Multi location Asterisk system - seeking advice


#1

Situation = We have production offices in LA, New York, and Austin that run full time. On any given production we could find ourselves anywhere. We need to stay connected and be reachable anywhere in a managed fashion.

Austin office is supplied phone service through a business class broadband/phone line provided by TimeWarner. (Runs at Dual T3 Speed) We are in a complex with multiple buildings that currently are served phone service through an EXECUTONE PHONE SYSTEM. We are under contract to use this system. We can convert to analog line supplied by our building management but we loose our limetless line pool if we do this.

LA/New York offices are supplied traditional phone lines and are also conected to the internet via cable modems.

Remote productions primarily realy on cell phones with a point man (production coordinator) that stays in touch with home base via cell phone or UHF radio.

How can I make asterisk work for me. Clients need to be able to find us no matter what city we are in or where ever we may be shooting.


#2

Asterisk has the ability to connect all of your offices via SIP or IAX2 through the internet and opened firewall ports. Not a problem for your IT admin.

You can also configure Asterisk to do “Follow me” call procedures:
Calls office, if not at office, try office2, if not at office2, then try cell phone, it not cell phone, then voicemail or whatever.

The Executone Phone System should have some available analog ports which you can plug into Asterisk or any number of VOIP products.

Given the fact that you are restricted to using the Executone system, you might consider hosting the main asterisk box elsewhere and routing all calls through it and then terminating with the Executone system and cell phones. You might have to modify the initial phone numbers that people try calling first, but it should work for you.

Another question to ask is what features does the Executone have for chatting with other systems?

Brad Rose


#3

to put Bradrose’s answer in another form, you can replace (if you want) any of the phone systems that you are not tied into with Asterisk, and they you can use Asterisk as a gateway for the other ones (in most cases). You then probably want to come up with a system wide phone number scheme and a dialplan which will intergrate it all. Then you can put the needed functionality into Asterisk to tie it all together, create follow-me type hunt group features (including the cell phones), etc. as needed.

p


#4

Thanks for the info. If you can give me a bit of clarification that would be great. I will provide some too.

  1. Executone phone sytem: In the long run I may be able to switch it out. Currently the Executone is supporting the entire building. The building ownere and manager has entertained the idea of switching to voice over ip. I believe the cost of replacing all of the equipment that he has invested in is a negative.

I know that I can get an analog feed from them. The downside is I have to pay for each line. Curently I pay for one digital and recieve 4 usable lines over one feed.

  1. In the event that I do house the server offsite and just tie in remotley through the existing phone system what kind of services will I need to aquire to be able to connect to the system.

  2. When asking about services that the Executone will work with, are there any particular services that Asterisk provides that are more likely to be compatible.