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  VoIP Howto
  Roberto Arcomano
  v1.7, August 7, 2002

  Voice Over IP is a new communication means that let you telephone with
  Internet at almost null cost. How this is possible, what systems are
  used, what is the standard, all that is covered by this Howto.  Web
  site <http://www.fatamor�> contains latest version of this document.

  Table of Contents

  1. Introduction

     1.1 Introduction
     1.2 Copyright
     1.3 Translations
     1.4 Credits

  2. Background

     2.1 The past
     2.2 Yesterday
     2.3 Today
     2.4 The future

  3. Overview

     3.1 What is VoIP?
     3.2 How does it work?
     3.3 What is the advantages using VoIP rather PSTN?
     3.4 Then, why everybody doesn't use it yet?

  4. Technical info about VoIP

     4.1 Overview on a VoIP connection
     4.2 Analog to Digital Conversion
     4.3 Compression Algorithms
     4.4 RTP Real Time Transport Protocol
     4.5 RSVP
     4.6 Quality of Service (QoS)
     4.7 H323 Signaling Protocol

  5. Requirement

     5.1 Hardware requirement
     5.2 Hardware accelerating cards
     5.3 Hardware gateway cards
     5.4 Software requirement
     5.5 Gateway software
     5.6 Gatekeeper software
     5.7 Other software

  6. Cards setup

     6.1 Quicknet PhoneJack
        6.1.1 Software installation
        6.1.2 Settings
     6.2 Quicknet LineJack
     6.3 VoiceTronix products

  7. Setup

     7.1 Simple communication: IP to IP
     7.2 Using names
     7.3 Internet calling using a WINS server
     7.4 ILS server
     7.5 A big problem: the masquering.
     7.6 Open Source applications
        7.6.1 Ohphone Sintax
        7.6.2 Gnomemeeting
     7.7 Setting up a gatekeeper
     7.8 Setting up a gateway
     7.9 Compatibility Matrix

  8. Communications using PSTN line

     8.1 Overview
     8.2 Scenario
     8.3 What can be changed in this configuration?

  9. Bandwidth consideration

  10. Glossary

  11. Useful links

     11.1 Open software link
     11.2 Commercial link


  1.  Introduction

  1.1.  Introduction

  This document explains about VoIP systems. Recent happenings like
  Internet diffusion at low cost, new integration of dedicated voice
  compression processors, have changed common user requirements allowing
  VoIP standards to diffuse. This howto tries to define some basic lines
  of VoIP architecture.

  Please send suggestions and critics to my email address

  1.2.  Copyright

  Copyright (C) 2000,2001 Roberto Arcomano. This document is free; you
  can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU
  General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation;
  either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later
  version.  This document is distributed in the hope that it will be
  useful, but

  WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
  General Public License for more details. You can get a copy of the GNU
  GPL here <>

  1.3.  Translations

  If you want to translate this document you are free, you only have to:

  1. Check that another version of it doesn't already exist at your
     local LDP

  2. Maintain all 'Introduction' section (including 'Introduction',

  Warning! You don't have to translate TXT or HTML file, you have to
  modify LYX file, so that it is possible to convert it all other
  formats (TXT, HTML, RIFF, etc.): to do that you can use "LyX"
  application you download from <>.

  No need to ask me to translate! You just have to let me know (if you
  want) about your translation.

  Thank you for your translation!

  1.4.  Credits

  Thanks to Fatamorgana Computers <> for
  hardware equipment and experimental opportunity.
  Thanks to Linux Documentation Project <> for
  publishing and uploading my document in a very quickly fashion.

  Thanks to David Price <> for his

  2.  Background

  2.1.  The past

  More than 30 years ago Internet didn't exist. Interactive
  communications were only made by telephone at PSTN line cost.

  Data exchange was expansive (for a long distance) and no one had been
  thinking to video interactions (there was only television that is not
  interactive, as known).

  2.2.  Yesterday

  Few years ago we saw appearing some interesting things: PCs to large
  masses, new technologies to communicate like cellular phones and
  finally the great net: Internet; people begun to communicate with new
  services like email, chat, etc. and business reborned with the web
  allowing people buy with a "click".

