Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy 2012! I have updated the layout of the site.

I have updated the layout of the site, to try to make navigating from page to page easier, and to try to make the advertising on the page less obstructive, yet still easily available and accessible for anyone that finds any of the ad links that pop up interesting or helpful.

I have also replaced the top banner logo with a new one that is not as tall as the original nyphonejacks logo, in hopes that it will take up less space on the screen and thus have more content on the page when you first visit the site.

I hope that the new layout makes it easier to view this page. The "search this site" is now located on the top of the right frame if you are looking for it. If you love or hate the new layout, or if you have any suggestions feel free to comment. As always, I believe that you should not need to sign up or sign in to anything to leave comments, so they are open for anyone. I have only enabled the captcha to try to reduce spam comments, but i have even permitted spam comments in the past if they are on subject and might be helpful to readers.

Friday, December 30, 2011

PoE injectors, PAP2T, 8 port switch and 2 surge protectors.

The 66 block and wiring coming out of the ceiling was already in place. The 24 port patch panel was already in place. The blue Netgear switch was already in place. all of the blue patch cords from the 24 port panel to the switch was already in place.

The phone wiring was run with CAT5 wiring and punched into the 66 block. I converted 4 phone jacks into data jacks for VoIP phones. The wiring was not long enough so I added keystone jacks and 8p8c (RJ45) connectors to extend the wire into the patch panel (the orange jacks to the left of the photo).

I installed and mounted the 2 surge protectors (black one on top, and white one on bottom.

I provisioned, installed and mounted a Linksys PAP2T to provide an extension for the overhead paging system (gray box towards top of image.

I installed 6 PoE injectors (the black boxes mounted above the patch panel)

I installed an 8 port switch (above patch panel to right). These power Polycom 331 phones that were installed in various locations within the store.

I installed all of the white patch cords from the 24 port panel to the PoE injectors and switch.

All of the existing wiring that went to the old phone system that was removed before I arrived were taped back and placed above the panel. They were just hanging down and messy.

Still need to test overhead paging system. Currently it remains in an ROH state as soon as dial tone is connected to it. I believe that the telephone interface is defective and may need to be replaced. .
[UPDATE: The existing Bogen telephone interface for the overhead paging was defective, and was replaced with a UTI-1]

I also need to add several ATA devices for several cordless phones. Currently there are 2 Linksys 3102 devices in place for 2 cordless phones, however they need to be replaced with PAP2T or 2102 devices. There is only 1 free port left in the Netgear switch, and 1 port available in a Linksys/Cisco wifi router that was already in place to the right of the panel.
[UPDATE: SPA3102 devices were removed and replaced with pap2t devices and cordless phones are now operational]

Monday, December 12, 2011

Host your own proxy for free on Google.

Ever have the need for a proxy server? Ever find that the public proxy server that you are trying to use is blocked? Perhaps you just want to be able to have your own proxy just because.

Well, this article http://www.labnol.org/internet/setup-proxy-server/12890/ shows you how easy it is to set up your own proxy. The whole process only takes a few minutes. I set one up for myself, not that I have had much of a use for it yet, but it is there, in case I go to a customers location and I need to access content that might be otherwise blocked on their firewall, or DNS servers, with out needing to adjust the settings on their network. (I am talking work related stuff here people, although your use, or need for a proxy server might be a bit different, such as social media or other blocked sites)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Ooma is upgrading their Voicemail servers on January 3 2012

Just in case you are an Ooma subscriber and the email hit your spam box, Ooma just sent out the following email today:

Dear Nyphonejacks,
Ooma is upgrading to a new voicemail system! The new servers will bring faster voicemail retrieval and more efficient voice prompts. It will also open the door for us to develop advanced voicemail features and services in the future.
We will officially upgrade all existing Ooma accounts to the new voicemail system on January 3rd, but we're inviting users to make the switch now. This will ensure you have uninterrupted remote access to your voicemail and give you more time to wind down your old voicemail account. You can upgrade your account at any time by clicking here and following the prompts on your screen.
If you do not upgrade your account at this time, we will automatically upgrade it during the week ofJanuary 3rd. If your account is upgraded by Ooma, you will not be able to remotely retrieve voicemail messages until you log in to My Ooma to reset your voicemail PIN.
Keep in mind that voicemail messages on the old server WILL NOT be moved to the new server. This includes both new and archived messages. Voicemail messages from the old server will only be accessible until January 31st, so if you want to keep your messages please download them at your earliest convenience.
If you'd like to learn more about the upgrade process, please see our FAQ. Or, if you're ready to upgrade now, click here to begin.
Until later,
Team Ooma

What kind of crappy VoIP service does Ebay use?

