[Freeswitch-users] Get on IRC day!!

Mario mario_fs at mgtech.com
Fri Oct 8 16:29:07 PDT 2010

I hope you don't mind comments and a thank you from a newbie. My
background is VOIP on Linksys SPA9000(I hate)/SPA962 phones in small
office for 3 years. I tried Asterisk and gave up, then FreeSwitch
earlier this year. I saw the book was coming so waited for that (I read
it 3 times). I am a mainframe computer programmer so not too dumb but
VOIP is all new to me. From a real newbies perspective:

1. The book was invaluable to get started. The wiki was invaluable to
keep going.

2. I started simple, trying to duplicate what I had: Two separate
systems one with answering and one with IVR that calls a cell phone.

3. I got it to work with the book and wiki and valuable help from the
mailing list that gave me info not in the book  or Wiki (that I could
find, such as bridge had to use :_:). In other words, I needed all three
resources to duplicate what I had.

4. I decided to add more functions since Freeswitch was so powerful, and
I was having fun with it. I have some pretty slick things (to me anyway)
implemented. I sure learned a lot I will share on the wiki.

5. But I have two problems, one a show stopper (prevents calls) since
September 21. Some people need to be hand-held all the time but I am not
one of them. Posting in the list is my last resort, usually after
several hours/days of searching. I have spent weeks on the two problems
(20 hours in the last 3 days). I posted on the list and got on IRC for
the first time today. My impression was that IRC was for the pros,
although to my surprise I was able to answer a newbies question! I
thought I would have figured it out by now but no. This scenario of a
newbie getting this far and having a show-stopper would be nice to
address. Could be a separate IRC for newbies?

As for paying/donations, I built FS on my OpenSuse system and plan to
put my goodies on the wiki. I also built this on osX where the final FS
will run (Mac mini). It was tough and someone else on the list had
problems on 10.6.4 and I provided everything I learned. I will also add
this to the wiki. Finally, my business has gone down a lot and don't
have much to spend but I was going to get the Hogans Heroes DVD
collection on the wish list or something like that (BTW, it's on HD on
UHD). You guys deserve a lot more but I am limited these days.

Anyway, thanks for a great product and I wish you luck and $$$ from it.
I will buy every book you publish and recommend FreeSwitch to anyone who
can use it.

