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Asterisk Open Source PBX 1.0 Release

michael posted more than 9 years ago | from the linux-phone-home dept.

Communications 208

An anonymous reader writes "Today at Astricon (the first Asterisk conference), Mark Spencer announced the release of version 1.0.0 of Asterisk. For those of you that don't know: Asterisk is a complete PBX in software. It runs on Linux and provides all of the features you would expect from a PBX and more. Asterisk does voice over IP in three protocols, and can interoperate with almost all standards-based telephony equipment using relatively inexpensive hardware. Asterisk users can be up and running, making phone calls in under an hour using the various guides found at the VoIP Wiki. Connectivity to the PSTN is provided by companies like VoicePulse, Nufone, Gafachi and VoipJet."

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208 comments

Asterisk? Linux? I'm so confused! (-1, Offtopic)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331827)

<sarcasm>
I was looking for Asterix and Obelix related articles and collectibles and ended up with a house full of computer communications equipment. This isn't what I expected and feel terribly misled! It's an error that could have happened to anybody and Les Éditions Albert René need leap into action and fight the confusing of things like Asterisk and Linux with their property, lest many others be confused by the similarities as I was. Oh, woe! I wonder if it's too late to cancel my plane ticket and hotel reservations for Astercon.


And Wiki could be confused with the LucasFilm character Wicket W. Warrick and VoIP, well, that should close enough to Poit to be a violation of Warner Bros. character Pinky... oh, will no one save us from such confusion!
</sarcasm>

For reference, please see this [slashdot.org] and this [slashdot.org]

Re:Asterisk? Linux? I'm so confused! (2, Insightful)

BitHive (578094) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331863)

Berkeley Breathed would like a word with you about your username. Also, if you have to provide references for your jokes, you might want to reconsider how funny they are.

Re:Asterisk? Linux? I'm so confused! (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331915)

Also, if you have to provide references for your jokes, you might want to reconsider how funny they are.

Editorial humor is wasted on you.

The point here is we watched something as utterly stupid as les editions rene bust the chops of Mobilix. Can't you see how close Asterisk, which runs in Linux are to their property? I'm sure their lawyers can. Forewarned is forearmed.

or is that four-armed?

Re:Asterisk? Linux? I'm so confused! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332219)

That's the first thing that came into my mind too..

kinda sad.

So, how many weeks you think until the cease and desist hits?

Re:Asterisk? Linux? I'm so confused! (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332305)

So, how many weeks you think until the cease and desist hits?

A month or so. The Astercon name in any publicity should attract those vermin. There's probably been a convention somewhere of Asterix fans and L.E.A.R. will probably feel enough propriety, as stupidly irrelevent as it is to compare cartoons to computer software/hardware, unless some dork hangs a banner somewhere with the Asterix or Obelix characters holding a box, which would imply L.E.A.R. and their fictional characters endorsement.

After the Mobilix [mobilix.org] debacle I would think naming would have taken a bit more care.

Re:Asterisk? Linux? I'm so confused! (1)

wolenczak (517857) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332785)

Asterisk != Astérix
DUH!

ads (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331832)

can we change the slashdot ads, i keep seeing this guy flex his muscles, getting annoying after a while.

Re:ads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331862)

can we change the slashdot ads, i keep seeing this guy flex his muscles, getting annoying after a while.

mozilla.org [slashdot.org]

Re:ads (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331998)

Mozilla is shit. Adblock is shit. They can't hold a candle to IE running AdMuncher [admuncher.com]

Re:ads (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331877)

does that turn you on?
are you insecure with your sexuality?

Re:ads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331881)

can we change the slashdot ads, i keep seeing this guy flex his muscles, getting annoying after a while.

echo '0.0.0.0 ads.osdn.com' |cat >> /etc/hosts

Re:ads (3, Funny)

ari_j (90255) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332011)

echo '0.0.0.0 ads.osdn.com' | cat >> /etc/hosts

Here's the problem with the new generation of Unix users - they think that, just because Unix is a collection of small utilities that can be used to achieve great results, they must utilize as many tools as possible in solving the simplest problems.

echo '0.0.0.0 ads.osdn.com' >> /etc/hosts

Re:ads (4, Funny)

JabberWokky (19442) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332133)

Actually, they should use:

printf "%s %s %s\n" $( echo '0.0.0.0 ads.osdn.com' | cat | rev | nl | head -5 | sed 's/Eris/Bob/g' | awk '{ print $2 " " $3 }' | rev | nl ) |cut -c3- >> /etc/hosts

--
Evan "If it's worth doing, it's worth overdoing"

Re:ads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332141)

It's not just UNIX. I've seen this in many research papers; "pipelineitis", the belief that the more stages of processing you have, the more data you can extract from the raw signal.

