Does IP telephony suck?

Discussion in 'UK VOIP' started by Klunk, Aug 16, 2008.

  1. Klunk

    Klunk Guest

    Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.

    I did have to laugh how the IT business I work at was brought to its
    knees by an IP telephony outage this week.

    A small call centre with about 50 staff running a Shoretel system ground
    to a halt when the phone system fell over. They blamed the BT ISDN 30
    link, but that was still up and OK. They blamed the licencing running
    out, but that was not it. No, some guy had plugged a laptop with a fixed
    IP address into a RJ45 jack. Sadly, the fixed IP address only matched the
    Shoretel server and confused it.

    To compound the matter, someone then tried to restart the server and it
    locked up in sheer confusion.

    2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.

    Best of all, there was not even so much as a PSTN phone in the place to
    plug into the DSL/FAX line to get out of the shite. Magic.



    --
    powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    Klunk, Aug 16, 2008
    #1
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  2. Klunk

    alexd Guest

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 13:14:00 +0000, Klunk wrote:

    > 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    > have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.


    Serves 'em right for not using Asterisk ;-)

    --
    <http://ale.cx/> (AIM:troffasky) ()
    15:19:11 up 35 days, 17:56, 2 users, load average: 0.09, 0.10, 0.05
    Convergence, n: The act of using separate DSL circuits for voice and data
    alexd, Aug 16, 2008
    #2
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  3. In article <48a6d297$0$26082$>,
    Klunk <> wrote:
    >Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.
    >
    >I did have to laugh how the IT business I work at was brought to its
    >knees by an IP telephony outage this week.
    >
    >A small call centre with about 50 staff running a Shoretel system ground
    >to a halt when the phone system fell over. They blamed the BT ISDN 30
    >link, but that was still up and OK. They blamed the licencing running
    >out, but that was not it. No, some guy had plugged a laptop with a fixed
    >IP address into a RJ45 jack. Sadly, the fixed IP address only matched the
    >Shoretel server and confused it.
    >
    >To compound the matter, someone then tried to restart the server and it
    >locked up in sheer confusion.
    >
    >2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    >have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.
    >
    >Best of all, there was not even so much as a PSTN phone in the place to
    >plug into the DSL/FAX line to get out of the shite. Magic.


    Anyone can plug in a PC with a duplicated IP address and it'll cause
    havoc with the other device - be it a server of a PBX, but a clued-up
    network/IT admin should be able spot it very quickly.

    So you can hanrdly blame IP telephony for the outage.

    This is so trivial to work around too - in any sort of business where
    the phone system uses IP internaly - VLANs, separate physical networks,
    locking devices to network ports, you name it, it's all possible. If
    phones are that important to them then why aren't they spending the
    money (and time) to make it robust?

    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Aug 16, 2008
    #3
  4. In article <48a6e359$0$629$>,
    alexd <> wrote:
    >On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 13:14:00 +0000, Klunk wrote:
    >
    >> 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    >> have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.

    >
    >Serves 'em right for not using Asterisk ;-)


    Asterisk wouldn't help, but the underlying Linux would certinaly start
    to spew forth whinges about a duplicate IP address on the network...

    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Aug 16, 2008
    #4
  5. Klunk

    Klunk Guest

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 14:32:34 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    by writing:

    > In article <48a6e359$0$629$>, alexd
    > <> wrote:
    >>On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 13:14:00 +0000, Klunk wrote:
    >>
    >>> 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    >>> have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.

    >>
    >>Serves 'em right for not using Asterisk ;-)

    >
    > Asterisk wouldn't help, but the underlying Linux would certinaly start
    > to spew forth whinges about a duplicate IP address on the network...
    >
    > Gordon


    I don't know a fantastic amount about this Shoretel thing, but I'd love
    to know what the underlying OS is on it. I would have thought it would
    have been Linux based myself, but that is just a guess.



    --
    powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    Klunk, Aug 16, 2008
    #5
  6. Klunk

    Chris Davies Guest

    Klunk <> wrote:
    > Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.


