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IBM and 3Com Plan First Internet Telephony Suite

CowboyNeal posted more than 8 years ago | from the at-last-I-can-call-my-mother dept.

70

TechnoGuyRob writes "IBM and 3Com, a company best known for its computer network infrastructure products, are teaming up to provide the world's first IP telephony suite. From the article: 'IBM and 3Com intend to offer the 3Com VCX suite of IP telephony Relevant Products/Services from solutions on IBM's System i business-computing platform... This means clients will be able to run business and telephony applications simultaneously managed by the System i's tools.' The application is intended for the Linux-on-Power operating system; so yes, it will run Linux."

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fr1st p0st (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15054043)

fr1st p0st

Echo-3 to Echo-7 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15054049)

Han old buddy! You read me?

Asterisk? (4, Informative)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054055)

the world's first IP telephony suite.

...other than Asterisk [asterisk.org] , right? Or is this somehow much better?

Re:Asterisk? (1)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054104)

> The world's first IP telephony suite.
>
> ...other than Asterisk [asterisk.org], right? Or is this somehow much better?

It's better because you have to pay IBM consultants for it.

"IBM Consulting: Or you'll regret that you had only one Asterisk when the boss put you in charge of the company's VOIP rollout!"

IP Telepathy (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055378)

I knew you were going to say that!

Not just software (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15054963)

I can't speak for the IBM contributions, but I worked on some of the old NBX stuff when 3Com bought them out.

There's more than just the software aspect of this - there's a lot of hardware to interface to T1/E1, ISDN BRI, modems, faxes etc. Dealing with analog lines, generating / recognising pulse dialling / DTMF, echo cancellation, mostly DSP stuff (although I bet modern CPUs can easily do the DSP stuff now).

Not sure is Asterix handles all that... I don't know it at all. But 3Com do sell some specialised hardware that can't easily be done in software.

(I don't work for 3Com anymore.)

Re:Not just software (1)

stor (146442) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055570)

There's a lot of hardware to interface to T1/E1, ISDN BRI, modems, faxes etc. Dealing with analog lines, generating / recognising pulse dialling / DTMF, echo cancellation, mostly DSP stuff (although I bet modern CPUs can easily do the DSP stuff now).

Not sure is Asterix handles all that...


Yeah it handles all that plus voice mail, conference calls, sending voice mail as email attachments and a slew of other features. Also, the company that produces Asterisk, Digium, produce a number of devices such as T1/E1 cards etc that are designed/tested for Asterisk. The hardware seems solid and was quite straight-forward to install.

It's impressive. Check it out.

Cheers
Andy

Re:Not just software (1)

andreyw (798182) | more than 8 years ago | (#15057798)

Too bad its also riddled with bugs. Honest to God, I don't think I care anymore whether the problem is with the zapata drivers for my 4-port FXO card, or with Asterisk. Both have been upgraded to oblivion. And still - some lines mysteriously disappear, Asterisk not answering them, or answering them with an ear-piercing squeal.

Re:Not just software (1)

stor (146442) | more than 8 years ago | (#15119566)

Too bad its also riddled with bugs.

It's certainly not bug-free but I have an installation that's been running fairly solidly for a few months. Needs a kick in the guts once every six weeks or so due to - you guessed it - zapata drivers.

my 4-port FXO card

Is it a Digium card?

some lines mysteriously disappear, Asterisk not answering them, or answering them with an ear-piercing squeal.

Gah! This shouldn't be that hard dude but I doubt it's Asterisk. Sorry to hear you've practically given up. It may not even be the card but rather some oddness/incompatibility between the line and the card. I'm assuming you know about such things as line rotation/selection, glaring, etc...

Cheers
Stor

Re:Asterisk? (1)

pr0digy25 (915443) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055024)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but one of the criticisms I've read about Asterisk is that it is more or less a unified app... runs into scalability problems and the inability to load certain processes off to other hardware. Whether this "suite" will address this issue properly, I guess it's a wait and see.

Get it right (0, Flamebait)

richdun (672214) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054082)

It'll run in Linux, not run Linux. Geez. If you're going to use a tired, old Slashdot joke, at least get it right.

