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Archive for August, 2010

Should You Use Ethernet For Your Voice & Data Network?

Friday, August 27th, 2010

by FreedomFire Com

It seems that whenever you talk about an upgrade or new installation of a company’s voice/data network these days you hear the buzz word “ethernet” sometime in the conversation. With all the buzz… should you seriously consider ethernet in the mix for your network solution?

Now think about that for a moment. Are you just “jumping on the bandwagon”… or is there some truth to all this hullabaloo?

To answer that let’s get serious for a moment… no gushing idol worship. Just facts.

First …. it’s very clear that today Ethernet has gone from a nice to have option to the preferred choice for WAN (Wide Area Networks) access links. Many companies also use it in their backbone for IP connectivity. So the question often is “why not Ethernet” ….. rather than “should you use it.”

For example it is increasing commonplace that in a campus network just about all high bandwidth communications is Ethernet based. Also many things that used to be separate such as voice, CCTV, security/card locks can be migrated. Although you might need something to drive the migration. Can someone say cost savings??? Don’t forget scalability with future technologies and increased performance efficiency too. All three will go over very well with your Big Boss …. and your shareholders.

If you need a few bullet points to drive home this message to that audience …. try using these:

- You really don’t need a router. It is simply an Ethernet Handoff to your network.

- As you increase in bandwidth …. the per meg price goes down much quicker than with DS3 or OC3 bandwidth.

- For off-net/on-net sites Ethernet can be much cheaper than standard DS3 or OC3 bandwidth …. because you do not have to deal with loop costs.

However, I don’t think Ethernet is really the common denominator, but IP (which tends to use Ethernet in most places). Since that means you don’t need Ethernet everywhere and you can integrate useful technologies you might need – MPLS, VSAT, ADSL, and DS3 for example.

Be aware though that some parts of networks are likely to not be Ethernet compatible for a long time. The issue with “everything must be xx” is not whether you can get xx (sic Ethernet) in most places, but how to cope with the last few “hold outs”.

A definite pro is that ethernet remains a layer 2 service. Which if you buy from a carrier means that you are in control of the routing. Whereas if you take an IP VPN service this will impact your internal routing configuration. Layer 2, Ethernet based connectivity between sites gives a lot of flexibility and often improved latency/jitter performance.

So if you’re using IP today on SDH services then a migration to Ethernet should be a lot simpler. But again this depends on the scenario. Most carriers now use Ethernet as the last mile and also for backbone connectivity. This has provided higher speeds without the capital outlay …. and has the requisite reliability you should expect.

I also wouldn’t use Spanning Tree and so would rely on the Network Layer to take the path decisions …. as this is a lot more deterministic and saves having multiple different protocols performing on the fly updates. Any IP application including voice and video should run just the same as over SDH …. but Ethernet would give you the options of putting Voice into it’s own VLAN. Controlling bandwidth in this manner …. incorporating Ethernet …. should be so much cheaper. You could over engineer the backbone and keep things simple.

There are no real drawbacks using Ethernet in my mind …. and I personally believe that this would give you more flexibility than either a traditional SDH structure or an IP VPN based network.

The only Cons I can think of relate to the maintenance and troubleshooting of the network. Depending on your architecture and design, it may be a nightmare to maintain the network. For example, point-to-point is simple, but rings and mesh is challenging and will require clever and flawless design.

You really need to design and test the network carefully. You need to be aware of the type of services you will be running. Such as constant traffic, bursty traffic, low-latency traffic etc… as all of that will impact on your network and will require careful configurations. You need to have your QoS (Quality of Service) planned accurately if working with VLAN’s or different types/classes of traffic.

Designed correctly, Ethernet models work well, but poorly implemented ones often have challenges. Its important for you to understand that Ethernet based WAN is not simply “plug-n-play”. It requires additional planning and setup.

Overall I think there are many more pros than cons for choosing ethernet for your voice/data network . We are seeing lots of improvements to Ethernet these days via various industry working groups ….. as well as evolving packet transport technologies such as MPLS-TP and PBB-TE. So the future of etherent looks even brighter.

