[kwlug-disc] VOIP and DirectDetect

L.D. Paniak ldpaniak at fourpisolutions.com
Thu May 5 10:21:33 EDT 2011

Thanks for the very interesting and useful piece of info!

I don't know if I'd trust the opinions on VoIP of a tech who sets telco
hardware on pulse in the 21st century.


On Thu, 2011-05-05 at 09:48 -0400, Jason Locklin wrote:
> I posted to this list about a year ago that I had purchased a new home
> and due to an odd bylaw, I was required to have the Kitchener/Waterloo's
> DirectDetect system installed due to my distance from the fire
> department. DirectDetect is an automated fire alarm that calls the fire
> department
> ( http://www.kitchener.ca/en/livinginkitchener/directdetect.asp ). The
> fire department told us that VOIP would not work with the system and we
> had to have either Bell or Rogers home phones (yes, that's right, a
> condition of occupancy in my house, set by the city, was to have Bell or
> Rogers!). Anyway, my builder purchased Rogers for us for a year to shut
> me up :-)
> Now a year later, I decided that I'm not paying for a $40-50 phone that
> goes down at least once a week and I have no control over (that and VOIP
> is cool). I set up my SPA-2102 ATA (directly connected to my provider as
> my asterisk server is now dead). DirectDetect didn't work of course. A
> technician came and reported that he couldn't "maintain a connection."
> They told my wife that VOIP is too low quality to work, and when my wife
> said it was cheaper, they said "well, you get what you pay for." These
> people have serious attitude. Anyway, I finally managed to schedule a
> technician to come while I was home so that I could troubleshoot my
> ATA. 
> It turns out the DirectDetect system was dialling in pulse. The
> technician changed it to dial in touch tone (DTMF) and it worked just
> fine. The system dials, then once connected, sends a simple DTMF code,
> waits for a DTMF code in response, and hangs up. I was worried it would
> be using FSK'ing like a fax machine or modem, but it's just sending
> simple tones. If you can call a business and dial someone's extensions,
> this system should work with your phone. 
> Sorry for the somewhat off-topic rant, but I just can't believe how much
> of a hassle this has been and I thought the VOIP people here might be
> interested in how difficult the city is making VOIP for some residents.
> If anyone has this system and is considering VOIP, you can reassure them
> that despite what the fire department says, it should work just fine
> (note: I have a UPS so the system can dial out in a power outage). 
> __
> Jason Locklin
> http://artsweb.uwaterloo.ca/~jalockli
> _______________________________________________
> kwlug-disc mailing list
> kwlug-disc at kwlug.org
> http://kwlug.org/mailman/listinfo/kwlug-disc_kwlug.org

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