Replacing CallPilot with Asterisk


#1

Hey guys.

I’m completely new to Asterisk, but it’s really great and an excellent piece of software.

I have a really dumb question.

At my company we have an old Nortel system, complete with antique Norstar phones.
We also have a CallPilot, whicih manages our voicemail.

I’m wondering if Asterisk could be set up as a replacement for the CallPilot, and if doing so would be ridiculously hard and unpractical.
Now, I don’t mind tinkering with the command line; in fact I enjoy it. However, at the end of the day, I find it gratifying when a system I set up works as intended; and I don’t understand completely if Asterisk would be compatible/desirable with our setup.

Some documentation I read stated that Asterisk is not compatible with Nortel hardware; now I’m not sure.

Would any of you be willing to help out a confused IT guy? :open_mouth:
Thanks :smiley:


#2

When I started to work with Asterisk, my goal was to eliminate the Nortel switches, call pilot and their ACD tool Symposium. I never attempted to put Asterisk in place of just the Call Pilot portion. I don’t know much about a Norstar system, as I had been working with Meridian hardware, so perhaps what I am about to say will not translate to your situation.

Using a PRI as a gateway between the Meridian and the Asterisk systems, I could conceive of a way to get some dialplan code in place that could work, though I have never tried it.

Asterisk also has the smdi interface, but I have no idea if any Nortel boxes actually support that interface. I do remember the old Meridian Mail did use a serial link to the switch for communication, but I never really looked at the details. I really do not know if Call pilot has the same, but I think it is a network based interconnect instead of RS-232.

Time for a sales type pitch, sorta.

Instead of simply replacing Call Pilot, perhaps you could consider replacing the system. The truth is, Nortel is dead. I will not go into the details of why I wanted to get rid of them before they went bankrupt and before Aviya bough the remnants. But the bankruptcy sure help sell my case for switching. The flexibility of the Asterisk has allowed my to do things, that even if possible with Nortel, would have been too costly to implement. (I completely replaced 4 PBXs for the cost of a Nortel VoIP gateway!)

What I did in order to reduce the cost of replacing all the endpoints was bought several ‘appliances’ that emulate, to the endpoint, proprietary switches such as Nortel and NorStar. It then presents those endpoints to Asterisk as SIP clients. This allows me to ‘re-purpose’ the existing endpoints. Another advantage is that I did not have to wire Cat-5 wherever there is a phone (yes, there are still more phones than computers in our company). I literally pulled the tail off the Nortel switch and plugged it into the appliance.

Now I simply replace Nortel endpoints with SIP endpoints when time and money permit.


#3

Hello Dalenoll,

I would like to know if finally you were able to replace your Call Pilot with Asterisk?

I am currently integrating an Asterisk system with an old Nortel 0x32 system using T1 between both systems. My Asterisk system is the gateway to the PSTN over another T1 card.

I can dial out to the PSTN from Asterisk extentions, make calls from Asterisk to the extentions at the Nortel legacy system, make calls from Nortel extentions to the Asterix ones, but when I try to dial out to the PSTN from the Nortel extentions over the Asterisk system I just get the Asterisk IVR.

So I would like to know if your environment is similar to the one described above and if you were able to sucessfully configure it.

Thank you in advance for your help!


#4

Regarding your outbound to the PSTN question, I posted a response in your other thread.

As far as the migration. The endpoints are primarily done, maybe a dozen or so left to do. I have the new Asterisk based infrastructure to handle the trunking in testing now, but the cut over is temporarily on hold because of other higher priority projects.

So Call Pilot is not completely gone, but the bulk of it’s use has been replaced!!