To get right to the point ….. I would not hesitate to recommend Ethernet as a viable solution. It is a cheap and scalable solution.

If you want help deciding what type of Ethernet bandwidth package best fits your specific business network application(s) …. I encourage you to take advantage of the free assistance offered via Ethernet Bandwidth Solutions

Michael is the owner of FreedomFire Communications … including Best Telecom Deals and Ethernet Bandwidth Solutions. Michael also authors Broadband Nation.

Corporate Telephone Answering Service

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

by johnkinskey1

When the call volume in your office rises up unexpectedly, a corporate telephone answering service will help you manage the situation efficiently. Customer satisfaction contributes much to your business.  This phone service provided in integration with PBX phone systems manages all inbound and outbound calls in an office in a cost-efficient manner.

 An Able Substitute for a Live Receptionist

 Reliable customer care service is the driving force of any business establishment. A corporate telephone answering service ideally serves as an alternative for a live receptionist. All calls are handled in a professional manner. When calls are made to your office, you can engage your callers with pleasant music, greeting messages and interactive voice responses that would appeal to them and give them a sense of importance. If you are busy or not in a position to attend calls, these calls can be redirected to your voice mail boxes after effective communication with the callers. Since this unique answering service carries out all the functions of a live receptionist, you don’t need to appoint additional staff in your office.

 Impressive Call Management Features

 With a corporate telephone answering service, you can have 24/7 call answering service. You can manage calls, operate your business from anywhere and impress your callers, by making use of its advanced call management features which include:

  • Call recording for all calls
  • Live telephone answering
  • Call screening facility
  • Call forwarding
  • Facility to forward messages through SMS to your mobile or email
  • Voicemail services

 

Low Investment Features

 Corporate telephone answering service helps you save on the costs of employing live receptionists for attending calls. The cost involved in implementing this service is very low. Since the service is operated by the service providers, you can also enjoy considerable savings on the cost of maintaining expensive PBX equipment in your office.

 Corporate telephone answering service is scalable and can therefore meet the future demands of your expanding business.  This service can be efficiently integrated with local and toll free numbers.

BT Expands its Hosted IP Telephony Service to Business Customers in the U.S.

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

By Vinti Vaid, TMCnet Contributor
BT announced the expansion of its hosted Internet Protocol telephony service to business customers in the U.S. 

The service uses BT (NewsAlert) and Cisco’s cloud computing-based technologies to bring converged voice, mobile and data services to every desktop in an organization. The service which was launched in 2009 has already seen success with several business organizations in the U.K.

Based on Cisco’s (NewsAlert) Hosted Unified Communications Services platform and BT’s Onevoice UCC portfolio, the service can be used by business organizations in reducing upfront investment costs if they are looking at adoption of unified communications on a global scale.

The hosted IP telephony is a collaborative offer based service. It has been designed for rapid deployment and the services can be extended to both large and small sites. Through these services, BT now offers its customers significant savings as well as operational predictability.

Robert F. Mason, principal research analyst at Gartner and author of Market Clock for Communications Services said that as a service, UC makes it possible to evaluate functionality and potential productivity benefits of a UC implementation without having to invest upfront for an on-premises solution.

BT and Cisco’s collaboration providing cloud-based unified communications system can help businesses reduce capital expenditure, enhance communication and introduce productivity enhancing tools says Neil Sutton, vice president, global portfolio, BT Global Services (NewsAlert). He added that the extension of their services to the U.S market was a milestone achievement for BT. 

Barry O’Sullivan (NewsAlert), senior vice president, Voice Technology Group, Cisco, noted that the company was excited about the potential and prospects that will rise as a result of the expansion of BT into new global markets. He further added that both BT and Cisco were partners in the unified vision of providing customers with flexible deployment models leading to reduction in costs while enhancing communications across any business organization.

BT Conferencing recently announced addition of Kontiki (NewsAlert) video platform.