WHoop! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331833)

FP BItches!

rgh (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331838)

screw you!

viva la asterisk (-1, Offtopic)

mogorman (618512) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331843)

second post

Thanks! (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331858)

For those of you that don't know: Asterisk is a complete PBX in software

Ooohhh! *slaps forhead* Well, fuck you very much, but wtf is a PBX?

Re:Thanks! (2, Informative)

mogorman (618512) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331884)

google is your friend.... in short its a phone system.

Re:Thanks! (4, Informative)

grifter7 (73822) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331912)

AC, meet my friend Google.

(PBX = Private Branch Exchange)

http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/P/PBX.html

Re:Thanks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332239)

Ok. WTF is a "Private Branch Exchange".

A trading/market place (exchange) for "private branches" (a creative euphansim)? Sounds somewhat obscene. Yipes.

Like all good slashdot zealots I stopped using Google once they sold out and went IPO.

Re:Thanks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332443)

(a creative euphansim)

euphemism

Re:Thanks! (3, Insightful)

kernelfoobar (569784) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331943)

PBX: Private Branch eXchange (private telephone switchboard)

used in medium and large size businesses. It's like a LAN for phones. You can tell when a employee has an extentions number.

Re:Thanks! (1)

barc0001 (173002) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332004)

Well, in this instance, if you don't know what a PBX is, you don't need one. Nothing to see here... move along.

Re:Thanks! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332072)

It's like a PBJ, but XTREME!!!

Re:Thanks! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332850)

Ooohhh! *slaps forhead* Well, fuck you very much, but wtf is a PBX?

WTF does WTF mean?

Enjoy your IAXy... (4, Funny)

kasparov (105041) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331861)

Anonymous User...

(Mark offered to give a free IAXy [digium.com] to the person who got this slashdot story posted) :-)

More "related links weirdness" (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331867)

Anyone who has thought that they'd like to own "The Internet" should check out the best deals under "related links". I might give it a look - the one I got last year is getting out of date. Which version are we up to now?

Linux Journal did an article on Asterisk... (5, Informative)

tcopeland (32225) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331869)

...right here [linuxjournal.com] .

It's a bit out of date - it suggests you check out the code from CVS - but lots of good info there nonetheless.

What kind of load can this carry? (1)

Enlarge Your Penis (781779) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331874)

Are we talking about a proper enterprise solution, or is this another shoddy piece of Linux software whose faults are ignored because it's not made by Microsoft?

Great for new businesses (4, Interesting)

erick99 (743982) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331882)

The features section of the website is certainly impressive. If I were starting a new business or, for some reason, had to get out of a current PBX contract, I would give this a try. Having worked in large companies with large PBX systems, the money saved would not be insignicant. I didn't see in the article or the features list if there was any sort of limit to the amount of phones that this would support. For example will it work with 400 employees? 4000? 40,000?

-erick

Re:Great for new businesses (5, Informative)

Scott Laird (2043) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332079)

It depends on your needs. There have been suggestions that some CLECs are using Asterisk internally, and there are certainly a ton of VoIP startups using it. The general impression that I get is that you don't want to run more then 100 simultaneous connections through a single Asterisk server. If you want more, then add more servers and share the load. If you're doing a lot of compression on the server, the number may drop below 100.

Fortunately, Asterisk does a decent job of sharing information between multiple servers, but setting up a large multi-system PBX still isn't going to be trivial.

If you're using VoIP phones (Cisco, Polycom, etc), then there's no real limit to how many employees you can service with a single server. If you're using analog phones, then you should probably limit yourself to around 4 T1s worth of phones per server.

Gee thanks (-1, Troll)

JaffaKREE (766802) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331888)

This should have been under 'Slashdot - advertisements'. Next article - Get $40 off the newest Linux ISO !

