Can headquarters be reached via VoIP?

Using the Church Webcasting System, YouTube, etc. Including cameras and mixers.
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Post by lincles-p40 »

jeffphil wrote: What's the best solution to fall back to the normal POTS line and ensure that if the technology goes haywire the line can be freed up for a 911 call even if it were up until that point 'off hook' on the Asterisk box?
There are ATA's that have both and FXO and a FXS port on them - you can then configure them so that certain numbers (like 911) just get bridged between the two and not handled by the Asterisk server. Here is what the setup would look like: Your incoming PSTN line would be connected to the FXO port on the ATA, the analog phone is plugged into the FXS port of the ATA and the ATA is plugged into the network. You can use the FXO instead of the X100p card, or just have it there in case of a 911 call (i think the X100p works better as an FXO). I'm not sure how configurable these ATAs are the concept of the Bridged call has alot of possibilities. I also don't know what happens in a power faliure but a cheap UPS should power the thing for many hours.

I have been playing with one of these ATAs (Grandstream handytone 488) but have not done enough testing to answer all your concerns - but maybe something to look into

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Post by russellhltn »

It would be crude, but you can probably wire up a relay such that when there's power, the relay routes the phone line though the computer. When when the power fails, then it connects a designated phone direct to the POTS line.

Just make sure you use a relay rated for continuous duty.
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Phone sieze


Post by The_Earl »

This is an example of the above mentioned relay in a pre-packaged form.

You need to be careful about connecting home-grown electronics to the phone company. They get really upset if your stuff messes up their systems.

I think you would hook up the PSTN phones as the "emergency" device. Then if power failed, it would automatically disconnect the Asterisk server.

I still think you would be better served by a call relay.
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Post by jeffszone »

From the description on the website you referenced, it sounds to me like the LSR-1 would force a particular phone to always be treated as an emergency when it is used. This makes sense for the elevator phones as it described. But, a foyer phone??? I think the goal would be that when there is no emergency and everything is working fine, you would want the foyer phone to go through the asterisk box so that it can route calls via VoIP if the POTS line is busy, or just to save on LD costs, etc. The issue is when the asterisk server is down, or the power is out, that you want it to be treated as an emergency and fall back to the POTS line. Not just because you picked up a particular phone in the building.
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Post by whitcomb-p40 »

I realize that the Church in general avoids the "latest and greatest" technologies but if VOIP were to be implimented, it would open up new avenues of communication. I don´t mind using Skype to call SLC, cost wise (with Skype) SLC and my regional offices in Frankfurt Germany are the same, except SLC speaks English better.

It would be great to be able use more members to help support FamilySearch in their own countries. This would be feasable with VOIP.

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Post by thedqs »

whitcomb wrote:SLC speaks English better.

That might be debatable. :D

Anyway VOIP is what most countries are already putting in so sooner or later I think just the standard infostructure will convert the church over to VOIP. Just have to wait a few more years.
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Post by SquireJohn-p40 »

jeffphil wrote: However my concern is what happens when:

* The power goes out
* The asterisk box crashes
* The ATA goes haywire
* Someone dials 911

What's the best solution to fall back to the normal POTS line and ensure that if the technology goes haywire the line can be freed up for a 911 call even if it were up until that point 'off hook' on the Asterisk box?

1. Install an UPS.
2. Its Linux, it shouldn't crash. (I know it can, but I've run Linux without rebooting for months at a time.)
3. Unplug the ATA and plug it back in they usually reset nicely -- but a quality unit shouldn't go haywire.
4. Get a VOIP service that offers E911 and/or route 911 calls out a POTS line. (Some ATAs can also failover to POTS and route 911)

Plus you can add all kinds of applications to Asterisk, meeting reminders/cancellation call out, voicemail, "follow me" to route a call to the right person at multiple phone numbers, etc. (e.g. provide a single number for members to call, if they have a crisis and select the "I want to talk to my priesthood leader", check their caller ID and send them to the HP Group Leader or Elder's Quorum President based on which they should be calling, rather than having them pester the Bishop!)

VOIP numbers and minutes can be a lot cheaper than "flat rate" telco lines. If the church was to negotiate and aggregate minutes across multiple units, they would be almost free. :)

BTW, get newer DIGIUM or Sangora cards and not eBay X100P generics for production systems.

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Phone system services?


Post by pritchet1 »

I use Parliant's PhoneValet Message Center as an answering service when my computer is on ($170 USD) for Mac-based computing systems.

I also use Skype for audio/video communications worldwide. I also paid the $30 USD annual fee for contacting landlines for both the US and Canada. I use a stereo headset with my computer (iMac G5).

I also use Vonage all the time and set up an 800 number with their service ($49 USD or so each month for all services). They also have the 911 service for local use. My only issue with them is that I do not have a "local" number, so folks have to call "long distance" to get me or they call the 800 number (which may or may not work for those in Canada who may call). The Vonage unit uses a regular phone connection.

As soon as an iPhone fully does Internet Telephony, I might get one. Apple invented the Internet Telephony genre and then gave others the technology - until they came back into it with the iPhone.

Again, a simple solution would be Call Forwarding to a cell phone for those church-building calls that "only get answered on Sundays". Otherwise, get Remote Access set up for the church answering system so calls can be addressed as they come in during the week.

As I see the church accepting mostly Microsoft technologies, I suspect it will also grab any Microsoft-based VoIP solutions
Robert L Pritchett
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Post by soviski-p40 »

[font=&quot]Ok friends, I understand the cost is lower, but how about reliability and quality? Also, our internet is through the phone company so how does that affect the price? We use Skype for international calls but I don't know about domestic calls. How is VOIP phone or Skype compared to regular ATT phone? Please let me know your helpful ideas and suggestions. Have a good day.[/font]
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phone messages


Post by bboy-p40 »

The church provides public access phone numbers to the church. If you wish specific individuals or departments, you must go through those lines unless someone at the church gave you a specific number to call.
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