Explaining The Types Of DS3 Bandwidth In Simple Easy To Understand Terms

Friday, August 20th, 2010

by FreedomFire Com

Too often the less informed confuse DS3 bandwidth with DSL when searching for a solution for their business’s voice/data network infrastructure.  This is especially true of a business without an inhouse IT specialist.  Since these broadband circuits are completely different … when searching for a DS3 network solution you need to understand what DS3 bandwidth means in simple terms you can relate to.

First, DS3 (or also called T3) has nothing to do with the service you plan to put over it. It is simply a 45 Megabit SONET Layer 1 protocol connection.   This just means you’re getting a lot of capability for your money.  In other words DS3 bandwidth brings more to the table … allowing your business to do much more (e.g. multi-media, video-conferencing).

The types of DS3 bandwidth you have available to you are ……

1. Full DS3 Bandwidth -

A DS3 line has 28 times the bandwidth of a T1 line (most common small line for businesses) …. so it will carry more traffic and deliver a faster response time when on your netowrk since you are not having to wait your turn as long with a T1.  It typically costs ten times the cost of a T1 depending on the location you want to install it.

Think of it as you have a car that can go 45 miles an hour.

2. Fractional DS3 Bandwidth -

A Fractional DS3 line has from 3-10 times the bandwidth of a T1.  But if you need to scale to 28 times …. it will not take much time to do so.  It will be a simple software change since the circuit has already been delivered. Fractional DS3 bandwidth obviously costs proportionally less than a full DS3 line.

Think of it as you have a car that can go 45 miles an hour …. but it has a governor set at 20. It’s easy to remove the governor, it just costs more money if you do.

3. Burstable DS3 Bandwidth -

A burstable DS3 line can provide up to 28 times the speed of a T1 …. but if you are bursting all of the time it will become more expensive than a full DS3 and you should upgrade.   A burstable DS3 line is cost effective if you need more than a T1 …. and only occassionally need up to a DS3.

Think of it as you have a car that can go 45 miles an hour …. and you pay extra for every mile an hour you drive over 20.

4. Point-To-Point DS3 Bandwidth -

A Point-To-Point DS3 line provides 28 T1’s worth of bandwidth between two offices (locations).   A point-to-point DS3 line is a very secure dedicated circuit.

Think of it as your car can go 45 miles an hour from Miami, Florida to Atlanta, Georgia and back. No where else. However there’s no traffic but you … and you can carry sensitive cargo without any concerns.

Now the above is a very basic explanation of the types of DS3 bandwidth you can choose from.  The details are much more technical … but at least you get the point.

If you want help deciding what type of DS3 bandwidth package best fits your specific business network application(s) …. I encourage you to take advantage of the free assistance offered via DS3 Bandwidth Solutions.

Michael is the owner of FreedomFire Communications …. including DS3 Bandwidth Solution.  Michael also authors Broadband Nation where you’re always welcome to drop in and catch up on the latest BroadBand news, tips, insights, and ramblings for the masses.

How to find out who owns any phone number to this phone free reverse lookup

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

By Doug Timlin

Using a reverse cell phone search, you can know someone’s full name, address and background information with just their phone number. Handy can arise in various situations – let us look to see what can be done.

Usually you have to pay a fee to use this type of search, but we again showed an easy way to try to get information for free.

There are companies that specialize in maintaining databases of information on the owner of all the phone numbers. They pay to get this information and then a small charge for government agencies, law enforcement department or agency that you want to run a detective searching a phone number. Thankfully, now they also allow people to use their services

Using a paid reverse phone search ISN ts expensive and easy to do. This is all done online – you type the phone number owner and full reports will be displayed on your computer screen.

There are links below that we are wrong article so you can try a free sample search.

However, here sa quick way to try to get this information free of charge:

Take the phone number that you investigate and fire to your computer. Go to Google and type the phone number in this format: 555-555-5555 (with the quotes). Press the search button and wait for your results appear.

In this case we expect that the number of telephones that have found a way around the world in a network at some point in time. People leave their phone numbers to various web pages – is needed to fill in the classifieds or even a kind of fill in the profile page.

