Cloud Telephony: High Availability with sipXecs

My world was shaken a little when Amazon’s Elastic Computing Cloud or EC2 collapsed two weeks ago, temporarily closing the doors on such sites as Quora, Reddit, FourSquare, and  others.

The trigger appears to have been a mysterious network event that occurred at Amazon’s “USA-EAST-1” availability zone, leading to delays in Amazon’s EBS and eventually bringing the show to a stop.

If you are not familiar with AWS—oh sorry, Amazon Web Services—and its terminology then most of the accounts in the news may have left you more, not less, anxious about the state of cloud computing.

Because I recently completed a DIY project (see reference below) in which I tested a very intriguing open-source SIP comm server called sipXecs (pronounced sipX, the ecs is silent) in Amazon’s EC2, my free-floating cloud concerns now settled on cloud telephony.Continue reading

A Peek at Cloud Telephony: SIPfoundry’s sipXecs

My curiosity got the better of me.  While I’m completely content to use turn-key cloud telephony–OnSIP, in my case—the lure of DIY telecom is sometimes too enticing to resist.

This led me to SIPfoundry’s sipXecs, an open-source PBX that many are using instead of an on-premises metal-based solution.

SIPfoundry has grand goals for open VoIP solutions. They are an independent non-profit that hopes to promote “free and unencumbered” telephony. Which is another way of saying their sipXecs PBX software is 100% standards based. So if enough companies, small and large, install sipXecs on their servers, we can all communicate via SIP over the Internet and not pay a dime in per minute charges.

I thought I’d experiment with sipXecs to see what all the shouting was about.Continue reading