SIP, Unified Communications Apps & Cloud Communications Forum
29-2014 - Issue #259
Unified Communications Apps & Cloud Communications Forum provides
thought leadership on SIP, Unified Communications Apps, Lync CEBP Apps,
Cloud Communications, OTT-Over The Top Apps
from SIP Trunk Providers, Network Providers, Microsoft, Facebook,
Google, Apple and other Communications, Mobile, Contextual-Intelligence
and other communications companies.
Lync is a trademark of the Microsoft Corporation.
1350+ Companies & CEOs in
450+ in UC/Lync alone
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prevent your organization from such attacks at the network perimeter,
the security filter for the Microsoft Lync Server 2010, Edge Server
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the SIP, UC Apps & Cloud Communications Forum
News released its Top-10 apps for surviving college (click on graphic
for list). Guess which UC app made on the list and it wasn't
Lync. It was Skype. Now if you have any sense of belief
that what you will learn in college will "stick with you"
latter, guess who wins at least in the simple mind of college
students. This is yet one more reason why Microsoft sees Skype
as their leading UC app.
Speaking of apps, any kinds of apps, email me your 1-5 top fav apps
of anything and will keep it anonymous and compile a list of
them. You can also include your kids and others you think are
cool apps. Click
here to email.
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This is a special edition from
AudioCodes to help you gain insights for their solutions and thought
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AudioCodes Company Blog.
Using the SBC Configuration Wizard:
Interview with Michael Williams Click here
Voice is Coming to LTE Click here
Are IP Phones Doomed? Click here
you have any comments, please send them to email@example.com
Gartner: Cisco v. Lync
I attended a great webinar by
Gartner - click
on image for all the slides. While I don't
think their "quadrants" have any real value as they are
just too vague. However, here are a few slides that are of
great value in your UC evaluation. Dan O'Connell was the
presenter and please note that the presentation was really about cloud
UC, however, from all my own research I agree with him that Lync is
still a DIY project but users love its features and Cisco is a solid
PBX platform but users hate Jabber.
be shy if you have any comments or want to do your own OPED, please
send them to firstname.lastname@example.org
Office 365 Gets Compliance
a long-term fan of Actiance, this new app keeps them on the leading
edge of social media compliance. Actiance released its governance
Microsoft Office 365, including Exchange Online and Lync
now allows organizations to capture, monitor, archive and review
Exchange Online emails and Lync Online instant messaging This means
for regulated companies, FINRA, SEC, FERC, and other agency
regulations require supervisory and recordkeeping capabilities for
real-time communication channels. "But this is also
becoming a growing concern for non-regulated companies," said
Kris Vann, Information Governance Counsel at Actiance.
"Cases are going beyond email now. IM and social forum
communications are increasingly showing up in lawsuits around
employee harassment, discrimination, product liability, defamation,
breach of contract and other types of civil litigation.
Companies have eDiscovery obligations to capture, collect and
preserve IM and forum content when litigation is
imminent. In certain circumstances the duty to supervise
arises even earlier."
archiving capabilities are available on native Office 365 Lync
Online, but there are major gaps that make it insufficient for
meeting governance requirements for most organizations. Greg
Buckles, founder and research consultant for the eDJ Group, explains
that "Lync Online IMs are stored in individual user mailboxes
rather than to the Lync archiving database. Users can disable
IM conversation history. There is no centralized management
functionality to monitor or ensure tamper-proof protections for IMs
or file transfers."
Governance Platform helps organizations meet supervisory,
recordkeeping and eDiscovery obligations for Office 365 for both
Exchange Online and Lync Online. To improve their governance of
Office 365, organizations can useVantage to monitor
communications to identify business critical content needing to be
retained, and scan for compliance events needing review by a
supervisor. They can then archive email and IM
in Alcatraz, the first context-awareTM cloud archive,
a repository for all their critical communications, which reduces the
cost of eDiscovery by uniquely displaying dynamic social content in
context. Actiance ensures chain of custody through tamper-proof
capture and archiving to a WORM-compliant repository.
compliance is on the rise as a must-have for more and more
companies. Even if you are not required you should have this
kind of solution because it can literally save you a fortune in legal
fees when that unexpected law suit emerges. If you look through
Actiance's solutions you will find they have a full suite of tools to
CYA now and in the future.
