per month (or
    > £20 per year) option, providing 2p (per call) peak-rate and free off-peak
    > calls.
    >
    > So far so good - but I'm now faced with a decision as to what kit to use.
    > I have read threads such as "Voip.Co.Uk but with which ATA?" - which are
    > very informative but still leave some outstanding issues.
    >
    > I don't *think* that I need (or even want!) to be able to access both voip
    > and BT from the same handset. The vast majority of our outgoing calls are
    > originated from my or my wife's study - so a handset dedicated to VoIP in
    > each location is all we need. We have BT extensions all round the house
    > (and garage!) so we can continue to answer incoming calls wherever we
    > happen to be. I do not *think* that I would need to be able to use the
    > equipment with more than one VoIP provider.
    >
    > The cheapest solution would appear to be voip.co.uk's generic ethernet MTA
    > for £50 - which includes £20-worth of 'UK pack' making the hardware
    > effectively £30. This appears to require an ethernet input from an ADSL
    > modem. Presumably connecting it to an ethernet port of an ADSL
    > modem/router is ok? I currently alternate between ZyXel Prestige 650H-E 4
    > port wired modem/router, and a 3Com 3CRWE754G72-A wireless (+4 ethernet
    > ports) modem/router. Are there any issues with using either of these
    > routers? Am I likely to have to muck about with the router configs to get
    > VoIP working? Looking at the setup instructions for the MTA, you ain't
    > supposed to connect PCs directly to your router, but rather to the output
    > of the MTA - presumably via a hub or switch if more than one. Is this
    > really necessary? If you do this, does it mean that the MTA is getting the
    > first bite at the bandwidth for phone use, passing what's left for
    > internet browsing etc.? Is this what's known as QoS?
    >
    > Another - albeit more expensive - solution is to go for voip.co.uk's
    > Speedtouch 716v5WL for £90 (effectively £70). This would presumably
    > replace my existing router(s) and do it all in one box? It appears to have
    > 4 ethernet ports, so I assume that I could connect my PCs directly to it?
    >
    > In the other thread, the SPA3102 seems to come highly recommended.
    > However, that seems to me to need an ethernet input and downstream
    > hub/switch in the same way as as voip.co.uk's MTA. Does the SPA 3102 do
    > anything useful - relevant to my stated requirements - which the other
    > ones don't?
    >
    > I would greatly welcome your comments.
    >


    If you are going to retain your BT line for I/C calls and only want VoIP
    for O/G calls you only require one VoIP account. A cost effective ATA
    would be a Linksys PAP2 as it is effectively two ATAs in one box.

    I use a PAP2 with a separate DECT base station on each port. His and hers.
    I could simply use the same VoIPCheap.com account for both halves
    of the PAP2, but I find it more convenient to log them in to separate
    Voxalot accounts.
    Some of the advantages are:

    The dial plan is easier to use, I have it set up so numbers can be dialled
    exactly as from a BT line; local, national and international formats.

    I can translate the short-code 10 to dial the other handset's voxalot
    number.

    I use the Voxalot dial plan to define other short-codes like 11 = my mobile
    12 = SWIMBOs mobile etc.

    0800 and 0808 get routed by Sipgate (because VoIPCheap charge!)

    Everything else goes via the VoIPCheap account.

    No QoS consideration has been given to my set-up, and quite
    honestly its never been an issue, even with both phones in use
    simultaneously, and other activity occurring on the PCs
    --

    Graham.
    %Profound_observation%
     
    Graham., Aug 4, 2007
    #2
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  3. Roger Mills

