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Multiple faxes on server 2003

Posted on 2007-07-31
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hi i was wondering if you could help
i am trying to install 5 pci 56k fax modems in one server.
it is a standard windows 2003 server R2
the problem i am having is that they seem to conflict with one and other, i put 1 modem in pci slot 1 and another in pci slot 3, i can happily query the 2 modems via device manager.  however if i go to the fax service manager i could only see one modem listed in devices.
But i cannot get them all working at the same time, if i query modems 2 and 4 i get an open comm message saying that it is used by another device, though having modems in only 2 and 4 work and query ok

is it possible to have five internal modems installed and get them working at the same time.they are all identical conexant modems.

any help will be appreciated.

thanks
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Question by:teknite
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kode99 earned 2000 total points
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One solution I have seen for two modems with shared fax is to use two different modems.  Apparently the fax software has trouble seeing multiples of one modem.  I have had similar issues with modem software on windows before.

The problem with 2 and 4 is that these are shared with 1 and 3.  So if you have a device on com 1 you cannot use come 3 at the same time.  The external ports are usually set to com1 and com2 (though many new systems dont have these anymore).

This really does not address trying to get 5 working though.  Exactly what modems are they?   If these are low end 'winmodem' types good luck getting 5 working.  Not saying its impossible (might be I just can't say for sure) but I have never had much luck with more than 1 or 2 in a single machine.  Often its hard to use anything but default or automatic settings which start to conflict when you have multiple units.

I prefer full hardware based modems, and for multiples would use external units combined with a multiport serial board to get deticated serial ports for each modem.
 
Here's an example of  a 4 port serial card,  cost is ~$100.  It shares a single IRQ for all 4 ports - but each is a fully operation port.  So you can use 1,2,3 and 4 with no conflict problems.  Also IRQ's are limited so allowing 4 ports to run 4 modems through only 1 IRQ is very helpful.

http://www.lavalink.com/index.php?id=223


I know the cost is much higher but I think you would get a far more reliable fax server using proper multiline fax or modem boards.

Brooktrout (aka Cantata Technology)  have real nice boards but the cost can be steep.  I think thier 'economical' board is 2 ports for around $800 and you can put 4 boards in one PC.  Probably WAY more than the modems you bought,  very solid performance though.

http://www.cantata.com/products/trufax/index.cfm

A slightly less expensive approach is to use a board with multiple modems.  These are used for dialup banks but also can do fax - basically just a bunch of modems on a single card.  Here's an example from Digi, 8 ports for ~$1900

http://www.digi.com/products/serialcards/acceleportrasfamily.jsp


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