Is this IP phone system a good deal? - Techist - Tech Forum

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Old 02-05-2006, 05:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Is this IP phone system a good deal?

Hello all,
I’m a Governor of my local school, and they’ve asked me to check up on this proposal for a new IP-based phone network to replace their normal phone system.
I’ve been given some info on it by the IT guy at the school and asked to check that it is ok, so does all this sound reasonable to people?
The network is based on a Cisco AVVID (Architecture for Voice, Video and Integrated Data) system.


School will save about £4000 a year on phone calls and line rental, and £15,000 on "telephony management" (cost of moving and changing phone extensions).

Phone travels with the person even when they move office, with all their settings saved.

Teachers can phone other teachers wherever they are.

Parents can ring teachers directly, and leave messages.

Important announcements can be broadcast to all phones (very Big Brother)

Conference calling.

What other things can this system do that maybe they haven't realised?

BT Skynet Quotation:

Unity Server:
P4 3.4GHz 80GB Sata 1GB server = £2,064

Unity Software:
Unity VM, 200 users (w/ 16 sessions, no additional users) = £6,110

Call Manager Server:
PROLIANT DL380 G4 XE-3.4 1MB 800MHz SCSI 1GB = £4,311

Voice Gateway:
2821 Voice Bundle, PVDM2-32, SP Serv, 64F/256D = £1,794

IP Communicator:
Cisco Communicator x 3 = £276

7921G IP phone x 50 = £6,500
7940 IP phone x 10 = 1,750


Maintenance (1 year)

8x5x4 maintenance (CISCO 4503) = £1,164
8x5x4 maintenance (Call Manager Server) = £1,798
8x5x4 maintenance (Unity Server) = £848

TOTAL COST = £36,600

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Old 02-05-2006, 06:25 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Yeah thats a great deal but you could give me that money and I could figure out a cheaper way but since its a school yeah cause schools got money and I hate goin to school!!!

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Old 02-05-2006, 06:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I wish somebody would just blow up all of the schools in the United States!!!

Its not like I'm learning anything anyway cause I'm as smart if not smarter than my friend and he graduated!!!
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Old 02-05-2006, 09:34 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Are you talking about VoIP?

If you are, then yeah, it's alot better than normaly phones. The VoIP phones you get have alot of very good features, voicemail, paging, holding, that cool music it plays while you put people on hold. As you said too, it end up being alot cheaper. The only downside I can think of is that you need broadband for it to work, and you need cables for each phone, and a network, and a switch to fit all the cables. Oh, and the phones arent that cheap either.
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Old 02-06-2006, 02:27 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Well it's a school with a fast internet connection already, T1 probably, so all the broadband infrastructure is already there.
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Old 02-06-2006, 02:52 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, it is great technology that i'm sure will be beneficial. But, like the old saying goes, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Think about all of the older teachers that are used to the standard phone systems. When you throw this new technology at them they will be absolutely shell shocked.

If it fits your budget and the integration won't be difficult, I'd say go for it. Communication is key these days...
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Old 02-06-2006, 09:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Where I work just installed a network very similar to that late last year. We have the Cisco 7940 phones with the Unity software.

They have it setup so that when someone calls and leaves us a message, an email pops up in our inbox with a wave file attached. That kind of blows, because my inbox is typically pretty full anyways.

Anyways, enough of my *****ing about the way they set it up. It's a very good system. If the phones didn't say Cisco IP Phone at the top, you would never know it.

I don't know much about the backend, though, and what they had to do to make that work. What I do know is that they used at least some of the existing network. By that I mean, I had one existing data outlet in my cubicle. The IT people came by, plugged a new Cat 5e cable into it, plugged the other end into the Cisco phone. There was a second data outlet on the phone, so they hooked the existing cable from that to my computer.
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Old 02-06-2006, 04:44 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for that hilowe. I'm getting the idea that it's worthwhile, once I find out a bit more about exat costs.

What about security though? Any chance it will get hacked, and if so what would that do?

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