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  • Shoretel on a dedicated DSL or T1 link?

    Hi All

    We have been using the Shoretel 6 in our company for 4 years now, and the VOIP sound quality has been so bad that we ended up using Skype to call between our offices. We do not have QOS on our network and do not intend to have QOS because it is too expensive. Is QOS a must? (The reseller didn't tell us)

    Anyway, now we are thinking of having a dedicated DSL between our two offices just for Shoretel. Question is how to implement this? By dedicated DSL, I mean an ordinary DSL (actually ADSL) but we will only use it exclusively for Shoretel.

    Can we do this?

    1) Buy a VPN router for each office to connect to the DSL. The router Ethernet port will join the LAN of each office.

    2) Have static route settings on the office LAN gateway router to route traffic destined for our Shoretel switches (1 x Shoretel 120/24 & 1 x Shoretel 60/12 in Office A and 1 x 120/24 in Office B), Shoretel server (1 in Office A) and 3 x IP Phones to go to the VPN router connected to the DSL.

    Will this work? If it does, does it mean the all VOIP calls between the 2 offices now go through the 'dedicated' DSL?

    Or do we have to use VLAN? We would like to aviod VLAN because our switches are low-end types which do not support VLAN.

    Thank you very much in anticipation.


    More details of our network

    Office A
    ISP Business Ethernet 3Mbps
    Firewall GTA GB-800e with VPN
    LAN 192.168.5.0/24
    Shoretel switch 120/24 IP: 192.168.5.22
    Shoretel switch 60/12 IP: 192.168.5.23
    Shoretel server IP: 192.168.5.17
    3 x IP phones: 192.168.5.18, 192.168.5.20, 192.168.5.21
    The rest of the phones are analogue.
    PLAN -- get a DSL line and a VPN router

    Office B
    ISP Flexlink T1 3Mbps
    GTA GB-500 with VPN
    LAN 192.168.3.0/24
    Shoretel switch 120/24 IP: 192.168.3.201
    All analogue phones.
    PLAN -- get a DSL line and a VPN router
    Last edited by johnny; 04-21-2009, 02:01 PM.

  • #2
    Qos

    How far apart physically are the two offices? What approximate call volume are you expecting between the offices, 5 simultaneous calls, 20, 100?

    The whole situation sounds like a mess.... your reseller didnt do you any favors.

    Comment


    • #3
      The two offices are about 40 miles apart, connected by GTA Firewll VPN via T1. We use the same T1 for our Internet traffic and inter-office file transfer as well.

      We call each other very often. Maybe 5 simultaneous calls. One office has 10 staff. The other has 20.

      This is what I am thinking of doing now:

      1) Have a separate IP network, e.g. 192.168.31.0 for the Shoreware server, Shoretel switches and IP phones (only 3 are IP phones, the rest are analogue). This IP network is a VPN network using a DSL at one office, say Office A. This DSL will be use solely for Shoretel traffic.

      2) Install another Network Card on my Shoreware director server. One NIC will be connected to the Shoretel network 192.168.31.0/24, and the other NIC will be connected to the office LAN 192.168.5.0/24. Enable Gateway Routing in the Shoretel server so that the packets can travel across the networks on the server. The default gateway on the server will be DSL VPN router, 192.168.31.1.

      3) Connect the Shoretel switches and IP phones at Office A to the DSL VPN router. Connect the Shoretel switch at Office B to a router which connects to Office A DSL VPN. -- well actually Office B should have its 2nd DSL and the the shoretel switch there connects to the DSL to Office A DSL VPN.

      Will this work?




      Originally posted by eazeaz View Post
      How far apart physically are the two offices? What approximate call volume are you expecting between the offices, 5 simultaneous calls, 20, 100?

      The whole situation sounds like a mess.... your reseller didnt do you any favors.
      Last edited by johnny; 04-21-2009, 08:19 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Food For Thought

        Johnny -

        I understand what you're trying to do, but I'm not sure a separate VPN tunnel over a DSL connection is really the best solution. Running VoIP over DSL seems to be full of issues such as latency, jitter, consistent bandwidth, delay, QOS. I think you would be jumping from the pan into the fire.