  2.3.  Today

  Today we can see a real revolution in communication world: everybody
  begins to use PCs and Internet for job and free time to communicate
  each other, to exchange data (like images, sounds, documents) and,
  sometimes, to talk each other using applications like Netmeeting or
  Internet Phone. Particularly starts to diffusing a common idea that
  could be the future and that can allow real-time vocal communication:

  2.4.  The future

  We cannot know what is the future, but we can try to image it with
  many computers, Internet almost everywhere at high speed and people
  talking (audio and video) in a real time fashion. We only need to know
  what will be the means to do this: UMTS, VoIP (with video extension)
  or other? Anyway we can notice that Internet has grown very much in
  the last years, it is free (at least as international means) and could
  be the right communication media for future.

  3.  Overview

  3.1.  What is VoIP?

  VoIP stands for 'V'oice 'o'ver 'I'nternet 'P'rotocol. As the term says
  VoIP tries to let go voice (mainly human) through IP packets and, in
  definitive through Internet. VoIP can use accelerating hardware to
  achieve this purpose and can also be used in a PC environment.

  3.2.  How does it work?

  Many years ago we discovered that sending a signal to a remote
  destination could have be done also in a digital fashion: before
  sending it we have to digitalize it with an ADC (analog to digital
  converter), transmit it, and at the end transform it again in analog
  format with DAC (digital to analog converter) to use it.

  VoIP works like that, digitalizing voice in data packets, sending them
  and reconverting them in voice at destination.

  Digital format can be better controlled: we can compress it, route it,
  convert it to a new better format, and so on; also we saw that digital
  signal is more noise tolerant than the analog one (see GSM vs TACS).

  TCP/IP networks are made of IP packets containing a header (to control
  communication) and a payload to transport data: VoIP use it to go
  across the network and come to destination.

  Voice (source)  - - ADC - - - - Internet - - - DAC  - - Voice (dest)

  3.3.  What is the advantages using VoIP rather PSTN?

  When you are using PSTN line, you typically pay for time used to a
  PSTN line manager company: more time you stay at phone and more you'll
  pay. In addition you couldn't talk with other that one person at a

  In opposite with VoIP mechanism you can talk all the time with every
  person you want (the needed is that other person is also connected to
  Internet at the same time), as far as you want (money independent)
  and, in addition, you can talk with many people at the same time.

  If you're still not persuaded you can consider that, at the same time,
  you can exchange data with people are you talking with, sending
  images, graphs and videos.

  3.4.  Then, why everybody doesn't use it yet?

  Unfortunately we have to report some problem with the integration
  between VoIP architecture and Internet. As you can easy imagine, voice
  data communication must be a real time stream (you couldn't speak,
  wait for many seconds, then hear other side answering): this is in
  contrast with the Internet heterogeneous architecture that can be made
  of many routers (machines that route packets), about 20-30 or more and
  can have a very high round trip time (RTT), so we need to modify
  something to get it properly working.

  In next sections we'll try to understand how to solve this great
  problem. In general we know that is very difficult to guarantee a
  bandwidth in Internet for VoIP application.

  4.  Technical info about VoIP

  Here we see some important info about VoIP, needed to understand it.

  4.1.  Overview on a VoIP connection

  To setup a VoIP communication we need:

  1. First the ADC to convert analog voice to digital signals (bits)

  2. Now the bits have to be compressed in a good format for
     transmission: there is a number of protocols we'll see after.

  3. Here we have to insert our voice packets in data packets using a
     real-time protocol (typically RTP over UDP over IP)

  4. We need a signaling protocol to call users: ITU-T H323 does that.

  5. At RX we have to disassemble packets, extract datas, then convert
     them to analog voice signals and send them to sound card (or phone)
  6. All that must be done in a real time fashion cause we cannot
     waiting for too long for a vocal answer! (see QoS section)

                          Base architecture

  Voice )) ADC - Compression Algorithm -  Assembling RTP in TCP/IP -----
                                                           ---->      |
                                                           <----      |
  Voice (( DAC - Decompress. Algorithm -  Disass. RTP from TCP/IP  -----

  4.2.  Analog to Digital Conversion

  This is made by hardware, typically by card integrated ADC.

