I am thinking about switching to a fully VOIP based solution but before I do I need to learn a bit about it. I have a few questions that I'm hoping some of you could help me answer. I've looked around but everything I've read it either to simplistic or far to complex!
Basically my goal is to have a few phones throughout the house which are indistinguishable from normal phones except obviosuly they will communicate through VOIP so I don't need to pay the extra cost of a phoneline. So here are a few questions:
1. What sort of hardware do I need? At the moment I have a WRT54GL with Milkfish installed (I don't really know anything about this apart from that it is for VOIP). Could someone explain the function of Milkfish? If I choose to buy some new VOIP phones is that all I would need?
2. I'm also strongly considering switching over to the Orcon+ network which would come with an Orcon HomeHub, which is actually a siemens gigaset sx763. In its features it says it has a "Integrated SIP Proxy" and "Local Private Branch Exchange (PBX) support for up to 6 extensions (e. g. analog, LAN, WLAN)". Can someone explain what the VOIP functionality is in this device and how it differs from the WRT54GL with custom firmware? I suspect the Siemens device has a built in ATA?
3. How could I hook this all up? If I have an ATA in one room then how am I ment to connect phones in the other rooms? Do I need multiple ATAs?
4. Is it possible once its all set up for these phones to act like normal phones in the way that if you just pick up and start talking on two phones in the same house you can hear eachother over the dialtone?
5. What would be a good VOIP provider to look at? I will probably end up waiting for Orcon's offering but it would be good to know who are the best providers out there? People have been saying xnet looks good, but preferably I'd like to avoid buying any extra hardware, which xnet seems to force?
I think that's all my questions for now, thanks for your help!