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pjbreen
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 28, 2006 10:33 pm    Post subject: Line in use function not working on AT&T 4 line Reply with quote Back to top

I'm using the ATT 4 line small business phones. I have three business lines through Vonage connected in a small office with 5 of those phones. Before Vonage, if someone else was on line 1 and I picked up the phone it automatically went to line two, or if line 1 was in use and a new call came in you just had to pick up the handset and it automatically picked up line two.

Now with Vonage, it doesn't recognize when line 1 (or 2 or 3) is in use. If I pick up the phone when line 1 is in use, I cut in on the conversation. Anyone have experience with this? Is there any way to make it function properly? Thanks for any input.


Last edited by pjbreen on Wed Aug 30, 2006 3:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Steve48
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 29, 2006 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I assume that the phones are working properly with all lines except with respect to the issue you've described. Is this correct?

This is strictly an off the wall guess, but we had some discussion awhile back about polarity issues when wiring in Vonage adapters. Basically, the polarity gets swapped when you plug a Vonage adapter into the building's phone wiring using an ordinary cord run to an ordinary wall jack. Could this be happening to you and would it perhaps cause your phones to behave the way that you're seeing?

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pjbreen
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Thanks for the reply.

Phones are functioning perfectly in all other respects.

I don't have them plugged into the building wiring. I have a cable modem coming in, and then I had my network wiring guy run a patch panel from one central location to each desk.

I did some more searching here and found one old post with someone having the same problem. They thought it was related to the voltage on the line. They said on a regular line, the voltage is much higher when the line is in use than when it isn't. I guess this is what the telephone uses to detect which lines are in use. I don't know if it's the same for Vonage with respect to higher voltage when in use. To be honest, this is getting a little over my head. I wouldn't know how to go about checking the voltage when in use vs. not in use. I'm impressed w/ myself just to have Voip working.

The old thread never figured out a fix for the problem, but the reasoning behind it seemed logical.

Would anyone know how to test voltage on a line? Or have any tips on where to go from here? I can provide any additional info needed from my end.
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pjbreen
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

And Steve, not to rule out your suggestion, do you know how I would go about testing the polarity? And how I would know if it's reversed from where it should be?

Thanks.
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pjbreen
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I found this on ATT site:

Problem
Why does the Line in Use indicator not light when an extension is in use?

Solution(s)
The phone you have may not show other phones in use. Some phones will only show "Line in use" if that phone is being used. Please check your user's manual for information on how this feature works. If your phone should indicate "Line in Use" when an extension phone is in use: This feature works by sensing the line voltage that is provided from your local telephone company. When someone picks up an extension phone the line voltage drops and the "line in use" indicator will turn on. If the line voltage does not drop enough, the "line in use" indicator will not come on. The line voltage needs to drop to 7-9 volts for this feature to operate properly. There is nothing wrong with the phone. You can contact your local Telephone Company for assistance with this problem.



So it looks like my problem is the voltage. Does anyone know if a Vonage line in use drops to 7-9 volts?
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Steve48
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Just to be clear about the previous post you found, the normal situation with phone lines is that the voltage is high when the phone is not in use and low when it is. This is true for both regular lines and Vonage lines.

The Vonage adapters are designed to simulate normal phone lines as closely as possible. I haven't actually measured the voltage with the phone in use, but the indicator on my own 2 line desk phone does function properly with Vonage.

To measure voltage polarity, the easiest thing is to buy or borrow a voltmeter. When the positive and negative probes from the meter are connected across a pair of wires, the meter will deflect properly if the positive probe is on the positive wire, and will deflect the wrong way otherwise. (Digital meters will display the sign directly.) The normal polarity is for the green wire to be positive (green-red pair) or for the white/blue to be positive (white/blue- blue pair).

The voltmeter will also tell you whether you're getting the expected drop. Your network wiring guy can probably help you with these tests. One thing you might want to try is to plug a plain vanilla phone into line 1 and see if, with it in use, the multi-line phones detect that.

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pjbreen
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Hi Steve,

Yes, I realized I had the voltage drop backwards after reading that snippit from the ATT site.

Thanks for the help so far. I'll pick up a voltmeter and try the tests you suggest.

I'll report back if I find any way to fix it.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I'll look forward to it. This is an interesting problem.

Don't forget that bit about doing some tests with a simple phone. If you happen to be able to lay your hands on a really old one, that would be ideal.

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pjbreen
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2006 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Tests so far:

Polarity seems to be correct. All voltages have + signs when connecting the positive lead to the green wire. On hook voltages are a steady 49.1 to 49.4 and line in use voltages are more varied, but average in the 4.7 to 5.4 range.

So based on everything I've read so far, I'm surprised my line in use function is not working properly. ATT site said voltage had to drop to at least 7-9 volts, mine is dropping a little more than that. Polarity seems correct. I'm puzzled. At least everyone in the office is now used to pressing the button for each line before picking up.

Last test I have not tried yet is connecting an old phone. I'll get to that one soon.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2006 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Sounds like you're doing all the right things. Please keep us posted with the "old phone" test.

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