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Hardware Thread, Please help - Cisco VoIP reconfiguration in Technical; Hi all, I am after some suggestions to help me move forward with the schools VoIP solution. The current situation ...
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    Paid_Peanuts's Avatar
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    Please help - Cisco VoIP reconfiguration

    Hi all, I am after some suggestions to help me move forward with the schools VoIP solution.
    The current situation is the school as a Cisco VoIP solution put in my a managed ICT service provider years ago. The contract with the managed ICT provider ends this year. When that contract ends the school will lose connectivity to the call manager solution hosted off site.
    At this point the 130 extensions (Cisco 7911's) will cease to work.

    Onsite other than the phones is a Cisco 2851 voice gateway, an ISDN2 connection and a decent internet connection for possibly routing calls over SIP?

    Can I ask what people would do if in a similar position? Would you look at putting back onsite a call manager express solution or a business edition 6000 by cisco? Or would you look at converting the handsets to SIP handsets and going down the open source route?

    The school will just want to make sure that which ever provision they go with it is a robust and reliable solution. The only fear with the open source route is the lack of support and the fear of loosing phone connectivity if something were to go wrong with no backup.

    I'd be really interested to see what people suggest, thank you.

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Hi, we are in a cry similar position. We are dumping Cisco for asterisk. If you want to phone me PM me and I will be more than happy to have a chat over the phone.

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    Paid_Peanuts (1st March 2013)

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    Paid_Peanuts's Avatar
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    Do I understand with the asterisk solution that we could continue to use our existing Cisco phones?
    Are you dealing with a UK based company for asterisk?

    Also why the decision to go with asterisk? Just curious to know whether you think its the best solution out there for integrating the existing Cisco handsets.

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    cpjitservices's Avatar
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    Cisco is expensive, we have gone with Asterisl/FreePBX here and we are using handsets from our old system (Talkswitch) which work perfect.

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    Paid_Peanuts's Avatar
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    Well it may be very expensive if we wanted to implement another Cisco solution onsite as we are being advised that the licenses we purchased originally with the phones are not transferable to the school...
    So any supplier is trying to quote for a solution including all the necessary licenses to run 130 extensions!

    We have had quotes from 8k to 18k with or without licenses!

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paid_Peanuts View Post
    Do I understand with the asterisk solution that we could continue to use our existing Cisco phones?
    Are you dealing with a UK based company for asterisk?

    Also why the decision to go with asterisk? Just curious to know whether you think its the best solution out there for integrating the existing Cisco handsets.
    Sorry about the auto correct fail in my last post. You can use your Cisco phones yes

    Some reasons

    • Price, no licenses etc
    • Easier to use than Cisco
    • More features
    • Lots more on-line documentation
    • Doesn't require a special router, less hardware etc
    Last edited by FN-GM; 1st March 2013 at 09:29 AM.

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    Geoff's Avatar
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    I'm running FreePBX deployments of similar size to you without issue. Assuming you went down such a route, the majority of your costs for such a deployment would be in hardware, mostly the handset costs if you wanted to replace your existing Cisco kit. Bear in mind your 7911 handsets use Cisco's propierty 'skinny' (SCCP) protocol rather than SIP out of the box. If you don't switch them over to use SIP natively you wont be able to use some of the more advanced call features (hold, transfer, forward, etc).

    Asterisk phone cisco 79xx - voip-info.org
    The Lodge | Upgrade a Cisco 7911 to SIP firmware

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    I'm running FreePBX deployments of similar size to you without issue. Assuming you went down such a route, the majority of your costs for such a deployment would be in hardware, mostly the handset costs if you wanted to replace your existing Cisco kit. Bear in mind your 7911 handsets use Cisco's propierty 'skinny' (SCCP) protocol rather than SIP out of the box. If you don't switch them over to use SIP natively you wont be able to use some of the more advanced call features (hold, transfer, forward, etc).

    Asterisk phone cisco 79xx - voip-info.org
    The Lodge | Upgrade a Cisco 7911 to SIP firmware
    Same with the 7941 & 7961

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    We were in exactly the same situation & the cost of renewing Cisco licences was a non-starter. We went with an Avaya IP Office system supplied & supported by a local Telecoms company. We replaced all the handsets(approx 50), it was very easy & quick to implement and simple to maintain. I looked at DIY solutions which reused the Cisco handsets but I concluded it was going to be a very steep learning curve for me learning about telephony & was not something I was comfortable in tackling.

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