Also, link an article that actually says something useful. This looks like a press release. It doesn't give any details as to how, where, or even when (and if I had a dollar for every time something on Slashdot was "announced" without a market date and never actually was released, well, I'd buy Slashdot...or something).

Re:Get it right (2, Informative)

TechnoGuyRob (926031) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054126)

Sorry.

Here's some articles with more information:

TMCnet [google.com]
InformationWeek [informationweek.com]
TechNews [technologynewsdaily.com]

Re:Get it right (1)

richdun (672214) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055213)

You sir, deserve a +5 Nice (or Chivalrous, take your pick).

Most would just throw a fit (like I did, mostly because I was about to sit through a ridiculously boring finance graduate course). You provided actual helpful information. We need more of you around here.

This is way better than asterisk (4, Interesting)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054139)

Asterisk is a good platform if you don't mind building a whole bunch of business-intelligence tools alongside it in order to get what you need done. Asterisk takes care of what I would consider to be a key, but simple, element of the equation -- converting the audio signals into bits and sending them around.

For a business to really base itself on an internet telephony platform, they need it hooked into a set of software allowing reporting, processing, etc. In its current incarnation, Asterisk provides a very simple Call Data Record output to ODBC or MySql. That's about it. Beyond that, the programmer has to invoke Perl AGI scripts along the way or make SQL queries from inside Asterisk's clunky extensions.conf configuration language.

Bottom line is that your business intelligence platform winds up being a bunch of homebrew Perl scripts. Not my idea of a fun time.

What IBM will put together is a set of tools where you can build the business intelligence platform alongside the PBX functionality that Asterisk makes in a completely integrated fashion, using object oriented tools, etc. Anyone considering building a mission-critical system on Asterisk should read over the extensions.conf file format for a little bit. It uses line numbers and Goto as its major flow control mechanisms. I thought those went out with Commodore 64 BASIC programming.

It's true that a few big companies use Asterisk. In each case they've had to tweak and rework it dramatically to make it useful. I predict this new system will blow Asterisk away.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (4, Informative)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054221)

Asterisk [slashdot.org] is too complicated for you to configure? Unable to add the FreePBX web interface [coalescentsystems.ca] ? Can't manage to get the Flash Operator Panel [asternic.org] working?

Let me introduce you to Asterisk@Home [sourceforge.net] which is uber-easy to configure (get your PBX up and running in an hour or two!), or if the "@Home" name is too objectionable for your PHB, the shiny Asterisk@Work [voip-info.org] logo so you can convince him that an open source project is suited for business use.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (2, Interesting)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054263)

Exactly. Businesses find it very hard to use a bunch of half-baked or half-tested open source add-ons. What they want is a nice shiny package that will do what they need.

In other words, Asterisk is more like a framework, not a solution. The article summmary says it all: "IBM and 3com Plan First Internet Telephony SUITE".

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054320)

Ok,
Well that's great for companies that have money to blow. The $40,000 we blew on our Nortel system was not well spent. The system is a piece of junk, runs on os/2, crashes at least once every 2 - 3 months, and randomly drops calls.
Oh yeah.. and we've maxed out our queues, there is a limit on the number of mailboxes you have, and routing is clunky.

We're in the process of upgrading to an Asterisk system because... well... because it just does 'everything'.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054340)

Download Asterisk@Home and try it out. Here is what you'll get:

  - Asterisk with preconfigured scripts typical for most companies (you just need to define the calling plan via a point-and-click interface). You get a call queue monitor (Flash Operator Panel) that puts any conventional PBX ACD monitor to shame, a web interface to voice mail, extremely detailed call logs, (theoretically) unlimited expansion capability, all pre-integrated with a quasi-open-source CRM (SugarCRM).

Ever set up a conventional PBX? It takes longer and you will NOT get a point-and-face interface, but an interface of beeps, or if you're very lucky, voice prompts. No visuals.