    Good story. Shame you multiposted instead of crossposting.
    Chris
    Chris Davies, Aug 16, 2008
    #6
  7. In article <48a6ec32$0$2920$>,
    Klunk <> wrote:
    >On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 14:32:34 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    >by writing:
    >
    >> In article <48a6e359$0$629$>, alexd
    >> <> wrote:
    >>>On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 13:14:00 +0000, Klunk wrote:
    >>>
    >>>> 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    >>>> have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.
    >>>
    >>>Serves 'em right for not using Asterisk ;-)

    >>
    >> Asterisk wouldn't help, but the underlying Linux would certinaly start
    >> to spew forth whinges about a duplicate IP address on the network...
    >>
    >> Gordon

    >
    >I don't know a fantastic amount about this Shoretel thing, but I'd love
    >to know what the underlying OS is on it. I would have thought it would
    >have been Linux based myself, but that is just a guess.


    I'd be surprised if it was... My experience of the competition is that
    they're all very much proprietary and scared pooless of Linux and
    Asterisk... (especially in the sub 200 seat scenario)

    (He says, having just had a customer replace their Avaya system with one
    of his own PBXs ;-)

    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Aug 16, 2008
    #7
  8. Klunk

    Klunk Guest

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 16:20:50 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    by writing:

    > In article <48a6ec32$0$2920$>, Klunk
    > <> wrote:
    >>On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 14:32:34 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    >>by writing:
    >>
    >>> In article <48a6e359$0$629$>, alexd
    >>> <> wrote:
    >>>>On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 13:14:00 +0000, Klunk wrote:
    >>>>
    >>>>> 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that
    >>>>> to have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple
    >>>>> outage.
    >>>>
    >>>>Serves 'em right for not using Asterisk ;-)
    >>>
    >>> Asterisk wouldn't help, but the underlying Linux would certinaly start
    >>> to spew forth whinges about a duplicate IP address on the network...
    >>>
    >>> Gordon

    >>
    >>I don't know a fantastic amount about this Shoretel thing, but I'd love
    >>to know what the underlying OS is on it. I would have thought it would
    >>have been Linux based myself, but that is just a guess.

    >
    > I'd be surprised if it was... My experience of the competition is that
    > they're all very much proprietary and scared pooless of Linux and
    > Asterisk... (especially in the sub 200 seat scenario)
    >
    > (He says, having just had a customer replace their Avaya system with one
    > of his own PBXs ;-)
    >
    > Gordon


    Thanks Gordon. The reason I ask is I am sure that one of the anti-linux
    brigade will pipe up and blame the OS.

    What is the general gist of things with all of these IP systems? They are
    mostly proprietary then?

    Ive just started to 'consider' the phone system in the place after years
    of working with BT on 'the other side' of the ISDN30's. I'm trying to
    'get' the concept bit of it - perhaps you can help?

    The desktop phones are all RJ45 in & out so I am guessing that (1) they
    are these things called 'ip phones' and (2) they are getting their power
    from the RJ45's too.

    It hooks up to a proprietary server that then attaches to the ISDN30 dual
    fibre. My guess is that the incoming ISDN30 is made up of a number of
    trunks and DDI's that interface with this unit and are charged as per
    normal call rates? Or are these likely to be provisioned by a VOIP
    provider over the ISDN30? I'm a bit confused on the scenarios possible
    here. (You have to remember - ex-bt, fed on crap, taught on copper, never
    told anything remotely useful in case we leave).

    I've heard the phrased 'hosted' a great deal and I'm guessing at a simple
    level this is the kind of thing that Sipgate offer where they have their
    own VOIP server and the EU simply connects into it via a WAN/DSL
    connection? I stretch my guess to assume that with the in-house Shoretel,
    that this becomes a PBX 'host' if you like and is therefore not a hosted
    solution?

    Any of the VOIP gurus who want to correct any of that to reality will
    receive a virtual cup of tea ;-)



    --
    powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    Klunk, Aug 16, 2008
    #8
  9. Klunk

    Arse Cork OK Guest

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 16:24:11 +0100, Chris Davies wrote:

    > Klunk <> wrote:
    >> Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.

    >
    > Good story. Shame you multiposted instead of crossposting. Chris


    I was wondering when of the belligerent net pervert policemen would
    notice that. Well done ;-)

    Here is your award

    ----------------------PRINT------------------------------
    Golden Arsehole Award
    ---------------------
    Awarded Saturday the 16th of August to Chris Davis who
    exceeded the ability of Columbo when he noticed that:

    something was multi-posted
    instead of crossposted.