HaHA! read in!: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10331889)

I sent this to their webmaster:

I find it somewhat humorous that on this page:

http://www.microsoft.com/seminar/events/security.m spx [microsoft.com]

the photo you use is that of a Macintosh PowerBook G4 15" (with the Apple logo on the back of the screen Photoshop-ed out), on a page about security summits and programs. While I don't want to get into a pissing contest about which OS is more secure, it's mildly humorous to find a Mac being used to advertise Microsoft's security, even if it is subtle.

Respectfully,

Andy Ringsmuth

I'll try and keep an eye on it and see if they decide to change the photo.....

http://www.macslash.org/ [macslash.org]

http://macslash.org/~andyring/ [macslash.org]

Re:HaHA! read in!: (1)

mebob (57853) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332272)

um you sure thats a power book?

Slashdot News (-1, Troll)

Space_Soldier (628825) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331902)

I want news that sound like news on Slashdot. I do not want news that sound like ads on Slashdot.

Re:Slashdot News (1)

JaffaKREE (766802) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331936)

It's a toss-up between Michael and Timothy for worst stories/ads/dupes. I think Timothy gets the nod for his under-24-hours dupes, although Michael posted this one.

Re:Slashdot News (1)

Desert Raven (52125) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331975)

I want news that sound like news on Slashdot. I do not want news that sound like ads on Slashdot.

Kind of funny, coming from someone with an advertisement in their sig line...

Translation: "I don't want to see any advertisements, except the ones I post."

Re:Slashdot News (5, Insightful)

erick99 (743982) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331981)

As far as I can tell from the article and their website, this software is free so I don't see how this is advertising. At least not in the traditional sense of advertising to make money from selling a product or service.

Don't you think you are being a bit hypocritical complaining about advertising when you are trolling for referrals for your free iPod? Now that is an example of advertising for a profit. If the shoe fits....

-erick

It's GPLed, anyways (2, Informative)

Scott Laird (2043) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332110)

Ignoring the free iPod issue, this is free software (GPL, even) that we're talking about. It's not v1.0 of some random commercial program. It's v1.0 of the premier Linux VoIP package. That makes it news.

Re:It's GPLed, anyways (2, Interesting)

jjhall (555562) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332318)

Exactly. I have a free link in my sig too. That doesn't make any difference to the point of my post, or the OP's point.

I'm actually using Asterisk for my phone system at home, and it is amazing what you can do with it. I'm running a CVS version from about 2 months ago, and had been updating it monthly up until my last update. Even running a development "non-stable" version I hardly have any issues at all. And each time I did, the people in the IRC channel have been very helpful, and most every time a CVS update has resolved my troubles.

With all the open-source talk these days, and all of the great sounding projects that end up being vaporware, a 1.0 release of such a large-scale project is truely news. It may sound like a PR advertisement, but when that is a very accurate description of the product, then what is the problem? As the saying goes, if the shoe fits....

Re:Slashdot News (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332284)

Yeah. All these announcements about Real, Useful, Working Products suck.



Bring back the Informative "duke nukem forever delayed again" and "this microsoft program has a bug" articles. Those articles about delays and vaporware make me feel good about all the delays and vaporware that the engineers in my company produce.


Learning about useful stuff like Asterix feels too much like work.

Plug (-1, Flamebait)

xombo (628858) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331910)

Since when is Slashdot a walking commercial? Oh wait.

Re:Plug (1)

YOUR SIG SUCKS! (712500) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332032)

Since when is Slashdot a walking commercial? Oh wait.

Free, legitimate, iPod & Flatscreen offer info [rekutyn.com]


YOUR SIG SUCKS!!!!

Why you ask? Because you BITCH ABOUT COMMERCIALS, YET YOU HAVE ONE IN YOU SIG.

YOUR SIG SUCKS!!!!

Re:Plug (1)

Tongo (644233) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332362)

Really, wtf is the deal bitching about advertisments for free software with a stupid advertisment for a friggin sig. Damn you people are idiots.

IP phone recommendations? (4, Interesting)

otis wildflower (4889) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331955)

Any recommendations for IP (ethernet) phones to use with Asterisk? We've got Lucent/Avaya fones with power over ethernet (convenient) but the PBX backend is a proprietary piece of shite.

