Ekiga v4.0 Released

Ekiga-LogoThis week saw an announcement about the release of Ekiga v4.0. This is the most significant release of the venerable open source soft phone in some time. It brings with it many improvements.

I’m especially interested in the following new capabilities:

  • New audio codecs: SILK (used by skype), G.722.1 (aka Siren 7), G.722.2 (aka GSM-AMR Wide band)
  • Video codecs changes: H.264 optimizations
  • Added RTP TOS support
  • Support for DNS SRV caching

While developed primarily on Linux Ekiga has long supported multiple platforms. I took a short while today to try the new release on an older Windows XP laptop. The Windows installer also installed the GTK libraries necessary to support the application. Installation was quick and painless.

Continue reading “Ekiga v4.0 Released”

Meta: New VPS Launched

hp-compaq-8510p-comp Not all progress is obvious without careful examination. Much of my time working on this site has, for the past week, revolved around getting the entire thing moved to a new virtual server…not that you would likely notice.

After some well documented effort (part 1, part 2 & part 3) to move from a shared host to a VPS, it ran well, essentially untouched, for over a year. UnmeteredVPS.net has proven a responsive and reliable hosting provider.

However, over that time there were a great many patches to the software (LAMP) that are the foundation of a WordPress installation. In July I found that something I wanted to do required updating PHP to a much newer version.

Continue reading “Meta: New VPS Launched”

LADSPA Integrated Into FreeSWITCH

For me one of the great frustrations of conference bridges is that they don’t give you the kind of control of audio properties that is commonly found in even simple audio mixing and editing suites. Wideband conference services, like ZipDX, make the conference experience a lot better, but there’s a lot of room for improvement.

Of course, this comes from the perspective of someone who has spent their working life in audio/video production, and only came to voip & podcasting later in life. Yes, a veritable Michael-come-lately. I bring to projects like the VUC the expectation of control that simply isn’t commonly possible. However, that is changing and we can thank the Freeswitch dev team for taking a leadership role in crossing these worlds.

Continue reading “LADSPA Integrated Into FreeSWITCH”

We’re Celebrating A New Home!!

After several troublesome months with our prior hosting company I finally moved this site to a new host this week. The very fact that you’re seeing this post says that DNS has changed and you’re at the new place.

This is an entirely new construction, so there may be a little dust still to be tidied up and a bit of paint yet to be applied. Rest assured that I’ll be addressing any deficiencies as I find them.

In September 2008 I made the leap from  from the free hosting at WordPress.com to a shared server account at BlueHost. Their service was fine back in the early days, but a shared host can be a problem.

Continue reading “We’re Celebrating A New Home!!”

CounterPath Launches Linux Softphone

There can be no question that Counterpath is the leader in SIP soft phones. From the free offering in X-Lite to my favorite Eyebeam, and finally Bria they’ve long had a diverse offering and occupied a leadership position in the market.

In a move to strengthen the diversity of their range today Counterpath announced the launch of Bria 3.0 for Linux. This gives them a native release on Windows, Mac & Linux, which is a considerable achievement.

Continue reading “CounterPath Launches Linux Softphone”

Toward A Community Developed IP Phone

A few days ago on the Asterisk Users Mailing List Tzafrir Cohen of Xorcom fame started an interesting thread about the possibility of a community developed IP Phone.

A common wisdom here is that one should use a proper hardware phone rather that an extra software on the user’s PC. Why is that such a big issue?

One thing that bothers me with the current crop of hardware SIP phones is that they are hopelessly proprietary.

So what would it take to build a fully-adaptable phone?

I am 100% behind the assertion that most users want a hard phone on their desk. Soft phones, even good ones, seem to be exclusively the domain of those who travel and vertical niches like call centers.

Continue reading “Toward A Community Developed IP Phone”