Potty Page

January 21, 2005

Geeky VoIP Goodness

Lots of you won't care about the geniusness of VoIP and how I've been playing with it recently. But I shall tell you anyway. Someone might find interest!

You'll remember ages ago that I VoIP'd the house. There then was the plan that I'd be able to answer the house phone at work, on my computer. Just because I could.

Unfortunatly, the uni firewall is it whore and it didn't look likely.

There was also the idea of intorducing VoIP into the TEC office, firstly to make an answering machine, but also to allow members of TEC to man the phone whilst they aren't actually in the office. Again... the uni firewall posed a problem.

Both TEC's machine and mine are running Asterisk (the Open Source Linux PBX) and there exists a protocol called IAX™, that allows Asterisk boxes to talk to one another. Luckily, you can change the port numbers it connects on, and hence defeat the over zealous firewall. Note however, to do this you have to set bindport to be the port, and not port, as it says in some manuals for Asterisk, in the iax.conf file. Finding this might actaully help you to set up the thing a lot quicker than I did... with it all just not working and all...

Anyways... I managed to get ClaudeStreet talking to TEC and have since got ClaudeStreet talking to my office, via a IAX softphone called Firefly.

Now comes the cool funky shite. It's now possible for me to dial a number from ClaudeStreet land that will use TECs phone line... yeah, so I could use this for bringing up huge phonebills and stuff... instead I used this for humourness and a proof of how VoIP rocks. Chris also runs a VoIP system at work... I gave him a number he could call on the ClaudeStreet box which would get the TEC box to dial my internal office number at Uni. Hence, he could call me at work, from anywhere in the world, for nowt. Cool?

It's also possible, although I didn't do it, to make it so that when an incoming call from BT comes in at ClaudeStreet, the call gets routed via TEC and the Uni's internal phone network to my lab phone. Wikky, no?

The test phonecall with Chris was cut off prematurely, when someone in the TEC office decided to make a call... and picked up the none-VoIP phone connected to the Uni network, interupting us... hehe.

The call from Chris' desk was routed as follows...

  1. Chris's VoIP phone thing
  2. Internet to somewhere in London
  3. Chris's Asterisk Box
  4. Internet back to ClaudeStreet
  5. ClaudeStreet's Asterisk Box
  6. Internet to TEC
  7. TEC's Asterisk Box
  8. University Phone Network
  9. My Office Phone

And the delay of routing mine and his voice over 3 internet connections, and London etc etc. Well you just couldn't tell!

Gonna have to buy myself a headset for the office now I think :-D Congrats if you've read to the end!

Posted by Ed at January 21, 2005 5:00 PM | Geek |