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Businesses with hosted VOIP

I have a three clients on hosted VOIP solutions, one is ring central, another two are phone.com.  The Ring Central person and 1 of the phone.com person has a delay in the ring or sometimes a disconnect when they answer.  The delay is say 2-3 seconds, meaning  about 5 rings, but the desk phone has only run once and sometime not at all.  The disconnect, to me seems more like the phone is still ringing, but this time, the delay was so long even though the phone is ringing, when they pick up handle, the call is to voice mail already.  To make it worse, this only happens to every 10-15 calls.  The other times, it works exactly the way it is supposed to.  Caller hears one ring, so does the desktop phone.

The second Phone.com client's phone always works as expected, who also has the same cheap SOHO router as the Ring central person, so I don't think it is quality of router.  

The problem Phone.com client has a SonicWall TZ 210.  This client also has multiple phones, and there are times the "hunt" meaning it rings one phone, no answer it goes to the other phone, shows this behavior also.  Example, ext1 rings 3 times, falls to ext2, which doesn't ring until 1-2 seconds after Ext1 stopped. They also observed ext2 to start ringing, but the call came through main line, skipping ext1 entirely.   Or maybe rings once, sometimes not at all then VM light comes on showing they missed a call.  Or when they pick up, the person mentions it rang a few times, even though the desk phone only rang once.  

If the call is connected or outbound, all features work as expected.

They all bought their phones from the vendors.  Speed tests based on the perspective company troubleshooting pages show good latency times as well as low jitter.  The sonicwall has the address objects, rules, as well as Consistent NAT, per Phone.com web site. All three are static IPs.  All of them have basic Polycomm desk phones.

The two that are having problems are on FIOS, the problem free is on cable (charter if it matters) .  

Anyone hear of anything like this, or been able to fix it?  I have been chasing my tail on this for a while.  Can't seem to find any others with similar problem, and of course the support shows "everythign is fine" or "Unplug the phone and reboot it, it connects so it is fine!".  Because it is intermittent, it is hard to reproduce on demand.
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tsaico
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tsaico
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1 Solution
 
PerarduaadastraCommented:
Is SIP ALG enabled on the routers with the VoIP issues? If so, disable it.
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
Two of the routers, (one of which is working perfectly) does not even have that option.  The sonicwall is confirmed not on.
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PerarduaadastraCommented:
Can you obtain a SIP trace from the affected phones when they're playing up? The problem seems to be SIP related, as once the call is successfully established everything works normally.

Presumably it would be impractical to move the routers between locations to see if the problem moved with them.
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
I can probably put a laptop to wireshark and then put it in a hub with the phone.  Because it is so few in between and only on inbound calls, it may take a while to get them.  Once client just sees it as "how it is", the other is considering a small Panasonic PBX to replace it.  My concern is if it is a problem with SIP, that once it moves to an internal PBX, the problem will persist.

As for swapping the routers...  they are different clients, so I don't think so.  Perhaps I can put in a new one and see, at least for the cheap router that is at the one of the sites having a problem.
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
I just tried a new SOHO router in the office with a similar type of current router to see if it helps.  I will keep you guys posted.
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
Well, been a couple of days, and it just happened with a new router.  I also started trying a few different path pings to check, and it does seem the two separate sites are dropping packets after the firewall.  I will take the issue up with the ISP and see if there is anything we can do to correct this.
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PerarduaadastraCommented:
If the client considering a Panasonic PBX is still using VoIP then he will almost certainly have the same problem with the new system, as according to your findings above the packet loss happens outside of your firewall.
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
Well, both the two clients are having problems are on Cable internet. The cable company (Charter if anyone is curious) sent a technician out to test the lines both at the street and also at the building.  I guess the building had a splitter up in the riser area that went off to who knows where, most likely a neighboring suite?  The original testing only tests for signal strength, and if enough, they plug in the gear and see if they can register it on their network.  If it does, they move on and call it mission complete.  I guess in the case of downloads and what not, you don't really notice any problems, but with VOIP, the traffic is more noticed if it is interrupted.

So the guy ran a new cable from the MPOE of the building to the suite, and over the weekend, no dropped packets.  Though the strange thing I can't get my head around, is why didn't the calls them selves ever act up?  Only inbound?  Who knows.  We will see if this clears up the problem.
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
Well, been a couple of days, and the dropped packets seem to be what was causing the headaches.  The ring delay is still there once in a while, but at least now all of the phones start ringing at the same time.

perhaps someone with more knowledge on HOW voip works can answer why dropping packets would only affect inbound call initiation and not voice quality (in our out), random disconnects during the phone call, or delays in outbound calls, which to me, would seem to be symptoms of the same issue, but neither client experienced those problems.
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PerarduaadastraCommented:
I can't explain it either...!
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tsaicoAuthor Commented:
Dropping packets were the cause of the issue.
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