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  • Welcome and thanks for coming!! Unfortunately, this slide is not entirely true. Telephones do have spam. Have you ever been eating dinner and the phone rings?
  • Introductions. We’re going to move quickly through the slides so please hold your questions for the panel discussion at the end of the presentation. Feel free to contact Chuck or myself if you’d like a copy of the presentation.
  • We hope that by the end of this session you’ll have a better appreciation for the world of voice communications and what to consider when looking at convergence on your campus.
  • OK, let’s start with some definitions.
  • What is telecommunications? Here’s the definition according to Newton’s Telecom Dictionary. Note that it’s not just voice communications. Telecommunications includes the phone network, LANS, WANS, cellular, radio, television and yes, even a telegraph. Historically, these have been separate networks and applications. So, what is convergence?
  • This is the first definition you’ll find in Newton's. This is a nice projector. Awesome convergence! OK, but we want to talk about telecommunications convergence.
  • Richard Notebaert ('note-a-bärt), now CEO of Qwest, said this about converged telecommunications way back in 1998. Convergence needs to be evaluated not only as an alternative to traditional voice networks, but also in what it can do to enhance an organizations ability to communicate with it’s customers. As an example, at UNCG there are three departments, Financial Aid, Housing and the Library, that now use Instant Messaging or ‘web chat’ on a regular basis to communicate with current and potential students. So, what makes voice so special as an application? Let’s do a quick review of the characteristics of a voice call.
  • Voice is two way, full duplex. HAM radio or Nextel ‘walkie-talkie’ is half duplex. Voice is real time. It doesn't like delays. Think about how annoying delays are with ‘live’ satellite broadcasts from around the world. Voice is symmetric, Time Division Multiplexing with guaranteed bandwidth. Data communication can be asymmetric, like Cable modem and DSL technologies with different upstream and downstream data rates. Switched 10MB Ethernet is plenty of bandwidth for voice. (We’re not talking about video right now.) Voice communications are critical to the function of the organization. You expect that no one else is listening to your call. BTW - Here’s an old voice term for you. How many people know what ‘sidetone’ is? It’s the part of the design of a telephone set that let’s you hear your own voice as your speaking. Too much sidetone becomes an echo and is bad. Too little sidetone make a voice channel unerringly quiet and people think the phone is broke. Try it back at your office. Pick up the handset and blow gently into it. You’ll hear the sound in the earpiece. Now let’s look at UNCG’s voice network.
  • Telephone Services bills the various academic, staff and student departments on campus for the services they use and, in turn, uses the revenue generated to pay for phone services provided by private sector companies (BellSouth, AT&T, etc.) and cover Telecom staff expenses. Local service is provided by BellSouth (Centrex). Long distance service is provided by AT&T (faculty/staff phones). There is no long distance offered for residence hall phone lines (student phones).
  • It’s hard to make out the details but, here’s a Visio of UNCG’s voice network Voice service (dial tone) is delivered via copper to each campus building by BellSouth. We do have some (limited) control of voice features in the central office switch.
  • This is a ‘snapshot’ of the whole of voice service at UNCG. The numbers don’t add up exactly due to lines that are shared or dual purpose. ** - UNCG ACD systems process and route an estimated 250,000 calls per year. We also inventory, maintain and bill for more than 20 different types of phone equipment (handsets and modules). How will these lines and services exist in a converged infrastructure? Besides the sheer number and types of voice lines, you also have to consider my next topic, voice applications or features.
  • This is a pretty straight forward list. No surprises here. These are on most everyone’s phone, are used on a regular basis and, probably meet the needs of a large percentage of your voice customers. If you aren’t familiar with it, here’s the difference between speed dial and autodial … Speed Dial – a programmed list w/multiple phone numbers accessed through ONE key Autodial – ONE phone number programmed on ONE key But let’s look at some other common voice features that are out there …
  • You may not be familiar with these features but, they are probably used today in one or more of your campus departments. Intercom/Paging – A one-to-one or one-to-many connection that doesn’t tie up phone lines (ex: Admin Asst to the boss) Multiple Appearances – more than one phone number or extension appearing on one or more phone sets (boss’s number) Call Pickup – Ability to ‘pick up’ a call ringing on a coworkers phone from another phone Hunt Groups – If line ‘A’ is busy, rollover to line ‘B’ , etc. Several types: Linear, circular Call Block – used to block harassment calls (used some in residence halls) Call Park – Put a call ‘on hold’ at the switch (park it) and pick it up at another phone with a code. Ex: “Mr. Malone, call waiting on 234.”
