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mazilo
From Mazilo
Premium
join:2002-05-30
Lilburn, GA
kudos:4

[Equipment] Build Your Own PBX Under US$16

I thought to pass along the following information to those who are interested in building an inexpensive PBX system.

Currently, J&R is having a great sale on a PogoPlug POGOV4A101 $15.99 (after $14 instant rebate) until 01/28/13. What I don't know is if it comes with a FREE S/H to any US address. At any rate, ArchLinux has some information on how to hack this device to run its OS that has both Asterisk and FreeSWITCH. This device is powered by a Marvell Kirkwood ARM processor clocked @800MHz with 128 / 128 MB RAM / NAND, an SD slot, a SATA port, and a Gigabit Ethernet port.
--
don't and stop are the ONLY two 4-letter words considered offensive to men, but not when used together.



jjoshua
Premium
join:2001-06-01
Scotch Plains, NJ
kudos:3

Less powerful than a dockstar. Is this thing useful at any price?


mazilo
From Mazilo
Premium
join:2002-05-30
Lilburn, GA
kudos:4

said by jjoshua:

Less powerful than a dockstar. Is this thing useful at any price?

The CPU on a Seagate Dockstar is clocked @1.2GHz. If one has an intention to build an Asterisk PBX System, I believe this device is powerful enough to drive several concurrent calls.

One can always spend about US$40 to get GoogleTV (an Android 4.x OS) on a USB stick powered by a Rockchip RK-3066 dual-core Cortex A9 CPU clocked @1.6GHz + 1 GB RAM and turn it into a PBX System.
--
don't and stop are the ONLY two 4-letter words considered offensive to men, but not when used together.


crazyk4952
Premium
join:2002-02-04
united state
kudos:1
Reviews:
·CenturyLink
·Vitelity VOIP
·Charter
·Callcentric
reply to mazilo

said by mazilo:

I thought to pass along the following information to those who are interested in building an inexpensive PBX system.

Currently, J&R is having a great sale on a PogoPlug POGOV4A101 $15.99 (after $14 instant rebate) until 01/28/13. What I don't know is if it comes with a FREE S/H to any US address. At any rate, ArchLinux has some information on how to hack this device to run its OS that has both Asterisk and FreeSWITCH. This device is powered by a Marvell Kirkwood ARM processor clocked @800MHz with 128 / 128 MB RAM / NAND, an SD slot, a SATA port, and a Gigabit Ethernet port.

This price does not include free shipping. Looks like S&H charges are about $6 for a U.S. address for super saver shipping.

mazilo
From Mazilo
Premium
join:2002-05-30
Lilburn, GA
kudos:4

said by crazyk4952:

This price does not include free shipping. Looks like S&H charges are about $6 for a U.S. address for super saver shipping.

So, it really isn't a sweet deal at all.
--
don't and stop are the ONLY two 4-letter words considered offensive to men, but not when used together.


mgraves1
Premium
join:2004-04-05
Houston, TX
kudos:1
reply to mazilo

Sure, it can handle a few calls. Years ago people, including myself, used Soekris Net4801 SBCs for embedded Asterisk systems.

»www.mgraves.org/?p=1092

The 466 MHz Geode CPU could handle a decent number of calls without transcoding, only 2-3 calls being transcoded in/out of G.729.
--
Michael Graves
Houston TX
»www.mgraves.org


jobr

join:2004-10-21
Halifax, NS
reply to jjoshua

I'm running Freeswitch on an Iomega Iconnect, which has the same CPU but clocked at 1 GHz and it works just fine. Freeswitch with one call going takes less than 10% CPU time.



crazyk4952
Premium
join:2002-02-04
united state
kudos:1
Reviews:
·CenturyLink
·Vitelity VOIP
·Charter
·Callcentric
reply to mazilo

said by mazilo:

said by crazyk4952:

This price does not include free shipping. Looks like S&H charges are about $6 for a U.S. address for super saver shipping.

So, it really isn't a sweet deal at all.

No, sorry. I didn't mean to imply that! You had just said that you were not sure if it included free shipping or not.


VexorgTR

join:2012-08-27
Sheffield Lake, OH
kudos:1
Reviews:
·voip.ms
·Callcentric

It's weird.... does nobody have old PC's around?

I have 3-4 systems ready to be recycled that could be a PBX......

What's the obsession with running linux apps on a wristwatch, kids toy, or whatever?

My current PBX is a computer that was slated for being recycled. It was a Pentium D. I put 2 gigs of Ram in it and now it runs 3CX... hooray.



Trev
IP Telephony Addict
Premium
join:2009-06-29
Victoria, BC
kudos:6

2 recommendations

said by VexorgTR:

It's weird.... does nobody have old PC's around?

I have 3-4 systems ready to be recycled that could be a PBX......

What's the obsession with running linux apps on a wristwatch, kids toy, or whatever?

My current PBX is a computer that was slated for being recycled. It was a Pentium D. I put 2 gigs of Ram in it and now it runs 3CX... hooray.

