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Post new topic   Reply to topic  Vonage® VoIP Forum - Vonage News, Reviews And Discussion » Fax - Tivo - Alarms
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guero77041
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Posts: 10

PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2004 2:26 am    Post subject: my experience with faxing Reply with quote Back to top

I see many posts discussing attepts to fax using Vonage. Let me tell you about my experience. I do a lot of faxing (no, I'm not a junk faxer!), and, simply put, the Vonage connection is simply not good enough for faxing.

For years I faxed using my modem. When I switched over to Vonage, I spend considerable time fiddling with the modem's fax settings, with little success. I read somewhere that faxing from PCs was unsupported, so I bought a HP LaserJet 3300 multifunction device. No improvement.

During my tribulations I was sending faxes through my eFax account. While the per-page fees can seem excessive, they may acctually be competitive compared to paying for a no-frills POTS line for faxing.

If faxing was the only data connection I needed, eFax may have been the solution to the problem. But I also need to make a modem data connection at least twice a day (no the service does not have an IP based solution). Whereas the fax service can be duplicated, the data service cannot, and this is why I gave up and finally got a plain-jane POTS line for my fax and data connections.

Some users have been able to improve fax performance by reducing connection speed and disabling error correction. While this may work for someone who only faxes occasionally, I don't think this is a viable solution for those of us who do a fair amount of faxing. First, newer fax machines can connect at speeds up to 33600 baud, whereas with you'll be lucky to connect reliably at 9600. By transmitting faster you'll free up both your and your client's lines sooner. Second, error correction features really do make the fax come out nicer on the other end.

So, my advice to anyone who does any significant amount of faxing is to keep an analog voice line.
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garys_2k
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Joined: May 05, 2004
Posts: 183

PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

YMMV. I believe there is a codec being developed specifically for putting fax data over Voip lines but it's not finalized yet. Once that's done I imagine all the larger Voip players will include it.

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ckoehncke
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Posts: 104

PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Fax has been in decline now for a number of years though clearly it has it's place.

The Voip protocol for fax is T.38 and BOTH the sending and receiving end must support this. Unfortunately, inexpensive MTA's typical don't support T.38 and even if it did depending on how and where the call is routed, there is no guarantee that the remote end supports T.38.

Thus Vonage and others typical resort to using the G.711 protocol (effectively clear channel comunications). G.711 generally works well EXCEPT it transmits at a full bore ~ 90 kbps. If your uplink doesn't support this speed on a consistent basis -- you'll find difficulties in sending or receiving faxes.
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garys_2k
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PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Ah, yes, T.38 was what I was thinking of, thank you. I didn't realize both ends had to use it, either (thus making it mostly useless until it's likely both ends are using VoIP).

I agree that fax is declining, but for some things it's still in heavy use. I remember at one of my house closings the lawyers had to fax a bunch of stuff to another party right away. As a stand alone method of mostly duplicating printed graphics it's not an entirely bad way to go. I wish it could be replaced, but I guess that's not likely.

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BATBAT1
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2004 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I have started to use eFax (Free to receive) to receive ALL my fax's with, This has been really GREAT. But they charge a fee to send.. I have not found any thing good to send.. I receive more I send, MY G85 does not have any setting to force the 9600 baud.. So it takes seveal tries using the *99 to send..

IT would be great if there was a fix.. I only send 1-2 fax a month so a fee any more then $2-3 would be to much..

BAT
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ckoehncke
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Joined: Jan 31, 2004
Posts: 104

PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2004 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

In terms of T.38 and BOTH ends ...

T.38 is basically a method for encapsulating fax data packets, sending them over IP and managing flow control between for the fax.

T.38 MUST be supported by BOTH the MTA (our Vonage Motorola and/or Cisco device) AND the gateway. In the case of Vonage, this gateway is where your call is handed from the IP network back to the traditional PSTN network.

Thus fax machines themselves have no clue about T.38.

Despite the relative slow speed of fax transmission, this older technology made extensive usage of the fact that all telephony networks have strict synchronization rules (they're all effectively on the same clock).

It's amazing to me that Vonage would advertise their service specifically for fax transmissions when the Cisco ATA doesn't support T.38 AND recognizing the many interop problems that fax bring in a Voip setting.
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dzuspann
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Joined: May 03, 2004
Posts: 14
Location: Grand Rapids, MI

PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2004 9:50 am    Post subject: REALTORS® still using fax a lot Reply with quote Back to top

I am a REALTOR® and faxes are a still a big part of our business. I use pdf files when I can but others do not. The fax part of Vonage is not 100% reliable and that is unacceptable when an offer or counter offer has to get thru.

I can receive a little better than I can send. I will say that sending and receiving from win fax works pretty good. But still not good enough for business purpose.
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AD8BC
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Joined: Apr 16, 2004
Posts: 35
Location: Grand Rapids, MI

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2004 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Hello again Caledonia!

I had the same fax issues, I tried in vain to get my faxmodem working. I finally said to he|_|_ with it and ordered a local e-fax line. I don't fax much but even at 12 bucks or so a month, considering all I am saving by switching to Vonage, it is more than a bargain. Of course, at 10 cents a page, e-fax may not be cost-effective for a REALTOR®.

-- Bill in Grandville
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Shadaxx
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Joined: Feb 28, 2004
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2004 1:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

All:

Here is a good discussion on Voip and faxing at DSL reports.

Please read :

http://www.dslreports.com/forum/remark,10331340~mode=flat

Check it out. decent info.
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trsands
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2004 1:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Should I assume that everyone who is having problems with faxing are either paying the extra $9.99/mo for a Residential plan or on a Business plan?
Also, if you are not paying for fax service with Vonage, you truely cannot fax anything over the line?

Thanks, Tom
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