Saturday, January 31, 2009

3 Decent Voip Sip Apps for linux

So we recently did a lot of research in regards to linux and its progression, unfortunately it just doesn't make the grade for call centers maybe only casual

Several if not all sip/voip clients were tested for linux, and the best were:

Sjphone, Zoiper"free", and Ekiga


Worked well on low ram ( 333 to 512) but audio would go out off and on, and getting pcm support out of some cards while using pulse audio with mic boost on you could only hear people faintly. Dead in our books if there is sound quality issues.

With 1gb nothing changed.

Sjphone/Opensuse 10:

Low Ram: Audio would crap out about every 6 hours or so.
High Ram: Good for a day or so, but still looses audio, the tops we saw audio was about 3 days.
With Kernel patches: Same as above even with the km kernel patches.

Sjphone/Fedora 10:

Low Ram: alot of the same above.
High RAM: Much better quality but fedora still looses sound at an unpredictable rate and generally during conversations so we had to drop it.


We first did our initial testing on crap hardware with an average of 333mb ram on the boxes, with ubuntu 8.10 installed.

Most or all boxes crashed/lost audio daily or several times a day.

Next we boosted the ram in those boxes to 1gb.

Most or all boxes lasted a day with out loosing audio - I would say about 1 to 3 days tops 6 to 8hours use a day. Audio death was the only issue at that point most fixes included restarting GDM/shutting down the machine, waiting 10 seconds and starting, because the audio problem would carry over on the reboot.


Low/High ram this died quick and was way too low, seems like Opensuse doesnt like when you switch out audio cards either. Kernel patches helped some but audio dies frequently, 2 days tops on audio.

Zoiper/Fedora 10:

This seemed to be the best as we saw some issues with zoiper acting funny but 2/4 boxes tested stayed up for a week or so. Was very impressed.


Pretty solid but wouldnt support multiline incoming calls is why we ditched it. Mutliline is on the way from what I hear. Stayed up for 3 days solid with out much issues, had to reboot due to audio lost.

Ekiga/Opensuse 10 :

Same as above.

Ekiga/Fedora 10:

Pretty solid would go accouple more days then the two above on most machines.

From what I can tell if you have atleast a gig of ram and want to use sip/voip Fedora/Zoiper seems pretty solid.

Obviously this is a quick and dirty but should give you an idea of what is capable. I assume the stability in PulseAudio differs per distro, and it appears that from worst to best: Ubuntu -> opensuse -> fedora


Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sad state of linux audio -_-

Well, If anything will make you feel like a failure its taking pride in something that is broken, and trying to get it to work.

Our little Voip experiment at work ie a Sip client on Ubuntu 8.10/Fedora 10.

Here's how I pretty much f'd up, big time.

So back in November we ok'd looking at voip, and by December we had our first tester box running - Absolutely fine, with the sip client sjphone.04 . A week later this became problematic. We started to move that group over (6 people) Ha, sjphone.04 has a horrible frame work, with even a worse way of managing sound. So we went sjphone.08 which went abit better, but still no cigar - it wouldnt work on alot of PC's. We talked with the guys that built our asterisk pbx, and they recommended an obscure program called zoiper. Zoiper seemed to just work. We installed it on our flag ship test machine, and spread it out amongst the group. Almost instantly we started having issues like Audio would stop mid calls, the UI would freeze. The Audio stopping ment we actually had to [shut down] the machines, wait 10 seconds, and then boot again and for the ui freezes/some audio drops we had to restart GDM. So after some experimenting, and some investigating I discovered this is not a "Unique" occurance, but honestly the state of Audio. The state of linux audio makes me kind of heart broken ... this one of my first really large projects - It taught me alot but it really indicates how functionality like Audio is in the trash. So to make a long story short we gave a few other Distro's a shot and Audio still crashes, some machines it takes weeks some it takes hours. I've probably done enough debugging and analysis on my own time to go crazy.