Yeah, I can't figure out why people don't use their old 32" CRT TV as a secondary monitor... they keep buying these new LCD flat panels or inexpensive tablets instead.
--
I represent AcroVoice, a full service Canadian VoIP Provider.
Buy your Obihai ATA shipped from within Canada.

OZO
Premium
join:2003-01-17
kudos:2

2 recommendations

reply to VexorgTR

said by VexorgTR:

What's the obsession with running linux apps on a wristwatch, kids toy, or whatever?

For me it's mainly about the cost of the power, consumed 24/7. PC could easily take 250W, while that tiny computer takes around 2.5W. While in winter it's not a bad thing (I have to heat home anyway), in the summer I don't want to pay x2 (one time for the PC consumed power and second time for conditioner to cool home down from that heat). Go green, save the planet...
--
Keep it simple, it'll become complex by itself...


brg

join:2001-01-03
Chicago, IL
kudos:1

said by OZO:

said by VexorgTR:

What's the obsession with running linux apps on a wristwatch, kids toy, or whatever?

For me it's mainly about the cost of the power, consumed 24/7. PC could easily take 250W, while that tiny computer takes around 2.5W. While in winter it's not a bad thing (I have to heat home anyway), in the summer I don't want to pay x2 (one time for the PC consumed power and second time for conditioner to cool home down from that heat). Go green, save the planet...

For many of us it's both. My personal "production" PBX is on a cast-off PC very much like VexorgTR describes. Bulletproof. Then, I tinker with embedded devices (Dockstar; the odd router; maybe a RasPi down the road) to see if I can get something that works in all respects as well as the "production" PBX PC so as to save that power. And also: to learn more about Linux, or maybe FreePBX, or raw Asterisk, or perhaps FreeSwitch...


VexorgTR

join:2012-08-27
Sheffield Lake, OH
kudos:1
Reviews:
·voip.ms
·Callcentric

You make the monitor joke, but I do still have one of those around for the server box I only need to physically visit a few times a year... otherwise it's OFF.

At the same time I hear "Go Green".... I think that re-use/recycle isn't exactly a horrible plan either. I try and minimize the tech trash, and we have a tech trash recycler that gets the rest. my "big old antique box".... that is "Eating up all those watts".... along with the furnace, lights and all the other computers we fix all add up to a 30$ electric bill. I'd say we're not exactly being wasteful with energy.



Hagar

join:2004-10-31
Sunnyvale, CA
Reviews:
·T-Mobile US
·AT&T U-Verse
reply to OZO

+1

I estimate that 1 Watt 24/365 cost me $3 a year (including the AC). Yup that is California electric prices for you.

Raspberry Pi 5W = $15/year PC 70+W > $210/year

My Linux arm based toys are basically free compared to an old PC.



VexorgTR

join:2012-08-27
Sheffield Lake, OH
kudos:1

All my electric for my whole business is about 350$ for the whole year.

Glad I live where I do....



XCOM
digitalnUll
Premium
join:2002-06-10
Spring, TX
Reviews:
·ObiVoice
·flowroute
·Comcast
·voip.ms
·Callcentric

said by VexorgTR:

All my electric for my whole business is about 350$ for the whole year.

Glad I live where I do....

Along with Pentium 4, Pentium D are one of the most inefficient processors ever built...

When you run a business from home who does not save on cost....
pfff
--
[nUll@dcypher ~]$


mgraves1
Premium
join:2004-04-05
Houston, TX
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to VexorgTR

said by VexorgTR:

What's the obsession with running linux apps on a wristwatch, kids toy, or whatever?

At least to me there is an undeniable attractive quality to appliance-like hardware for such services. This is why I have a NAS and not a file server. It's why my Logitech SqueezeServer runs on a net-top. It's why my router is a PCEngines ALIX running m0n0wall.

Low-power consumption. Low heat output. Low noise output. Runs for considerable time on an affordable UPS. Reboots to an operating state without user intervention.

What's not to like?

OTOH, there are limits. I've purchased a Dockstar but not actually used it to host anything but a hard drive.
--
Michael Graves
Houston TX
»www.mgraves.org


brg

join:2001-01-03
Chicago, IL
kudos:1

said by mgraves1:

OTOH, there are limits. I've purchased a Dockstar but not actually used it to host anything but a hard drive.

If I can get Asterisk and FreePBX up-and-running on a Dockstar, you certainly can. I got my $22 worth.


VexorgTR

join:2012-08-27
Sheffield Lake, OH
kudos:1
Reviews:
·voip.ms
·Callcentric
reply to XCOM

The shop has its own electric meter and all, so in the city's opinion, it's not an In-home business, since it's separated... but yeah, it's a big cost saver. Smaller cities are many times easier to deal with.

We've got older computers around here like litter at times, so it just makes sense to use it rather than scrap it. If the mobo has the mil-spec caps on it, it's a candidate for being re-used.

