[TriLUG] Asterisk for the office
jonc at nc.rr.com
jonc at nc.rr.com
Thu Nov 9 18:19:35 EST 2006
Asterisk is definitely enterprise ready but you have identified some of
the weak points below. Still, if you have a fairly static phone config
and just need basic phone apps, then Asterisk is easily do-able for the
Paging is best done using an analog speaker system - which looks to
Asterisk like a simple Analog phone line. Other than that, you can use
the intercom feature available with Cisco 7940 or 7960 phones and just
setup a "conferencing" group that uses the intercom feature on all your
phones. It won't work perfectly, but it will work.
If you think you need 24 lines then a PRI is the way to go. You'll get
CallerID and the cost is much cheaper for the setup and maintenance.
If you go with POE switches, that will be more expensive than buying
power bricks for each phone, but you will get some nice honking Cisco
switching power that will vlan out your Voice traffic from your Data.
The cheaper solution is to get a Cisco 2924 XL-EN (that "EN" part is
*very* important) and bunch of power bricks. It cost would be about half
of that of going with a Cisco 3524-PWR
The advantages of VoIP are tremendous, and installation is about half
the cost of a traditional service, but... it still ain't cheap.
If you guys want an interrum solution (hosted VoIP), then look us up. We
would be happy to help you take you guys off your old PBX and move you
over to the world of VoIP. And if you need any Asterisk help, let me know.
BTW: I've gotten several Kick-butt Asterisk servers from Cerient (Jason
Tower). The costs have all been around $2k (plus the Digium hardware),
and they would work great as and Enterprise Asterisk server for an
office of your size or larger.
----- Original Message -----
From: Brian Henning <brian at strutmasters.com>
Date: Thursday, November 9, 2006 12:20 pm
Subject: [TriLUG] Asterisk for the office
To: TriLUG <trilug at trilug.org>
> Hi Y'all,
> Coming back around to the Asterisk topic again.. Now that we're
> looking at the possibility of expanding off-site operations, having
> completely-VoIP office telephony solution is seeming more and more
> prudent. So I'm looking for some advice from folks who have
> whole-office systems using Asterisk (as well as input from folks
> have used non-Open-Source software). I've already thought of the
> following points:
> - Need a real butt-kicking server to handle as many as 24 inbound
> (using a Digium TDM2400), plus however many inter-office calls may
> occurring (plus room for expansion). Right now I'm contemplating a
> 2 Extreme-based system.
> - In the absence of intelligent managed switchgear, need separate
> switchgear for 100bT for the phones. Possibly with PoE.
> - Need to have all the features of our existing PBX. General
> call-handling features are a cinch with * dialplan and
> applications, but
> I'm finding, in particular, the "page" or "intercom" feature seems
> to be
> more of a challenge in the VoIP world. Paging ability is essential.
> - Phones need to be simple enough that our folks can use them, but
> complex enough to handle things like paging. I've seen
> for the Cisco 7960 set. Price is a consideration, as our initial
> investment will be 30 phones.
> I'm also all-ears for other options. It'd be fantastic in $boss's
> I'm sure, if we didn't have to abandon the investment we've already
> in our current Nortel MICS system. Unfortunately, so far the only
> I've found to interface the PBX with an Asterisk system is via
> adapters. Icky, because of course then you lose a lot of the PBX
> features for the Asterisk users.
> Also, if there's anyone that would like to come visit our facility,
> evaluate our current system and our needs and make a quote, I'd be
> happy to entertain it.
> Thanks a lot!
> Brian A. Henning
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