    Such sterling work, observation and ability to communicate
    the errors made by others can only be accomplished by
    perfect people, or those commonly referred to by ordinary
    people - who are prone to error- as 'F**KING ARSEHOLES'
    ----------------------------------------------------------

    I think you can take that to mean 'F*ck off' in case you
    were wondering ;-)
    Arse Cork OK, Aug 16, 2008
    #9
  10. In article <48a70e1c$0$2523$>,
    Klunk <> wrote:
    >On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 16:20:50 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    >by writing:


    >>>I don't know a fantastic amount about this Shoretel thing, but I'd love
    >>>to know what the underlying OS is on it. I would have thought it would
    >>>have been Linux based myself, but that is just a guess.

    >>
    >> I'd be surprised if it was... My experience of the competition is that
    >> they're all very much proprietary and scared pooless of Linux and
    >> Asterisk... (especially in the sub 200 seat scenario)
    >>
    >> (He says, having just had a customer replace their Avaya system with one
    >> of his own PBXs ;-)
    >>
    >> Gordon

    >
    >Thanks Gordon. The reason I ask is I am sure that one of the anti-linux
    >brigade will pipe up and blame the OS.


    There's nothing an OS can do if another device on the same network decides
    to use it's IP address... And even detecting it on the compromised host
    can be tricky. Things will get really confusing really fast unless you
    can detect it. That's where a good sysadmin comes in...

    >What is the general gist of things with all of these IP systems? They are
    >mostly proprietary then?


    Yes, mostly. Even some of the ones based on open source solutions keep
    their own internal bits private...

    If they build the hardware, write the software then they know *exactly*
    what the system is capable of - especially in terms of number of
    extensions, concurrent calls and so on. That's no bad thing, generally.

    A recurring question on some of the asterisk lists is "how big a server
    do I need?" and quite simply unless you've a lot of knowledge about the
    inner "guts" of the box, it's hard to say... Even then, are you using
    stock Linux kernels and distributions or custom?

    (And it's something I've spent a lot of time with my own boxes, so I
    know their limitations!)

    >Ive just started to 'consider' the phone system in the place after years
    >of working with BT on 'the other side' of the ISDN30's. I'm trying to
    >'get' the concept bit of it - perhaps you can help?


    Sure...

    >The desktop phones are all RJ45 in & out so I am guessing that (1) they
    >are these things called 'ip phones' and (2) they are getting their power
    >from the RJ45's too.


    Not necessarily. They'll get power for sure, but they might not be IP.
    (They might be using the connectors because that makes it easy to work
    with an existing structured cabling in a building)

    Or they might be IP, but using their own proprietary protocol. It's
    all about vendor lock-in. Why make your PBX compatible with other
    manufacturers phones? You'll lose money that way, see...

    Try googling the phone model number for your systems...

    Even some phones from the legacy companies, while advertised as SIP
    compatible, sometimes aren't, so have some weird issues that makes them
    hard to interface with anything other than the same manufacturers
    PBXs...

    I don't make phones, so I don't care what gets plugged in to my PBXs,
    although because there are now dozens of independent phone manufacturers
    all making their phones SIP compatible, each with dozens more models,
    I can't test them all, so will only supply a small subset...

    >It hooks up to a proprietary server that then attaches to the ISDN30 dual
    >fibre. My guess is that the incoming ISDN30 is made up of a number of
    >trunks and DDI's that interface with this unit and are charged as per
    >normal call rates? Or are these likely to be provisioned by a VOIP
    >provider over the ISDN30? I'm a bit confused on the scenarios possible
    >here. (You have to remember - ex-bt, fed on crap, taught on copper, never
    >told anything remotely useful in case we leave).


    ISDN30 - at it's simplest is a 2Mb digital data line capable of handling
    up to 30 concurrent calls (channels). You start with 8 and pay BT more
    for each channel you enable. You get the line from BT, and really, here
    we don't care what the underlying technology is - copper or fibre -
    ISDN30 can work over both - we just care about the patch lead from the
    BT box to our PBX. So you have 30 channels (or calls), and any number
    of DDI numbers - 100's if need-be. Having more desk phones than channels
    is quite normal - unless you're in a busy call centre!

    (There's a whole field of mathematics to work out the number of channels
    you need vs. the number of people vs. number of minutes on the phone
    each day vs. the probability of running out of lines - look up Erlang)

    The 'data' over the ISDN30 is traditional legacy stuff. Each channel
    is a fixed chunk of 64,000 bits/sec. (8000 samples of 8 bits a second)
    Multiply that by 30 and you're a bit short of 2M, but there's space left
    over for signalling (sending the phone number down, etc.)