I install NAS units in tiny offices for file share purposes. The old Buffalo LinkStations come to mind since they have auto-backup to another HDD. Some of those are still in good working order after 6-7 years. As long as they keep working, they stay..... just keep old drives backed up.


mdseuss

join:2012-05-27
Worcester, MA
reply to XCOM

said by XCOM:

Along with Pentium 4, Pentium D are one of the most inefficient processors ever built...

When you run a business from home who does not save on cost....
pfff

I agree. I've got pfSense running on a Pent 3 (old Dell desktop) and was able to trim it down to about 29W (including a 40G laptop HD). This box is great since I have 4 PCI 10/100 Ethernet cards in it.

Don't toss those old P3 motherboards yet!

I am looking for an embedded alternative to run pfSense (even if only with dual Ethernet interfaces). Recommendations?

mazilo
From Mazilo
Premium
join:2002-05-30
Lilburn, GA
kudos:4

said by mdseuss:

I am looking for an embedded alternative to run pfSense (even if only with dual Ethernet interfaces). Recommendations?

Either get a router with lots of RAM / Flash or build your own using any NAS + an RJ45/USB dongle. In either case, make sure each device is supported by any Linux embedded project, i.e. OpenWRT. The PogoPlug mentioned above is one of them.

I recently acquired some Seagate GoFLEX NET devices from some Fry's Electronics stores for US$9.99 each. Also, I just purchased some of this USB 2.0 to RJ45 10M/100M Lan Ethernet Adapter for US$3.00 each. Once I receive this RJ45/USB dongles, I can easily convert my Seagate Dockstar / GoFLEX NET into a router to run OpenWRT.
--
don't and stop are the ONLY two 4-letter words considered offensive to men, but not when used together.

mdseuss

join:2012-05-27
Worcester, MA


Thanks Mazilo, I hadn't considered USB-Ethernet to add a second port to my dockstar. I love OpenWRT for lots of things but I really, really love pfSense for firewall (more than OpenWRT).

I'm going to order a few of those $3 USB/Ethernet adapters for fun!


mazilo
From Mazilo
Premium
join:2002-05-30
Lilburn, GA
kudos:4

2 edits

said by mdseuss:

Thanks Mazilo, I hadn't considered USB-Ethernet to add a second port to my dockstar. I love OpenWRT for lots of things but I really, really love pfSense for firewall (more than OpenWRT).

I'm going to order a few of those $3 USB/Ethernet adapters for fun!

I just wanted to let you know that according to this post, the performance of an RJ45/USB dongle is horrible. I have yet to find out myself. However, I believe as long as the RJ45/USB dongle is configured as WAN, that will probably reduce some of the overhead unless there will be a lot of WAN traffics.

EDIT: Beware that it takes times to ship your products from China to your premise, especially the new Chinese Spring Festival is around the corner. During this time, the Chinese will take off for a two weeks vacation, IIRC.
--
don't and stop are the ONLY two 4-letter words considered offensive to men, but not when used together.

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·callwithus
reply to mazilo

Hey, thanks for the lead on those dongles! I may need to add a Ethernet port to my Smoothwall Express box (running under Virtualbox in my Windows Home Server) and those look very good. I can see the hit on CPU usage, best to use them for low traffic subnets.


mdseuss

join:2012-05-27
Worcester, MA
reply to mazilo

For $3 and some delay, I'm not expecting much!

I'm also quite happy with my $20 TP-Link TL-WR703N units with the same low expectations. They are really small and usable when running OpenWRT. I'm using one now as an SSH-tunnel gateway to a difficult to manage network. (And running from USB provided +5V has its advantages for 'placement' over 12V devices!)

For my 'production' needs, I will buy a more capable embedded device to run pfSense. Soekris? or something like that.


mazilo
From Mazilo
Premium
join:2002-05-30
Lilburn, GA
kudos:4

said by mdseuss:

For $3 and some delay, I'm not expecting much!

OK and that's fair.

For my 'production' needs, I will buy a more capable embedded device to run pfSense.

Does OpenWRT support pfSense?
--
don't and stop are the ONLY two 4-letter words considered offensive to men, but not when used together.

hardly
Premium
join:2004-02-10
USA

1 edit
reply to mdseuss

duplicate post


mdseuss

join:2012-05-27
Worcester, MA
reply to mazilo

pfSense is a *BSD based O/S with firewall app and runs on bare metal (or VM)

So there are surely appliances that run OpenWRT and NOT pfSense but probably not the other way around.

Assuming a Soekris device uses about 9 or 10 watts, it would take 5-6 years of runtime to 'pay for itself' compared to my 29W PentIII device ... food for thought.


hardly
Premium
join:2004-02-10
USA
reply to mdseuss

said by mdseuss:

I am looking for an embedded alternative to run pfSense (even if only with dual Ethernet interfaces). Recommendations?

This may interest you:

»Re: Need advise on setting up Asterisk/PBX.

mdseuss

join:2012-05-27
Worcester, MA


Hardly,

thanks, both useful links!