    Ian Pawson Guest

    Roger Mills wrote:
    > I currently don't use VoIP but am considering it, and am looking for advice.
    >
    > I currently have a broadband (PlusNet) internet connection over a BT phone
    > line, and make most of my calls (predominantly UK geographic) using 1899 or
    > 18866. This works fairly well - except that the price per call has gradually
    > risen from 1p to 5p. Although we don't make that many calls, my wife and I
    > (both retired) are increasingly finding that we're competing for the phone
    > at the same time - plus one of us is often engaging the phone whilst the
    > other is waiting for an important incoming call.
    >
    > My current thoughts are that a VoIP solution with two virtual phone numbers
    > would be the way to go. We could have a phone-line each for making outgoing
    > calls, leaving the BT line free for incoming calls. The offerings of
    > voip.co.uk would seem to fit the bill - going for the £2 per month (or £20
    > per year) option, providing 2p (per call) peak-rate and free off-peak calls.
    >
    > So far so good - but I'm now faced with a decision as to what kit to use. I
    > have read threads such as "Voip.Co.Uk but with which ATA?" - which are very
    > informative but still leave some outstanding issues.
    >
    > I don't *think* that I need (or even want!) to be able to access both voip
    > and BT from the same handset. The vast majority of our outgoing calls are
    > originated from my or my wife's study - so a handset dedicated to VoIP in
    > each location is all we need. We have BT extensions all round the house (and
    > garage!) so we can continue to answer incoming calls wherever we happen to
    > be. I do not *think* that I would need to be able to use the equipment with
    > more than one VoIP provider.
    >
    > The cheapest solution would appear to be voip.co.uk's generic ethernet MTA
    > for £50 - which includes £20-worth of 'UK pack' making the hardware
    > effectively £30. This appears to require an ethernet input from an ADSL
    > modem. Presumably connecting it to an ethernet port of an ADSL modem/router
    > is ok? I currently alternate between ZyXel Prestige 650H-E 4 port wired
    > modem/router, and a 3Com 3CRWE754G72-A wireless (+4 ethernet ports)
    > modem/router. Are there any issues with using either of these routers? Am I
    > likely to have to muck about with the router configs to get VoIP working?
    > Looking at the setup instructions for the MTA, you ain't supposed to connect
    > PCs directly to your router, but rather to the output of the MTA -
    > presumably via a hub or switch if more than one. Is this really necessary?
    > If you do this, does it mean that the MTA is getting the first bite at the
    > bandwidth for phone use, passing what's left for internet browsing etc.? Is
    > this what's known as QoS?
    >
    > Another - albeit more expensive - solution is to go for voip.co.uk's
    > Speedtouch 716v5WL for £90 (effectively £70). This would presumably replace
    > my existing router(s) and do it all in one box? It appears to have 4
    > ethernet ports, so I assume that I could connect my PCs directly to it?
    >
    > In the other thread, the SPA3102 seems to come highly recommended. However,
    > that seems to me to need an ethernet input and downstream hub/switch in the
    > same way as as voip.co.uk's MTA. Does the SPA 3102 do anything useful -
    > relevant to my stated requirements - which the other ones don't?
    >
    > I would greatly welcome your comments.
    >
    > TIA.

    On advantage of using the MTA from voip.co.uk is that it comes
    pre-configured ie you unpack it, plug it into a port on you router, plug
    a phone into it and it all works. The Linksys 3102 on the other hand
    requires a *lot* of tweaking to get it correctly setup for use in the UK.
     
    Ian Pawson, Aug 5, 2007
    #3
  4. Roger Mills

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    Ian Pawson <> wrote:

    > On advantage of using the MTA from voip.co.uk is that it comes
    > pre-configured ie you unpack it, plug it into a port on you router,
    > plug a phone into it and it all works. The Linksys 3102 on the other
    > hand requires a *lot* of tweaking to get it correctly setup for use
    > in the UK.


    That makes sense - thanks. Any comments about having computers plugged into
    the *other* router ports - as opposed to being daisy-chained from the MTA as
    recommended?

    Am I likely to have to do any re-configuring of my ZyXel or 3Com routers to
    enable the MTA to work - or is it just a case of plugging it into a free
    port?

    Are there any *dis*-advantages in using the MTA rather than a 3rd party ATA?

    Does the MTA need an IP address. If so, I presume the default is that it
    uses DHCP to get one from the router? The thing is, I've disabled DHCP and
    given everything on my network fixed IP addresses. I presume I can give the
    MTA a fixed address? Does it have a web interface for config purposes? [It
    sounds a bit 'chicken & egg' since I assume I would need to be able to talk
    to it by means of its default IP address and subnet mask before I could
    change them to something of my choosing?]

    TIA of your further comments.
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 5, 2007
    #4
  5. Roger Mills

    Ian Pawson Guest

    Roger Mills wrote:
    > In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    > Ian Pawson <> wrote:
    >
    >> On advantage of using the MTA from voip.co.uk is that it comes
    >> pre-configured ie you unpack it, plug it into a port on you router,
    >> plug a phone into it and it all works. The Linksys 3102 on the other
    >> hand requires a *lot* of tweaking to get it correctly setup for use
    >> in the UK.