It seems to me that the Open Source community beat IBM to the punch with the world's first Internet Telephony SUITE. No, it wasn't asterisk, which as you mentioned is just a framework, but by the Asterisk@Home folks, who built a complete SUITE on CentOS. All open source all the way through, with the exception of SugarCRM which is not true open source.

Asterisk in and of itself is not a solution. I agree with you there.
Asterisk@Home is a solution.
IN other words, Asterisk + FreePBX + FOP + ARI + SugarCRM is a solution - or if you object to SugarCRM's non-Open status, you can use vTiger as your CRM solution instead.

Of course, you'll probably still claim it's not a solution, either not having read the sites I pointed you to, or being an IBM or 3Com employee involved with "IBM's and 3COM's plan for the first internet telephony suite" - which is typical considering that IBM pushes open source when it suits them, and ignores its existence when it suits them in their desire to claim to be first.

Disclaimer: I am NOT a member of the Asterisk@Home development team, nor Digium, nor any of the other components of the suite. I just happen to think it's a great solution after having spent quite a while evaluating various PBX solutions.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054305)

That's not what the parent to your post was talking about. He was describing the shortcomings of the extensions.conf language (it sucks), and the need to extend Asterisk with AGI scripts (although I use Python, not Perl). And he's right; Asterisk comes with only very basic business intelligence tools. It's up to you to either script your own, or pay someone to do it for you. Luckily, Asterisk is so flexible and AGI is so easy to use that creating such tools is generally a snap. We have Asterisk doing all kinds of cool stuff (generating voice prompts on the fly, complex CDR, and tons of other stuff), and it wasn't that tough to do at all.

And yes, I work with Asterisk daily, contribute code to the project, etc. Out of the box, it is suitable only for the most basic of use cases.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054352)

Read my sig line. I run a phone-based service using the thing. My problem is not that I need handholding. My problem is that for business-level operations, Asterisk can't get the job done without major hacks.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054400)

You are running a (what sounds like) single queue and you can't figure out how to setup asterisk?!

Well you are right you DO have some major issues... I called your number... Not only was there an aweful echo, but there was no hold music... what can't figure that out?

I have asterisk running, no echo, hold music is fine, handeling tons of calls a day.

Exactly what major 'hacks' did you have to do to get your agents to log into the system, and then do CDR on them and the queue?!

If you mean you had to program AgentCallbackLogin(xyz||) then I have no sympathy for you.. that's not a hack, that's simply programming your PBX! You have to do that with any PBX system you put in... It just happens that asterisk has some very nice config file instead of a clunky phone interface or beeps.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (0, Flamebait)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054502)

You're dumb.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054521)

Now Now... be nice. I'd actually consider myself pretty smart when it comes to Asterisk. I personally enjoy the programming that I can do with it and the fact that when it doesn't do something just the way I like it, I can make it do it with a little prodding.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

hey! (33014) | more than 8 years ago | (#15056869)

He doesn't have a problem (a) setting up Asterisk to do what it was intended to do. He has trouble coaxing to (b) do what it was not intended to do. So an Asterix distro that makes (a) easier doesn't help him with (b).

While given that Asterix is open source, of course he could do a great deal with programming, up to and including completely rearchitecting the core system if need be. However, for a business this is not necessarily ideal.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

Da_Weasel (458921) | more than 8 years ago | (#15057324)

Your WotC link isn't working.....you have a working link?

Re:This is way better than asterisk (2, Interesting)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054290)

Uhh.. there is really nothing wrong with line numbers and gotos. If, XYZ, then goto blah@macro-do_this.

If you can't program Asterisk, you are just a stupid moron who can't read and learn, I'm sorry. Asterisk is a PBX. If you want accounting, load an accounting module. If you are looking to sell PBX systems, presumably once you've built a system or two, you'll know what you need! If you are looking for something for work.. the 'clunky' interface is what makes Asterisk so great! PERL is not clunky. If I want Asterisk to do XYZ, I can literally make it do that in my LANGUAGE OF CHOICE!

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054384)

As I told another commenter, my issue is not that I'm a moron and can't code. My problem is that, for anything beyond a basic PBX, Asterisk can't do it without major hacking.