If this number has not been published online, Google is your best to get it.

If there is an exact match in the search results, display the page and see what you can find out about the phone owner. Hopefully you can find out the names and addresses – information that was infinitely better.

This otherwise free cell phone search technique will often work. Although the service paid t years, you can give this injection to see if you can save a few bucks. If you can not be always go to a paid service later.

If you do not use a paid service, is sa good idea to check that the limited service provided when someone searches for a flat fee. You never judged only once and then you can use the search whenever you need. This makes it easier than paying for each search that you use.

If you do not use a paid service, is sa good idea to check that the limited service provided when someone searches for a flat fee. You never judged only once and then you can use the search whenever you need. This makes it easier than paying for each search that you use.

There sa lot because you may need to use this type of service. Maybe you get a joke call from certain numbers and want to know who’s calling, or you want to know what a particular phone number that continues up the phone your wife. Whatever reason, is s nice to know you can use reverse cell phone search all you might need. All the best!

How to find out who owns any phone number to this phone free reverse lookup

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

By Doug Timlin

Using a reverse cell phone search, you can know someone’s full name, address and background information with just their phone number. Handy can arise in various situations – let us look to see what can be done.

Usually you have to pay a fee to use this type of search, but we again showed an easy way to try to get information for free.

There are companies that specialize in maintaining databases of information on the owner of all the phone numbers. They pay to get this information and then a small charge for government agencies, law enforcement department or agency that you want to run a detective searching a phone number. Thankfully, now they also allow people to use their services

Using a paid reverse phone search ISN ts expensive and easy to do. This is all done online – you type the phone number owner and full reports will be displayed on your computer screen.

There are links below that we are wrong article so you can try a free sample search.

However, here sa quick way to try to get this information free of charge:

Take the phone number that you investigate and fire to your computer. Go to Google and type the phone number in this format: 555-555-5555 (with the quotes). Press the search button and wait for your results appear.

In this case we expect that the number of telephones that have found a way around the world in a network at some point in time. People leave their phone numbers to various web pages – is needed to fill in the classifieds or even a kind of fill in the profile page.

If this number has not been published online, Google is your best to get it.

If there is an exact match in the search results, display the page and see what you can find out about the phone owner. Hopefully you can find out the names and addresses – information that was infinitely better.

This otherwise free cell phone search technique will often work. Although the service paid t years, you can give this injection to see if you can save a few bucks. If you can not be always go to a paid service later.

If you do not use a paid service, is sa good idea to check that the limited service provided when someone searches for a flat fee. You never judged only once and then you can use the search whenever you need. This makes it easier than paying for each search that you use.

If you do not use a paid service, is sa good idea to check that the limited service provided when someone searches for a flat fee. You never judged only once and then you can use the search whenever you need. This makes it easier than paying for each search that you use.

There sa lot because you may need to use this type of service. Maybe you get a joke call from certain numbers and want to know who’s calling, or you want to know what a particular phone number that continues up the phone your wife. Whatever reason, is s nice to know you can use reverse cell phone search all you might need. All the best!

Advantages of a hosted pbx

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

A hosted PBX phone system, a real blessing for novice business organizations. The advantage to using a business telephone system that can maintain the amount of expansion of existing local or toll-free phone number without making additional investments. In addition, this phone system can handle the increasing number of calls in a professional.

Manage Your Business from remote location

By applying the host PBX phone system in your business organization may have geographic flexibility. You can control your business from anywhere as a rural location can call the number officially transferred alternative phone number with the number. In addition, you can maintain the cycle of contact with customers and workers who work in different locations using one phone number. When the call is not answered within a certain number of rings or if phone lines are all busy, callers are directed to a voicemail system, so that they can leave a voice message.

Developing Your Virtual Business Presence in Each Site

You can develop a virtual business presence and strength of each choice location of this phone number, which also helps reduce the cost of establishing a physical office, especially areas. When you change your business location, do not need to get a new phone connection and a different area code. You can contact the customer by using existing telephone and fax numbers. This phone system can expand and grow as your business needs change.

