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MakeAvayaRedGreatAgain

Avaya stuff on Asterisk?

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When someone tells you "Avaya" - they think the old Nortel. 

And I am freckin jealous they have all the fun.

 

Any familiar with the UCx phone system? Some Nortel alums left and took some Asterisk distro (not sure what one) since FreePBX supported the UniSTIM protocol and guess what? You can put more than just Nortel VOIP terminals. All their digital terminals since 1988 and present (including the Norstar) can connect just fine. All you need is a gateway that has an Ethernet board and the gateway will link up with the UCx. 

 

Again why does Nortel have all the fun?

 

I don't want to see CLAN boards just disappear, as well as the legacy DCP and IP sets. This has been an assault to the original Avaya community.

 

Has anyone taken the challenge of reverse-engineering the Avaya stuff to make their own UCx killer? Protocols are totally different, and all I know is their H323 IP port is 1709. And I hate coding, so I can't assumable such thing.

 

Despite the FUD, Nortel systems will for many years to come be "alive and well". Avaya? Not so much. :(

 

Since Cisco has outpaced Avaya in 95% of the Fortune 500 and given how Avaya will emerge from bankruptcy other than their call center software that they will market, I think Avaya is really dead. So has anyone gotten deeper (other than the classic Definity thread)  with the internals of any of their "Avaya Red"/Lucent/AT&T systems?

 

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I can see about trying to get you documentation on the Avaya DCP signaling protocol if you want, but what you're talking about would take an extremely significant amount of reverse engineering and development to accomplish. Especially considering the phones themselves are essentially dumb terminals; everything that makes them unique is on the PBX. Given that Definity parts are cheap, easy to find and repair if necessary, and at least with older systems completely unlockable now, I think you'll find more motivation to extend the life of the existing systems around here.

 

And I hate coding, so I can't assumable such thing.

 

You'll probably find people to be twice as hesitant to embark on any sort of coding project if you don't like to contribute any code.

 

 

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On 9/16/2017 at 8:47 PM, ThoughtPhreaker said:

I can see about trying to get you documentation on the Avaya DCP signaling protocol if you want, but what you're talking about would take an extremely significant amount of reverse engineering and development to accomplish.

 

I'd appreciate that, hit me up via PM. Going into the Definity was a little intimidating, but that was just at the surface level.

 

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Especially considering the phones themselves are essentially dumb terminals; everything that makes them unique is on the PBX. Given that Definity parts are cheap, easy to find and repair if necessary, and at least with older systems completely unlockable now, I think you'll find more motivation to extend the life of the existing systems around here.

 

I get that point about the phones being dumb (that's why it was called "Voice Terminals" in the first place!). Yeah the parts are cheap, easy to repair (allegedly), there are other reasons why using virtualization and modern gateways could be argued. 

 

 I got my CMC box only because that individual was moving there wasn't a location where the thing could be in a proper location without a fan being blared at all times. That individual had gotten a Mitel 3300 box (from another cutover) and actually unplugged the fan modules and given the light traffic of it, it isn't a problem. But what for other folks? I don't think you can unlock CM 4x+ for say a virtual appliance and tie it to a G250/G350, etc... see use case? 

 

I guess that case could can quickly go nowhere. 


 

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You'll probably find people to be twice as hesitant to embark on any sort of coding project if you don't like to contribute any code.

 

 

 

 

And this is where I kinda not agree. I think given the very nerdy nature of "Avaya", that was how the UCx was born. If they turn things down on such ideas because one doesn't know how to code... I think they should be taught sensitivity as a mandate and learn that the rest of the world don't think like them and have to respect it.  I find people with engineering/coding backgrounds to have a very low respect for the moderate technical people (to your point above.) There needs to be a balance between the nerds and the geeks, and the nether folks too. The rest could be going off topic, so if anyone inferred that I would be the lead developer/leader of said project, it would be way up my IQ and pay scale!  

 

(Apologies for misspelling "assemble" earlier)

Edited by MakeAvayaRedGreatAgain
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I'd appreciate that, hit me up via PM. Going into the Definity was a little intimidating, but that was just at the surface level.


I'll post it here. This forum is for sharing information, not hording it.


https://openload.co/f/1ZIT1mcLD3U/system-75_atttj.zip


Long story short, there's an AT&T Technical Journal article on the System 75 - the Definity's ancestor my friend was nice enough to snap some pictures of at a university library. I won't mention them unless they specifically want me to, but it goes into a reasonable amount of depth about the Definity's hardware and software architecture. Part of what it details is the Definity's DCP protocol; the one used to communicate with the phones. It's an ISDN spinoff, long story short. Probably a variant of 5E custom. If you take a close look at the cards, you'll notice there's some Siemens PEB2075 (iirc) D-channel exchange controller ICs on them that all but confirm it's ISDN. A logic analyzer or an ISDN-specific protocol analyzer will take you a long way in figuring out the differences between this and an off the shelf basic rate interface.