Believe it or not, some people want to do more with a telephony system than provide a basic PBX system (read my sig-line for an example). For more complex situations, there are things that Asterisk simply cannot do. For example, out of the box Asterisk won't allow me to grab a call back once I've dialed it out without waiting for the called party to hang up.

Asterisk's clunky programming language is *NOT* a plus. There's a reason why the world moved to functional and object-oriented programming models for user interfaces. A PBX is a user interface, and as such it should be built on an object-oriented platform. It would be great if it used Perl natively, but it doesn't. You have to shell out to Perl anytime you want to do anything.

Imagine if Asterisk's extension handling were object oriented. People could write modules that provide whole sets of functionality that you could plug into your system.

Now, go RTFA and you'll see the whole point of the IBM thing is what I'm describing - NOT just a simple PBX.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054430)

Beyond a basic PBX? When we were first checking out Asterisk to see how it worked (we were looking at offering VoIP and now do offer it using Asterisk on the backend), we had a wholesale provider that provides us with dial-up numbers just vanish out of the blue. Of course this resulted in literally hundreds of phone call and our call center was swamped.

We realized we had a problem.. when I thought... hrmm asterisk!

About 5 minutes later and 50 lines of code the asterisk system was now routing calls.. If a user selected they were not able to get online and getting error 691 asterisk looked at their CALLERIDNUM, dipped into our dial-up number database, and read back a new number to the customer... warning them of course to check if it was local.

You said:
For example, out of the box Asterisk won't allow me to grab a call back once I've dialed it out without waiting for the called party to hang up.

I'm not sure I understand what you mean. Grab it back to what?

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054486)

You're offering this extremely simple use case, and I don't really feel like continuing this debate. Suffice it to say, as several other commenters on here have validated, if you want more than just a simple PBX, Asterisk won't do it out of the box.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054511)

OH! Grab it back as in:

ME--->Queue
ME--->Given Number

You want to pull me back out of the queue? How about just have your operator transfer the call to an extension and punch in a callcode?

IE: XFER-->201
"Please enter the call code"
ENTER: 1123#

Your call codes wouldn't need to be that long as you could recycle them.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054569)

No. I send a call out to an external number using Dial() and want to grab it back after an asynchronous event, like a row being updated in a database. How can you do that, eh Mr. Smarty?

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054764)

I think the problem is in your call logic.

ie:
LEG1 --> Leg1 Of call
LEG2 --> The call you are sending out with Dail()

Why would you need to send the ENTIRE call out the other trunk?

If you are waiting for someone to answer, have them hit something if they answer, otherwise send it along to another trunk.

If your 800-411 operators are at their houses, why aren't they using sip phones? If they are using regular phones, and once the operator gets the number you want to grab it back to the asterisk system, just have the operator issue a # to transfer it (even over analog lines), and or issue a Dial(#) command on the trunk.

I don't really know what you are trying to do, but 'grabbing it back'. I think the issue lies with your dialplan logic more then, 'asterisk is junk'.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

adslmaster (882246) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054575)

Uhh.. there is really nothing wrong with line numbers and gotos. It just makes debugging a nightmare. And modifying the code.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

JakiChan (141719) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055176)

Hrm, let's see:

Let's say I'm a telcom manager at a large-ish company. I've got two choices here. On the one hand I've got my long-haired-hippie linux geek telling me that he can totally hack together a system around Asterisk. On the other hand I have a major corporation trying to sell me a product.

It seems a no-brainer to me. Unless I acquire some sort of obvious advantage (other than cost) why should I bring the development knowledge in house? I'll just end up with some system that's hard to maintain when my hippie linux guy up and quits.

And if you don't think that's what goes through the head of management, then you're a moron who can't figure out how business works.

Re:This is way better than asterisk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15056839)

What happens when the company quits, or refuses to support your new needs, happend here, hence the move to asterisk, it might make them dependend on a geek, but atleast the stuff can be maintained, albeit with some difficulty, such a commercial program, forget it.