        My thinking is "Keep It Simple". Here is what I would suggest. Keep your Internet access at your larger office and use a dedicated point-to-point T1 between your main office and the remote office. A dedicated PTP circuit will allow you to control QOS over the link. I would consider not having a 2nd Internet connection at the remote site and pump all the Internet traffic from the remote site over the PTP T1 to the main site. Gives you 1 point of control for Internet access.

        You didn't mention trunks but I'm assuming that each office has it's own trunks so that's good.

        There is a reason so many businesses use dedicated Point-to-Point T1 - they are the standard to which all other service is measured.

        Just my 2-cents.

        Bill
        Last edited by Bzawlocki; 04-22-2009, 07:19 AM.

        Comment


        • #5
          hi Bzawlocki

          thank you for the reply.
          we don't have the budget for a point-to-point T1.

          maybe VOIP systems like Shoretel aren't for small companies?
          we only have 1 T1 at each office and we use it for everything - Internet, inter-office traffic and VOIP.
          i read that Shoretel VOIP uses about 300Kbps per call.
          if this is so, 5 calls = 1.5Mbps, that means the whole of our T1 bandwidth!
          (mistake 300kbps per call is for the shoretel linear broadband codec.
          normal codec is only about 30kbps?)
          VOIP is not really cost effective ....


          Originally posted by Bzawlocki View Post
          Johnny -

          I understand what you're trying to do, but I'm not sure a separate VPN tunnel over a DSL connection is really the best solution. Running VoIP over DSL seems to be full of issues such as latency, jitter, consistent bandwidth, delay, QOS. I think you would be jumping from the pan into the fire.

          Here's my thinking is "Keep It Simple". Here is what I would suggest. Keep your Internet access at your larger office and use a dedicated point-to-point T1 between your main office and the remote office. A dedicated PTP circuit will allow you to control QOS over the link. I would consider not having a 2nd Internet connection at the remote site and pump all the Internet traffic from the remote site over the PTP T1 to the main site. Gives you 1 point of control for Internet access.

          You didn't mention trunks but I'm assuming that each office has it's own trunks so that's good.

          There is a reason so many businesses use dedicated Point-to-Point T1 - they are the standard to which all other service is measured.

          Just my 2-cents.

          Bill
          Last edited by johnny; 04-22-2009, 01:26 AM.

          Comment


          • #6
            Budget

            I had a crazy long reply that vaporized when I hit post.....

            Bill hit this one right on the head. Price out the T1. You may be surprised. We pay 303 per month for slightly less mileage.

            I would look at replacing the internet connection at the small office with DSL or removing it completely. Use those savings to help pay for the T1 between offices. You wouldnt need vpn's anymore, you could do QOS on the T1 circuit, and life would be much less complex. Small cisco routers can be gotten on ebay for near nothing. Your firewalls would be doing their job, routers would be routing, no vpn's......

            Dual nics in the server are unsupported and will cause you major issues.

            You were dealt a mess here..... I fear the road you are planning to take will make things worse for you. That would be the most complex 2 office network in history.......

            A really good codec takes 64k per call. I believe 300k per call is the requirement for video conferencing. With a T1 and QOS, your site to site calls will be exactly the same as calling the desk next to you, seriously. There will be no difference whatsoever.........

            VOIP + Internet = Bad

            With a Point to Point clearline, you could probably remove some trunks/phone lines as well. The small office could possibly share the phone lines/PRI from the main office and save more money.
            Last edited by eazeaz; 04-21-2009, 11:06 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              just something small to add here. shop your circuits around to multiple vendors also. Several are giving away great router hardware that they will configure for you to your specs to get you to sign up. The lan QOS isn't nearly as important as the WAN QOS. You could look at dropping the dual internet connections, and having one at the main office, and then a mpls, point to point, or for your distance maybe metro-e between sites and have both sites pull internet traffic across the one circuit.

              Comment


              • #8
                T1 Utilization

                Johnny -

                I certainly understand what you are saying about $$ but as someone mentioned shop around. Look at the HP 7102 for an edge router - fairly cheap, lifetime hardware and software warranty.

                We have 18 remote offices. All of them have a T1 running all their Internet, inter-office data, and VoIP. Our largest remote office has about 20 users, 25 PCs, 2 servers, 1 ShoreTel switch, and a single T1 does a very good job for them.