Also, is LDAP supported in Asterisk?

Re:IP phone recommendations? (5, Informative)

Akai (11434) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332020)

By far my fav are Cisco 7960 (I haven't tried the 7970) the only problem is they need things like DNS entried and tftpservers to work optimally.

For lower-cost alternatives, I really like the SNOM phones. I've used an snom 200 for quite a while and it's a very nice phone.

I also have a Pulver WiSIP which is nice but not exactly featureful, and the audio quality goes down when WEP is used.

For ATA's the SIPura, and the Linksys models there of ($50 or so) are a good bet, and the dirt-cheap Grandstreams work okay too.

Use the voip wiki to find optimal phone and sip.conf configs for a bunch of different phones.

Re:IP phone recommendations? (1)

halfelven (207781) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332341)

But i thought the Linksys is locked to Vonage or some kind of service like that?
Are you aware of any Linksys devices that are not locked? If yes, where can i find them?

Re:IP phone recommendations? (3, Informative)

Akai (11434) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332667)

There are un-locked linksys Sipura's out there, look for -NA on the model # PAP2-NA and RT31P2-NA are the two models available according to VoIP Wiki [voip-info.org]

Re:IP phone recommendations? (4, Informative)

ldspartan (14035) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332052)

In my apartment, I've got a Cisco 7960 and Budgetone 100 both connected to * via SIP. They're at opposite ends of the cost spectrum, the 7960 being about $400 MSRP and the BT about $100. Both work fine.

See http://www.voip-info.org/ for more.

--
Phil

Re:IP phone recommendations? (1)

otis wildflower (4889) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332108)

Is the extra stuff on the pricier fones (such as, say, alphanum LCD extension/callerid readout) supported?

I'd be interested enough to pay the functionality, but obviously only if it's supported..

Re:IP phone recommendations? (1)

ldspartan (14035) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332285)

Define "supported". I'm no expert, but in regards to the Cisco 79xx, the display is managed wholly seperately from the PBX. It is used to define roles for the softkeys above and below the screen, and display information about calls in progress / being placed. It can also support webapps in a limited way using some sort of... creepy cisco XML.

In any case, with a DHCP server, a TFTP server, a web server, and Asterisk, you can get everything working on a 7960 or 7940.

Re:IP phone recommendations? (1)

redcircle (796312) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332117)

We are using cisco 7940 series One thing that is cool about asterisk is that you don't even need a phone to use it. All you need is a computer with a mic and speakers.

Re:IP phone recommendations? (5, Informative)

Scott Laird (2043) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332181)

The Polycom IP300/IP500/IP600 line seems to be the best combination of price and performance right now, at least for a business environment. You can get cheap phones (the Grandstream Budgetone is around $70), but they're cheap and missing some features.

Asterisk doesn't have native LDAP support, but it's not very hard to write a script that produces a set of Asterisk config files out of LDAP data. With a bit more work, you could script Asterisk to do LDAP lookups, but it'll take too much work to be worth it for small (100 users) sites.

Re:IP phone recommendations? (2, Interesting)

otis wildflower (4889) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332315)

Asterisk doesn't have native LDAP support, but it's not very hard to write a script that produces a set of Asterisk config files out of LDAP data. With a bit more work, you could script Asterisk to do LDAP lookups, but it'll take too much work to be worth it for small (100 users) sites.

With LDAP you can get interesting stuff like injecting voicemails to IMAP mailboxes, having group extensions (like helpdesk) inject voicemail to group mailboxes, etc..

I'm just thinking how neat it would be to have a voicemail password be dtmf(lc($passplain)) so you'd have single signon ;)

Re:IP phone recommendations? (4, Informative)

Scott Laird (2043) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332486)

Well, Asterisk already lets you send voicemail via email, with the message attached as a WAV file. It can suck its VM config out of MySQL or Postgres, or it can use text files. It'll also send mail to a pager email address; I get a SMS message on my cell phone whenever I get new voicemail at home. The message includes the caller ID information as well, which makes it a snap to return calls.

There's a patch out there somewhere to tie Asterisk into Request Tracker. Done properly, you could build a really interesting support phone system--it'd record calls, stick them into the ticket queue as needed, and give you a great way to keep track of who's bugging you the most.