But it's not even close to Yate (2, Informative)

BuGless (31232) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054522)

All people talk about is Asterisk. Meanwhile there's the OpenSource solution (even GPL) called Yate [yate.null.ro] ; which handles a magnitude larger number of calls than Asterisk on the same hardware, it has the (currently still unique) perfect NAT-proof algorithm for SIP, it has excellent support for H.323, and, last but not least, the company supporting it insists to do paid work only when it results in (new) GPLed code.

Yate handles business-logic integration just fine with predefined hooks (I used a PostgreSQL backend to integrate it with).

Re:But it's not even close to Yate (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054851)

Yate - Yet another telephony engine

I think that says it all... Asterisk is just nicer.

Re:This is way better than asterisk... RAGI? (1)

catch23 (97972) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055892)

AHEM. You can setup a full blown system using Ruby on Rails + RAGI (Ruby Asterisk Gateway Interface). I created one from scratch and in under a week I had a system that communicated via Jabber, persisted data with Rails, and called people taking some poll information. I did it for my WoW guild so that all the guild members could be notified when one of the green dragons spawned (Lethon, Emeriss, etc). The phone call would ask the user if they would be able to come online, and that information would be then persisted.

This took 1 week, with unit tests, web framework, jabber framework, and asterisk functionality. Check out our guild, The Transcendent on Medivh :-D

Re:This is way better than asterisk (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 8 years ago | (#15059731)

It uses line numbers and Goto as its major flow control mechanisms.

I am guessing that you do not code. Allmost all languages have line numbers(labels)/goto. More importantly, the major apps(think an OS) make heavy use of these. I can tell you that an *nix use it for error handling. In addition, I have seen the NT code for pre-3.5 NT (working at HP Ft. Collins; MS wanted us to port to the pa-risc; no go after seeing their code). It was loaded with goto's as well.

Dynamicsoft!!! (1)

kevlar (13509) | more than 8 years ago | (#15059968)

This was invented, coded, utilized and eventually faded away into oblivion by a company named Dynamicsoft back in 1999. However, since Dynamicsoft did not believe in patents and insisted on open standards for everything, as well as targeting massively sized telephony operators that loved to toss them around like a dog's chew toy rather than getting decent money for enterprise solutions, they were eventually purchased by Cisco for penny's on the dollar, just days before the electricity was to be shut off.

No, I am not bitter... ok... yes, I am bitter.

3Com Still Around...? (0, Offtopic)

creimer (824291) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054165)

I didn't think 3Com survive the dot-com-go-busty cycle. What has it been doing since spinning off Palm and not being swallowed up by Cisco?

On a side note, my first modem was a USR 2400 internal.

Re:3Com Still Around...? (1)

suckass (169442) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054447)

Building some great VoIP produducts. Take a look at their VCX and NBX platforms. The NBX blows away cisco's call manager in my opinion. Much more bang for the buck.

Re:3Com Still Around...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15054457)

Yes, 3com is still very much around. For those that dont know, the VCX platform and codebase came from 3com's Commworks division, which provided carrier-class VoIP and data products. 3com sold off most of Commworks but kept the VCX stuff. The VCX code has been in use for YEARS by major long distance carriers (Sprint, MCI), etc. I've heard that the major carriers were saving millions using VoIP as a backhaul transport before VoIP was a common household term. There are lots of tariffs and "access fees" on voice call transmissions, but if you convert to IP before you send it across the country, it becomes just "data", there's no tariffs on data transmissions. Convert back to voice at the other end. And shhhh... dont tell anyone we're doing this, haha. If you made long distance calls in the past 8 years, it probably passed through a 3com VoIP system.

Tags (2, Interesting)

MeanMF (631837) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054171)

"3Com" tag gets filtered out..

Re:Tags (1)

gbobeck (926553) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055090)

back in the good old days (read: pre 1997), you could have used the 'usrobotics' tag instead...

Not Linux news.... (4, Informative)

rdean400 (322321) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054187)

Read the Information Week article [informationweek.com] . The system already runs on Linux. It's being ported to i5/OS.

Re:Not Linux news.... (1)

rdean400 (322321) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054214)

Never mind. Source article came straight from IBM press release. Information Week read between the lines and came up with something not even there.