  Today every sound card allows you convert with 16 bit a band of 22050
  Hz (for sampling it you need a freq of 44100 Hz for Nyquist Principle)
  obtaining a throughput of 2 bytes * 44100 (samples per second) = 88200
  Bytes/s, 176.4 kBytes/s for stereo stream.

  For VoIP we needn't such a throughput (176kBytes/s) to send voice
  packet: next we'll see other coding used for it.

  4.3.  Compression Algorithms

  Now that we have digital data we may convert it to a standard format
  that could be quickly transmitted.

  PCM, Pulse Code Modulation, Standard ITU-T G.711

  �  Voice bandwidth is 4 kHz, so sampling bandwidth has to be 8 kHz
     (for Nyquist).

  �  We represent each sample with 8 bit (having 256 possible values).

  �  Throughput is 8000 Hz *8 bit = 64 kbit/s, as a typical digital
     phone line.

  �  In real application mu-law (North America) and a-law (Europe)
     variants are used which code analog signal a logarithmic scale
     using 12 or 13 bits instead of 8 bits (see Standard ITU-T G.711).

  ADPCM, Adaptive differential PCM, Standard ITU-T G.726

  It converts only the difference between the actual and the previous
  voice packet requiring 32 kbps (see Standard ITU-T G.726).

  LD-CELP, Standard ITU-T G.728
  CS-ACELP, Standard ITU-T G.729 and G.729a
  MP-MLQ, Standard ITU-T G.723.1, 6.3kbps, Truespeech
  ACELP, Standard ITU-T G.723.1, 5.3kbps, Truespeech
  LPC-10, able to reach 2.5 kbps!!

  This last protocols are the most important cause can guarantee a very
  low minimal band using source coding; also G.723.1 codecs have a very
  high MOS (Mean Opinion Score, used to measure voice fidelity) but
  attention to elaboration performance required by them, up to 26 MIPS!

  4.4.  RTP Real Time Transport Protocol

  Now we have the raw data and we want to encapsulate it into TCP/IP
  stack. We follow the structure:

  VoIP data packets
      I,II layers

  VoIP data packets live in RTP (Real-Time Transport Protocol) packets
  which are inside UDP-IP packets.

  Firstly, VoIP doesn't use TCP because it is too heavy for real time
  applications, so instead a UDP (datagram) is used.

  Secondly, UDP has no control over the order in which packets arrive at
  the destination or how long it takes them to get there (datagram
  concept). Both of these are very important to overall voice quality
  (how well you can understand what the other person is saying) and
  conversation quality (how easy it is to carry out a conversation).
  RTP solves the problem enabling the receiver to put the packets back
  into the correct order and not wait too long for packets that have
  either lost their way or are taking too long to arrive (we don't need
  every single voice packet, but we need a continuous flow of many of
  them and ordered).

                      Real Time Transport Protocol

      0                   1                   2                   3
      0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
     |V=2|P|X|  CC   |M|     PT      |       sequence number         |
     |                           timestamp                           |
     |           synchronization source (SSRC) identifier            |
     |            contributing source (CSRC) identifiers             |
     |                             ....                              |


  �  V indicates the version of RTP used

  �  P indicates the padding, a byte not used at bottom packet to reach
     the parity packet dimension

  �  X is the presence of the header extension

  �  CC field is the number of CSRC identifiers following the fixed
     header. CSRC field are used, for example, in conference case.
  �  M is a marker bit

  �  PT payload type

  For a complete description of RTP protocol and all its applications
  see relative RFCs1889 <> and 1890

  4.5.  RSVP

  There are also other protocols used in VoIP, like RSVP, that can
  manage Quality of Service (QoS).

  RSVP is a signaling protocol that requests a certain amount of
  bandwidth and latency in every network hop that supports it.

  For detailed info about RSVP see theRFC 2205

  4.6.  Quality of Service (QoS)

  We said many times that VoIP applications require a real-time data
  streaming cause we expect an interactive data voice exchange.

