[Sip] Thank you all for your help!

Alan Crosswell <alan@columbia.edu> Thu, 13 September 2001 12:38 UTC

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Date: Wed, 12 Sep 2001 22:42:24 -0400
From: Alan Crosswell <alan@columbia.edu>
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Subject: [Sip] Thank you all for your help!
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I'm sorry to be too rushed to personally thank each of your individually
right now, but thank you all for offering and helping us provide IP-based
telephone service at the drop of a hat so that our students and staff could
phone home and let their loved ones know they were OK. For your entertainment
follows a brief chronology that summarizes what transpired to get a handful
of IP phones up and running to bypass NYC Metro trunk congestion.

Wednesday 9/12/01 10:00pm              

Chronology of Columbia University's use of IP telephony and I2.  

All times US/Eastern (note how early some of the left-coasters log in
and read their mail!)

9/11 9:50am - roll in to work on the subway unaware of anything yet.
              Columbia is miles away from the World Trade Center.
    10:15am - find out what happened
            - start trying to phone home to reassure family and discover
              swamped phone circuits (no surprise here).  Send email to
              friends who live outside NYC asking them to phone my family
              (they do).
    10:30am - asked by administration if we can get some sort of Internet
              phone service set up in computer labs or similar public space
              for students to phone home.  Have a few staff try out net2phone
              but start thinking about how hard it will be to explain to
              people and ...
    10:57am - get bright idea: VoIP via remote campuses outside NYC metro
              area since our I2 and I1 links have stayed up.  Send email
              to Professor Henning Schulzrinne, "Mr. SIP" to ask if he
              can get some of his SIP phones working via remote partners.
              Prof. Schulzrinne and his students, Sankaran Narayanan,
	      and Kundan Singh <kns10@cs.columbia.edu> run with this while
              I pursue the non-SIP approach which I am more familiar with.
    11:22am - send similar email to videnet_all_admin@listserv.unc.edu since
              I have portable, user-friendly H.323 equipment.  Also sent
              email to NYSERNet 2000 Engineering Working Group with the
              same query plus asking about Cisco Call Manager (since
              we have some IP phones we were experimenting with).  Key to
              this is the remote site *must* have an outbound Internet to
              PSTN gateway.
    11:23am - Winner for the fastest response time: Mike Pihlman <mikep@es.net>
              at LBL in Berkeley offering his H.323 to H.320 gateway.
    11:36am - "James O. Whitlock" <whitlock@buffalo.edu> makes similar offer.
    11:36am - "Tim Poe" <timpoe@email.unc.edu> at University of North
              Carolina Chapel Hill sends IP address of his H.323
              gatekeeper and dialing string info.  This is the easiest
              for me so I go with it and start reconfiguring a Polycom
              Viewstation SP to use it.  Call my mom in Wilmington, NC
              and my wife in Westchester County, NY (not necessarily
              in that order:-).  Tell the administration we can
              provide an easy to use outbound phone setup.
    11:36am - Eric Damboise <damboise@maine.edu> offers use of Cisco Call
    11:56am - "Gabriel W. Moulton" <moulton.13@osu.edu> offers H.323 GW.
    12:06pm - Get bounced typo mail for NYNSERNet Engineering Working Group
              and this time actually send the message to them :-(
    12:18pm - "Jason Eells" <JasonE@cciu.org> also offers H.323 GW.
    meanwhile Henning's group and their SIP research partners at Nortel
              Networks, Jeremy George at Yale University, Clarent.com,
              Dynamicsoft.com, set up four SIP phones, each using a
              different gateway.
    12:37pm - "Greg Economides" <Greg@kamugate.tamu.edu> also offers H.323 GW.
    12:53pm - I am finally able to come up for air and reply to the email!
     1:00pm - Mike at ESNet has cascaded equipment with Arif Khan and Jamie
              Lambert at Ohio State.  He's also been getting a lot of vendor
              support from Accord.
     1:08pm - Radvision also offers their GW.
     1:16pm - Steve Blair at Univ of Pennsyvlania offers his Cisco MCM.
     1:21pm - Phil Coolick of Penn State University offers his Cisco MCM
              and we start setting up two Cisco IP phones to use his MCM.
     2:09pm - Dan Eckstrom and Dave Barr of Cornell offer to set up a Cisco
     2:21pm - 4 SIP IP phones are set up in the Computer Science conference
              room and made available to members of the department and
              shortly the entire Fu School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.
     2:49pm - We get our IP phones working with Penn State's MCM.
     3:49pm - Steve Good of the Rochester Insitute of Technology worked with
              Cisco and Cornell to get Cornell some needed Call Director
     ~4pm   - We put two Cisco phones out in the lobby of our student
              center, next to public pay phones.  We chose to hold off on
              the more complicated to operate videoconference units.

As far as I know, all these phones are still available and we are still seeing
sporadic busy signals for some calls from our regular phone system.  I have
been out of the office since Tuesday volunteering doing Amateur Radio 
communications in support of the disaster recovery effort in NYC.

This is my first chance to log in and catch up on email.

Our thoughts are with those who have lost so much.

Alan Crosswell
Director, Network and Computing Systems
Columbia University Academic Information Systems

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