    >
    > That makes sense - thanks. Any comments about having computers plugged into
    > the *other* router ports - as opposed to being daisy-chained from the MTA as
    > recommended?
    >
    > Am I likely to have to do any re-configuring of my ZyXel or 3Com routers to
    > enable the MTA to work - or is it just a case of plugging it into a free
    > port?
    >
    > Are there any *dis*-advantages in using the MTA rather than a 3rd party ATA?
    >
    > Does the MTA need an IP address. If so, I presume the default is that it
    > uses DHCP to get one from the router? The thing is, I've disabled DHCP and
    > given everything on my network fixed IP addresses. I presume I can give the
    > MTA a fixed address? Does it have a web interface for config purposes? [It
    > sounds a bit 'chicken & egg' since I assume I would need to be able to talk
    > to it by means of its default IP address and subnet mask before I could
    > change them to something of my choosing?]
    >
    > TIA of your further comments.

    You only need to do the daisy chain if you want to talk to the web
    server in the MTA to change config etc. Works fine just plugged into a
    port on your router.
     
    Ian Pawson, Aug 5, 2007
    #5
  6. On Sun, 05 Aug 2007 09:06:44 +0100, Ian Pawson <>
    wrote:

    >Roger Mills wrote:
    >> I currently don't use VoIP but am considering it, and am looking for advice.
    >>
    >> I currently have a broadband (PlusNet) internet connection over a BT phone
    >> line, and make most of my calls (predominantly UK geographic) using 1899 or
    >> 18866. This works fairly well - except that the price per call has gradually
    >> risen from 1p to 5p. Although we don't make that many calls, my wife and I
    >> (both retired) are increasingly finding that we're competing for the phone
    >> at the same time - plus one of us is often engaging the phone whilst the
    >> other is waiting for an important incoming call.
    >>
    >> My current thoughts are that a VoIP solution with two virtual phone numbers
    >> would be the way to go. We could have a phone-line each for making outgoing
    >> calls, leaving the BT line free for incoming calls. The offerings of
    >> voip.co.uk would seem to fit the bill - going for the £2 per month (or £20
    >> per year) option, providing 2p (per call) peak-rate and free off-peak calls.
    >>
    >> So far so good - but I'm now faced with a decision as to what kit to use. I
    >> have read threads such as "Voip.Co.Uk but with which ATA?" - which are very
    >> informative but still leave some outstanding issues.
    >>
    >> I don't *think* that I need (or even want!) to be able to access both voip
    >> and BT from the same handset. The vast majority of our outgoing calls are
    >> originated from my or my wife's study - so a handset dedicated to VoIP in
    >> each location is all we need. We have BT extensions all round the house (and
    >> garage!) so we can continue to answer incoming calls wherever we happen to
    >> be. I do not *think* that I would need to be able to use the equipment with
    >> more than one VoIP provider.
    >>
    >> The cheapest solution would appear to be voip.co.uk's generic ethernet MTA
    >> for £50 - which includes £20-worth of 'UK pack' making the hardware
    >> effectively £30. This appears to require an ethernet input from an ADSL
    >> modem. Presumably connecting it to an ethernet port of an ADSL modem/router
    >> is ok? I currently alternate between ZyXel Prestige 650H-E 4 port wired
    >> modem/router, and a 3Com 3CRWE754G72-A wireless (+4 ethernet ports)
    >> modem/router. Are there any issues with using either of these routers? Am I
    >> likely to have to muck about with the router configs to get VoIP working?
    >> Looking at the setup instructions for the MTA, you ain't supposed to connect
    >> PCs directly to your router, but rather to the output of the MTA -
    >> presumably via a hub or switch if more than one. Is this really necessary?
    >> If you do this, does it mean that the MTA is getting the first bite at the
    >> bandwidth for phone use, passing what's left for internet browsing etc.? Is
    >> this what's known as QoS?
    >>
    >> Another - albeit more expensive - solution is to go for voip.co.uk's
    >> Speedtouch 716v5WL for £90 (effectively £70). This would presumably replace
    >> my existing router(s) and do it all in one box? It appears to have 4
    >> ethernet ports, so I assume that I could connect my PCs directly to it?
    >>
    >> In the other thread, the SPA3102 seems to come highly recommended. However,
    >> that seems to me to need an ethernet input and downstream hub/switch in the
    >> same way as as voip.co.uk's MTA. Does the SPA 3102 do anything useful -
    >> relevant to my stated requirements - which the other ones don't?
    >>
    >> I would greatly welcome your comments.
    >>
    >> TIA.