  Unfortunately, TCP/IP cannot guarantee this kind of purpose, it just
  make a "best effort" to do it. So we need to introduce tricks and
  policies that could manage the packet flow in EVERY router we cross.

  So here are:

  1. TOS field in IP protocol to describe type of service: high values
     indicate low urgency while more and more low values bring us more
     and more real-time urgency

  2. Queuing packets methods:

     a. FIFO (First in First Out), the more stupid method that allows
        passing packets in arrive order.

     b. WFQ (Weighted Fair Queuing), consisting in a fair passing of
        packets (for example, FTP cannot consume all available
        bandwidth), depending on kind of data flow, typically one packet
        for UDP and one for TCP in a fair fashion.

     c. CQ (Custom Queuing), users can decide priority.

     d. PQ (Priority Queuing), there is a number (typically 4) of queues
        with a priority level each one: first, packets in the first
        queue are sent, then (when first queue is empty) starts sending
        from the second one and so on.

     e. CB-WFQ (Class Based Weighted Fair Queuing), like WFQ but, in
        addition, we have classes concept (up to 64) and the bandwidth
        value associated for each one.

  3. Shaping capability, that allows to limit the source to a fixed
     bandwidth in:

     a. download

     b. upload

  4. Congestion Avoidance, like RED (Random Early Detection).

  For an exhaustive information about QoS see Differentiated Services
  <> at IETF.

  4.7.  H323 Signaling Protocol

  H323 protocol is used, for example, by Microsoft Netmeeting to make
  VoIP calls.

  This protocol allow a variety of elements talking each other:

  1. Terminals, clients that initialize VoIP connection. Although
     terminals could talk together without anyone else, we need some
     additional elements for a scalable vision.

  2. Gatekeepers, that essentially operate:

     a. address translation service, to use names instead IP addresses

     b. admission control, to allow or deny some hosts or some users

     c. bandwidth management

  3. Gateways, points of reference for conversion TCP/IP - PSTN.

  4. Multipoint Control Units (MCUs) to provide conference.

  5. Proxies Server also are used.

  h323 allows not only VoIP but also video and data communications.

  Concerning VoIP, h323 can carry audio codecs G.711, G.722, G.723,
  G.728 and G.729 while for video it supports h261 and h263.

  More info about h323 is available at Openh323 Standards
  <>, at this h323 web site
  <> and at its standard
  description: ITU H-series Recommendations

  You can find it implemented in various application software like
  Microsoft Netmeeting <>, Net2Phone
  <>, DialPad <>, ... and
  also in freeware products you can find at Openh323 Web Site

  5.  Requirement

  5.1.  Hardware requirement

  To create a little VoIP system you need the following hardware:

  1. PC 386 or more

  2. Sound card, full duplex capable

  3. a network card or connection to internet or other kind of interface
     to allow communication between 2 PCs

  All that has to be present twice to simulate a standard communication.

  The tool above are the minimal requirement for a VoIP connection: next
  we'll see that we should (and in Internet we must) use more hardware
  to do the same in a real situation.

  Sound card has be full duplex unless we couldn't hear anything while

  As additional you can use hardware cards (see next) able to manage
  data stream in a compressed format (see Par 4.3).

  5.2.  Hardware accelerating cards

  We can use special cards with hardware accelerating capability.  Two
  of them (and also the only ones directly managed by the Linux kernel
  at this moment) are the

  1. Quicknet PhoneJack

  2. Quicknet LineJack

  3. VoiceTronix V4PCI

  4. VoiceTronix VPB4

  5. VoiceTronix VPB8L

  Quicknet PhoneJack is a sound card that can use standard algorithms to
  compress audio stream like G723.1 (section 4.3) down to 4.1 Kbps rate.

  It can be connected directly to a phone (POTS port) or a couple mic-

  It has a ISA or PCI connector bus.

  Quicknet LineJack works like PhoneJack with some addition features
  (see next).

  VoiceTronix V4PCI is a PCI card pretty like Quicknet LineJack but with
  4 phone ports

  VoiceTronix VPB4 is a ISA card equivalent to V4PCI.