  • Here’s another important voice feature, 911. There have been several lawsuits filed by residential customers against VoIP carriers around emergency calls that were not routed to a PSAP or had incomplete/inaccurate phone number or address information. The FCC in May 2005 mandated that VoIP providers have procedures for notifying customers what their 911 capabilities are. Vendors have solutions. Most depend on user input or accurate wiring/switch records to provide 911 location information. Accurate network infrastructure mapping (jack to cable to switch port) is critical for campus location information.
  • Over the last 100+ years, the traditional TDM voice network has grown and matured into the reliable and feature rich environment we enjoy today. How many of these features are in use on your campus? Are they available in a future VoIP solution? What if you miss one?
  • And oh, by the way, don’t assume you can substitute one vendors feature for another. They may not work the same. There are talented voice professionals that work in, or have worked with, your various campus departments to design, install and configure the voice features that meet their needs. Find them. Talk to them. Integrate them into your convergence plans. Now, let’s talk about putting voice on the network.
  • Thanks Chris.. Let’s look at voice and the network…
  • Do traditional voice and data fit together well? The demands of voice traffic create challenges for a data network. Most data folks just think of voice as a low bandwidth data app. This is true but the latency and sensitivity of voice traffic takes special engineering. The Network vendors have been working since voice (and video) first started being discussed as data to re-engineer to the standards needed for voice.
  • In looking at our challenges in providing voice over a data network we’ll focus on these four areas.
  • Telephone Are they the same release of IOS? How are they managed? Do you just add powered switches for voice and wireless?
  • QoS is sort of a catch all term for networking performance but a reasonable definition is “the ability of a network to maintain a level of performance according to the needs of the application”. Let’s take a quick look at the parts of a network that input delays in the voice data networks.
  • Converting voice to data and back to voice again interjects delay that has to be there. Moving through each network device, switch/router introduces delay. The delay can be minimized if your network infrastructure is set for minimal numbers of switch/router hops and if these devices have multiple queues so that low latency traffic has its on high priority queue. When we reach slow and congested parts of the network we need to be careful that the things we’ve done to maximize the amount of bandwidth for data don’t introduce too much delay. We end up need define the parameters of these slow congested links so that we have smaller packets and can interleave different priority packets. We can then have true distance delays like, as Chris mentioned, conversations between journalist in New York and Iraq. Then when we finally get through the network to the phone it needs to be able to buffer packets so that we have a smoothness as the data to convert back to voice. LLQ – Low-Latency Queuing LFI – Link Fragmentation and Interleaving
  • In the Public Switched Telephone Network, QoS is defined by international standards. It’s built in. Bandwidth and delay are well defined. While they are very reliable, PSTN circuits do go down and, when they do, you lose the whole circuit and have to reestablish the connection from scratch. PSTN networks have had over 100 years to mature into the five nines reliable system we have today.
  • In the Ethernet/IP data network, routers typically are optimized for data streams. There are no guarantees that packets will make it from one router to the next. IP makes a determined effort to deliver packets but, if packets disappear, it’s not IP’s job to recover the lost packets. It’s up to the application, via TCP or other protocols, to resend packets or use other error–recovery procedures. Frame Relay PVC’s do help manage the quality of service for WAN circuits. In some respects, IP networks have the potential to be more reliable than the PSTN because if a particular router fails, packets can be routed via other paths to their destination.
  • This might be your campus network (a very redundant network) …. Notice the redunancy from the access switches at the top and bottom of the slide. Most of us have not built our networks to this level of redundancy… Notice the access layer at the top of the slide.. This is where the clients (voice and traditional data devices) would connect into the network. In this case the access layer had redundancy built into the distribution layer so that if one of the distribution routers fail the voice packets can still continue on to their intended destination. This allows failure to be limited to a single switch. Notice the call manager server farm at the bottom of the slide. The servers that exist here and the telephone registers with the managern so the manager and mediate the setup of a call between two VoIP telephones. How close have we come? What needs to change?