Re:Not Linux news.... (1)

zm (257549) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055032)

Information Week read between the lines and came up with something not even there.

Actually, 3Com VCX system does run on Linux (a RHEL clone, to be more precise). I've been working on it for the last couple of years...

ZM

Re:Not Linux news.... (1)

rdean400 (322321) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055051)

My comment was more about Information Week's claim that the Linux stuff was being ported to the i5/OS.

Re:Not Linux news.... (1)

zm (257549) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055115)

Oh, but it is being ported. I've been working on that in my (3Com-partner) company.

Re:Not Linux news.... (1)

zm (257549) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055120)

Oh, actually, let me rephrase that: it will run on Linux that will in turn run on top of i5/OS VM. (or some such thing... ;) )

Re:Not Linux news.... (1)

rdean400 (322321) | more than 8 years ago | (#15061803)

Linux runs in a virtual partition, and is managed by a hypervisor. It won't actually run ON i5/OS. It used to be that i5/OS was the hypervisor in the system, but that hasn't been true for a number of years.

Ahhh 3com (5, Interesting)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054348)

This remind me of a story a friend of mine told me. He told his company NOT to purchase a 3com VoIP system, but they didn't listen. They had nothing but grief thereafter. The 3com VoIP system would not read line voltages correctly from a Vonage ATA (they were using Vonage for phone lines for some reason). Further, it would not work with 'SIP', as 3com had their own proprietary protocol. It was later found out that 3com firmware had a bug in it that prevented the Vonage line from hanging up. SO they downgraded... then other things broke.

This is exactly why we are dumping our Nortel phone system for Asterisk. Proprietary stuff is junk! The Nortel crashes, drops calls, is clunky. The ACD monitoring software (Cinphony) REQUIRES that it be run on an IIS server as 'Administrator' rather then the Internet account. When questioned the company said "yeah don't put that server on the outside of your firewall". I said what?! That's not acceptable, you can't run an application as 'administrator'. They said 'well that is how it runs, sorry'.

Problem is, once you have a large system like that put in for a call center, you can't exactly "just return it". We spent the good part of 2 years fighting the company that put in the Nortel and Cintech (Makers of Cinphony) to get it to work right. To this day it only transfers a call out of a queue to a land-line when it feels like it.

Oh and don't even get me started about "The routing resources needed for this call are not available" if you have a transfer to an external number from one of the menu trees on the Nortel.... apparently you can only have 1 outbound transfer from a CCR tree?!?!

This is why I hate proprietary software.... it doesn't work, and they don't support it!

Re:Ahhh 3com (1)

necrogram (675897) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054550)

Don't get me wrong, I'm for open standards and open platform, but the automatic assumtion of proprietary == bad isnt the way to approach every situation. I'm running a Cisco Callmanger installation, and once i got past the implentation I got no complaints with going with it. So I dont have the source to it... big deal! i still have the level of support I need. Sure I had issues when I first installed the stuff, but you're gonna have that with anything. 90% of my issues was with "its diffrent and not the old phone system". Anytime I've picked the phone up, I've gotten what I've needed. Like when i was having issues with CallerID settings, I was able to get an engineer from Cisco on the calls with Verzion so i could have someone able to intellignetly discuss the issue. Am I saying proprietary is always the way to go? not in the least. What I am saying is you need to stand back, preform your research and due dilligence. Find what works best for you. And before I get blasted for be anti-open source, my network infrasture provisioning and inventoring(sp?) is build all on open source.

Re:Ahhh 3com (2, Informative)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054600)

Well that's fine, if you don't mind paying the high cisco TAC fees each year to keep your contract open.

Re:Ahhh 3com (3, Informative)

biba2 (254865) | more than 8 years ago | (#15056701)

Unfortunatlly everything goes quite well with Cisco if the entire network is only Cisco. We've managed by mistake to convince in several situations Cisco phones (7940) to reboot after a well formatted SIP packet(RFC 3261 compliant) that wasn't in the way Cisco thinks SIP should be.
I think that free/open software is starting to be backed up by companies that are able to provide the technical support for any kind of issues. A few companies which do that are: Null Team which supports Yate, Digium which supports Asterisk.