Re:IP phone recommendations? (1)

spectro (80839) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332514)

As long as your phone supports SIP it will work out-of-the box with Asterisk. I understand Avaya released firmware updates for some of their phones to add SIP support to them. Check Avaya's support website.

Asterisk... (5, Informative)

juuri (7678) | more than 9 years ago | (#10331987)

...is quite nice and easy to get going with a cheap $40 FXO card. With that and a decently powered machine you can easily replace your home answering service or machine with something a bit more complex. As great as Asterisk is though it definitely is a 1.0 product, hopefully now that the functionality has stabilized somewhat, more work will be put into rearing the myriad of control files into something more managable and some work will be put into better troubleshooting tools. Odd or weird problems can be a real PITA to diagnose on your Asterisk setup.

My dialplan (which works all but the analog portion 100% of the time) is that a call comes in -> rings the analog line a few times -> asterisk then picks up and gives the user a menu, from there one can pick my sip client or my girlfriend's or a global that rings the analog line and the sip clients at the same time. In case of no answer voicemail then picks up and fires off an email to us containing the message. Eventually I hope to have it sharing functionality with some friends in different states so we can all have free local dial-ins for family and friends who are scattered.

Re:Asterisk... (3, Interesting)

bastion_xx (233612) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332187)

Agreed. There was a lot of "discussion" when the 1.0-stable and 1.0RC1 branches were put in place... then abandoned in favor of HEAD.

Hopefully the discipline is in place to keep bug fixes on the 1.0 branch while new features can be put into HEAD or another branch completely.

Happy * user in 3 continents, 1 Carribean island, and at home too!

Re:Asterisk... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332623)

What FXO card did you use? For $40, I'd like to try it ...

best and worst of open source (5, Insightful)

MrShoop (621273) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332014)

Asterisk exemplifies the best and worst elements of an open source project. The best being this is an awesomely powerful, infinitely configurable robust piece of software that is free and can replace otherwise extremely expensive proprietary systems. It is power to the masses in that a small company can have a comparable phone system to a big corporation that spends tens of thousands of dollars.

The worst is that there is a very steep learning curve. Configuration of both hardware and software is complex. While the documentation is thorough, it is not oriented towards the first time set-up.

Taken as a whole, though the good outweighs the bad, and it is worth investing in learning about it. This is great package. Tanks to the people who have been working on it, esp Mark at Digium.

Re:best and worst of open source (5, Insightful)

Scott Laird (2043) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332381)

In many ways, Asterisk reminds me of Sendmail, circa 1996 or so. It's complex, it's sort of hard to configure (although Asterisk doesn't use line noise for config files, unlike Sendmail), but it's insanely flexible. In the early and mid 90s, you needed the flexibility, because email standards were in flux. SMTP was common, but so was UUCP and BITNET and a handful of other protocols. Gateways into non-RFC822 systems were all over the place. You needed a mail program that could handle all sorts of weird issues or you'd never be able to hack together a config that could handle your weird mail needs.

Asterisk is similar. It's complex because it's designed to be able to tie together clumps of incompatible phone systems and act in all sorts of ways that the programmers didn't really intend. You can use it as a pure VoIP system, a gateway between different VoIP systems, a plain PBX with analog phones, a VoIP extension for an existing PBX, a voice-mail system for a PBX, a dialer for a call center, or a centrex-style virtual PBX for multiple companies. It's flexible enough to let you configure it to be any of these and a thousand other things. And today, we need the flexibility because we have so many weird little phone systems that we need to tie together.

For email, things eventually changed. SMTP is king, and RFC 822 is the gold standard for email formats. Modern mailers are a lot less complex because they *CAN* be. Will the future hold something similar for telephone service? Who knows. Check back in a decade, but for now, use Asterisk.

But does it talk to skype (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332017)

Skype (http://skype.com) seems to be taking off. Can Asterisk coexist with Skype?

Re:But does it talk to skype (1)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332304)

They aren't competitors really. One is a service provider, the other is a tool. PBX's work w/ all of the normal phone companies, so I don't see why a PBX won't work w/ VOIP

Re:But does it talk to skype (1)

magefile (776388) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332475)

Sorta. * does SIP and other standard VoIP protocols, but Skype uses a proprietary format. But, it is possible to have Skype bridge to a POTS #, which * can then call.

broadvoice omitted (0, Offtopic)

alatesystems (51331) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332028)

Don't forget Broadvoice [broadvoice.com] . It works too and is really cheap.