  • Of course, you want a backup call manager in a VoIP deployment. Calls in progress on the PSTN don’t failover very well. Once the connection is broken, that’s it. Should you place your gateways in a central location or distribute them out across the network. Distributed has advantages for 911 and network failure scenarios but, takes more management overhead. Redundant links at the access layer will greatly reduce the potential of LAN outages to impact voice service.
  • Redundancy in the different layers can reduce the potential of a LAN outage. Having all the extra redundant layers make it more reliable if this redundancy isn’t so complicated that the network is more subject to configuration failures. Gartner says that 40% of network failures are “user process errors” so our “change management” and “process procedures” must meet high standards to not introduce more failures. Voice over the network creates its own set of testing and monitoring problems. Most of our testing applications look primarily at data from quantity and not with the quality components needed for voice. We need testing procedures that measure delay through out the network to meet the standards for voice. Encryption is not necessarily the default in today’s VoIP setups. One would probably like to discourage the illegal wiretaps… Encrypt where you can… Remember that the VoIP telephone and servers if they are sitting on networks are vulnerable to security compromises. If you isolate them, there will be a cost to do…. How much separation is appropriate?
  • Thanks Chuck, now I think we’re ready to do some convergence. It’s coming … Eventually
  • Here are some of the benefits that will accrue with converged telecom. Today there’s separate wiring for voice and data. In addition to the out of pockets costs for MAC, there’s also delays due to technician/vendor scheduling. A potential student is looking at a University department’s web page and has a question. They can click on a link, enter their phone number and get a instant callback from that department. You can highlight a phone number on a web page, right click it and one of the options is to ‘dial this number’.
  • There’s certainly no lack of industry buzz on the topic. Open any IT trade publication and you’ll find an article on convergence. In 2004, a tipping point was reached for VoIP. For the first time, more IP phones were sold than traditional phone sets. First quarter 2005 sales of IP PBX systems grew by 17% compared to traditional PBX systems which grew by 12%. But …
  • … hold on now!! There is more to the story. There’s an installed base of traditional phones that, for the most part, are working just fine, thank you. It could be 5-10 years before VoIP is widespread in the enterprise. There’s also a lot of big voice carrier infrastructure and revenue, as well as federal/state taxes and industry regulation, that is built around today's traditional phone network. It’s not going to go away overnight. The carriers see convergence coming, they see the success of broadband telephony and, are actively working on next generation technologies, like Centrex IP, that will help them retain and grow their market share. Regulators are talking about how to encourage growth and innovation in the Telecom industry while protecting telecom tax revenues and fees intended for the public good like the Universal Service Fund. And then there are the equipment vendors. Cisco is betting a lot of it’s future growth on its AVVID voice/data/video infrastructure. Nortel, Avaya and other traditional voice equipment providers are promoting next generation technologies too but, they have an advantage in that they put in place the existing base of traditional voice systems. (They also don’t have any R&D expenses for their traditional product lines. Voice equipment vendors can afford to offer those systems for less that their IP products.) So there you have it …
  • It’s an exciting time for convergence. I’m a true believer in the benefits and future of voice and data convergence but, you’ve got to have the business case for it too. That’s an entirely different presentation. If you have a ‘green field’ (or new installation opportunity) application or an older voice system that’s obsolete or expensive to support, VoIP can be an attractive option. We’ve recently implemented a VoIP solution at UNCG for our Financial Aid department. We’ve ‘sipped’ the Kool-Aid of VoIP, not drank the whole cup. Now I’d like to open it up to our panel and ask them and you (the audience) to share your thoughts, ideas and activities around converged voice and data services. The panelists were chosen (drafted) because they’ve either implemented or are evaluating next generation communication technologies at their campuses. Thank you for your time and attention. We have ... (introductions)
  • Discussion starters … What are the convergence plans at your campus? Have you drank the ‘Kool-Aid’ of VoIP or maybe just tried a SIP? (pun intended) Are your voice and data organizations talking and working together? How well? How are you providing power to your IP telephones? How long do you want to keep up the telephones in a power outage? What do you think of using VoIP phones as emergency type phones? Thank you for your time and attention.