  VoiceTronix VPB8L is a logging card with 8 ports.

  For more info see Quicknet web site <> and
  VoiceTronix web site <>

  5.3.  Hardware gateway cards

  Quicknet LineJack and VoiceTronix cards can be connected to a PSTN
  line allowing VoIP gateway feature.

  Then you'll need a software to manage it (see after).

  5.4.  Software requirement

  We can choose what O.S. to use:

  1. Win9x

  2. Linux

  Under Win9x we have Microsoft Netmeeting, Internet Phone, DialPad or
  others or Internet Switchboard (from Quicknet web site
  <>) for Quicknet cards.

  Warning!!: Latest Quicknet cards using Swithboard (older version too)
  NEED to be connected to Internet to get working for managing
  Microtelco account (not free of charge), so if you plan to remain
  isolated from Internet you need to install OpenH323 software

  For VoiceTronix cards you can find software at VoiceTronix web site

  Under Linux we have free software GnomeMeeting
  <>, a clone of Microsoft Netmeeting, while
  in console mode we use (also free software) applications from OpenH323
  <> web site: simph323 or ohphone that can also
  work with Quicknet accelerating hardware.

  Attention: all Openh323 source code has to be compiled in a user
  directory (if not it is necessary to change some environment
  variable).  You are warned that compiling time could be very high and
  you could need a lot of RAM to make it in a decent time.

  5.5.  Gateway software

  To manage gateway feature (join TCP/IP VoIP to PSTN lines) you need
  some kind of software like this:

  �  Internet SwitchBoard <> (only when connected
     to Internet) for Windows systems also acting as a h323 terminal;

  �  PSTNGw for Linux and Windows systems you download from OpenH323

  5.6.  Gatekeeper software

  You can choose as gatekeeper:

  1. Opengatekeeper, you can download from opengatekeeper web site
     <> for Linux and Win9x.

  2. Openh323 Gatekeeper (GK) from here

  5.7.  Other software

  In addition I report some useful software h323 compliant:

  �  Phonepatch, able to solve problems behind a NAT firewall. It simply
     allows users (external or internal) calling from a web page (which
     is reachable from even external and internal users): when web
     application understands the remote host is ready, it calls (h323)
     the source telling it all is ok and communication can be
     established.  Phonepatch is a proprietary software (with also a
     demo version for no more than 3 minutes long conversations) you
     download from here <>.

  6.  Cards setup

  Here we see how to configure special hardware card in Linux and
  Windows environment.

  6.1.  Quicknet PhoneJack

  As we saw, Quicknet Phonejack is a sound card with VoIP accelerating
  capability. It supports:

  �  G.711 normal and mu/A-law, G.728-9, G.723.1 (TrueSpeech) and LPC10.

  �  Phone connector (to allow calling directly from your phone) or

  �  Mic & speaker jacks.

  Quicknet PhoneJack is a ISA (or PCI) card to install into your Pc box.
  It can work without an IRQ.

  6.1.1.  Software installation

  Under Windows you have to install:

  1. Card driver

  2. Internet Switchboard application (working only with Internet, using
     newer Quicknet cards)

  all downloadable from Quicknet web site <>

  After Switchboard has been installed, you need to register to Quicknet
  to obtain full capability of your card.

  When you pick up the phone Internet Switchboard wakes up and waits for
  your calling number (directly entered from your phone), you can:

  1. enter an asterisk, then type an IP number (with asterisks in place
     of dot) with a # in the end

  2. type directly a PSTN phone number (with international prefix) to
     call a classic phone user. In this case you need a registration to
     a gateway manager to which pay for time.

  3. enter directly a quick dial number (up to 2 digits) you have
     previously stored which make a call (IP or PSTN).

  Internet Swichboard is h323 compatible, so if you can use, for
  example, Microsoft Netmeeting at the other end to talk.

  Warning!! Internet Switchboard NEED to be connected to Internet when
  used with newer Quicknet cards

  In place of Internet Switchboard you can use openh323 application
  openphone <> (using GUI) or ohphone
  <> (command line).