    >I've heard the phrased 'hosted' a great deal and I'm guessing at a simple
    >level this is the kind of thing that Sipgate offer where they have their
    >own VOIP server and the EU simply connects into it via a WAN/DSL
    >connection?


    At it's simplest level, yes - although Sipgate are really doing it on a
    single-line basis - no "desk to desk" facilities.

    A lot of people really are pushing hosted solutions (probably becuae
    they've spent a lot of money on them :) The legacy (BT) world equivalent
    is "Centrex", but although I run such a service myself, I don't really
    push it. Not convinced it's good for anything more than a small office
    of 1-4 people, or lots of distributed small offices....

    > I stretch my guess to assume that with the in-house Shoretel,
    >that this becomes a PBX 'host' if you like and is therefore not a hosted
    >solution?


    Yes. ISDN30 in, phones on desks out with the Shoretel PBX acting as a big
    switch plumbing it all together. Maybe with extra features like voicemail,
    call recording and so on. That's what a PBX is.

    >Any of the VOIP gurus who want to correct any of that to reality will
    >receive a virtual cup of tea ;-)


    Heh..


    VoIP is out there and it works, and it works well - given the limitations
    of the UK broadband network - however I think there's still a lot
    of mis-information out there (and some cowboys )-: I've met people
    who tell me that VoIP is rubbish, but then they're paying £9.99 for a
    rubbish ISP... You get what you pay for! And there's a lot of "legacy"
    about.... The crippling contracts that the dinosaur manufacturers sign
    their clients into mean that it's almost impossible for them to break
    out if/when they do want to go VoIP or their existing vendor will charge
    them an arm and 2 legs to enable a *single* SIP interface on the PBX to
    enable a home worker, or charge per channel to connect 2 PBXs together
    to link offices up... There's 60 years of FUD to try to unravel before
    VoIP will become more readily acceptable...


    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Aug 16, 2008
    #10
  11. Klunk

    Klunk Guest

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 19:03:08 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    by writing:

    > In article <48a70e1c$0$2523$>, Klunk
    > <> wrote:
    >>On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 16:20:50 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    >>by writing:

    >
    >>>>I don't know a fantastic amount about this Shoretel thing, but I'd
    >>>>love to know what the underlying OS is on it. I would have thought it
    >>>>would have been Linux based myself, but that is just a guess.
    >>>
    >>> I'd be surprised if it was... My experience of the competition is that
    >>> they're all very much proprietary and scared pooless of Linux and
    >>> Asterisk... (especially in the sub 200 seat scenario)
    >>>
    >>> (He says, having just had a customer replace their Avaya system with
    >>> one of his own PBXs ;-)
    >>>
    >>> Gordon

    >>
    >>Thanks Gordon. The reason I ask is I am sure that one of the anti-linux
    >>brigade will pipe up and blame the OS.

    >
    > There's nothing an OS can do if another device on the same network
    > decides to use it's IP address... And even detecting it on the
    > compromised host can be tricky. Things will get really confusing really
    > fast unless you can detect it. That's where a good sysadmin comes in...
    >
    >>What is the general gist of things with all of these IP systems? They
    >>are mostly proprietary then?

    >
    > Yes, mostly. Even some of the ones based on open source solutions keep
    > their own internal bits private...
    >
    > If they build the hardware, write the software then they know *exactly*
    > what the system is capable of - especially in terms of number of
    > extensions, concurrent calls and so on. That's no bad thing, generally.
    >
    > A recurring question on some of the asterisk lists is "how big a server
    > do I need?" and quite simply unless you've a lot of knowledge about the
    > inner "guts" of the box, it's hard to say... Even then, are you using
    > stock Linux kernels and distributions or custom?
    >
    > (And it's something I've spent a lot of time with my own boxes, so I
    > know their limitations!)
    >
    >>Ive just started to 'consider' the phone system in the place after years
    >>of working with BT on 'the other side' of the ISDN30's. I'm trying to
    >>'get' the concept bit of it - perhaps you can help?

    >
    > Sure...
    >
    >>The desktop phones are all RJ45 in & out so I am guessing that (1) they
    >>are these things called 'ip phones' and (2) they are getting their power
    >>from the RJ45's too.