Re:Ahhh 3com (1)

gstovall (22014) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054579)

Matt, I was curious as to what Nortel product this was that was crashing.

Re:Ahhh 3com (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054614)

It was/is a Nortel Modular ICS unit with Cinphony ACD software installed. Had 2 PRI cards in it, and I believe 48 phone stations. Also had a nortel norstar voicemail system. Oh yeah, if you click too fast in the webinterface for the voicemail, the entire voicemail system locks up *sigh*.

Why not use a scalable Open Source solution? (3, Informative)

BuGless (31232) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054583)

Check out Yate [yate.null.ro] , it's open source, and scalable, and is in use in many callcenters in Europe without problems.

Re:Why not use a scalable Open Source solution? (1)

pavera (320634) | more than 8 years ago | (#15056637)

For all you people touting Yate as a replacement to asterisk, you do realize it doesn't even have transfer and 3 way capability built in don't you?

http://yate.null.ro/pmwiki/index.php/Main/Transfer s [yate.null.ro]

Transfering a call and three way calling is listed as a "feature request", I don't know how you can possibly recommend such obviously alpha telephony software.

I'm not trying to say that Asterisk is the end all be all, its not, and maybe Yate will come up and be a better solution, but right now, without basic PBX features, it is not.

Re:Why not use a scalable Open Source solution? (1)

biba2 (254865) | more than 8 years ago | (#15056683)

Actually these days Yate supports conference, transfer (3 way calling if i remeber correctly is some sort of american conference - since Yate supports conference it also supports this). I'm sorry that the website is a little bit outdated and thank you for letting us know about that problem.

Re:Ahhh 3com (1)

zm (257549) | more than 8 years ago | (#15055098)

The 3com VoIP system would not read line voltages correctly from a Vonage ATA (they were using Vonage for phone lines for some reason). Further, it would not work with 'SIP', as 3com had their own proprietary protocol.
Ummm... you've got me confused here... why would a SIP based system like 3Com VCX need to read a line voltage off an ATA?

ZM

Re:Ahhh 3com (1)

matth (22742) | more than 8 years ago | (#15058464)

To get analog phone lines into the system for termination/origination.

Monster Mash (2, Informative)

blooba (792259) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054406)

So they're using SIP. It should be no problem for someone to package an extremely competetive open source solution.

Only thing that concerns me concerning competetiveness, are the new fcc telco rules and related pending legislation, the stuff that will make it easy for monsters like IBM and 3com to pay premiums for better ISP service.

Interesting opensource telephony suite (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15054653)

This is a interesting opensource project started by someguys, we're currently testing it out at work, so far theres no issues. voip suite [sourceforge.net]

Headline Misleading (2, Insightful)

jmcharry (608079) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054831)

It is THEIR first telephony suite, perhaps, but not THE first. Reminds me of old AT&T claims about "firsts" things that had debuted elsewhere.

It did get me to RTFA, which is the purpose of a headline, but it was misleading. The actual article was not particularly interesting.

Has anyone seen... (1)

peektwice (726616) | more than 8 years ago | (#15054832)

the support costs of a iSeries? Linux might save you a bit for software support, but that harware support, and arm-twisting upgrade schedule will have you pulling your hair.

"It will run Linux" (1)

gnufied (942531) | more than 8 years ago | (#15056307)

"It will run Linux"? I would rather have "It will run on Linux"?

Seen last week... (1)

GlobalMind (597374) | more than 8 years ago | (#15057170)

Leave to /. to talk briefly about the content of the article and the solution and focus in on the syntax of the post itself...sheesh. Anyway, enough of that rant.

3Com was at the Spring COMMON user group conference (for System i) in Minneapolis last week showing this.While at the moment they're running it on an xSeries server, the System i port is forthcoming. I had some time to speak with them about it, and like what I see.

I have to say this was a really slick solution and as a System i, iSeries bigot, a great use of the platform.

K.
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