CDN REST - More Intense UC
companies seek to become 'digital enterprises,' many are faced with
the challenge of omni-channel marketing and content distribution: delivering
content to Web browsers, mobile and tablet browsers, and even in-car
systems, for example. While dreams of 'mashups' in the past sought to
deliver programmer-friendly ways of accessing cleaned, tidy data over
standard Web protocols, that technology doesn't seem to have rolled
out to the market beyond early prototypes popular at conferences -
after all, who says 'mashup' any more? Contentful is bringing an
interesting, RESTful, public cloud API approach to content
Contentful is solving with a RESTful API approach to the content
management problem. Delivered as SaaS, they layer on runtime services
like CDN and A/B testing and gaining adoption from such big names as
Nike, Playboy, Axel Springer, Viacom and Hyundai.
a REST fan, I think they are on the right track. However, I am
waiting to hear back from them with more details.
One Last Look Serious Call
issued a great and serious 32-page white paper on call QoS. You
may have hated the telephone company in managing your telephone calls
but at least you could blame them when the CEO's call went
south. Now you are responsible and you may lose your job when
the call goes south and you have no idea why. In my SIP class, there
are more than 40 reasons why calls can fail and reasons why and you
will need to know all of them and have your own tools. Here is
a good start.
"There are a number of VoIP management solutions available in
today's market place. However, when you start to drill-down into the
capabilities of these tools they tend to focus on the performance
elements of your network infrastructure and associated VoIP metrics
(e.g. RTT, RTD/Latency, Packet Loss, Jitter, Moss, R-Factor etc.),
assumptions are made on infrastructure and fault management being in
place, so it is vitally important to assess the complete picture of
your solution requirement before selecting the choice of tool to be
deployed. VoIP monitoring lies central to this, as VoIP downtime and
poor VoIP performance directly impacts such things as business
performance, profitability and revenue. Achieving a consistent level
of quality on VoIP calls requires multiple dependent components working
properly, thus the importance of a monitoring system that correlates
the infrastructure, performance, and fault management into an
view is vital.
In order to
manage a VoIP solution End-to-End you need to monitor the hosting
environment, (e.g. CUCMs, V.Rec, V.Mail, V.Gateways, SIP Trunks,
etc.) the WAN (e.g. CE Access Routers, Core WAN if you're an
ISP\MSP), and the end-user locations. It is then vital that you
on-board the identified components to best-practice processes in
order that you start to build up the End-to-End visibility of your
VoIP managed service solution. Once the physical device component
infrastructure has been on-boarded and tested (e.g. SNMP trap, syslog
collection, Netflow, etc.), for accuracy around the fault and event
management, you can then build your performance measurements and
reporting requirements based on Service Level Agreements (SLAs), Key
Point Indicators (KPIs), and threshold alarm management criteria for
proactive management purposes. Having End-to-End visibility of
your VoIP solution is vital when troubleshooting issues and potential
problem areas, as assuring a great customer experience can no longer
be assessed simply by having green LEDs on a dashboard. StableNet® is
a unified End-to-End Service Quality Management platform and
therefore, takes a customer-centric approach to the service assurance
monitoring infrastructure, performance, and fault management in a
are QoS problems and solutions not addressed by this white
paper. However, if you are serious about taking on SIP call QoS
management, then you need to know what happens when anything and I do
mean anything goes wrong and this will certainly help you when it
goes bump in the night.
One Last Look Serious Lync
Lync has never really been about serious call management. Many
Lync advocates who I am one see its potential. However, there
are many seriously features that Lync needs which is why I think you
should take a look at what Bressner is doing. One of cool
features is one I designed twenty years ago because it is not always
the first calls but how do you handle the next call
while you are on the phone. They seem to have a nice solution
to this problem.