    >
    > Not necessarily. They'll get power for sure, but they might not be IP.
    > (They might be using the connectors because that makes it easy to work
    > with an existing structured cabling in a building)
    >
    > Or they might be IP, but using their own proprietary protocol. It's all
    > about vendor lock-in. Why make your PBX compatible with other
    > manufacturers phones? You'll lose money that way, see...
    >
    > Try googling the phone model number for your systems...
    >
    > Even some phones from the legacy companies, while advertised as SIP
    > compatible, sometimes aren't, so have some weird issues that makes them
    > hard to interface with anything other than the same manufacturers
    > PBXs...
    >
    > I don't make phones, so I don't care what gets plugged in to my PBXs,
    > although because there are now dozens of independent phone manufacturers
    > all making their phones SIP compatible, each with dozens more models, I
    > can't test them all, so will only supply a small subset...
    >
    >>It hooks up to a proprietary server that then attaches to the ISDN30
    >>dual fibre. My guess is that the incoming ISDN30 is made up of a number
    >>of trunks and DDI's that interface with this unit and are charged as per
    >>normal call rates? Or are these likely to be provisioned by a VOIP
    >>provider over the ISDN30? I'm a bit confused on the scenarios possible
    >>here. (You have to remember - ex-bt, fed on crap, taught on copper,
    >>never told anything remotely useful in case we leave).

    >
    > ISDN30 - at it's simplest is a 2Mb digital data line capable of handling
    > up to 30 concurrent calls (channels). You start with 8 and pay BT more
    > for each channel you enable. You get the line from BT, and really, here
    > we don't care what the underlying technology is - copper or fibre -
    > ISDN30 can work over both - we just care about the patch lead from the
    > BT box to our PBX. So you have 30 channels (or calls), and any number of
    > DDI numbers - 100's if need-be. Having more desk phones than channels is
    > quite normal - unless you're in a busy call centre!
    >
    > (There's a whole field of mathematics to work out the number of channels
    > you need vs. the number of people vs. number of minutes on the phone
    > each day vs. the probability of running out of lines - look up Erlang)
    >
    > The 'data' over the ISDN30 is traditional legacy stuff. Each channel is
    > a fixed chunk of 64,000 bits/sec. (8000 samples of 8 bits a second)
    > Multiply that by 30 and you're a bit short of 2M, but there's space left
    > over for signalling (sending the phone number down, etc.)
    >
    >
    >>I've heard the phrased 'hosted' a great deal and I'm guessing at a
    >>simple level this is the kind of thing that Sipgate offer where they
    >>have their own VOIP server and the EU simply connects into it via a
    >>WAN/DSL connection?

    >
    > At it's simplest level, yes - although Sipgate are really doing it on a
    > single-line basis - no "desk to desk" facilities.
    >
    > A lot of people really are pushing hosted solutions (probably becuae
    > they've spent a lot of money on them :) The legacy (BT) world equivalent
    > is "Centrex", but although I run such a service myself, I don't really
    > push it. Not convinced it's good for anything more than a small office
    > of 1-4 people, or lots of distributed small offices....
    >
    >> I stretch my guess to assume that with the in-house Shoretel,
    >>that this becomes a PBX 'host' if you like and is therefore not a hosted
    >>solution?

    >
    > Yes. ISDN30 in, phones on desks out with the Shoretel PBX acting as a
    > big switch plumbing it all together. Maybe with extra features like
    > voicemail, call recording and so on. That's what a PBX is.
    >
    >>Any of the VOIP gurus who want to correct any of that to reality will
    >>receive a virtual cup of tea ;-)

    >
    > Heh..
    >
    >
    > VoIP is out there and it works, and it works well - given the
    > limitations of the UK broadband network - however I think there's still
    > a lot of mis-information out there (and some cowboys )-: I've met
    > people who tell me that VoIP is rubbish, but then they're paying 9.99
    > for a rubbish ISP... You get what you pay for! And there's a lot of
    > "legacy" about.... The crippling contracts that the dinosaur
    > manufacturers sign their clients into mean that it's almost impossible
    > for them to break out if/when they do want to go VoIP or their existing
    > vendor will charge them an arm and 2 legs to enable a *single* SIP
    > interface on the PBX to enable a home worker, or charge per channel to
    > connect 2 PBXs together to link offices up... There's 60 years of FUD to
    > try to unravel before VoIP will become more readily acceptable...
    >
    >
    > Gordon


    Thanks for taking the time to run through that with me Gordon. It's the
    first USENET post that I've cut, pasted and saved for a number of years.

