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PSTN cut-overs - PRI, BRI, 1FB analog, etc.

Posted on 2010-08-17
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Last Modified: 2013-12-29
This might seem broad, but I'm interested in the cut-over of a customer's PSTN service.  Specifically:

A customer currently has ISDN BRI and analog trunks coming in for PSTN access.  We're going to be proposing an IP telephony Cisco solution for them, and they'll be converting over to a full PRI in replacement through a Cisco ISR gateway.   My question concerns the whole process of arranging the switchover in the circuits, specifically:

1) what does the actually "turn up" up the circuit look like, configuration-wise?  If the PRI is scheduled for a certain time, is it generally predictable (down to the hour), where you and the customer can expect a clean switchover at a specific time?  

2) what about the incoming phone numbers/DIDs?  Can you generally arrange that all numbers that were coming over the analog (or BRI) circuits will also be cleanly cut-over at a predictable cut-over window?

Hopefully this is enough to explain my gaps in experience - the goal is simple: schedule a cut-over from their existing circuit(s) to a new PRI through an IPT voice gateway, and I want to make sure it's a clean cut.

Thanks in advance - the more detail, the better...



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Question by:cardsfan73
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by:celdridgeMadman
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In my opinion this is the kind of questions I would be asking of my Telco provider.

I could tell you my experience of this, but that's only relevant to the Telco I was with at the time. Every provider has different procedures, and these change over time.

The best thing to do would be to sit down with the customers account manager and go over the cut-over process they have in place, then see where there are any gaps in the service delivery and try and fill those gaps. You'll probably need to push them a little depending on the level of service/how large the customer is.
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JRSCGI earned 500 total points
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We have helped many clients through the cutover process.  Most carriers are fairly well versed in what needs to happen.  If you are moving the BRI and PSTN service to a PRI circuit with the same (current) carrier, it is fairly straightforward.  Even if you are switching to a new carrier for the new service, it can and usually does happen cleanly with some advance planning.
First, you want to order the PRI circuit and have them install it in advance of the cutover.  They should assign a new DID (Direct in dial) number to it that you can use for testing with the new system.  This confirms the new service is working and ready to go in advance.
The carrier will then do a number translation on all exsting lines - converting them from their current service to DID numbers pointed to the PRI.  Of course, the equipment should already be programmed to properly route these numbers.  Usually the carrier will not move the numbers from the old service to the new PRI until you tell them to, and when you or the client place the service order, you specify what time you want the conversion scheduled.  As the carrier for the contact number of the person that will coordinate and assist with testing.  Then you have them on the line while they translate the numbers and don't end the call until everything tests out ok. If there is a problem, they are on the line and responsible for the trouble shooting coordination.  If the problems can't be resolved quickly, they can reverse the translations and reconnect to the old system (providing you a fall-back plan).  
Your two questions above are thus as you hoped - a scheduled and orderly process with all numbers converted.  A back up plan (just don't remove the old system until testing is complete).  And the carrier engaged to ensure success.
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