[kwlug-disc] VOIP and DirectDetect

unsolicited unsolicited at swiz.ca
Thu May 5 10:58:11 EDT 2011

Agreed. And agreed with John. However, I also don't anything that 
defaults to pulse these days.

Jason, don't know if you feel up to it, but:

- you might let the fire department know that all is well, and VoIP 
works just fine. Perhaps you can stop some amount of fud propagation.

- don't know if you want to complain back to the technician's home 
office. Aside from attitude, the cost savings is non-trivial, 
especially these days, incompetence at pulse ...

L.D. Paniak wrote, On 05/05/2011 10:21 AM:
> 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
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