 

Quote

Yeah the parts are cheap, easy to repair (allegedly)


I don't see a lot of issues with Definity cards, but usually it's just some discrete components that flaked off because of heat or mishandling. I can't claim surface mount soldering is easy, but it's doable. Especially when it's just a few capacitors or resistors that were very clearly ripped off the PCB.

 

Quote

I got my CMC box only because that individual was moving there wasn't a location where the thing could be in a proper location without a fan being blared at all times. That individual had gotten a Mitel 3300 box (from another cutover) and actually unplugged the fan modules and given the light traffic of it, it isn't a problem. But what for other folks? I don't think you can unlock CM 4x+ for say a virtual appliance and tie it to a G250/G350, etc... see use case?


Not especially, no. While I've heard a lot of things about the ICPs (am I the only person who goes out of their way to call them Insane Clown Posses? I feel like a dork for letting that crack me up), not a lot of them make me confident in their ability to behave under normal circumstances, let alone when someone takes their fans away. More to the point though, the Definity fans are off the shelf 120mm ones. You could take ten minutes to slap new ones on instead of literally endless years of soul crushing work. I had this conversation with Gewt at one point, and she suggested a pair of these: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Sanyo-Denki/9S1212L401/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMt9MS9kROxCwxJGgTye%2bJ04n%2bGQcnh6s2E%3d . While the noise level isn't currently a big issue for me (the Definity lives in my garage), the fans both use standard color codings for +5/+12 volts and ground. To be safe, maybe compare with a thermometer for about a half hour or so on both to make sure the new fans are doing what they should, but otherwise, you should have a quieter Definity in a lot less time for in all likelyhood a lot less money.

 

Quote

And this is where I kinda not agree. I think given the very nerdy nature of "Avaya", that was how the UCx was born. If they turn things down on such ideas because one doesn't know how to code... I think they should be taught sensitivity as a mandate and learn that the rest of the world don't think like them and have to respect it.  I find people with engineering/coding backgrounds to have a very low respect for the moderate technical people (to your point above.) There needs to be a balance between the nerds and the geeks, and the nether folks too.


With all due respect, you're not likely to find a lot of people supporting that belief in any sort of practice. As someone who doesn't have a serious knowledge of car engines, if I were to ask a team of mechanics to develop a custom replacement engine for me and informed them that I wouldn't be able to help them make it, even if they liked the engine, there's probably no team in the world that would take on such an effort for free. You could apply this same idea to construction, music composing, or like I said - any sort of practice that involves significant skill.


This is getting out of the realm of this topic, but on a personal note, I've seen far, *far* less UCx systems out there than I do original Norstar or BCM systems in place. The economics make much more sense in that case too; lots of nationwide store chains have Norstar key systems. Definities are more of a one-off system for mid-sized businesses and offices. The only chain users I know of off the top of my head are Nordstrom and Motel 6. In the first case, they don't show any interest in getting rid of their Definities, and are installing Auras that can support DCP phones in all their new stores. In the second, aside from attendant consoles and maybe one or two staff phones, the phones are all vanilla analog sets. If you'd like to pick up a UCx though, you can probably get one for pretty cheap from one of the Toys 'R Us stores going out of business.


That being said, please do keep in mind that this forum isn't a business, and none of us are getting paid to do this; this is all funded with money out of our pockets and with a substantial chunk of spare time out of our personal lives. When I started trying to learn out how unlock Definity processors - three years ago, I hadn't written a line of code, and had a generally much fuzzier understanding of how computers and even phone switches worked internally. Much like phreaking has continually helped me learn a lot of new skills and ideas, It's partly thanks to being able to stick with this undertaking that I was able to gain a much more solid understanding of computer software and time division multiplexing, and help make a lot of great things happen in the process, like bringing Definity service to Toorcamp and hopefully saving some PBXes from the scrap heap. As a general rule, most people who do this sort of thing are ready to help everyone else with that sort of understanding; it always leads to great things, but that readiness ends on huge projects the initiator shows no motivation to participate in. If you don't like this, well, we've already given you an ample amount of resources you'll find literally nowhere else on the internet to help you start, and some of them have been uploaded specifically for your benefit. You're welcome to expect a better response from all the other groups of people doing Definity reverse engineering.

Edited by ThoughtPhreaker
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4 hours ago, ThoughtPhreaker said:

I'll post it here. This forum is for sharing information, not hording it.


https://openload.co/f/1ZIT1mcLD3U/system-75_atttj.zip


Long story short, there's an AT&T Technical Journal article on the System 75 - the Definity's ancestor my friend was nice enough to snap some pictures of at a university library. I won't mention them unless they specifically want me to, but it goes into a reasonable amount of depth about the Definity's hardware and software architecture. Part of what it details is the Definity's DCP protocol; the one used to communicate with the phones. It's an ISDN spinoff, long story short. Probably a variant of 5E custom. If you take a close look at the cards, you'll notice there's some Siemens PEB2075 (iirc) D-channel exchange controller ICs on them that all but confirm it's ISDN. A logic analyzer or an ISDN-specific protocol analyzer will take you a long way in figuring out the differences between this and an off the shelf basic rate interface.

