BladeWare Scalability and Multi-Core Machines

BladeWare scales nicely across multi-core machines by using Commetrex’ exclusive OpenMedia stream-processing framework which allocates media processing onto multiple OpenMedia stream-processing processes. Since the SIP or PSTN channels are partitioned across multiple processes, the Windows or Linux OS can execute these CPU-intensive processes on multiple cores.

Each OpenMedia process supports up to 256 channels, giving a theoretical maximum of 2048 channels on an 8-core machine.
BladeWare queries the OS to determine how many cores are available and allocates a reasonable number of OpenMedia processes based on the number of cores and channels configured.

Alternately, the BladeWare user may configure BladeWare to create a specified number of OpenMedia processes without regard to available cores.

Want to learn more? Give Mike Morris, who heads up our BladeWare team, as call and ask him about it at 770-449-7775 X360.

What’s Next for BladeWare?

Last week’s BladeWare release (2.4.13) is loaded with new features that give the user the configuration flexibility to deal with the behavior of different service-provider’s networks. It’s part of our on-going effort to “make FoIP work.” For example, some networks can’t handle port changes from G.711 to T.38, which is now configurable.

But work on the next release, which adds two major features, has been proceeding in parallel, and will soon be ready. It adds Smart FoIP® and in-band call-progress analysis (CPA) to BladeWare SIP. Smart FoIP increases the effective fax-success rate to that of the PSTN, resulting in increased customer satisfaction and reduced service costs. And CPA gives your application more information on what type of endpoint has answered.

As you may know, SIP signaling replaces in-band CPA up to the point of the call being cut through as signaled by 200 OK. But that does not account for voice answer, intercept tones, or modem answer, which is required for the application to make an informed choice as to what media-processing function to execute (voice, fax, video, etc.). BladeWare’s CPA provides all of this, plus the industry’s highest accuracy answering-machine detection.

Smart FoIP eliminates the two most-common problems with FoIP: late T.38 reINVITES and PCM clock-sync problems on G.711 pass-through calls. But we’ve taken Smart FoIP further by giving the user the ability to tune media selection to optimize results in idiosyncratic networks, as further explained below.

Ready to give BladeWare a test drive? Send an email to sales@commetrex.com

An ITSP Behind Every Tree!

Our industry is a glorious free-for-all among thousands of ITSPs. And with so many recent market entrants, you would expect there to be a proliferation of FoIP implementations. Naturally, this presents a challenge for fax servers.

For example, a few years ago, nearly all T.38 reINVITEs originated with the called/off-ramp gateway. That’s not the case today, even though the SIP Forum emphatically says the off-ramp gateways should do the deed.

But there are just too many users out there that want to make T.38-only calls and have the calling gateway send a reINVITE. One of our customers told us last week that their service provider configures its SBC to send a T.38 reINVITE toward the off-ramp/called gateway for every fax call. That means the calling gateway, the SBC, and the called gateway must deal with glare, a condition where two network entities send reINVITES to each other at the same time. The amount of time that it takes to resolve the glare condition will often cause a fax call to fail.

But it’s up to the fax server to deal with these networks, so we’ve added a new level of configurability to Smart FoIP to resolve these issues.
What’s your experience with calling-side reINVITEs? Send us a note at support@commetrex.com and let us know.

FaxTap NG Update

FaxTap NG is moving rapidly to not only offer unprecedented functionality, such as automatic NSS/NSF processing and image rendering, but also excellent ease-of-use enhancements. In previous issues of this newsletter we’ve told you about NSS/NSF and the modem improvements. But now FaxTap has automatic updates. If there has been an update to the product since the last time you used it, FaxTap will tell you and offer to perform the update for you.
If you have yet to order FaxTap and you’re ready to let it help you make FoIP work, give us a call at 770-449-7775 and press 1. You can also shoot us an email at sales@commetrex.com.

The MX8A is Here!

You may be aware that NetGen Communications, our sister company that produces and markets Smart ATA to ITSPs and their channel, is partnering with New Rock Technologies (Shanghai) to produce additional products needed by the ITSP. And next to market is the MX product line of access and trunking gateways.

These gateways solve a wide range of enterprise application problems, such as PSTN access for Lync, and include models from four-to-120 ports.  The expansion of Smart FoIP is underway, starting with the MX8A, which offers various combinations of station and office interfaces totaling 4 or 8 ports.

But here’s the thing: the 4-port unit lists for only $190 and the 8-port for $295. That means that if you have a BladeWare system that needs PSTN connectivity today but FoIP tomorrow, you can do it without add-in boards. Just drive the MX8A with the FoIP BladeWare. Including Smart ATA in the mix, you have 2-, 4-, 8-port PSTN interfaces for around $50 per port. And you don’t have to give up V.34 because it’s supported by BladeWare, Smart ATA, and the MX8A.

When the user is ready, to cut the cord and move to FoIP, just remove the gateway.