  Under Linux you have to install:

  1. Card driver, from Quicknet web site <>.
     After downloaded you have to compile it (you must have a
     /usr/src/linux soft or hard link to your Linux source directory):
     type make for instructions.

  2. Application openphone <> or
     ohphone <>.

  3. If you are a developer you can use SDK
     <> to create your own
     application (also for Windows).

  6.1.2.  Settings

  With Internet Switchboard (and with other application) you can:

  1. Change compression algorithm preferred

  2. Tune jitter delay

  3. Adjust volume

  4. Adjust echo cancellation level.

  6.2.  Quicknet LineJack

  This card is very similar to the previous, it supports also gateway

  We only notice that we have to download
  <> PSTNGx application (for Linux and
  Windows) or we use Internet Switchboard to gateway feature.

  6.3.  VoiceTronix products

  1. First download software here <

  2. Untar it

  3. Modify 'src/vpbreglinux.cpp' according to file README

  4. type 'make'

  5. type 'make install'

  6. cd to src

  7. type 'insmod vpb.o'

  8. retrieve (from console of from 'dmesg' output command) major
     number, say MAJOR

  9. type 'mknod /dev/vpb0 c MAJOR 0' where MAJOR is the above number

     cd to unittest and type './echo'

  Follow README file for more help.

  I personally haven't tested VoiceTronix products so please contact
  VoiceTronix web site <> for support.

  7.  Setup

  In this chapter we try to setup VoIP system, simple at first, then
  more and more complex.

  7.1.  Simple communication: IP to IP

         A (Sound card)   -  -  -    B (Sound card)

     -  -  -
 calls and viceversa.

  A and B should have

  1. an application like Microsoft Netmeeting, Internet Switchboard,
     Openh323 (under Windows environment) or Ohphone, Gnomemeeting
     (under Linux), installed and properly configured.

  2. a network card or other kind of TCP/IP interface to talk each

  In this kind of view A can make a H323 call to B (if B has server side
  application active) using B IP address. Then B can answer to it if it
  wants. After accepting call, VoIP data packets start to flow.

  7.2.  Using names

  Under Microsoft Windows a NetBIOS name can be used instead of an IP

            A            -  -  -             B       -  -  -

          John           -  -  -           Alice

                      John calls Alice.

  This is possible cause John call request to Alice is converted to IP
  calling by the NetBIOS protocol.

  The above 2 examples are very easy to implement but aren't scalable.

  In a more big view such as Internet it is impossible to use direct
  calling cause, usually, the callers don't know the destination IP
  address. Furthermore NetBIOS naming feature cannot work cause it uses
  broadcast messages, which typically don't pass ISP routers .

  You can also use DNS to solve name in IP address: for example you can
  call ''''.

  7.3.  Internet calling using a WINS server

  The NetBIOS name calling idea can be implemented also in a Internet
  environment, using a WINS server: NetBIOS clients can be configured to
  use a WINS server to resolve names.

  PCs using the same WINS server will be able to make direct calling
  between them.

  A (WINS Server is S) - - - - I  - - - -  B (WINS Server is S)
                               E  - - - - -   S (WINS Server)
  C (WINS Server is S) - - - - R
                               E  - - - -  D (WINS Server is S)

                     Internet communication

  A, B, C and D are in different subnets, but they can call each other
  in a NetBIOS name calling fashion. The needed is that all are using S
  as WINS Server.

  Note: WINS server hasn't very high performance cause it use NetBIOS
  feature and should only be used for joining few subnets.

  7.4.  ILS server

  ILS is a kind of server which allows you to solve your name during an
  H323 calling: when you start VoIP application you first register to
  ILS server using a name, then everyone will be able to see you using
  that name (if he uses same Server ILS!).

  7.5.  A big problem: the masquering.

  A problem of few IPs is commonly solved using the so called masquering
  (also NAT, network address translation): there is only 1 IP public
  address (that Internet can directly "see"), the others machines are
  "masqueraded" using all this IP.