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  • Voice: The network ‘killer app’? UNC Cause 2005 Annual Conference Wilmington, NC – November 8-10, 2005
    • Chris Malone, Director of Telecommunications
        • University of North Carolina at Greensboro
        • [email_address]
    • Chuck Curry, Associate Vice Chancellor, Technology Planning
        • University of North Carolina at Greensboro
        • [email_address]
    Converged Campus Voice Services (Not just dial tone)
    • Agenda
      • Definitions
      • Voice at UNCG
      • Voice applications (features)
      • Voice as a network application
      • The coming convergence
      • Panel discussion
    Converged Campus Voice Services (Not just dial tone)
    • Definitions
    Converged Campus Voice Services
  • Definitions The art and science of “communicating” over a distance by telephone, telegraph and radio. The transmission, reception and switching of signals, such as electrical or optical, by wire, fiber, or electromagnetic (i.e., through-the-air) means. Newton’s Telecom Dictionary Telecommunications –
  • Definitions 1. A measure of the clarity of a color monitor. A measure of how closely the red, green and blue guns in a monitor track each other when drawing color image. The other measures are focus and dot pitch. Newton’s Telecom Dictionary Convergence
  • Definitions “ Conventional wisdom holds that convergence – the gradual blurring of telecommunications, computers and the Internet – is primarily about technology and the inevitable clash of voice and data networks. But that narrow viewpoint misses the bigger picture … Convergence is about the way we work – even behave. Our public voice network will become the public multimedia network … with such a robust and ubiquitous network … we will always be on line. And that will let us develop applications we can’t even dream of today.” 1998 - Richard Notebaert, CEO, Ameritech ‘ Converged’ Telecommunications
  • Voice 101: Voice Call Characteristics
    • Two Way, Full Duplex
    • (simultaneous – send and receive)
    • Time sensitive, i.e., no latency
    • (voice engineered to < 400ms round trip)
    • Symmetric (TDM, send/receive at the same speed)
    • Relatively low bandwidth requirements
    • (G711 @ 64Kbps is toll quality voice)
    • Reliable
    • Secure
    • Voice at UNCG
    Converged Campus Voice Services
    • Eleven employees (local staff) who provide voice services and products to over 2500 faculty/staff employees and 4000 resident students located in 70+ buildings across the UNCG campus.
    • Receives no direct state operating funds (auxiliary).
    • Services include; operator services, voice services help desk (trouble calls), detailed service billing, support and maintenance of voice services and hardware (phone moves/add/changes, voice/data wiring, voice mail administration, training, ACD systems) as well as voice system design and project management to support new construction and renovations.
    • UNCG does not own a private phone system (PBX). The University purchases Centrex local and AT&T long distance services through the Information Technology Services (ITS) state master contract.
    UNCG Telecommunications (Telephone Services) “ Serving the Campus Community, one call at a time.”
  • Voice at UNCG (by the numbers)
    • 5778 - Total UNCG voice lines, broken down as follows …
    • 3255 - Individual Faculty/Staff lines - Included in this total are:
      • 1492 - Analog lines
      • 1611 - Digital lines (p-Phone)
      • 10 - ACD groups with 100 ACD agent positions
    • 270 - Departmental lines (main numbers)
    • 240 - Fire/Security/Elevator/Emergency/Courtesy lines
    • 168 - Fax lines
    • 152 - MADN (Multiple Appearance Directory Numbers)
    • 22 - Toll Free Numbers
    • 2523 - Individual Student lines (analog)
    • Voice applications (features)
    Converged Campus Voice Services
    • Basic voice features
    Voice Applications (features) ** - multiple options
    • Autodial
    • Music On Hold
    • Speed Dial
    • Message Waiting
    • Redial
    • Caller ID
    • Forward **
    • Conference **
    • Transfer
    • Hold
    • Other common voice features
    Voice Applications (features) ** - multiple options
    • Call Park
    • Distinctive Ringing**
    • Call Block
    • Hunt groups**
    • Call Waiting
    • Call Pickup**
    • Multiple Appearances**
    • Intercom/Paging
    • When someone dials 911 from a campus phone, what is transmitted to the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP)?
    Campus Emergency Calls (911)
    • Traditional voice vendors have hundreds of features. For example, Avaya lists:
      • 30+ Basic Call features
      • 40+ Attendant (Operator) features
      • 70+ ACD/CTI features
      • 20+ PSTN Trunking features
    Voice Applications (features)
    • Centrex has hundreds of USOC’s (Universal Service Ordering Codes) for features
    • UNCG uses over 150 voice feature/equipment billing codes
    Voice Applications (features)
    • Voice as a network application
    Converged Campus Voice Services
  • Voice and data fit together?
