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michael_lucid
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Joined: Oct 14, 2004
Posts: 2
Location: Chicago, Illinois

PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2004 8:28 am    Post subject: Vonage Newbie needing clarification Reply with quote Back to top

Greetings!

I am excited about the prospect of getting this at home, but I'd like some clarification on some points. I scoured the forum, but only found many conflicting reports, so I thought I would start fresh!

I have Comcast Cable for my internet, which I have going to a surfboard modem, out to a 4 port Linksys router (wired) and then out to the computers. I am not using a server, as each computer gets it's Its IP when it boots up (the router is the DHCP server)

If I get Vonage, and it goes inline in front of the router (i.e. modem---vonage box---my router---computers) will this hose up the binding Comcast has to the MAC addressof my router? I don't mind changing it, but comcast charges for multiple computers.

I'm also concerned about port forwarding...I presume the Vonage router only has 1 ethernet port, which I would then patch to my router....does the Vonage box have port forwarding? Or can I have it as a pass through and still have my router do all of the work?

Has anyone had any luck getting a certain number? I know you can choose your area code, but if I want to get a "business type" number, like a XXX-1000, XXX-5200, is this possible?

I would go for the residential basic plan, which does not include fax service, however I've heard you can still use a fax anyway. Is this true?

And just for kicks, is there a way to setup your voicemail via your computer so you can have a clearer sounding greeting than just talking into your phone? I work in the sound realm, and I'd liek to ahve a unique effects laden greeting.

Any other issues you think I should be made aware of?

Thanks so much!
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temproductions
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Joined: Feb 01, 2004
Posts: 54
Location: Castle Rock, Colorado

PostPosted: Sun Oct 17, 2004 12:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
If I get Vonage, and it goes inline in front of the router (i.e. modem---vonage box---my router---computers) will this hose up the binding Comcast has to the MAC addressof my router? I don't mind changing it, but comcast charges for multiple computers.


Yes, that would mess with things a bit on Comcast's end. I have Comcast too, and a close friend of mine works for Comcast, and explained it quite well once. You can always clone the MAC address that Comcast is using to authenticate you into their network (the MAC of your router, in your case), and spoof that MAC in your Vonage adapter, but the easiest thing to do will be to put the Vonage adapter behind the router, just like any other computer. Additionally, this will simplify how your router is assigning IP address via DHCP. The Vonage adapters will default to look for their IP as a DCHP client, so you would just plug the Vonage adapter into your router, and immediately have dialtone without really having to configure anything.

Quote:
I'm also concerned about port forwarding...I presume the Vonage router only has 1 ethernet port, which I would then patch to my router....does the Vonage box have port forwarding? Or can I have it as a pass through and still have my router do all of the work?


As far as the number of ethernet ports, it depends on which Vonage adapter you end up getting. If you get the Motorola, it has 2 ethernet ports, although it's a hassle to use them both if the MTA is plugged into a router... Long story.

I really think for simplicity sake, you'd be happier just plugging the Vonage adapter into your router, and let your router continue to handle port forwarding, etc. The MTA does have an HTML interface you can log into and configure several parameters, but it's not as flexible as your router will be in a lot or aspects.

Quote:
Has anyone had any luck getting a certain number? I know you can choose your area code, but if I want to get a "business type" number, like a XXX-1000, XXX-5200, is this possible?


I can only speak as a residential plan customer; as far as I can tell, the numbers are completely randomly selected, and you pretty much just get what comes out of the pool. Much like getting a cell phone, in most cases. I'd be surprised if Vonage has a heck of a lot of control over what number you're assigned, as it usually comes from another LEC (phone company), and in most markets, Vonage likely has little say what number you get. Bottom line on that one, I wouldn't count on being able to request any specific numbers, outside of selecting your area code and prefix.

Quote:
I would go for the residential basic plan, which does not include fax service, however I've heard you can still use a fax anyway. Is this true?


Basically, the two residential plans are very similar. The simple way to explain it would be like this: The $14.99 plan includes 500 minutes per month to call whoever you want in North America (USA & Canada). If you use more than 500 minutes, it's $.03 per minute additional. The $24.99 plan includes unlimited minutes to call anyone in North America (USA & Canada).