    Being ex-BT the bit that bewildered me was this dual fibre thing only
    delivering a 2m link when I know we used to knock the same thing down a
    couple of pairs of copper. I can't see the benefit in using the fibre in
    the first place when you factor in the cost! One of the guys in the place
    was saying that they tried to get their DSL down the fibre too and BT
    laughed at them, telling them it could not be done. I'm sure that a fibre
    link is plenty capable of speed - oddles of it in fact. My best guess is
    that there is no 'product' that matches what the company I am working for
    wants.

    I get your point about the reliability of VOIP. Clearly there is going to
    be a big difference with good hardware, a fibre ISDN 30 and dedicated
    equipment. Much more than a DSL line, a PAP2 and a wonky PSU ;-)

    I've got the bug over this whole thing. My interest in telecoms goes way
    back and it captivates me. I'm going to have a 'play' with Asterisk. I'm
    a Linux bug anyway, so I don't have a steep learning curve. It's going to
    come down to basic concepts. I've read that there are hardware issues
    with PCI latency, but I don't know how old the article was. Other than
    the Box Gordon, what am I going to need to set up a little 'test'
    Asterisk system? Say I have 2 X PSTN on the wall + 2 X Sipgate and wanted
    to put in 5 extensions. I guess I'm going to need some 'compatible'
    phones - hows and what's I am not clear on. I guess I will also need some
    form of card to convert the incoming PSTN. How this will all bolt
    together, and be 'cheap enough' so that her indoors will let me play -
    whilst giving me a useful 'primer' is yet to be seen.

    \~~~~~/#
    \ / #
    \_/#
    -------- Your tea, Sir.


    --
    powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    Klunk, Aug 16, 2008
    #11
  12. In article <48a72e8f$0$2928$>,
    Klunk <> wrote:

    >Thanks for taking the time to run through that with me Gordon. It's the
    >first USENET post that I've cut, pasted and saved for a number of years.
    >
    >Being ex-BT the bit that bewildered me was this dual fibre thing only
    >delivering a 2m link when I know we used to knock the same thing down a
    >couple of pairs of copper. I can't see the benefit in using the fibre in
    >the first place when you factor in the cost! One of the guys in the place
    >was saying that they tried to get their DSL down the fibre too and BT
    >laughed at them, telling them it could not be done. I'm sure that a fibre
    >link is plenty capable of speed - oddles of it in fact. My best guess is
    >that there is no 'product' that matches what the company I am working for
    >wants.


    BT want to put fibre everywhere, but tehy do have some odd rules - it's
    probably to do with the competition rules set by Ofcom/whatever. It
    wouldn't surprise me if they were using less than 1% of the capacity of
    all the fibre they've laid....

    >I get your point about the reliability of VOIP. Clearly there is going to
    >be a big difference with good hardware, a fibre ISDN 30 and dedicated
    >equipment. Much more than a DSL line, a PAP2 and a wonky PSU ;-)
    >
    >I've got the bug over this whole thing. My interest in telecoms goes way
    >back and it captivates me. I'm going to have a 'play' with Asterisk. I'm
    >a Linux bug anyway, so I don't have a steep learning curve. It's going to
    >come down to basic concepts. I've read that there are hardware issues
    >with PCI latency, but I don't know how old the article was. Other than
    >the Box Gordon, what am I going to need to set up a little 'test'
    >Asterisk system? Say I have 2 X PSTN on the wall + 2 X Sipgate and wanted
    >to put in 5 extensions. I guess I'm going to need some 'compatible'
    >phones - hows and what's I am not clear on. I guess I will also need some
    >form of card to convert the incoming PSTN. How this will all bolt
    >together, and be 'cheap enough' so that her indoors will let me play -
    >whilst giving me a useful 'primer' is yet to be seen.


    Look for trixbox or pbx in a flash. They're mostly "canned" versions
    of Asterisk + Linux, but might get you going. Failing that, see if your
    Linux distribution has packages, and if all-else fails, try
    www.asterisk.org and compile it from source...

    Hardware wise, look for a TDM400 card with 2 x FXO modules. (You
    might want to try the OpenVox clone cards as they are cheaper). I use
    http://www.voipon.co.uk/ for most of this stuff. Stick an FXS module
    on it too to connect up a local anlogue phone (cheaper than an ATA but
    you'll not get much change from £220 for the card + 3 modules)

    (US terminology - FXO's connect to the "Central Office" ie the Telephone
    Exchange, FXS connect to Stations - ie phones)

    If you just had one line, then you might find an X100p card (or clone
    card) on eBay for £20 or less though. I don't think it's good to have 2
    of them in a PC though.