    >On advantage of using the MTA from voip.co.uk is that it comes
    >pre-configured ie you unpack it, plug it into a port on you router, plug
    >a phone into it and it all works.


    Quite true, although it is not very well specced. The Linksys PAP2T is
    perfect and far better, also Voip.Co.Uk are very helpful and happy to
    support their customers with other equipment. In fact I'd give them
    11/10 on all counts.

    Go for the £20pa deal, you cant beat it. You can easily set up two
    numbers on the PAP2T without going in to dial plans etc.

    > The Linksys 3102 on the other hand
    >requires a *lot* of tweaking to get it correctly setup for use in the UK.


    Untrue. Apart from user settings it pretty much works straight out of
    the box, or it did for me. Yes many of the settings are USA but they
    work fine in the UK.

    Again that's without getting involved in gateways, dial plans etc.

    If you want to just plug and go get the PAP2T.
     
    Paula Russell, Aug 7, 2007
    #6
  7. Roger Mills

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    Paula Russell <networking%%@bbc.co> wrote:

    >
    >> On advantage of using the MTA from voip.co.uk is that it comes
    >> pre-configured ie you unpack it, plug it into a port on you router,
    >> plug a phone into it and it all works.

    >
    > Quite true, although it is not very well specced. The Linksys PAP2T is
    > perfect and far better, also Voip.Co.Uk are very helpful and happy to
    > support their customers with other equipment. In fact I'd give them
    > 11/10 on all counts.
    >
    > Go for the £20pa deal, you cant beat it. You can easily set up two
    > numbers on the PAP2T without going in to dial plans etc.
    >


    Many thanks for that suggestion - the PAP2T appears to do just what I want.
    It doesn't allow a single handset to be shared between voip and the BT
    line - but I don't want to do that anyway. It would sit on the LAN at the
    same level as my PCs and doesn't require - allow even - PCs to be connected
    downstream of it, which avoids the need for an additional hub/switch. It
    presumably means that it doesn't implement QoS - but most posters seem to
    think that that's over-rated, anyway.

    It appears to be fairly easy - via a connected telephone - to turn off DHCP
    and enter a static IP address and subnet mask, gateway address, etc. which I
    would need to do. In the setup and trouble shooting instructions on the
    Linksys website it mentions - in some circumstances - having to configure
    the router to forward certain ports to the device. Is this likely to be
    necessary? Is there any possibility that it may require the router to do
    anything exotic which it may not be able to do?

    TIA (again).
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 7, 2007
    #7
  8. Roger Mills

    Paul Hayes Guest

    Roger Mills wrote:
    > In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    > Paula Russell <networking%%@bbc.co> wrote:
    >
    >
    > It appears to be fairly easy - via a connected telephone - to turn off DHCP
    > and enter a static IP address and subnet mask, gateway address, etc. which I
    > would need to do. In the setup and trouble shooting instructions on the
    > Linksys website it mentions - in some circumstances - having to configure
    > the router to forward certain ports to the device. Is this likely to be
    > necessary? Is there any possibility that it may require the router to do
    > anything exotic which it may not be able to do?
    >
    > TIA (again).


    Not with Voip.co.uk, they have their own NAT traversal capabilities
    built into their network, you shouldn't need to touch your router.

    cheers,
    Paul.

    --
    Working Email:

    paul-at-polog40-dot-co-dot-uk
     
    Paul Hayes, Aug 8, 2007
    #8
  9. Roger Mills

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    Paul Hayes <> wrote:

    > Roger Mills wrote:
    >> In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    >> Paula Russell <networking%%@bbc.co> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >> It appears to be fairly easy - via a connected telephone - to turn
    >> off DHCP and enter a static IP address and subnet mask, gateway
    >> address, etc. which I would need to do. In the setup and trouble
    >> shooting instructions on the Linksys website it mentions - in some
    >> circumstances - having to configure the router to forward certain
    >> ports to the device. Is this likely to be necessary? Is there any
    >> possibility that it may require the router to do anything exotic
    >> which it may not be able to do? TIA (again).

    >
    > Not with Voip.co.uk, they have their own NAT traversal capabilities
    > built into their network, you shouldn't need to touch your router.
    >
    > cheers,
    > Paul.


    That's good to know - thanks.
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 8, 2007
    #9
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