    • Bursty
    • Greedy
    • Drop Insensitive
    • Delay Insensitive
    • TCP Retransmits
    • Smooth
    • Benign
    • Drop Sensitive
    • Delay Sensitive
    • UDP Best Effort
    vs. Data Voice
    • Switch modernization and Power
    • Quality of Service (QoS)
    • Failover/Redundancy
    • Reliability/Security
    Voice as a Network Application
    • How many Ethernet switches do you have?
      • What version IOS?
      • Will they all be powered?
      • (future PoE uses?)
    • Cost/size of UPS – Generators?
      • Power/HVAC in telecom rooms?
      • How long to keep phones up?
    Switch modernization and Power
    • What is QoS?
    • The ability of networks to guarantee and maintain certain performance levels for each application according to the needs of each user.
    Quality of Service
  • QoS-Elements That Affect End-to-End Delay Campus Branch Office CallManager Cluster SRST router IP WAN PSTN End-to-End Delay (Must be < 150-200 ms) 25 ms CODEC Variable Queuing Variable Serialization Variable Propagation & Network 20-50 ms Jitter Buffer
  • QoS – Quality of Service PSTN model: QoS Built-in Dedicated bandwidth (TDM) QoS
  • QoS – Quality of Service “ Best Effort” “ Unreliable” Ethernet model: No QoS Built-in Applications must do their own QoS QoS QoS QoS
  • Converged Network Summary Campus Branch Office CallManager cluster SRST router IP WAN PSTN
    • Inline Power
    • Multiple Q’s
    • 802.1p/ Q
    • Fast link convergence
    Campus Access
    • Multiple Q’s
    • 802.1p/ Q
    • Classification
    • Reclassification
    Campus Distribution
    • Multiple Q’s
    • 802.1p/ Q
    • Traffic shaping
    • Link efficiency (LFI, cRTP)
    • Classification
    • Reclassification
    WAN Aggregation
    • Multiple Q’s
    • 802.1p/ Q
    • Link efficiency (LFI, cRTP)
    • Classification
    • Reclassification
    Branch Router
    • Inline Power
    • Multiple Q’s
    • 802.1p/ Q
    Branch Switch Bandwidth Provisioning
  • Building a Campus Network Multi-layer Network Design Call manager server farm Distribution Layer 3 Core Layer 3 Access Layer 2 Distribution Layer 3 Access Layer 2 = L3 Links = L2 Links
    • Redundant call controllers
    • PSTN circuits don’t do failover well
    • Where do PSTN gateways reside?
      • Centralized
      • Distributed
    • Layer redundancy
    • Testing and monitoring
    • Encrypted voice and call control streams
    • Vulnerabilities of the voice/network devices
    • Convergence …
    • coming to a campus near you…
    • (eventually).
    Converged Campus Voice Services
    • Single network infrastructure
    • Simplified move/add/change
    • Multimedia applications
      • “ Call Me” links
      • Point and click dialing
      • Presence
      • Unified Messaging
      • Voice/video conference
    • Telework/Telecommuting
    Convergence – Driving Factors
    • Ebay buys Skype for $2.6B
    • Vonage – one million lines and growing
    • AOL announces VoIP service
    • Google announces VoIP plan
    • Microsoft acquires Teleo
    • WiFi/Cellular convergence
    Convergence … all aboard!
    • “ Cisco has sold four million IP phones and the installed base of enterprise phones in the world is approximately 400 million”
    • Mark Lambert, Cisco Product Marketing Director
    • “ [Traditional voice] is like electricity, I already have electricity. It works. Why would I buy this new electricity?”
    • Chris Malone, 10/3/05 Voice Report
    Whoa! Slow down there, buddy!
    • Convergence …
    • coming to a campus near you…
    • (eventually).
    Converged Campus Voice Services
    • Rob Hudson, Director, Network Services
        • East Carolina University
        • [email_address]
    • Tom Lamb, Director of IT Infrastructure
        • University of North Carolina at Charlotte
        • [email_address]
    • Greg Sparks, Director of Communication Technologies
        • North Carolina State University
        • [email_address]
    Converged Campus Voice Services Panel Discussion