    You won't have PCI latency issues on a relatively new motherboard, but
    the TDM card prefers to have an IRQ all of it's own. (Although I'm told
    the newer TDM410 boards are much better in this respect) I haven't done
    an analogue install for a month or so, so not looked at the newer card
    yet, but I have an openVox card I'm experimenting with...

    You might also want to download "the starfish book" and read it - Search
    for "Asterisk - the future of telephony" - it's in PDF format now.

    Cheap & basic phones are Grandstream BT200's, but the display is numeric
    only. They are in the "fisher price" range, but I've deployed quite a
    few of them with good results.

    Have fun!

    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Aug 16, 2008
    #12
  13. Klunk

    Allan Gould Guest

    Arse Cork OK wrote:
    > On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 16:24:11 +0100, Chris Davies wrote:
    >
    >> Klunk <> wrote:
    >>> Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.

    >> Good story. Shame you multiposted instead of crossposting. Chris


    [snip]

    > I think you can take that to mean 'F*ck off' in case you
    > were wondering ;-)


    The spiel of expletives and invective by "Arse Cork OK" was more
    offensive than Chris' claim of multiposting or crossposting, IMHO.
    Allan Gould, Aug 16, 2008
    #13
  14. Klunk

    Klunk Guest

    On Sat, 16 Aug 2008 20:30:56 +0000, Gordon Henderson passed an empty day
    by writing:

    > In article <48a72e8f$0$2928$>, Klunk
    > <> wrote:
    >
    >>Thanks for taking the time to run through that with me Gordon. It's the
    >>first USENET post that I've cut, pasted and saved for a number of years.
    >>
    >>Being ex-BT the bit that bewildered me was this dual fibre thing only
    >>delivering a 2m link when I know we used to knock the same thing down a
    >>couple of pairs of copper. I can't see the benefit in using the fibre in
    >>the first place when you factor in the cost! One of the guys in the
    >>place was saying that they tried to get their DSL down the fibre too and
    >>BT laughed at them, telling them it could not be done. I'm sure that a
    >>fibre link is plenty capable of speed - oddles of it in fact. My best
    >>guess is that there is no 'product' that matches what the company I am
    >>working for wants.

    >
    > BT want to put fibre everywhere, but tehy do have some odd rules - it's
    > probably to do with the competition rules set by Ofcom/whatever. It
    > wouldn't surprise me if they were using less than 1% of the capacity of
    > all the fibre they've laid....
    >
    >>I get your point about the reliability of VOIP. Clearly there is going
    >>to be a big difference with good hardware, a fibre ISDN 30 and dedicated
    >>equipment. Much more than a DSL line, a PAP2 and a wonky PSU ;-)
    >>
    >>I've got the bug over this whole thing. My interest in telecoms goes way
    >>back and it captivates me. I'm going to have a 'play' with Asterisk. I'm
    >>a Linux bug anyway, so I don't have a steep learning curve. It's going
    >>to come down to basic concepts. I've read that there are hardware issues
    >>with PCI latency, but I don't know how old the article was. Other than
    >>the Box Gordon, what am I going to need to set up a little 'test'
    >>Asterisk system? Say I have 2 X PSTN on the wall + 2 X Sipgate and
    >>wanted to put in 5 extensions. I guess I'm going to need some
    >>'compatible' phones - hows and what's I am not clear on. I guess I will
    >>also need some form of card to convert the incoming PSTN. How this will
    >>all bolt together, and be 'cheap enough' so that her indoors will let me
    >>play - whilst giving me a useful 'primer' is yet to be seen.

    >
    > Look for trixbox or pbx in a flash. They're mostly "canned" versions of
    > Asterisk + Linux, but might get you going. Failing that, see if your
    > Linux distribution has packages, and if all-else fails, try
    > www.asterisk.org and compile it from source...
    >
    > Hardware wise, look for a TDM400 card with 2 x FXO modules. (You might
    > want to try the OpenVox clone cards as they are cheaper). I use
    > http://www.voipon.co.uk/ for most of this stuff. Stick an FXS module on
    > it too to connect up a local anlogue phone (cheaper than an ATA but
    > you'll not get much change from 220 for the card + 3 modules)
    >
    > (US terminology - FXO's connect to the "Central Office" ie the Telephone
    > Exchange, FXS connect to Stations - ie phones)
    >
    > If you just had one line, then you might find an X100p card (or clone
    > card) on eBay for 20 or less though. I don't think it's good to have 2
    > of them in a PC though.
    >
    > You won't have PCI latency issues on a relatively new motherboard, but
    > the TDM card prefers to have an IRQ all of it's own. (Although I'm told
    > the newer TDM410 boards are much better in this respect) I haven't done
    > an analogue install for a month or so, so not looked at the newer card
    > yet, but I have an openVox card I'm experimenting with...
    >
    > You might also want to download "the starfish book" and read it - Search
    > for "Asterisk - the future of telephony" - it's in PDF format now.
    >
    > Cheap & basic phones are Grandstream BT200's, but the display is numeric
    > only. They are in the "fisher price" range, but I've deployed quite a
    > few of them with good results.
    >
    > Have fun!
    >
    > Gordon


