So much coverage in just one week!

For the voice project I’m working on, I believed the material in the CCNA Voice curriculum would be enough. In the past week, I have come to realize that the CCNA Voice really is all about introducing the concepts, and isn’t very heavy on the practical application of the technology. I still had many questions remaining, particularly with regards to functionality and licensing of the different hardware.

Enter CVOICE and CAPPS from the CCNP Voice curriculum. I currently do not plan to pursue the CCNP Voice certification (I said that about CCNA Voice, but this time I mean it 🙂 ), but I am so glad that I took a look at these books, particularly CVOICE, as it directly relates to what I am trying to accomplish with CUCME. It answered a lot of questions that I had remaining from CCNA Voice.

The question at the end of my previous post has been answered. What’s funny about the question is that there is pretty much only a single choice with regards to the scope of the project I am working on. The question itself demonstrates a lack of knowledge, which I now have. Having the ability to read older entries to see how I’ve progressed (even if it is just in a single week, as in this case) was one of my primary motivations for creating this blog. When I finally achieve my CCIE R/S (and beyond), I want to have a record of progression for “the quest.”

By the way, the answer to the question is the Cisco Unified Border Element functionality internal to the Cisco router. The CCNA Voice curriculum briefly mentions it, but it really doesn’t say what it is or what it does (or where it is). You must use the CUBE when connecting separate VoIP-to-VoIP networks, such as in the case of service provider’s SIP trunk. In an even earlier post, I said I was considering going with a Cisco Business Edition 3000 system. It turns out that it requires a CUBE for its SIP trunking capability, so since I need a Cisco router anyway, it is cheaper to integrate it all into one router instead of having a separate router and communications management system.

The CVOICE and CAPPS books are great because they go into much greater detail about both the theory and configuration of the different features and functionality. Like the SIP Trunking book, it was nice to read these two books while NOT in pursuit of a certification, because I didn’t have to try to memorize every detail. Additionally, about 1/3 of the CVOICE and about 3/4 of the CAPPS books didn’t apply to my current situation, so I skipped through those sections. That’s also why I didn’t take and post notes as I have for other books in the past — I didn’t read them cover to cover, only the sections I needed.

I finally have all the equipment chosen for the project. I’m currently in negotiation to acquire a subset of the total equipment to provide a prototype/demo.

Hopefully now I can pause the Voice stuff and get back to my CCNP R/S studies until the project continues. What’s so great about this experience, though, is that upon its success, I can use it as a template for future VoIP deployments, which will drastically reduce both the time to proposal and the deployment itself.