- Pickup calls for managers or colleagues
- Pickup longest ringing call
- Centrally configurable via Active Directory
- Users can be in multiple pickup groups
- Avoids interruptions
- True Busy on Busy -prevents a connect charge
- Redirect 2nd call
- 2nd call is handled when 1st call is dialing/ringing
- Accept, drop and pickup calls with 1 button
- Click-to-Dial for any selected phone number
- Call transfer with single button click
- Function keys can be freely defined
- Quick consultative and blind call transfer
- Fast call handling with hot keys
- Supports multiple call handling
- Optionally automatic contact view in CRM application
Call transfer with contact search
- Blind or consultative transfer with single button
- Convenient call completion while in consultative call with just a
designed telephone systems from ground up, like the adage "it's
the economy stupid," in this case, "it's the features
stupid." Without a serious feature call handling approach,
Lync will get dismissed as features are the key to user call
REST APIs Is Not Yet Another SBC Interface
to Avi Grabinski from AudioCodes giving us some insights on REST and
its role with Lync/SIP. He writes, "Telecom's bigger (but
younger) brother, the Internet, has developed its own set of
management interfaces (APIs), mainly SOAP and REST.
Well guess what? Similar to what happened to some telecom services
that were replaced by Web apps (for example SMS replaced by
WhatsApp), so are legacy telecom management protocols being replaced
by Web management protocols, led by REST.
REST is more than just another way to manage telecom devices. Being a
dominant API in Web technology, REST serves, among other things, as a
bridge between Web applications to telecom devices which were
previously isolated in their own 'telecom' domain.
Linking these two worlds yields new services which were not
For example, today an SBC can be connected to a CRM web application
(i.e. Salesforce.com) and allow an employee to place a call to his
customer by clicking the contact's name on the CRM web GUI (this may
also involve WebRTC).
Some words on how REST works. REST (or RESTfull API as it is
sometimes called) is used to manage and read the status of a remote
device. It uses HTTP as its transport layer and in most cases
the message payload uses 'JSON' structure.
JSON is a human-readable format, which makes it possible for anyone
to inspect these messages.
Besides the great synergy that REST brings by linking the Web and
Telecom worlds, REST in itself has important advantages over the
legacy Telecom management protocols that make the development process
easier for the 3rd parties integrating with the API. Unlike SNMP and
TR-69, REST is, as said, human-readable. Thanks to HTTP, REST easily
traverses firewalls - a problem which SNMP and CLI may face. REST
also does not require identical schemas (data structures) to run on
both managing and managed devices in order to talk to each other,
which simplify its maintenance. REST is also secure as it can run
over HTTPS while security on the legacy protocols is complex.
Lastly, REST is a stateless API unlike CLI (which is both stateful
and unstructured). REST statelessness makes it easier to implement.
AudioCodes, which has always been a firm believer in open standards,
is investing heavily in REST. Our soon to arrive next major SBC
release, will have an impressive set of REST APIs with which our
partners are already working to create innovative new
Bottom-line - As you saw above Lync has REST
at is core and now you can write REST API's that link your SBC
directly to Lync.
Lync API for SDN - Gets REST
REST has certainly got a lot of
support this year with all the major SBC providers such as Sonus,
AudioCodes and Sangoma. This means closer integration of
applications with platforms. In addition, many of the new comms
developers such as Twilio and others adding support. Then there
is the huge explosion in PAAS-platform as a service cloud providers
offering multi-vendor integration for developers. This week
Lync got into the game with their API-applications programming
interface for Lync.
This is from Jamie Stark's blog
post. "This is a big paradigm shift, and we have jumped in
with both feet. Today, we're releasing the Lync SDN API for free to
anyone with a Lync Server deployment. The API provides a REST-ful
data stream of information about media flows as they get started.
data can then be fed into an SDN controller to enlighten the network
about what needs to happen and where. We have outlined three
primary use cases for this:
- Diagnostics. By using the data from the API,
network monitoring systems can then correlate between media flows in
Lync and activities in the network that may have an impact on
- Automatically provisioning Quality of Service
(QoS). When the
controller gets information about a media flow starting up, it can
instruct the network to assign the appropriate marking to those
packets in real time.
- Orchestration. Just like it sounds, imagine all
the different instruments of the network from layer one to layer
seven all singing along in harmony. Click on the image for the
is another part of this blog post on SDN-software defined networks.
separating the low-level network functions into commodity hardware controlled
by a software-based platform.
Second, having applications inform the
software controller of their requirements of the network. This
concept started with cloud-scale data centers and has been moving
down-market as enterprise network architects realize the power of
this model. SDN's primary use case has been around ensuring
that virtual machines can be managed independently of the underlying
network fabric. Here in the Lync organization, we think that unified
communications can be a major beneficiary as well. In any UC
implementation there are dozens of network elements - from routers to
reverse proxies, intrusion detection systems to application delivery
controllers, firewalls to session border controllers - that all need
to be provisioned and configured correctly for optimal media flow.
