Asterisk PBX is a very smart telephone system for home, office and enterprise use. In December 2006 I had to decide between purchasing a new ISDN/analogous system for about 2 external ISDN- and 20 internal extension lines or trying something new, even cheaper.
The Pros and Contras of Asterisk for me have been:
- system has to be reliable (for my parent’s company), but I had no experience with VoIP
- bad documentation of Asterisk (in 2006 Stefan Wintermeyer said “like sendmail in 1996″ :) )
- nobody could tell me how to use ISDN for outbound lines – everybody used Asterisk for Internet Telephony and their old ISDN phones inside. I intended to do the contrary.
- it’s something uncommon / new
- cheap dial switching unit, server alread existed
- old system straighthroug analogous, new phones needed – why not VoIP hardware?
- later integration of Internet Telephony very easy
I decided pro Asterisk, and implemented the following:
- basic functionality
- ISDN inbound/outbound with a Fritz!-Card
- four MSNs
- four (intersecting) ringing groups
- ringing group-dependent outbound caller ID
- user-administerable, Asterisk-DB managed call diversion (using call deflect)
- inbound limit of calls (Telco’s busy tone if one is already talking)
As soon everyting worked fine, Stefan Wintermeyer released his new book. :) Of course, I bought it – it’s very useful, I’d had less problems with it available just in time… :)
Thanks a lot to TheBonsai, too! He often helped, and never asked for place and time!
I will update “Asterisk” section as soon as I find out something new.