                I think our jobs are hard enough with these tough budget constraits placed upon us - making the network as simple as possible is really the most cost effective way to save $$.

                Personally, I think VoIP is a very cost effective way to handle voice. The alternative is to go back to the key systems with dedicated voice only trunks between offices - this is much better.

                Talk to us about the trunks you have setup? Do you have incoming trunks at each location? And if so how many? The reason I ask is that if you have lots of trunks there is a potential area of savings. If you tie the two facilities together with a PTP T1 you might be able to reduce the number of trunk lines you are getting from the telco. Something to look at.

                I hope we haven't discouraged you too much. I know your trying to save $$ and get the darn thing working better but I don't think the VoIP over a VPNed DSL is the way to go.

                Johnny - One more thing - your location says California - where in CA are you specifically?

                Bill
                Last edited by Bzawlocki; 04-22-2009, 07:23 AM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  hi Bzawlocki

                  We have 6 outgoing trunks and 4 incoming DID trunks at Office A and
                  3 outgoing and 3 DID trunks at Office B.

                  The two offices are at Palo Alto and San Francisco.

                  Right now, the two offices uses the same ISP T1, and the ISP says that the two offices are connected together in an inner loop which does not leave the ISP network. So the packets should go from one office to the other without going into the Internet. But both offices are using the same T1 for Internet and connect to our other branch offices via VPN (GTA firewall).

                  The Shoretel traffic now is going through the VPN between the 2 offices. So it is a VPN'ed T1. That is, the Shoretel server and switches at office A are connected to Office A's LAN 192.168.5.0, and the shoretel switch at office B connected to Office B's LAN 192.168.5.0, and both office A and B's LANs are VPN'ed.

                  That is not the end of the story. Now we are going to cancel our ISP at the two offices, and get a faster Speakeasy 3Mbps Business Ethernet at Office A and 3Mbps Sonic Flexlink T1 at Office B. So now, the packets traveling between the two offices will be going out to the Internet (encapsulated in the VPN of course).

                  I think we have no choice but to upgrade all our routers and switches and implement QOS ? VLAN? QOS and VLAN and a dedicated point to point T1 between the 2 offices -- that would not be cost effective anymore.

                  Thank you


                  Originally posted by Bzawlocki View Post
                  Johnny -

                  Talk to us about the trunks you have setup? Do you have incoming trunks at each location? And if so how many? The reason I ask is that if you have lots of trunks there is a potential area of savings. If you tie the two facilities together with a PTP T1 you might be able to reduce the number of trunk lines you are getting from the telco. Something to look at.

                  Johnny - One more thing - your location says California - where in CA are you specifically?

                  Bill

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Price

                    I think this can be designed so that it will come out the same cost or cheaper than the original plan...... and work properly.

                    Upgrading your switches and implementing QOS wont do a thing to help you if you are going over the internet for inter-site calls.

                    You could come out a hero in this deal... fix all the problems AND possibly even save money!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      hi eazeaz

                      So QOS on the WAN router won't help at all if our inter-office traffic is going over the Internet?

                      So is there any way to improve sound quality for the inter-office traffic going over the Internet?

                      So the only solution is a point-to-point T1 between the 2 offices?

                      thank you.


                      Originally posted by eazeaz View Post
                      I think this can be designed so that it will come out the same cost or cheaper than the original plan...... and work properly.

                      Upgrading your switches and implementing QOS wont do a thing to help you if you are going over the internet for inter-site calls.

                      You could come out a hero in this deal... fix all the problems AND possibly even save money!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Qos

                        The *best* solution is a point to point between the offices, hands down.

                        QOS on your wan router only controls what leaves your router FIRST. Once it hits your ISP's routers, they do whatever the heck they want with it. Unless you are running MPLS where the ISP will "honor" QOS settings, it is a crapshoot.

                        Now enabing QOS on your WAN router certainly will not hurt, and *may* even help, but it is not guranteed.

                        If you indeed have both locations on the same ISP, then you have a "reasonable" chance that simply enabling and configuring QOS on your wan routers will take care of most of the voice quality issues between the offices. This is because your routers will control what goes out of their queues and give preference to the VOIP traffic. Since it is all internal to the ISP and never really hits the internet, there *should* not be any bottlenecks.....