On 10/08/10 15:06, David Ponzone wrote:
> I concur what Michael says.
> We see quite some people on IRC, who (and I am just stating a fact)
> require a LOT of help, althought they didn't really do their homework,
> and their main objective is to connect 2 phones at home to a common SIP
> account.
> So I would agree that in a such case, detailed explanations are
> required. But the issue is, most FreeSWITCHers won't have the time for
> it, and those newbies don't have money to spend for consultancy or a
> full VoIP course.
> And for someone already "VOIP-enabled", FreeSWITCH's learning curve is
> quite fast, if you immerge yourself in it for at least 2 weeks, if you
> read the wiki and the book, and if you join the channel, not only to ask
> questions around, but also to read other discussions. I learn so many
> things just being there.
> Also, a lot of people think that there is a team somewhere in charge of
> completing the wiki.
> Well, no.
> It's everybody's task to do it, if one feels he has an interesting info
> to share, or a nice example to give to newbies.
> Also there are still quite some mistakes to correct (I corrected one the
> other day in the doublenat scenario example), and variables to document.
> Even a newbie can document, once he has understood something that is not
> explained on the wiki.
> David Ponzone  Direction Technique
> email: david.ponzone at ipeva.fr <mailto:david.ponzone at ipeva.fr>
> tel:      01 74 03 18 97
> gsm:   06 66 98 76 34
> Service Client IPeva
> tel:      0811 46 26 26
> www.ipeva.fr <BLOCKED::http://www.ipeva.fr/>  -   www.ipeva-studio.com
> <BLOCKED::http://www.ipeva-studio.com/>
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> /
> Le 08/10/2010 à 23:31, Michael Collins a écrit :
>> On Fri, Oct 8, 2010 at 1:06 PM, mazilo <Nabble at slickdeals.endjunk.com
>> <mailto:Nabble at slickdeals.endjunk.com>> wrote:
>>     1. FS needs to setup/provide a good forum, instead of the unfavorable
>>     mailing list. 
>> No, it doesn't. We've heard this argument for three years. We've
>> openly stated that while *we*, personally (the core FS team) don't
>> care for having a forum, we are not against the community setting one
>> up and maintaining it. We had one person try two different things with
>> a forum, one of which I think is the Nabble thing. It died a slow,
>> painful death from lack of community support. Our community as a whole
>> just doesn't want one. An argument has been floated that having a
>> forum will allow the community to grow and thrive, and therefore *we*
>> (the core FS team) should sponsor and maintain it. Frankly, we don't
>> buy it. We feel like having an AWESOME piece of software with
>> enthusiastic users is what makes the community grow and thrive. If
>> someone stays away from FreeSWITCH solely because they don't like our
>> combination of mailing list, IRC, and wiki then so be it. We respect
>> their decision.
>>     I tried to bring in as many newbies and/or other PBX users as
>>     I could (at least 4 newbies) and none of them has shown up.  I
>>     followed up
>>     with them and got several answers. One of them is I had had my
>>     share with
>>     mailing lists in the past and I don't like to deal with it again.
>>     I sure
>>     don't mind if FS has a good forum to attend. One managed to lurk
>>     around and
>>     told me that there are a lot of FS experts here trying to help,
>>     but she
>>     wouldn't understand at all when reading the replies addressed to
>>     some posts. 
>>     She told me the replies/suggestions were brief and vague with no
>>     examples to
>>     lead/guide any newbies to make them trying to understand.
>>     Honestly, I agree
>>     with her. This leads me to the next item below.
>>     2. When helping a newbie, try to explain in more detail (best with an
>>     example) and don't be brief. For instance, when I posted
>>     http://freeswitch-users.2379917.n2.nabble.com/More-questions-migrating-from-Asterisk-to-FS-td5260522.html#a5260522
>>     this  asking for some help, I know everyone, including Antonio, had
>>     voluntarily tried to help. However, telling a newbie like me to
>>     use param is
>>     really not going to help at all, let alone may completely discourage a
>>     newbie who tries to learn FS. Some people, be it a newbie or an
>>     expert, will
>>     learn better to understand through examples. For sure, we don't
>>     really want
>>     to encourage any spoon fed activities here.
>> I respect your honesty. I will encourage those answering newbie
>> questions to be more explicit wherever possible. Just understand that
>> everyone on this list and in IRC is an unpaid volunteer, giving of
>> their time freely. In some cases an expert has to make a choice: give
>> a brief answer or give no answer. Given the option, I think even a
>> newbie would appreciate the quick answer as opposed to silence on the
>> wire.
>>     3. The Wiki needs to be revised with additional examples.
>> Agreed. Volunteers welcome. :) Seriously, I need as much help as
>> possible with the wiki. I definitely have a core of people helping
>> out. (You know who you are, and I thank you profusely.) I would like
>> to have more help. Keeping the wiki updated is a big job. Anthony &
>> company add features faster than we can document them! In many cases,
>> because Tony is such a great programmer, he can add stuff in like an
>> hour and it takes 2-3 hours for me to read the source code, recompile,
>> make changes to my dialplan or other configs, test various scenarios,
>> and then update the wiki with the new API, dp app, chan var, SIP
>> profile param, etc. All the while I have a day job and other
>> FreeSWITCH-related duties.
>>     There may be some
>>     few good suggestions with examples replied to the posts that
>>     helped the
>>     posters. Perhaps, one needs to make sure those good suggestions with
>>     examples get added to the Wiki for others benefit. The
>>     http://wiki.freeswitch.org/wiki/Dialplan_XML Dialplan XML  and
>>     http://wiki.freeswitch.org/wiki/SIP_Provider_Examples SIP Provider
>>     Examples
>>     are two good examples to follow. This way, a newbie can learn easier,
>>     instead of bombarding the list with the same questions from time
>>     to time.
>> We spent a ton of time on the FreeSWITCH book, which contains a lot of
>> the hand-holding newbies really need. It's relatively inexpensive and
>> you can get just the PDF if you like. (If you're destitute then you
>> can probably borrow the book from someone who has it.)
>>     <snip...>
>>     For instance, I recently (as far back as 3 weeks
>>     ago) told someone in a VoIP forum about FS conference calls and even
>>     provided the  http://wiki.freeswitch.org/wiki/FS_weekly_2010_09_15
>>     link  (at
>>     the time). He replied back and told me that he doesn't know how to
>>     make his
>>     VoIP device to support a SIP URI dial into the conference line. 
>> I'm not trying to be mean here, but honestly, if he can't dial any of
>> our ways of getting to the conference then he's *not ready for a VoIP
>> conference*!! We have many ways to connect:
>> PSTN: 1-919-386-990
>> SIP: sip:888 at conference.freeswitch.org
>> <mailto:sip%3A888 at conference.freeswitch.org>
>> GTalk: gtalk:conf+888 at conference.freeswitch.org
>> <mailto:gtalk%3Aconf%2B888 at conference.freeswitch.org>
>> Skype: call skype user "skypiax5"
>> That's five different ways of connecting. I'm sorry, but that's more
>> than enough ways to get people to call a *VoIP* conference about
>> telecom software. If people are incapable of connecting from one of
>> these five ways then they are not yet ready for FreeSWITCH.
>> I will keep working the wiki and making FreeSWITCH as easy as possible
>> for newbies. However, please keep in mind that those who don't have
>> telecom, networking, and/or VoIP experience are going to experience a
>> much steeper learning curve. That's just the nature of the beast. To
>> ease their transition maybe we could come up with a recommended
>> reading list? "VoIP For Dummies" kind of stuff maybe. If you guys have
>> any suggestions I'll put the on the wiki.
>> -MC
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