Chris

Re:broadvoice omitted (1)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332342)

broadvoice is a VoIP provider, just like Skype. Asterisk is not a provider. It is something you use for call routing and handling.

Boy, you're a fucking genius alright. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332473)

Notice how in the article header it lists several providers?

Extrapolate from that, smarty pants.

MACS ARE HOMO (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332040)

The much acclaimed Father Randy "Pudge" O'Day finally makes his appearance on Slashdot!!

M*_M_A_C_S_ _A_R_E_ _H_O_M_O_ _M_A_C_S_ _A_R_E_*H
A_/_____\____REPENT___\___NOW______/____\_______O
C|___I___|____AND_BUY__\_A_MAC____|______|______M
S|__LOVE_`.__Call_1-800-NAMBLA____|_______:_____O
_`___M____|_____________|________\|_______|______
A_\__A____|_/_______/__\\\___--___\\_______:____M
R__\__C___\/____--~~__________~--__|_\_____|____A
E___\__S___\_-~____________________~-_\____|____C
_____\______\_________.--------.______\|___|____S
H______\_____\______//_________(_(__>__\___|_____
O_______\___.__C____)_________(_(___>___|__/____A
M_______/\_|___C_____)/_STEVE\_(____>___|_/_____R
O______/_/\|___C_____)|_BLOW_|__(___>___/__\____E
______|___(____C_____)\_JOBS_/__//__>_/_____\____
M_____|____\__C_____\\_________//_(__/_______|__H
A____|_\____\____)___`----___--'_____________|__O
C____|__\______________\_______/____________/_|_M
S___|_M____________/____|_____|__\__I__G______|_O
____|_A_W_________|____/_APPLE_\__\__M__H_____|__
A___|_D_I_A____/_/____|__xServe_|__\_____E ____|M
R___|_E_T_____/_/______\__/\___/____|_____Y____|A
E__|____H_M__/_/________|_C__|_______|_________|C
___|______A___|_________|_A__|_______|_________|S
H__|______C__|__________|_T__|_______|_________|_
O__|_________|__________|_5__|_______|_________|_
*M_O_ _M_A_C_S_ _A_R_E_ _H_O_M_O_ _M_A_C_S_ A_R_*


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Important Stuff: Please try to keep posts on topic. Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page)

cheap, turnkey asterisk systems? (5, Insightful)

timothy (36799) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332043)

I know at least one technically skilled computer programmer type (ruling me out on two counts) who had a lot of pain setting up asterics. (Brian will remain completely anonymous.)

Considering the ludicrous (low) prices for which one can buy a complete system far-more-than-capable of running asterics, the relatively cheap price of the phone interfaces, etc, it seems like a plentifully adequate Asterics box could be made for a lot less than $500, and perhaps sold for that amount (just one or two lines, more could cost more). This isn't *dirt* cheap like future, hypothetical home PBX appliances ought to be from Linksys and similar companies, but considering you can also use it as a home server and other things on the side, strikes me as at least a plausible, reasonable price to aim for.

Has anyone done this? Does anyone sell a shoe-box PBX for a few hundred dollars that can be accessed via web, so new voice messages and menus can be dropped in via clicky-clicky drop-down menus?

On this front, Isaac from MythTV and Marc from Asterics should get together and forge an unholy alliance, integrating two home-automation tasks in a nice, non-monolithic, package. I noticed that MythTV has *some* kind of new addition involving phones, but I have not read the linked bits yet ;)

timothy

Re:cheap, turnkey asterisk systems? (1)

otis wildflower (4889) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332212)

I wonder if it can fit in a WRT54 or other cheap home router for just this purpose?

Even if you have to mount an external storage server, it could be a cute toy...

Re:cheap, turnkey asterisk systems? (1)

unixfan (571579) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332241)

Why, you sound just like a troll. What's up with this reference of MythTV and Asterisk?

Unfortunately big complex systems require some idea of what you are doing. Services are available to those who don't understand telephony. But usually they want to get paid for their time. You sound like you expected something like this to be just configure, make, make install and it's up and running.