Instead of having all of these elements configured discretely, SDN
provides a model for a single policy-based method of operations,
where the application tells the network what needs to happen."
think there are too many applications and not enough people to
understand how to sell them, use them or support them. There is
also a critical shortage of developers on all platforms. Moreover,
Lync is not the only platform that offers an exciting solution. WebRTC
and iOS apps are gaining ground and bring many exciting user-facing
multi-media solutions. Yet, having a very strong interest
in QoS-quality of service it is a great use for this API. Click
on image for my article on QoS.
Bottom-line - Whether you call it SDN-software
defined network or simply REST networking, new approaches to
CAAC-communications as a concept or rather contextual communications
are coming fast. Whether there is something more than making
the connection but making communications context to the user is
something that seems elusive though an amazing number of app try.
Today, Lyncosphere -
"Lync Visualized" is released.
image for Lyncosphere (uses Flash)
a lot of beta testing and feedback this new microsite that is
designed for indepth explanations and explorations of Lync by
providers of Lync solutions and applications.
are some view comments:
"Lyncosphere is an innovative
way to help sales, channel and end users "see" how Lync
works. This really helps me engage with customers
faster and get solutions understood by all the decision-makers."
Matt Jolly - Senior Support Engineer Vology.com
"Lyncosphere visualizes how Lync works and
helps you understand which 3rd party Lync solutions are available to
provide additional functionality to your Lync environment."
Rui Maximo - CEO Lync-Solutions.com
"This is a very good - well done indeed,
it would be of great use to both channel partners and end users
GreenPublisher, TelecomReseller/Usernews Publications - The
World's Leading News Source for Unified Communications,
Collaboration and Cloud www.telecomreseller.com
#NotOneMore - IM Voice - Broadcast
Alerts - Personal Alarms - Group Chat
the need to protect staff, students, customers, visitors and others
increases, there is a corresponding need for mobile apps to add some
level of notification and emergency communication. iPeerSafe is a personal and peer safety and social
networking alert and chatting app allowing users to add text, images
and audio recordings for iPhone, iPad or iTouch.
Personal Panic Alarm with posting text, images, color-coding
priorities and audio recordings to Facebook, Twitter, email and
Broadcast Alert with text, images, audio recordings and color-coded
highlights to all users in same school
Class Assignment feature for class work projects and collaboration as
well as teacher-student chatting
School/college peer, group, parent and global chatting
Journal-Diary - private and shareable notepads on Twitter, Facebook,
Linkedin, Instagram and Email as well as doodlepad graphics tool
Weather from local area
Calendar with more than 70 icons to indicate type of meeting and
for tips, applications and ideas.
Bottom-line - I have completed a brief
exploration of findings in research in more than 30 citations regarding
both real and online safety dealing with other persons of potentially
harmful and deadly threats including bullying and
Click here for Top-10 Tips for Personal & Peer
Safety in School, Business, Campus and Public Settings.
with a Microsoft - Unified Communications channel sales and marketing
click on image.
Click on Linkedin logo to
Security Issue - Restricting Remote Access
to Only Corporate-Issued Computers
security policies require employees to use only corporate-issued
computers to connect to the corporate network. Personal devices
aren't permitted to connect to internal resources. How can I enforce
security policies for users connecting to Lync Server from a
configuring the Security Edge Filter and Security Web Filter to block
NTLM authentication requests as well as restricting authentication
requests from only authorized Active Directory domains, the Security
Filters prevent users from connecting to Lync Server from a
non-corporate issued computer at the network perimeter.
Server when published to the Internet are susceptible to many
types of attacks. Without a solution such as the Security Edge Filter
and Security Web Filter, user accounts can easily be locked out in
Active Directory Domain Services, passwords can be brute-forced,
internal Lync Server resources can be consumed unnecessarily by DDoS
attacks, Lync meeting attendees can be hacked by cross-site scripting
(XSS) attacks, and many more attacks (SOAP, XML, etc) as shown in the
Security Edge Filter and Security Web Filters, attacks can be blocked
at the network perimeter as illustrated in the following diagram.
Tips for #Hast Tags
Click on image for complete article
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