             A  - - -

             B  - - -   Router with NAT  - - -  Internet

             C  - - -

                         This doesn't work

  In the example A,B and C can navigate, pinging, using mail and news
  services with Internet people, but they CANNOT make a VoIP call.  This
  because H323 protocol send IP address at application level, so the
  answer will never arrive to source (that is using a private IP


  �  there is a Linux module that modifies H323 packets avoiding this
     problem. You can download the module here
     <>. To
     install it you have to copy it to source directory specified,
     modify Makefile and go compiling and installing module with
     "modprobe ip_masq_h323". Unfortunately this module cannot work with
     ohphone software at this moment (I don't know why).

             A  - - -   Router with NAT

             B  - - -         +           - - -  Internet

             C  - - -  ip_masq_h323 module

                           This works

  �  There is a application program that also solves this problem: for
     more see ``Par 5.7''

             A  - - -

             B  - - -    PhonePatch   - - -  Internet

             C  - - -

                           This works

  7.6.  Open Source applications

  7.6.1.  Ohphone Sintax

  Sintax is:

  "ohphone -l|--listen [options]"

  "ohphone [options]... address"

  �  "-l", listen to standard port (1720)

  �  "address", mean that we don't wait for a call, but we connect to
     "address" host

  �  "-n", "--no-gatekeeper", this is ok if we haven't a gatekeeper

  �  "-q num", "--quicknet num", it uses Quicknet card, device

  �  "-s device", "--sound device", it uses /dev/device sound device.

  �  "-j delay", "--jitter delay", it change delay buffer to "delay".

  Also, when you start ohphone, you can give command to the interpreter
  directly (like decrease AEC, Automatic Echo Cancellation).

  7.6.2.  Gnomemeeting

  Gnomemeeting is an application using GUI interface to make call using
  VoIP. It is very simple to use and allows you to use ILS server, chat
  and other things.

  7.7.  Setting up a gatekeeper

  You can also experiment gatekeeper feature


          (Terminal H323) A  - - -
          (Terminal H323) B  - -  - D (Gatekeeper)
          (Terminal H323) C  - - -

                     Gatekeeper configuration

  1. Hosts A,B and C have gatekeeper setting to point to D.

  2. At start time each host tells D own address and own name (also with
     aliases) which could be used by a caller to reach it.

  3. When a terminal asks D for an host, D answers with right IP
     address, so communication can be established.

  We have to notice that the Gatekeeper is able only to solve name in IP
  address, it couldn't join hosts that aren't reachable each other (at
  IP level), in other words it couldn't act as a NAT router.

  You can find gatekeeper code here <>:
  openh323 library <> is also required.

  Program has only to be launch with -d (as daemon) or -x (execute)

  In addition you can use a config file (.ini) you find here

  7.8.  Setting up a gateway

  As we said, gateway is an entity that can join VoIP to PSTN lines
  allowing us to made call from Internet to a classic telephone. So, in
  addition, we need a card that could manage PSTN lines: Quicknet
  LineJack does it.

  From OpenH323 web site <> we download:

  1. driver for Linejack

  2. PSTNGw application to create our gateway.

  If executable doesn't work you need to download source code and
  openh323 library <>, then install all
  in a home user directory.

  After that you only need to launch PSTNGw to start your H323 gateway.

  7.9.  Compatibility Matrix

  First Matrix refers to:

  1. Software intercommunications (i.e. Netmeeting with SwitchBoard)

  2. Software/Driver/Hardware talking (i.e. Netmeeting can use a
     PhoneJACK card).

  |            | Netmeeting |SwitchBoard |  Simph323  |  OhPhone   | LinPhone    |Speak-Freely|HW PhoneJACK|HW LineJACK |
  | Netmeeting |      V            V            V           V             X            X            V            V
  |SwitchBoard |      V            V            V           V             X            X            V            V
  |  Simph323  |      V            V            V           V             X            X            X            X
  |  OhPhone   |      V            V            V           V             X            X            V            V
  | LinPhone   |      X            X            X           X             V            X            X            X
  |SpeakFreely |      X            X            X           X             X            V            X            X
  |HW PhoneJACK|      V            V            X           V             X            X            _            _
  |HW LineJACK |      V            V            X           V             X            X            _            _

  Second Matrix refers to Gateway softwares that manage LineJACK card.

  |              |HW LineJACK GW| SwitchBoard  |    PSTNGW    |
  |HW LineJACK GW|      _       |      V       |       V      |
  | SwitchBoard  |      V       |      _       |       _      |
  |    PSTNGW    |      V       |      _       |       _      |


  �  V : Works

  �  X : Doesn't Work

  �  -- : Doesn't care

  8.  Communications using PSTN line

  8.1.  Overview

  VoIP becomes very interesting when you start to use PSTN lines to call
  other people in the world, directly to their home telephone.

