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asgllc
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 6:29 pm    Post subject: Setup Help: 4 Vonage V-Portals with 4 4-Line AT&T 974 Ph Reply with quote Back to top

I operate a business from my home with 4 desks and 4 phone sets. I currently have AT&T phone service (POTS) with AT&T DSL.

We have 4 AT&T 974 Model 4-Line phones. They are currently setup with Call Forward/No Answer so that calls will roll from the main number to the three alternate numbers. This is a feature provided by AT&T.

My lines come into the office on a single Cat5 line to a wall jack. I replaced a 2-Pair phone jack with a 4-Pair RJ45 Leviton jack. I then run a Cat5 patch cable to a Leviton 4x4 Breakout Module for each phone. The sequence is wall jack/cable/breakout module/cable/breakout module/cable...and so on. The phones then plug into the breakout modules with one AT&T cord for line1/line2 and another cord for line3/line4. Systems works fine now with the AT&T POTS setup.

I have 4 Vonage V-Portals/Model VDV21-VD. I have an AT&T 2Wire Wireless Router with 4 wired ports and wireless capability. I also have a Linksys Network Hub that I can use in the setup if necessary.

I will want to set up one of my numbers as the main number with Vonage. I will also want to have calls roll to my other 3 lines if not answered on the main number. Voicemail would be activated on the 4th line if not answered at all. I believe that I will have to have all 4 lines/numbers under one account with Vonage to do so. I don't know why they sold me 4 V-Portals if they are two-line portals. I assume I could have gotten by with 2 2-Line V Portals.

Is there an adapter that could convert my 4 phone lines coming out of my 4 V-Portals back into a Cat5 jack? I think I could easily engineer one using a retrofit jack or "biscuit". I have plenty of Cat5 and RJ11 and RJ45 jacks and plugs.

If someone could recommend an ideal solution that'd be great.
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DLevenson
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

What you want is usually called a 'harmonica' adaptor. You need one that connects four single-line jacks to a single 4-pair jack, and then you need four modular patch cables. Adaptors like this can probably be found at Sandman (www.sandman.com) or at Hello Direct (www.hellodirect.com).

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butterman
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

This is separate from your actual problem, but you don't have to use all 4 V-Portals. You can transfer lines online to consolidate and only have to use 2. Then just keep the other two if one of the two you activley use ever dies.

Log in to your Vonage account and go to the Add-ons tab.

Then use the Move a number to consolidate your 4 lines on to 2 devices.

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asgllc
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Appreciate everybody's help so far. I've ordered a "harmonica" and a spare in case something goes wrong with one I can quickly switch over.

I will also take your advice and use two V-Portals and keep one or two as a spare.

I will report back with results after I've installed everything and tested it because my specific situation seems to a fairly common setup for small business.

Thanks.
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