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VoIP Hacks: Tips & Tools for Internet Telephony Paperback – January 1, 2006
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"The book provides hacks for Windows, Linux and Mac based applications, and there are number of Mac-only hacks, so the relevance of the whole to the UKUUG community may be slightly reduced, but I still think this is a worthwhile wide-ranging set of hacks for general knowledge." - Mike Smith, news@UK, June 2006
About the Author
Ted Wallingford has designed and implemented Voice over IP on networks large and small. As IT Director for a large, private construction firm, Ted transformed a single-operator midrange computer room into a mission-critical 24x7 data center hosting services for lines of business across the country. He now offers network design for VoIP systems and product management assistance for up & coming VoIP carriers through his macVoIP.com consulting practice. Ted is also the author of O'Reilly's "Switching to VoIP".
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If you enjoy learning about VoIP and you want to learn how to do more with it, this book is for you. Going beyond the regular setup "tricks", VoIP lists out plenty of fun and interesting things to do with your VoIP connection. Whether it's downloading little applications to track your usage or learning how to control the lights in your home with your IP phone, this book will please all the geeks out there in the world who need to go past simply using their connection, needing to get into the guts of how it all works.
If you want to learn more about VoIP and some of the fun things you can do with it, this is a fun book to add to your collection.
Of course, other VoIP solutions are explored. Skype, is mentioned and basic features are explored, although the detail provided on Skype is not as detailed as those of other solutions, which maybe due to the coverage for Skype under the Skype Hacks book. However, the coverage for building your own VoIP via Asterisk is quite detailed and in-depth. Options that explored for this approach, are call forwarding, hold music, voice mail applications and distinctive ring as well as basic advice on setting up and compiling the application. The process appears to be able to easy to implement, but alas was not tried due to this reviewers use of Skype for his VoIP needs.
Also in the closing chapters of the book, issues of improving QoS are addressed as is the legacy signalling protocol that H.323 is since the adoption of SIP. Since QoS is vital to ensuring that VoIP traffic receives the bandwidth that it needs Ted gives us some basic commands to find out if there is jitter [dropped datagrams] and some ways to fix this issue. However, it should be noted that this chapter, as with most of the later half of the book is more in line for larger scale operations that use Linux/Unix and building their own office VoIP solutions.
To summarize, VoIP hacks does offer something for everyone, although the hacks provided in the latter chapters are geared to the enterprise level deployment of VoIP. That's not to say that the information is not relevant or even eye opening, just the average home user will find little to apply this to.