  8.2.  Scenario

  A typical application is like that:

  Home telephone1 -- (PSTN) -- PC1 -- (Internet) -- PC2 -- (PSTN) -- Home telephone2

  1. Home Telephone1 make a calls to PC1 phone number (using PSTN line,
     I mean classic telephone line).
  2. PC1 answer to it.

  3. Home telephone1 must tell PC1 what gateway use (PC2 in this case)
     by giving the IP address (from DTMF keyboard) and/or what number
     call (in this case Home telephone2).

  4. After that PC1 will start to make an H323 call to PC2, then it will
     pass Home telephone2 to PC2 to make it call it throught PSTN line.

  5. Home telephone2 answers to call and communication between Home
     telephone1 and Home telephone2 begins.

  8.3.  What can be changed in this configuration?

  1. You may use a PBX to select many lines to access many PC1 gateway
     (for example one to call within your state, one to go accross
     Europe, and so on...): typically you don't have to change this,
     cause cost is always the same.

  2. You can select (after called your PC1 gateway) every PC2 you want
     (for example a PC2 living in England to call an English person so
     that you'd pay only intra-country costs).

  So your decision will be taken considering PSTN line costs. In fact
  what VoIP does is the convert this:

  Home Telephone1 --- (PSTN) --- Home Telephone2
               PSTN great distance calling cost

  into this:

        Home Telephone1 --- (PSTN) --- PC1   +
        PC2 ---- (PSTN) --- Home Telephone2  =
            2 PSTN short distance calling costs

  To save money you need that:

  2 PSTN short distance calling costs < PSTN great distance calling cost

  Typically "short distance calling" refers to a "city cal" while "great
  distance calling" can be an "intercontinental call"!

  9.  Bandwidth consideration

  From all we said before we noticed that we still have not solved
  problems about bandwidth, how to create a real time streaming of data.

  We know we couldn't find a solution unless we enable a right real-time
  manager protocol in each router we cross, so what do we can do?

  First we try to use a very (as more as possible) high rate compression
  algorithms (like LPC10 which only consumes a 2.5 kbps bandwidth, about
  313 bytes/s).

  Then we starts classify our packets, in TOS field, with the most high
  priority level, so every router help us having urgently.

  Important: all that is not sufficient to guarantee our conversation
  would always be ok, but without an great infrastructure managing
  shaping, bandwidth reservation and so on, it is not possible to do it,
  TCP/IP is not a real time protocol.

  A possible solution could be starts with little WAN at guaranteed
  bandwidth and get larger step by step.

  We finally have to notice a thing: also the so called guaranteed
  services like PSTN line could not manage all clients they have: for
  example a GSM call is not able to manage more that some hundred or
  some thousand of clients.

  Anyway for a starting service, limited to few users, VoIP can be a
  valid alternative to classic PSTN service.

  10.  Glossary

  PSTN: Public Switched Telephone Network

  VoIP: Voice over Internet Protocol

  LAN: Local Area Network

  WAN: Wide Area Network

  TOS: Type Of Service

  ISP: Internet Service Provider

  RTP: Real Time Protocol

  RSVP: ReSerVation Protocol

  QoS: Quality of Service

  11.  Useful links

  11.1.  Open software link

  �  Voxilla <>

  �  Linux Telephony <>

  �  Open H323 web site <>

  � <>

  �  Speak Freely <>

  � <>

  � <>


  11.2.  Commercial link

  �  Fatamorgana Computers <>

  �  International Communication Union <>

  �  Voicetronix web site <>

  �  Quicknet Web site <>

  �  Cisco Systems <>

  � <>

  � <>

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