 

Oh already I have that, and had to go to my State Library to find it locally. I had been trying to digitize it over the last couple of years and life got in the way.

 

I had Avaya sources contact on my site that the DCP was an ISDN varient before the ISDN was finalized (a comment still is there).

 

4 hours ago, ThoughtPhreaker said:

I don't see a lot of issues with Definity cards, but usually it's just some discrete components that flaked off because of heat or mishandling. I can't claim surface mount soldering is easy, but it's doable. Especially when it's just a few capacitors or resistors that were very clearly ripped off the PCB.

 

But some boards are harder to find. 

 

4 hours ago, ThoughtPhreaker said:

Not especially, no. While I've heard a lot of things about the ICPs (am I the only person who goes out of their way to call them Insane Clown Posses? I feel like a dork for letting that crack me up), not a lot of them make me confident in their ability to behave under normal circumstances, let alone when someone takes their fans away

 

I take that to be an insult. I'm not an engineer but a professional, so I don't go and insult systems other than calling Nortel Nerdtel. That's the only line I cross..

 

Quote

More to the point though, the Definity fans are off the shelf 120mm ones. You could take ten minutes to slap new ones on instead of literally endless years of soul crushing work. I had this conversation with Gewt at one point, and she suggested a pair of these: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Sanyo-Denki/9S1212L401/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMt9MS9kROxCwxJGgTye%2bJ04n%2bGQcnh6s2E%3d . While the noise level isn't currently a big issue for me (the Definity lives in my garage), the fans both use standard color codings for +5/+12 volts and ground. To be safe, maybe compare with a thermometer for about a half hour or so on both to make sure the new fans are doing what they should, but otherwise, you should have a quieter Definity in a lot less time for in all likelyhood a lot less money.

 

Easy to say when this information wasn't around a few years ago. And the individual who gave me his CMC is a sever administrator with already a high stress job.  And the system couldn't be put into a decent location. I believe he lives in some townhouse. He doesn't apparently have the time like you folks just creeping around the internals. 

 

Quote

This is getting out of the realm of this topic, but on a personal note, I've seen far, *far* less UCx systems out there than I do original Norstar or BCM systems in place. The economics make much more sense in that case too; lots of nationwide store chains have Norstar key systems. Definities are more of a one-off system for mid-sized businesses and offices. The only chain users I know of off the top of my head are Nordstrom and Motel 6. In the first case, they don't show any interest in getting rid of their Definities, and are installing Auras that can support DCP phones in all their new stores. In the second, aside from attendant consoles and maybe one or two staff phones, the phones are all vanilla analog sets. If you'd like to pick up a UCx though, you can probably get one for pretty cheap from one of the Toys 'R Us stores going out of business.

 

It's within the realm of the topic. You do know that the UCX supports Meridian 1 (the PBX line) sets, right? So your argument is actually counterproductive. Yes the Avaya PBX boxes was most often found in midline setups, but again, I think you missed my point of what the UCx can do, the ability to add IP sets without worrying about licenses, and I just see the resistance because I am not a technical person and no one else is interested...whatever. I see you folks more interested in resuscitating old TDM boxes and questionable PPNs that are sadly becoming more and more rare. 

 

4 hours ago, ThoughtPhreaker said:

That being said, please do keep in mind that this forum isn't a business, and none of us are getting paid to do this; this is all funded with money out of our pockets and with a substantial chunk of spare time out of our personal lives. When I started trying to learn out how unlock Definity processors - three years ago, I hadn't written a line of code, and had a generally much fuzzier understanding of how computers and even phone switches worked internally. Much like phreaking has continually helped me learn a lot of new skills and ideas, It's partly thanks to being able to stick with this undertaking that I was able to gain a much more solid understanding of computer software and time division multiplexing, and help make a lot of great things happen in the process, like bringing Definity service to Toorcamp and hopefully saving some PBXes from the scrap heap. As a general rule, most people who do this sort of thing are ready to help everyone else with that sort of understanding; it always leads to great things, but that readiness ends on huge projects the initiator shows no motivation to participate in. If you don't like this, well, we've already given you an ample amount of resources you'll find literally nowhere else on the internet to help you start, and some of them have been uploaded specifically for your benefit. You're welcome to expect a better response from all the other groups of people doing Definity reverse engineering.

 

Fair point and understand your counter.

Edited by MakeAvayaRedGreatAgain
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