However, once you have studies the subject you can install a new system in under 30 minutes, and have it fully operational. It will have a sample configuration, which you will need to study and learn. Wiki exists which can take you through the whole thing.

Once you know both of these things you can build and configure a box in a matter of hours. That is, configured to do the kind of cool things you like it to do.

Re:cheap, turnkey asterisk systems? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332262)

He is just like a troll.

MythPhone (2, Interesting)

timothy (36799) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332730)

Here's the link (from the MythTV site) for MythPhone [zen.co.uk] . It's for making SIP calls, not intended for integration with a POTS service as far as I can see, but conceptually it could be a good front end for calls made over asterics (or any landline, if tied into one). That would lose the fancy picture stuff, but would turn a MythTV computer into a big, fancy phone. Beldar Conhead plastic face mold not included.

"Unfortunately big complex systems require some idea of what you are doing. Services are available to those who don't understand telephony. But usually they want to get paid for their time. You sound like you expected something like this to be just configure, make, make install and it's up and running."

Actually, I'd like it to be even simpler than "configure,make, make install," but I don't *expect* it -- at least, not magically. The reason I suggest a turnkey appliance is because such a thing can encapsulate many hours of the time you mention in a form that's easily reproducable at low marginal cost, and the cost of that time can be amortized over many units' worth of hardware -- the same way interface-design and programming time that go into things like wireless appliance of various kinds can.

Re: complexity / money for time, the same could be said (and has been) about all kinds of complex systems which have in the end been simplified with sufficient skill to make them useful *without* a big learning curve. I want my cake and to eat it too, Yes, but so does everyone who drives a car that doesn't need to be manually cranked, rides a ski-lift, or uses central heating instead of stoking a coal furnace (etc). There will always be a market (in money and attention span) for the hardcore, bare-metal approach to just about anything, but that doesn't mean simplifications and commoditization in general are bad.

Somewhat related example: video compression. Using dvd::rip, I have squashed a few DVDs into hard-drive friendly smaller sizes, so I can carry some favorite films on my laptop. dvd::rip is itself a front-end meant to be simpler and friendlier than using the underlying programs it connects, but it's still not all that user friendly, at least to klutzes like me :) Got it working, eventually, Yes, but QuickRip [freshmeat.net] (sadly discontinued) does a good-enough job with a shallower learning curve. Tradeoffs are everywhere, and there's one.

Cheers,

timothy

Re:cheap, turnkey asterisk systems? (1)

codepunk (167897) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332321)

Or you can just pay me to program and set it up for you, piece of cake my friend.

I just had a funny thought.. (2, Funny)

Havokmon (89874) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332071)

As I clicked on the Asterisk link, I imagined a GNU HURD stampeding across the internet to the Asterisk server.

What have we become?!

Re:I just had a funny thought.. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332182)

As I clicked on the Asterisk link, I imagined a GNU HURD stampeding across the internet to the Asterisk server.

Can you elaborate on that?

New Marketing Slogan... (4, Funny)

GypC (7592) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332081)

Asterisk 1, because when it comes to your job, you only have one "ass-to-risk"

OK, that was bad.

Asterisk is great! (4, Informative)

SendBot (29932) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332135)

I've just barely started playing with it, but it's pretty easy to use once you get the hang of it. It even comes with prerecorded messages such as "all members of our household are currently dealing with telemarketers", "somethings *terribly* wrong", and one that's just angry monkeys screaming for 20 seconds.

Here are some great resources for getting started:
http://www.digium.com/handbook-draft.pdf [digium.com]

and a good soft phone (x-lite) at http://www.xten.com/ [xten.com]

Re:Asterisk is great! (3, Funny)

Havokmon (89874) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332532)

and one that's just angry monkeys screaming for 20 seconds.

Oh sorry, I was trying to set the outgoing message, but the kids had just come home from school.

Thanks, I'll fix that.

Another Provider of Interest (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332147)

I've been using a Canadian company by the name of Galaxy Telecom (http://www.galaxytelecom.net/ [galaxytelecom.net] ) they've got some interesting features as well (DID's, World Wide termination, etc)
If your looking for someone to put your calls through, you might want to check this company out as well

Just had this chat with my CIO pal.... (1, Insightful)

mark0 (750639) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332209)

Marko: Wanna be a bleeding-edge cheapskate with the company telephony? [/. URL here] Petey: So you'd have to contract PSTN connectivity separately through one of those fly-by-night outfits with household names like Nufone and Gafachi. Sweet. Marko: Well, yes, but you'd have the advantage of exposing your telephony to the attacks of script kiddies. Petey: Also sweet. Sign me up.