Economic and User-Friendly Alternative Communication

Hosted PBX phone features can be activated in the near time frame. To use the services do not have to buy and maintain equipment costs in your office locations. Equipment maintained in the web services and services provided through a hosted PBX server using a high bandwidth internet connection or a dedicated phone connection. If the PBX service is divided among several users can use the service at an affordable monthly bill

Report: Most data breaches tied to organized crime

Friday, August 13th, 2010

by Elinor Mills

Misuse of access privileges, hacking, and malware were the most commonly used methods for stealing data, the report found.

(Credit: Verizon)

Organized criminals were responsible for 85 percent of all stolen data last year and of the unauthorized access incidents, 38 percent of the data breaches took advantage of stolen login credentials, according to the 2010 Verizon Data Breach Investigations report to be released on Wednesday.

While external agents were behind 70 percent of the breaches, nearly 50 percent were caused by insiders and only 11 percent were attributed to business partners, concluded the report, which focused on data breaches that took place in 2009.

The study combined data from investigations and statistics worldwide compiled by Verizon and the U.S. Secret Service in which 141 cases were analyzed involving more than 143 million compromised data records, compared with the more than 360 million records compromised in 2008.

Most of the externally originated breaches came from Eastern Europe, North America, and East Asia, the data shows.

Nearly 50 percent of breaches involved misuse of user privileges, while 40 percent resulted from hacking, 38 percent used malware, 28 percent used social engineering tactics, and about 15 percent were physical attacks.

There was not one single confirmed intrusion that exploited a patchable vulnerability, reflecting that fact that many of the most common hacking methods–SQL injection, stolen credentials, and backdoors–exploit problems that can’t be readily patched.

“Attackers really do seem to be not so much concerned with finding software vulnerabilities as much as finding types of misconfigurations that let them in the door,” Wade Baker, director of risk intelligence for Verizon Business, told CNET on Tuesday.

Ninety-six percent of the breaches in the study were avoidable through simple or intermediate controls and nearly 80 percent of the victims who are subject to PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) guidelines had not achieved compliance.

Factoring in the Secret Service data, Verizon’s data breach investigations span six years, more than 900 breaches and more than 900 million compromised records.

Meanwhile, a Ponemon Institute report released earlier this week found that the median annualized cost of cybercrime for 45 organizations that participated in the study was $3.8 million per year and data theft accounts for the greatest amount of total external costs.

Cheap International Calls Using Your Cell Phone

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

by margaretellis

 Nowadays, a cell phone is considered to be a basic necessity. The further advancement in the telecommunications industry has made the cell phone one of the most important modes of communication, and has made it indispensable for countless of people.

Aside from regular billing, prepaid calling services can also be used to avail of talk time using a cell phone. A reliable prepaid calling service covers both domestic and international call services. Since we as average consumers lean more towards low denomination call rates, we can use this to enjoy making calls without worrying about having an huge phone bill. There are a number of phone cards available throughout the US market that offers users with different rates depending on its being used via a cell phone or a pay phone. One should always pay for a call service or purchase a call card basing on the kind of phone call that will be made. In every case, the rates vary. Calls that are placed from outside of the USA or ISD calls basically have more expensive rates due to the international surcharges.

Presently, the US cellular market is literally swamped with cheap international cellphone call cards presented by lots of companies. The wide range of cell phone service providers in the USA charges heavier for direct dialed international calls made using a cellular phone. Such companies typically catch you off guard you with a lofty cell phone fee in case you made lot of calls outside the US using your cell phone. Fortunately, there is no need to worry further for the average consumer who makes many direct dialed ISD calls from the USA. There are lots of cheap alternatives available especially for these people, and these alternatives come very affordable while preserving the high quality of call that you want and deserve.

Typically, most of these products require the user to dial an access number in order to activate the service. These calling services present you with high quality talk time without sacrificing on the call quality. It’s no surprise that these calling cards have become immensely popular in the USA. International prepaid calling services are considered perfect for a person to make many calls outside the US at very affordable rates. This service was brought forth so that you can talk comfortably without worrying about having a huge phone bill.