                        unfortunately, you can't control what comes back in to your router. If your ISP is pumping internet traffic back to you, and delays the VOIP traffic, then you are screwed (what you are seeing now).

                        I am not familiar with your vpn/firewall appliance. Most do have QOS functions available.

                        If you start a ping between offices, and let it run continuosly, any time your voice quality goes to crap you will see the ms response times spike.

                        on a clearline point to point with qos, your ping times at 50 miles should never go above 4ms. I would be willing to bet that you are seeing times over 100ms.......

                        Going with two separate ISP's will be far worse.........

                        MPLS was designed to do what you are trying to do, two offices with a vpn and internet. The difference is that the phone company honor's QOS. People that cant afford MPLS go with point to point circuits.........

                        Watchguard firewalls have the ability to rate limit traffic. You could "reserve" a certain amount for VOIP traffic. This isn't 100% effective either, but better than nothing.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by eazeaz View Post
                          I think this can be designed so that it will come out the same cost or cheaper than the original plan...... Upgrading your switches and implementing QOS wont do a thing to help you if you are going over the internet for inter-site calls. You could come out a hero in this deal... fix all the problems AND possibly even save money!
                          If you've already made the decision to get the bonded DSL Internet connections at both offices - then it's gotta be a tough sell to convince your managment to spend more $$ on a PTP T1 for VoIP.

                          But if you haven't poured the concrete yet consider this:

                          1. Remote office: No bonded DSL Internet access at this location. Keep the telco trunks, keep the Shoretel switch. Build this as a separate network (ie. 192.168.6.x). With the $$ you save from NOT having the bonded DSL Internet, install a PTP T1 to your Main office. Configure your router to set the default-network to be your Main office, so that all Internet traffic flows over your PTP T1 to the Main office.

                          2. Main office: Install the bonded DSL 3Mbps Internet access. Send ALL Internet traffic out this access. Connect your remote office via the T1 to carry VoIP and their Internet traffic.

                          The reason I keep coming back to the dedicated T1 is pretty simple: all DSL connections ultimately aggregate the traffic into one device at the CO. Your traffic has to contend with all the other traffic and to make matters worse DSL sellers often severely over-subscribe their service. So, they may sell 100 1.5Mbps DSL connections but really only have enough upstream bandwidth to support 25% of that traffic. It's basically a crap-shoot. What you need for reliable VoIP traffic is a reliable comm link.

                          Just guessing but you would think a PTP T1 from Palo Alto to San Francisco would be reasonable - it might be pretty close to the bonded DSL cost for the remote office.

                          I think you mentioned in your 1st post that you've had problems with VoIP over VPN DSL for years - I think there is a reason for those problems and I don't think the problem was you.

                          If you do move forward with the bonded DSLs at both location and then setup the VPN between sites, please keep up posted on how it all works.

                          Eazeaz - I think you and I were typing at the same time (-: and I think we're thinking the same thoughts just choosing different words (-:
                          Last edited by Bzawlocki; 06-17-2009, 12:11 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I know it is a few days old, but to add, DSL / Cable business lines or consumer are all Asymmetrical, Meaning they never send at the same of receive. Normally a business side DSL/Cable is 1.5 - 3.0x768 or 256 or 184

                            This just wont work for VOIP period. If your business is using the same DSL/Cable for data traffic then your pretty much all over the VOIP.

                            You cannot expect Toll Voice Quality on a poorly designed connection. As ezaaz stated, VOIP + Internet = quality.

                            You cannot control the hops, the route or the integrity of the public Internet with VOIP. On a Home to Office VPN, even with a DSL/Cable 3.0x768 your pushing the edge of the envelope.

                            If your going to go with the DSL/Cable Solution, the only way you can improve any Voice is to prioritize the ports for ST. Such as ports 5060 (Sip) 2427/2727/5004 (mgcp) and so on.

                            Attaches is the Ports used to ensure operation of the ST system




                            One other item is to set the remote users as teleworkers enabling G729a

                            You cannot blame ShoreTel for a cheap and poorly designed network. ST sits on top of that network, its not part of it
                            Attached Files
                            Last edited by Jlorenz; 04-29-2009, 08:56 AM.

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                            • #15
                              How do I find ShoreTel BP in Arkansas City, KS.

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