Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
| VoIP & Gadgets blog - Latest news in VoIP & gadgets, wireless, mobile phones, reviews, & opinions


VoIP Hacker vs. VoIP Server Honeypots

March 10, 2011

It's VoIP hacker vs. VoIP Server. Who will lay the smack down and win this battle of good vs. evil? The stakes are high.

Google Voice <strike>Supports</strike> SIP

March 8, 2011

We all heard the buzz surrounding Google killing off Gizmo5, including some peeved users like Todd Vierling. However, Todd Vierling then discovered that Google added SIP support to reach any Google Voice number. For instance, if you Google Voice number is 203-555-1000, anyone can now call you for free via SIP simply by dialing

A bunch of bloggers picked up on Todd's discovery. Dan York, writes "Wouldn't it be great if you could call a Google Voice number directly via SIP?

Aastra BluStar Media Phone Launches

February 28, 2011

Aastra today launched Aastra BluStar, a video conferencing solution for the desktop. The BluStar 8000i desktop media phone includes true HD video conferencing quality with unified communications and business applications along with collaboration. It includes a 13-inch touch screen that achieves true HD 720p video conferencing at a rate of 30 frames per second. It also includes excellent HD sound quality, powered by four voice tracking microphones and three speakers. Acquires Dash - Google Voice, Skype & Others Impacted

February 23, 2011, a nationwide supplier of VoIP network services to Voice 2.0 innovators such as Skype, Pinger, and others, today announced the acquisition of dash Carrier Services (dash), a North American-based provider of tier-one emergency services and wholesale carrier voice solutions. The acquisition provides Bandwidth with a definitive competitive edge, as it will now tightly couple additional advanced services, such as E911 calling, with its core voice and SMS offerings to deliver a stronger experience for customers who would otherwise need to cobble together these services in much less efficient ways. The deal was all-cash, and the combined company is now projected to generate over $100MM in revenues this year.

Voice 2.0 innovators will increasingly need to add services like E911 calling as VoIP adoption continues to accelerate, and can directly address this need through its now expanded portfolio of solutions.

Microsoft Lync Virtualization How-to Guide

February 22, 2011

Microsoft just released a whitepaper that outlines best practice recommendations for running Lync Server 2010 in a virtualized environment.

Here's a snippet from the Table of Contents showing the covered topics:
1.2    Why Virtualize?   
2    Virtualization in Lync Server 2010   
2.1    Terminology   
2.2    Supported Functionality   
2.3    Hypervisors
2.3.1    Validated Hypervisors
2.3.2    Other Hypervisors
2.3.3    Unsupported Hypervisors
2.4    Guest Operating System Requirement
2.5    Virtualized Lync Server Deployment General Considerations
2.5.1    Mixing Physical and Virtual Servers Running Lync Server 2010
2.5.2    Spreading Lync Server Workloads on Different VM Hosts
2.5.3    High Availability through Virtualization
2.5.4    Quick Migration and Live Migration Support
2.5.5    Dynamic Memory Support

8    Measuring Performance on Virtual Lync Server 2010   
8.1    Performance Indicators
8.1.1    Processor and Percentage of Processor Time
8.1.2    Network Interface
8.1.3    Memory
8.1.4    Databases
8.1.5    SIP

1.7    Establishing Performance Baselines
1.7.1    Resource Utilization Baseline Tests
1.7.2    User Load Baseline Tests
1.7.3    Multipoint Conferencing Unit (MCU) Resource Utilization Baseline Tests: (Monitor on All MCUs)

Running Lync in a virtualized environment is a popular topic amongst Lync aficionados, so read up on this document and avoid any pitfalls in your UC infrastructure!

Asterisk + OpenBTS = Be Your Own Wireless Carrier

February 14, 2011

OpenBTS (Open Base Transceiver Station) is a free softare implementation of the GSP protocol allowing the creation of software-based GSM access points that enable standard GSM mobile phones to make phone calls without using traditional wireless providers' networks. In other words, create your own homebrew cellular network!

According to the OpenBTS Project, OpenBTS is an open-source Unix application that uses the Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP) to present a GSM air interface ("Um") to standard GSM handset and uses Asterisk software to connect calls leveraging SIP and VoIP.

The goal of the project is to reduce the cost of GSM service provision in rural areas and the developing world. They explain, "In plain language, we are working on a new kind of cellular network that can be installed and operated at about 1/10 the cost of current technologies, but that will still be compatible with most of the handsets that are already in the market. This technology can also be used in private network applications (wireless PBX, rapid deployment, etc.) at much lower cost and complexity than conventional cellular."

During the past few Burning Man festivals, OpenBTS has performed a week-long live field test under special temporary WE9XJN authorization to use certain wireless frequencies.

Polycom UC Intelligent Core Platform Supports TIP Standard - Interoperable with Cisco

February 9, 2011

June of last year I wrote about how Cisco had to adopt the open source TIP protocol before the EU would approve Cisco's acquisition of Tandberg:
An interesting back story behind the Cisco acquisition of Tandberg is that Cisco had to make sure Cisco's open source and free TIP (Telepresence Interoperability Protocol) protocol was used. The EU wouldn't approve the acquisition of Tandberg without Cisco agreeing to use this protocol. There have been obvious concerns (including my own) that Cisco/Tandberg could create a proprietary telepresence platform that locked out third-party competitors. Cisco and Tandberg just made an announcement stating advanced multiscreen telepresence interoperability with each other as well as other third-party systems, by integrating the Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP) on Cisco's newly acquired Tandberg TelePresence Server.
The fruits of that effort are now realized with today's announcement from Polycom.

Hosted Microsoft OCS/Lync Provider Supports Direct SIP Trunking

February 3, 2011

Direct SIP trunking has existed since OCS 2007 R2, however, WorkSpace Communications claims to be the only hosted Microsoft OCS/Lync Provider to support direct SIP trunking in a "hosted" environment. Even the more recent version Microsoft Lync cannot do direct SIP trunking when using a hosted Lync provider. I stopped by their booth at ITEXPO where they told me that Microsoft said it would be near impossible to offer direct SIP trunking in a hosted scenario. Well, they figured it out and are now applying for a patent.

Currently, WorkSpace Communications is hosting OCS 2007 R2, but Lync support will be released very shortly.

SIPfish VoIP Recorder ITEXPO Coming Out Party

February 3, 2011

SIPfish, a San Francisco-based company and their SIPfish VoIP Voice-Recorder appliance has been in stealth mode - in private beta since March 2010. Now they are ready to bring their Linux-based appliance for general availability with their first public showing of the SIPfish VoIP Recorder appliance made at ITEXPO East 2011 in Miami.

I met with Scott Olsen, Co-Founder and CEO of SIPfish to learn more. One of the first things Scott said his goal was in this product was "no compromises on accuracy and we have to make sure everything gets recorded". He explained that they have done lots of regression testing and have engineered their product to have high throughput, leveraging  Intel advanced I/O for network appliances, which is designed to handle the capture of thousands of packets without losing a single one.

Scott said they are dealing with carriers now that are looking to record 20,000 simultaneous calls with maybe 5,000 calls that they want to record.

Fonax Announces New Web UI for IP-PBX Line at ITEXPO

February 2, 2011

At ITEXPO Fonax today announced the release of their minimalist WEB UI  with full recording capability. As of Feb 2nd all Fonax systems will ship with the new interface and capabilities. The new user interface enables installers and end-users, the ability to make simple, as well as complex changes to their phone system. Adding users, extensions, call reports and much more are now as simple as a few clicks away.

To be honest I've never heard of Fonax.

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