August 17, 2010

Troubleshooting Your VoIP Ecosystem

  • Integrated Research
The VoIP call quality issues explored within this whitepaper include those experienced within the network, within the VoIP application and within devices in the voice stream.  Its aim is to help you as a VoIP stakeholder troubleshoot issues from a telephony perspective within the overall data network. Enabling an end-to-end view of the entire VoIP ecosystem with PROGNOSIS helps you correlate, diagnose and resolve performance issues that affect VoIP quality. This results in reduced mean-time-to-repair, more streamlined troubleshooting processes and efficiency gains.  Tangible benefits like these help you deliver better ROI on the investments you make in deploying and managing a high quality VoIP service.

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This is an excellent paper that provides an overview of many of the causes of poor performance on a VoIP network.

I really like the Q&A structure of the paper, with the discussion broken down into areas of "Poor Voice Quality," "Dial Tone Failure," and "Call Setup Problems."

I invite you to review the information and also to join Sue Bradshaw and me in discussing some of the items raised in the paper.

Prognosis’s message has been consistent for the last few years. You state that the top issues affecting VoIP are poor voice quality, inability to obtain a dial tone and call setup failure. What’s new about VoIP management in 2010?

We still find the top issues affecting VoIP are poor voice quality, dial tone and call setup failure. As the root causes of VoIP problems frequently span multiple operational domains, we’ve integrated VoIP ecosystem diagnostics tightly with VoIP management to help staff identify problems throughout the entire VoIP ecosystem.

What do you mean by the VoIP ecosystem and how does visualizing it help voice administrators do their jobs?

To answer the first part of your question - the VoIP ecosystem incorporates every device in the voice stream. It’s the network mesh and devices between the end points. Once the links and network devices have been discovered PROGNOSIS classifies them. Classification determines for example that a router is in fact a router and identifies and classifies the interfaces associated with it.

And to answer the second part of your question - Prognosis automatically monitors the performance of those devices so that a voice administrator can correlate network conditions with call and voice quality. For example the administrator can choose to see only degraded voice streams. In the same display they will see all the devices that are involved in those voice streams, and what the main impairment factors are. They can drill down to see details of packet loss, latency and jitter or choose to drill down on each of the devices, it may be the PBX, router or other device and analyse what’s happening on the interfaces or the CPU activity, memory utilization and so on to analyse what is causing the MOS impairment.

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