They both include the same features: Voicemail, caller ID, call conferencing, call waiting, etc. The calling features are exactly the same bewteen the two rate plans.

Quote:
And just for kicks, is there a way to setup your voicemail via your computer so you can have a clearer sounding greeting than just talking into your phone? I work in the sound realm, and I'd liek to ahve a unique effects laden greeting.


I have a recording studio too, and I've wondered the same thing. To my knowledge, there is no way to record your outgoing greeting besides just using the telephone, as with most voicemail systems. I could well be wrong, you might search this forum for a better answer. If you find one, share it with me!

Quote:
Any other issues you think I should be made aware of?


Since you're using Comcast like I am, I can honestly tell you that you'll likely have no troubles with the service. Every once in a while, my router will lock up, and I'll have no dialtone.. stuff like that. Not Vonage's fault.

Sometimes when I'm uploading a file, or sending an email with an attachment, if I'm on the phone at the same time, the person I'm talking to will notice that I sound a little choppy for a few seconds. It usually clears itself up after a few seconds. As you know, Comcast doesn't give us a huge amount of upload bandwidth, so stuff like that will occasionally happen.

Hope that helps! I've been on board with Vonage since nearly the beginning. I have had all of their hardware adapters except the new Linksys PAP2, which if you haven't ordered yet, is likely what you'll receive (http://www.linksys.com/products/product.asp?grid=33&prid=651). I started with the original Cisco unit, which I LOVED. I moved on to the Motorola, which I don't like as much. I have my Linksys on order now, which I am hoping is better than the Motorola. I expect it's probably pretty good, since Cisco owns Linksys. Surprised

There ya go. Let us know if you can think of any more questions. My opinion: If you order the service, you probably won't regret it. The features are way better than what you get with a POTS line (Plain Old Telephone System)!

Take care,

Russ
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genevish
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Joined: Oct 20, 2004
Posts: 3
Location: Atlanta, GA

PostPosted: Tue Oct 19, 2004 10:15 pm    Post subject: Re: Vonage Newbie needing clarification Reply with quote Back to top

michael_lucid wrote:
I have Comcast Cable for my internet, which I have going to a surfboard modem, out to a 4 port Linksys router (wired) and then out to the computers. I am not using a server, as each computer gets it's Its IP when it boots up (the router is the DHCP server)

If I get Vonage, and it goes inline in front of the router (i.e. modem---vonage box---my router---computers) will this hose up the binding Comcast has to the MAC addressof my router? I don't mind changing it, but comcast charges for multiple computers.


This is exactly the same setup I have. I have the Vonage MTA behind the router, as temproductions suggests. I used the info in this post to setup port forwarding to better handle high bandwidth use. I just changed it tonight, so I can't confirm whether it really does anything or not yet, although I did check my Vonage voicemail while doing a DSL speed test and it sounded fine (and my speed still clocked in at better than T1 speeds).

-Scott
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Las_Vegas
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Joined: Sep 06, 2004
Posts: 46

PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2004 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Connecting the adapter after your router requires setting Port Forwarding in your router for the few UDP addresses (53, 69, 5060, 5061, 10000-20000) and fortunately doesn't interfere with other port forwarding you're using with the computers.

Yes. You can FAX with a single line. It's a good idea to use a 2 conductor phone line from the adapter and pass it through a DSL filter in reverse before it feeds into the house wiring. I did use the 2 conductor wire, but not the DSL filter. It works for me fine.

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Las_Vegas
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Laureltn
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Joined: Aug 19, 2003
Posts: 220

PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2004 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

We've got Comcast too. I've had all three adapters -- started with the Cisco behind the router with ports forwarded. When we got the Motorola, I really wanted the QOS so we put it in front. A lot of other folks had problems with their networks going down when the Moto was in front, but ours was always very solid and rarely needed reset.

We've recently migrated to the Linksys MTA, also in front of our Linksys router. I know just enough about this stuff to be dangerous, I'll admit. but I just checked the network connection for this computer, running off the router behind the MTA, and it is showing it's assigned by DHCP with the typical address, ending in .100. I just powered up my notebook and it's grabbing .102 wirelessly, again assigned by DHCP. We've also never received any notification from Comcast that we're violating anything.

The Linksys adapter is slightly different. It's got the two phone jacks and three ethernet ports.
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