One of the very affordable prepaid calling services is Voxcall. It has acquired a great deal of popularity with US citizens who are in need of making domestic and international long distance calls from their mobile phones. They offer cheap prepaid call rates and entitle their users to lots of different benefits such as the single minute billing, which charges you for one minute whenever you make a single minute of call, instead of “cheaper” call cards that round off to the nearest 3 minute percentage. Another benefit is the Pinless Dialing, which only requires you to input the security pin once upon registration, thus eliminating the need to enter the digits each time you try to make a call. They also offer their users with transparency, by allowing them to view their payment transactions history any time they want to, so you won’t have to worry about hidden charges and never wonder how much you’re being billed or where you’ve called.

An international prepaid call service like this has revolutionized the way are making international calls to keep in touch with our loved ones. It offers the affordability and practicality that we want and need, while preserving the high quality call that we rightfully deserve.

How to Install Telephone Equipment

Monday, August 9th, 2010

By Jerry Walch

You can install your own telephone equipment without first attending telecommunications school. Telephone wiring is relatively straightforward and simple to install using simple tools that most do-it-yourselfers will already have in their tool kit. The materials that you will need are available through most hardware stores and home centers as well as online. As with most wiring projects, the hardest part will be routing the station wire from the Telcom’s Network Interface Device (NID) to where your phone jacks are to be installed. The NID or Demarcation Point, the “Demarc” for short is the point where the Telcom wiring ends and the customers wiring begins.

Instructions

  • Mark locations of where telephone jacks will be installed. Use an electronic stud finder to make sure that you’re not drilling into or cutting into a wall stud. For ease of installation, you will be wiring the telephone jacks using a Buss Topology, where the telephone jacks are wired in parallel with each telephone jack acting as a feed through device carrying the service to the next jack. If you are installing a cordless telephone system, the telephone jacks should be located adjacent to electrical outlets.
  • Step 2

Cut the openings in the wall finish for the device boxes using one of the device boxes as a guide in outlining the cutouts. The objective is to make the cutout conform as close as possible to the dimensions of the box. Installing boxes in the wall isn’t mandatory, but using them makes for a neater, more professional appearance. For neatness in appearance make these cutouts so they will be even with the electrical outlets in the room. As a rule the top of these boxes are 12 inches above the finished floor line, but check the other outlets in the room in case there is a variation.

  • ·  Drill a 3/8-inch hole in each corner of the cutout and then use the portable jigsaw to remove the cutout.

  • Step 4

Drill down through the wall’s sill plate into the basement or crawlspace using a 1/2-inch spade bit. Use the drill extension if needed.

  • Step 5

Open the customer’s access side of the NID box. The NID is usually located on the outside of your home in close proximity to the electric power meter. Once inside the NID box, you will see four color-coded screw terminals. The two that you are interested in if you’re installing a single-line telephone system are the red and green terminals; the yellow and black terminals would be used for the second line if you had two lines coming into your home. There’s also a short cable with an RJ-11 plug that couples the Telcom side of the NID to your side. Unplug this coupler until you finish your wiring.

  • Step 6

Route the telephone station wire from the NID to the first telephone jack. Route another section of wire from the first jack to the second one. Repeat until you have wire running to all the jacks. Use a fish tape to pull the wires up through the sill plate and into the room.

  • Step 7

Insert the cables into the device boxes, place the device boxes into the wall cutouts and secure them in place by tightening the screws drawing the mounting wings tightly against the inside of the wall surface.

  • Step 8

Remove 6 inches of the outer jacket and remove 1/2-inch of insulation from each red and green wire. Connect the red and green wires to the red and green wires (terminal screws) on each of the jacks. Secure the jacks in the device boxes. The jacks are actually part of the box cover plates.

  • Step 9

Connect the red and green wires at the NID, reconnect the patch cord, and close up the box.

  • Step 10

Plug in your telephone equipment