07 Jun 2008

Notes on VoIP Setup

After doing my due diligence, combing NewEgg and the greater Internet for more than a week, reading every blog review I could find, and even making a little comparison chart, I decided to take the plunge and ordered myself a VoIP ATA.

At the last minute, I passed up the favorite for most of my comparison, the PAP2-NA, ordering the slightly more full-featured SPA-2102 instead. Although it allegedly lists for $110, I picked it up from Telephony Depot for $58, with after shipping was the best deal I could find.

The 2102 arrived yesterday, and I got a chance to play around and set it up last night. Overall, the installation process went smoothly, although I did run into one significant hiccup. The 2102’s installation and setup documentation is sufficient if you’re planning on using it at the edge of your LAN, but if you want to have it inside the LAN, you’re mostly on your own. Furthermore, the paper documentation for the voice-prompt interface is flat-out wrong in several areas, giving incorrect values for options (a problem that I believe stems from a mismatch between the firmware revision on the box and the version the docs were written for).

After having to reset the box several times – it’s possible to get it into a basically un-configurable state by switching it into bridge mode, when combined with the poorly-document voice prompt – I began writing up notes on the ‘right’ order to change the 2102 from gateway to statically-addressed, internal mode.

To do it, you’ll need a laptop or other computer with an Ethernet port that you can disconnect from your home LAN. (You definitely don’t want to plug the 2102 into your LAN un-configured, since out of the box it acts as a DHCP server.)

SPA-2102 LAN Setup Notes - 2.27kB ASCII text

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