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HELP URGENT - VOIP Solution needed

Hi all

we are just about to place a Win2003 server into a farm for a client, they are a small firm 4-6 users. Thye have asked us to quote for a VOIP system pretty basic stuff call routing if away from office to mobile, voice mail etc

I just wondered whats the easiest/cheapest setup, what hardware do we need? can we use w2k3 in anyway? sorry total newbie to this VOIP lark.

one other thing they wanted the VOIP to be hosted with the server is this possible?

Adam
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pbrane
Asked:
pbrane
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1 Solution
 
grbladesCommented:
I suggest you have a look at Asterisk (http://www.asterisk.org/). It runs on Linux normally but I think there have been ports to Windows.

How do you intend to connect to the standard telephone system?
You can connect to VoIP providers for making long distance and international calls and even get your own number for incoming calls.
Normally however you have an interface to the local telephone provider for incoming/outgoing calls. You can have a set of analogue lines, ISDN (BRI) or PRI (T1 or E1). This will govern what hardware you use. Often it is recomended not to use dedicated server hardware as sometimes they have interrupt issues with some telephone interface cards.

More information available at:-
http://www.voip-info.org/wiki-Asterisk
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scampgbCommented:
Hi pbrane,
If you want cheap, then Asterisk is probably your best bet.

Asterisk is an open-source PBX system that handles VoIP and can do PSTN (normal phone lines) too.
You can find out about this at http://www.asterisk.org

You'll find loads of information on Asterisk, including how to implement it at http://www.voip-info.org/tiki-index.php?page=Asterisk

Asterisk runs on Linux, but I believe that ports are being done for Windows.  Personally, I'd stick to a Linux install.  There are special CDs that you can download to help you get it up and running quickly - take a loko at http://www.voip-info.org/wiki-Asterisk+Install+CDROM

There are a couple of example setups that might be a good starting point:
http://www.voip-info.org/wiki-Asterisk+setup+home
http://www.voip-info.org/wiki-Asterisk+setup+soho+4+CO+12+extensions

Note that all this isn't necessarily the easiest - but it's almost certainly the cheapest and most flexible.

Sorry for the link-fest, but your question is quite general.

Does that help?
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scampgbCommented:
grblades: I was a couple of minutes too slow typing again! :-)

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Joel_SiskoCommented:
Adam,

For that many users and what they are looking to do with the call routing, I would go with a hosted PBX or depending  on the call volume they have, use a service such as

www.iconnecthere.com 

(they provide all the adapters you need for free), you do not need to have a crash course in Asterisk or even Linux, can order a digital phone to use with the service, they offer many features such as:

Features:
Broadband Phone Adapter - FREE!
Voicemail
Voicemail from web
Voicemail from phone
Voicemail notification by email
Caller ID
Unlimited In-Network Calling
3-Way Calling
Call Waiting
Speed Dial
Repeat Dial
Do Not Disturb
Call Forwarding
Directory Assistance (411)
Call Forking
 Real-Time Online Account Management
Real-Time Online Call Records
Virtual Calling Card
Pc to Phone (soft client)
Low Rates for additional calls to any destination worldwide
Benefits:
Save Money
Predictable Phone Bill
Worldwide Telephone Numbers
Convenience and Control
Mobility
Automatic Recharge
No Risk

Kindest reagrds,

Joel_Sisko
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