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[#] Fri May 28 2010 12:27:12 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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So magic jack will be able to port numbers starting auguest 2010
So if they can port my number, It's a one time fee, and then $30/yr for all I can eat domestic. and I get to keep my white plains number.
And if I move before august, I can park my white plains number at phonenumberbank for $10 a month until I move.

[#] Sat May 29 2010 10:37:09 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Oooh! I've got an even better idea, if all you really need is to receive calls.

Get the numberbank or whatever you use to park and forward your existing number. Sign up for a free DID using IPKall, and point it to a copy of Asterisk running on your server, which is of course keeping a dynamic DNS name updated somewhere. Once the calls arrive on Asterisk you can route them to an analog phone connected to an ATA.

[#] Sat May 29 2010 18:50:36 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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I meantt o ask, so it doesn't do outgoing calls? I guess I don't need that, just to keep the number.
And where is this great service of yours, what's it called again?

[#] Sun May 30 2010 13:46:58 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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It's at and no, it doesn't do outgoing calls. If you need that ability you could sign up for for very cheap minutes with no per-month fees.

[#] Mon May 31 2010 10:09:01 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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so as a goof I hooked up ekiga to an ipkall number and in about 3 minutes is was working.
I played with asterisk for a few minutes when I realized how not trivial it is to set up and then thought about what I needed it for and realized it wasn't worth it.
I'll keep the ekiga thing around (hey it's free and easy) but what I really want is cheap phone and my 948 number so I'm going to see if the magic jack thing pans out.

[#] Mon May 31 2010 11:21:06 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Ekiga will definitely get the job done if you run it at the network edge and it can accept incoming SIP sessions.

Asterisk ... it's amazing and super powerful and super flexible but, as you've discovered there is a bit of a learning curve. For something as broad as a PBX it unfortunately has to be that way. There's an "easy" version called Trixbox but it ships as an appliance. You could run that in a VM but then you'd have to figure out how to route all of the SIP portsw from your network edge to Trixbox, which could be tough.

I've been running Asterisk on my home network for years now. It's great having my Ethernet-attached phones and the ability to do all sorts of custom features. I've got TWO numbers from IPKall. One is a number that, when called, behaves exactly like my POTS line; I use it when I call home from my cell phone, so if someone is on the phone it still rings in instead of producing a busy signal. The other is a number that goes straight to voice mail, every time. I have my cell phone configured to forward on busy or no answer to that number, effectively making my *home* voice mail system the one that is attached to my cell phone. I just didn't want another voice mail box to have to check.

[#] Mon May 31 2010 20:54:26 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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I think my interest goes as far as seeing if I can still plug my voicemodem into the magic jack so I can still use my linux box as an answering machine and fwd my voice mails to my email.

[#] Tue Jun 01 2010 00:00:11 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Supposedly you can reverse engineer the Magic Jack software and swipe your SIP credentials out of it, and then use the SIP agent of your choice to access their network. I suppose that with their 30 day free trial you could attempt that and then return it if you don't manage to get it working.

Or you could just run their software in a VM, which is what you're going to do, but I'd want to go for the 100% Completely Digital solution. It already bugs me that I get digital SIP delivered to my house via fiber, which then runs over ten feet of cable as a POTS line before getting converted right back into SIP as it enters my server.

[#] Tue Jun 01 2010 20:35:26 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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Well, it arrived today, and I plugged it in, and it installed (in the correct vm mind you) and voila a dial tone.
registered me a number in less than 5 minutes and works.
I expected at least some small hiccups because of the vm but it works so far.
I haven't seen such a seamless install of anything since 1995 or so when I installed apple's digital camera software on windows 3.1

[#] Wed Jun 02 2010 13:13:00 EDT from Peter Pulse @ Uncensored

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This is all very interesting. I am wondering a few things.. like, how does ipkall pay their expenses or make money? How do you hook up ekiga to an ipkall number, I thought ekiga was just a voip client.. don't you need a server/switch in the middle?

[#] Wed Jun 02 2010 14:48:55 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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I'm guessing you already know how settlements work, but I'll include an explanation for the benefit of those who don't. When a long distance call is placed, the originating LEC must make a micropayment to the terminating LEC to cover the cost of terminating the call. The amount of the micropayment depends upon the rate center.

The business model (or scam, if you prefer, but it's currently legal) is for CLEC's to set up shop in some rate center where the settlement micropayments for terminating calls is relatively high, and then offer services that center around receiving a high volume of calls. The most well-known are free conference call services. IPKall is another; they simply complete the incoming call by sending it back out over a SIP trunk.

Ekiga is a VoIP client, but you have to remember that with SIP there really isn't any such thing as a client. SIP is peer to peer.
When you "set it up as a client" all you're really doing is registering with a switch somewhere, telling it "when someone dials my extension, hey look I'm over here at this IP address." But if the address is static, you can easily route calls directly to it.

[#] Wed Jun 02 2010 15:28:52 EDT from Peter Pulse @ Uncensored

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Yes but i never thought of that as being enough money for a business model.
Which is why I'm not rich. :( And the SIP thing makes sense too. Somewhere someone must have written a simple SIP gateway, easier than asterisk, so that you can use your wifi sip handset behind NAT...

[#] Wed Jun 02 2010 18:06:36 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Well, you used to be able to use Free World Dialup as a proxy, but they don't have free accounts anymore.

As for the business model, it definitely depends on being able to work with razor-thin margins. They offer absolutely no support of any kind, and they probably already had all of the equipment already in place from whatever lines of business they were already conducting.

[#] Thu Jun 03 2010 22:17:33 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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when you use ekiga, you sign up an account with, your sip address is and when you fire up ekiga it logs into, so I think is the actual gateway and in this case the program ekiga is really just a dumb voip client, it doesn't actually function as a sip server I don't think. I could be wrong.

[#] Fri Jun 04 2010 07:53:58 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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That's true too.  And easier to configure than the way I suggested.  :)

[#] Wed Jun 09 2010 07:53:56 EDT from the8088er @ Uncensored

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I love how I only got the first 80 characters of that URL but it contained everything needed to get me to the page.

I've often thought about how these RFID chips are unsafe. I'm carrying in my wallet 4 individual RFID enabled cards that someone could probably very easily steal just by brushing up against me. When I pay for stuff using the contactless payment system thing, it doesn't ask you to sign it, enter your PIN, or anything at all. It's just ....... Approved!

[#] Wed Jun 09 2010 11:00:29 EDT from dothebart @ Uncensored

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put tinfoil in your wallet, or put the cards in a tinfoil closure.

[#] Wed Jun 09 2010 18:00:31 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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So after some testing magic jack was giving me some choppy voice, but I attirubte that to vmware more than the gizmo or software itself.
But then.... I came home one day and noticed the vm rebooted, and not cleanly. So it didn't start up again. I had to poke it to restart.
I was on a call for work (best test I can think of) and the vm crashed again.
Ok, so much for that.
So I just installed the latest virtualbox, installed xp and installed magicjack.
Hopefully vbox will fare better.

[#] Wed Jun 09 2010 20:26:13 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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wow that was horrible. The sound cuts out 50% of the time, like you get .2 seconds of audio then .2 seconds of dead.
I hope there's some way to get this working....

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