Large Installation Questions

Hey all, I have done a bit of research and cant seem to find anything really solid on these questions. Im hoping I can get 1 or more (hopefully similar) answers here.

I have a client who is looking at moving from a traditional PBX to a VOIP system. I have experience installing asterisk based systems for smaller clients, but this one is going to be a bit bigger (Many thousands of phones)

A few questions:

  1. What is the upper limit of connections that one would recommend on a single asterisk box? This is disregarding the obvious hardware factor, and taking into account software only. I am planning on just stringing together multiple boxes through IAX, but I am trying to get an idea of how many boxes we are talking about here.

  2. The customer has 1 or more DS3’s. Does digium make a DS3 card ? I cant find anything substantial, but I keep hearing rumors of one in development.

  3. Does anyone have recommendations for Wireless (ie 802.11) phones for installation that work well with the typical asterisk setup ? Most of my experience has been with Polycom, which has worked well, but they dont offer much in the mobility department.

  4. I want to install asterisk-1.4 on RedHat EL, rather than use AsteriskNow. Does the GUI found in AsteriskNOW come included in the standard asterisk-1.4.0 installation? Or is this something I am going to need to download from somewhere else ?

Thanks for any information you can provide on these !


You are looking at this all wrong.

Firstly deployng a systm with “many” thousands of extensions is very different form deploying one with a 100 or so.

Your idea of “stringing” a few boxes together is flawed a a PBX solution.

for starters,

How is a user on system 2 going to retreive his voicemail when he is at a phone on system 1.
How is he going to pick up a call on system 1 from 2 ?
How are you going to sort out queues
Paging, and the list goes on.

Personaly I havent deployed * into this size but I have designed and deployed comercial systems upto 6000+ extensions. and at this size you are looking at a design and deployment timeframe of 3 - 6 months at least.

If you do want to go * then you would proberly need ser at the front to handle the set registrations at least.

You realy need to do your costings well as this scale of project requires large upfront costs and little to no cashflow till the end.

Oh and as to Handsets use the Hitachi WIP5000


Hi ianplain,

You are completely right. Small and large installations are completely different animals. Im looking at OpenSER to use it as a sip gateway and just use asterisk for voicemail, recordings, and such.

Thanks for your advice !