EDIT This may not have had anything to do with Ebay after all, as I just experienced a similar problem on a phone call just now - I think it must be the stupid WiFi calling feature of my new Tmobile cell phone... I will do some testing to see if the trouble was in fact ebay related, or the fact that Tmobile thinks it is a good idea to use my WiFi to make calls when I am within range of my AP. 

I opened an Ebay account several months ago, because I had intended on selling a bunch of the stuff that I have  that I no longer need or use. I have been too busy to get around to actually putting anything up on the site, so it sat there dormant for quite a while. Today I logged into the account, because I actually do plan on putting some stuff up on there within the next few weeks or so. When I logged in I found that my account has been suspended - in September! I never received the e-mail telling me that the account had been suspended. The alleged reason for the suspension was the activity on the account. What activity on the account? I have not even logged back into the account after I set it all up.

Unfortunately the only way to resolve this was by a phone call. There was no online option to resolve this problem, either by email, chat, or by providing a form for me to complete the required information that they needed from me.

From the moment that the call connected the call quality was shit, pure shit. I had an extremely difficult time understanding the customer service rep located in India. Since they are located in India, I have no idea why their hours of operation are based on Pacific time! It felt like I was on a bad skype connection or something. A company that has the volume business as Ebay, and the amount of revenue that they generate, you would think that they would invest in some added bandwidth for their VoIP system, or at least use a more reliable VoIP provider than the bottom barrel VoIP service providers.

I am not sure if they still own Skype or not, but the connection quality reminded me strongly of the experiment that I did at my home where I replaced my home phone service with Skype for several months. That experiment failed terribly, and Magicjack provided a much better connection, and simpler solution. It just shows how sad your product really is when the Magicjack can beat you as far as quality, and price.

Well this is just another one of those rant posts. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

I will probably post what I am posting on Ebay here, and on several of the forums that I frequent before putting the stuff up on Ebay. to give people a heads up, and perhaps deal directly with people if possible.

New Blog - Kindle Fire Fanboy

A few days ago I created a new blog, Kindle Fire Fanboy. I did not have much content prepared, so i did not announce it.

I have been working to add some content to the newly designed blog, and feel that I can now announce it to everyone who visits my other blogs.

You can click HERE to visit the new blog, or click on the new links provided on the top of this page just underneath the NYPHONEJACKS banner.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

What to do with a WiFi enabled Blackberry that no longer has service.

EDIT: Seems that everything broke, strangely except for the built in browser. This is not a top priority of mine, as I have internet access on my new Android phone, and can use my Kindle Fire to browse the web while I am on the phone. I will however play around with this when I have free time, and figure out what settings need to be changed to regain as much functionality as possible. 

Since I switched over to an Android phone I no longer have active service on my Blackberry. I have been using my Blackberry on the train as my MP3 player so that I do not kill the battery on my new android phone, but it seems like just using my old Blackberry as a MP3 player is wasting the potential that this device can still do.

Unfortunately I have a CDMA version Blackberry, that means that there is no SIP software that I can install and run, so I am unaware of if any of you GSM Blackberry users can continue to use SIP softphones on your Blackberries.

What I have been able to do so far is to set the default browser as the WiFi browser by going to SETTINGS>ADVANCED OPTIONS>BROWSER then choosing HOTSPOT BROWSER as the default browser, then saving. This enabled me to access the built in browser of the phone to surf the web. For some reason it will not allow me to click on any of my bookmarks - so further testing needs to be done to determine why it is behaving this way.

Other apps that require internet to work are:
Opera browser works just fine over WiFi
Twitter continues to get updates
Google Voice app still updating (although of course you can not use the phone to make calls)

So far I have not been able to get GPS to show my location, AFAIK you should not need a cellular connection or service for GPS to work, so I will need to look into this issue further.

Funny thing of this all? I am using the WiFi hotspot feature of my android phone to power the WiFi of the Blackberry. Well at least it allows me to jump on the internet real quick with the Blackberry while I am on an active call with the Android. Yes I have tested that the hotspot still works while on an active call.

I will update as I find other uses, functionality, or modifications needed to get more use out of my old Blackberry.