(23-Apr-10) VoIP is everywhere in the business world, as the promise of cost savings and greater productivity is too great to ignore. That doesn’t mean it’s problem-free: As with all major tech deployments, VoIP can run into trouble. But there are ways to diagnose and remedy these issues at all levels.
In The Beginning
Experts suggest that VoIP troubleshooting should start with LAN analysis. “There are various network analytics tools and optimizers that will let a network admin look into his traffic and see where the spikes are,” says IDC analyst Jonathan Edwards. “This happens a lot during peak times of the day or peak seasons for call centers, such as the holidays. These tools let you see where the traffic’s coming from and visualize the VoIP traffic. Then if a user reports a problem on a call, the admin can use that tool to trace it back to that time period and see what was happening at the time of the problem.”
There is a wide range of LAN analysis tools suitable for VoIP troubleshooting. “You have some tools that are hardware-based, where you basically have some probes in your network,” says Jerome Joanny, director of product integration at ShoreTel. “Those probes basically generate traffic, measuring delay, jitter, and such. Software tools can do similar things, only they’re installed on PCs or servers that simulate traffic.”