    Thanks Gordon - another cut and paste and plenty to play with ;-)
    Thank you for your time.



    --
    powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    Klunk, Aug 17, 2008
    #14
  15. Klunk

    mr deo Guest

    "Klunk" <> wrote in message
    news:48a6d297$0$26082$...
    > Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.
    >
    > I did have to laugh how the IT business I work at was brought to its
    > knees by an IP telephony outage this week.
    >
    > A small call centre with about 50 staff running a Shoretel system ground
    > to a halt when the phone system fell over. They blamed the BT ISDN 30
    > link, but that was still up and OK. They blamed the licencing running
    > out, but that was not it. No, some guy had plugged a laptop with a fixed
    > IP address into a RJ45 jack. Sadly, the fixed IP address only matched the
    > Shoretel server and confused it.
    >
    > To compound the matter, someone then tried to restart the server and it
    > locked up in sheer confusion.
    >
    > 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    > have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.
    >
    > Best of all, there was not even so much as a PSTN phone in the place to
    > plug into the DSL/FAX line to get out of the shite. Magic.
    >
    >
    >
    > --
    > powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    >


    I have seen networks do this before, I dont think it's a IP Telephony flaw,
    as W2K, Linux, and many routers can all fall over when you get 2 peices of
    hardware trying to claim the same IP..
    Time to fire the tech who was in charge, and the guy who plugg'd in the
    lappy.
    mr deo, Aug 17, 2008
    #15
  16. Klunk

    Stephen Guest

    On Sun, 17 Aug 2008 21:10:22 GMT, "mr deo"
    <> wrote:

    >
    >"Klunk" <> wrote in message
    >news:48a6d297$0$26082$...
    >> Always been a fan of Voip. Use it at home myself via Sipgate.
    >>
    >> I did have to laugh how the IT business I work at was brought to its
    >> knees by an IP telephony outage this week.
    >>
    >> A small call centre with about 50 staff running a Shoretel system ground
    >> to a halt when the phone system fell over. They blamed the BT ISDN 30
    >> link, but that was still up and OK. They blamed the licencing running
    >> out, but that was not it. No, some guy had plugged a laptop with a fixed
    >> IP address into a RJ45 jack. Sadly, the fixed IP address only matched the
    >> Shoretel server and confused it.
    >>
    >> To compound the matter, someone then tried to restart the server and it
    >> locked up in sheer confusion.
    >>
    >> 2 days later and the phones are back on, but how fantastic is that to
    >> have an IT call centre brought to its knees with such a simple outage.
    >>
    >> Best of all, there was not even so much as a PSTN phone in the place to
    >> plug into the DSL/FAX line to get out of the shite. Magic.
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >> --
    >> powered by Linux - bastardized by Window$ -
    >>

    >
    >I have seen networks do this before, I dont think it's a IP Telephony flaw,
    >as W2K, Linux, and many routers can all fall over when you get 2 peices of
    >hardware trying to claim the same IP..
    >Time to fire the tech who was in charge, and the guy who plugg'd in the
    >lappy.


    no - back end servers should be on the other side of a router where
    they are less likely to have user address conflicts.

    i blame the designer - or whoever cut the budget.....
    >

    --
    Regards

    - replace xyz with ntl
    Stephen, Aug 18, 2008
    #16
  17. Klunk

    Chris Davies Guest

    mr deo <> wrote:
    > W2K, Linux, and many routers can all fall over when you get 2 peices of
    > hardware trying to claim the same IP..


    I'm pretty sure I've seen Windows boxes complain when something else
    answers an ARP request for their own IP address. Good idea IMO (for lots
    of reasons).

    Chris
    Chris Davies, Aug 19, 2008
    #17
    1. Advertising

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