Re:Just had this chat with my CIO pal.... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332290)

Shut up mailboxhead.

I HATE MARKO
i hate marko
I hayayayayte markooooo!

Mailboxhead!

Fignuts!

Re:Just had this chat with my CIO pal.... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332565)

Or you could fork out 40 buck and get a card to interface to the pstn, close off your sytem with a firewall.

You could also install a 4port T1 card, order up a T1 from your local Telco provider, install a few channel banks and have a traditional PBX saving thousands and thousands of dollars without ever exposing yourself to script kiddies.

Asterlink.com (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332215)

Don't forget asterlink.com and tollfreeexpress.com

We are running it (4, Interesting)

codepunk (167897) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332293)

We have been running it for quite some time to handle our order status system. We programmed a python interface to our oracle database, greatest thing since sliced bread. Very flexible system with alot of possibilities.

Music on hold (for any PBX) (3, Interesting)

SnakeStu (60546) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332372)

Not that most will care, but I first heard about Asterisk via the HTTP_REFERER data in the Web server logs for the OMR [openmusicregistry.org] , which was apparently referenced as a place to get no-cost, pre-licensed (open licensed) on-hold music.

Now that the OMR has been shut down, the links to those songs are available in an XML dump of the music database that can be found on freality.org [freality.org] or my own site [just-stuart.com] .

Long time user (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332483)

I have been using Asterisk for well over a year, it has replaced the cisco call manager for my applications.

It has provided robust functionality, and many features that would be cost prohibitive to implement from other vendors.

If your looking to get into voice over IP on a scale larger than a single Vonage accout, or even want to have full pbx facilities for home..this is the way to go.

Just my 2 cents
-AC-

Anybody used this with a wireless network? (1)

ewg (158266) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332499)

Anybody used this with a wireless LAN, either with soft phones or Wi-Fi handsets?

How well did it work?

not too far out: email by phone (2, Interesting)

timothy (36799) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332506)

Someone (not me! not me! the monkeys!) should connect asterics with festival, an audio compression program, and a mail agent.

Would be good to call one's landline (connected to an asterics box) and be given options like "press 7 to hear email."

Would be annoying to hear everything, perhaps (and too slow, too), but an option like "play the first 10 words, then prompt for more, or to skip to the next message" would make it bearable.

timothy

Re:not too far out: email by phone (2, Funny)

NinjaPablo (246765) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332717)

That'd be great. I could call in and hear festival stumble thru all the spam I have. "horse china The president today announced a new policy. Low cost viagra Can you maintain 4 hours episilon romeo episilon charley tango india oscar november?"

Does Asterik support IPv6? (1)

GrassyKnowl (547325) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332535)

I am wondering if Asterik works with IPv6.

informativ.e tacotaco (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10332558)

don't wantD to feel

Asterisk PSTN termination in Norway (1, Informative)

Graabein (96715) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332566)

This is a shameless plug:

Voop [www.voop.no] offers PSTN termination over IAX and SIP for Asterisk users in Norway. Both business users and private individuals welcome.

Disclosure: I work for Voop.

Long time asterisk user (1)

aquadood (769082) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332582)

I am really happy to hear this milestone. Being a long time user of asterisk, this is very welcome. I can say that asterisk is one very fine piece of software, being as flexible as it is, and can be used for JUST about anything you need to do with a phone line. I use it for SIP/VoIP and other IVR-type purposes, and have yet to be disappointed.

Screen shots? (1)

Linker3000 (626634) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332676)

Now all we need is a new release of their Web site that has some screen shots for those taking a passing interest!

Re:Screen shots? (2, Funny)

bytesmythe (58644) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332887)

Here's a pic [telephoneart.com] of the system in action.

Watch out for the users mailing list (1)

edbarrett (150317) | more than 9 years ago | (#10332746)

It's full of good stuff, but it's high traffic (IMHO). I was subscribe for a couple days shy of a month, and ended up with 3425 messages.
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