Having trouble placing or receiving calls or using your voicemail system on Ooma Telo VoIP Phones? Post your questions here.
#86328 by rsomazzi
Tue Aug 23, 2011 3:17 pm
Hello again,

I have already posted here regarding problems with my Telo. When connected in between my router and cable modem, it destroys most of my bandwidth and gives me terrible reception quality on calls. But, I can make outgoing calls.

After resolving the quality problems by connecting the Telo to the router as in Modem > Router > Telo and by issuing QoS rules on my router for my Telo, the quality problems have gone away. However, I cannot make outgoing calls.

So, after a few initial emails from Ooma tech support, here I am a week later from the last response and several requests from them for help. Nothing. After spending $240 on this "service" I am finding I have overpaid for it, by a lot.

I will not tolerate reduced bandwidth by using Ooma's "recommended" setup. And there is no reason why the Telo shouldn't work given it is now connected to the router like any other ethernet device.

I have done the following:
1. Configured the Telo to use "Built in" MAC
2. Used that MAC to issue a static IP to the Telo (192.168.1.3)
3. Put the Telo into the DMZ
4. Port forwarded all UDP and TCP ports listed in this forum using 9 separate rules within my router (Netgear WNR3500L)
5. Rebooted all hardware many times

I have spent enough hours on this that really, Ooma should be refunding my the money I've spent so far. At a minimum, I expect someone to respond to my requests for help, far inside a week after the last.

This only disappointment worse than the device itself is Ooma's service.

Roger S.
#86335 by rsomazzi
Tue Aug 23, 2011 7:42 pm
Tbird - thanks once again. You seem to be the only one who lends a hand nowadays.

That, and the tech support fella I spoke with on the phone earlier. I have grown exceedingly frustrated over the past week with Ooma but this time, it was suggested I prefix my phone numbers with *99. When I did this, the call went through. All he said was the *99 forces the call through, whatever that means. He also indicated my problem was due to a 'bug in the system' and that the engineers 'were aware of it and working on it'.

So, I have a workaround for my calls. The settings you suggested Ill also try, but I believe I've already set them for gaming a while back.

thanks,
Roger
#86340 by thunderbird
Wed Aug 24, 2011 3:58 am
rsomazzi wrote:Tbird - thanks once again. You seem to be the only one who lends a hand nowadays.

That, and the tech support fella I spoke with on the phone earlier. I have grown exceedingly frustrated over the past week with Ooma but this time, it was suggested I prefix my phone numbers with *99. When I did this, the call went through. All he said was the *99 forces the call through, whatever that means. He also indicated my problem was due to a 'bug in the system' and that the engineers 'were aware of it and working on it'.

So, I have a workaround for my calls. The settings you suggested Ill also try, but I believe I've already set them for gaming a while back.

thanks,
Roger

Info Only:
It seems strange that you could call outbound using the Modem-Ooma-Router configuration, but not with the Modem-Router-Ooma configuration. Normally this would lead to the conclusion that the Router was blocking the outbound signal? So I was very surprised the hear that *99 worked for outbound calling. *99 changes the call from a narrower band CODEC, to a wider band CODEC.

The most important thing is; what ever works.
#86346 by rsomazzi
Wed Aug 24, 2011 7:44 am
You're telling me it's weird, but the *99 works.

I knew it wasn't a port or firewall issue since I have already tried putting the Telo into the DMZ and used port forwarding to no avail. That alone tells me the problem is with the Telo somehow. Other devices that have made me question port or firewall configs that I've placed into the DMZ into the past have worked fine this way, then no longer when taken out of the DMZ.

Now that I am able to use QoS via the router and a static IP for the Telo, my call quality issues have literally disappeared. My bandwidth also remains at a solid 53mb down and 2.5mb up, which is where I should be at.

I hope Ooma fixes their "bug" soon. Thanks for the technical explanation on *99, I didn't know that.

rsom
#86349 by DTR
Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:01 am
I've opened two support tickets since my trial began, and I haven't had any response. No phone call back, no email, no nothing!!!

I hope Ooma doesn't pay much for the outsourcing of their support. Because they aren't getting their money worth, and the customers and their service is greatly affected by this lack of response. Having a phone number to call someone and actually getting to talk to someone is a step in the right direction, but it leads to absolutely nowhere..... it's like a front for support, and being done just to show some level of support (even if it is useless). Pretty much a "Smoke and Mirrors" concept in my opinion.
#86350 by thunderbird
Wed Aug 24, 2011 9:12 am
DTR wrote:I've opened two support tickets since my trial began, and I haven't had any response. No phone call back, no email, no nothing!!!

I hope Ooma doesn't pay much for the outsourcing of their support. Because they aren't getting their money worth, and the customers and their service is greatly affected by this lack of response. Having a phone number to call someone and actually getting to talk to someone is a step in the right direction, but it leads to absolutely nowhere..... it's like a front for support, and being done just to show some level of support (even if it is useless). Pretty much a "Smoke and Mirrors" concept in my opinion.

How is your Ooma setup, Modem-Ooma-Router or Modem-Router-Ooma?

What are your upload and download speeds?

I have my Ooma Telo connected after my Router and use Upload and Download speed set to 7000 kbps. I have never experienced the Robotic Inbound Sounds.

I wonder if the Robotic Inbound Sounds have a relationship with higher bandwidths.

Since Ooma seems to be having difficulty finding the “Sweet Spot” for their firmware corections for the Robotic Inbound Sounds, try the following:

There are two things that may be worth trying.
One would be to set your Ooma Setup Quality of Service Download Speed to double the measured download speed as measured with http://www.speedtest.net/. This setting should make sure that there is no bandwidth restriction?


If that doesn't work, try setting the Ooma Setup Quality of Service Download Speed to 385 kbps. That speed is what Ooma says is the Minimum required for the download speed.

If the Inbound voice sounds garbled, but not robotic, increase the Download Speed by 5 kbps, and test again, etc.

If the Inbound voice sounds Robotic, decrease the Download Speed by 5 kbps, and test again, etc.

These settings may slightly restrict the download speed, helping to keep packets in order?

Please report your findings.
#87163 by joemc_1965
Thu Sep 15, 2011 6:17 am
First post here. I am telling you this just so you realize that I have absolutely no clue what I am doing. But I do want to share some of my experiences with similar problems.

I have had ooma for over a year. In this time I have seen some of the same problems you are struggling with. At first I kept my landline just to make sure this 'ooma' thing was going to work out, especially since my landline provider (Horry Telephone Cooperative) does not allow people to 'port out' numbers. I had ooma for around 9 months (and was satisfied) before finally 'cutting the landline'. I have been happy with ooma for most of this time - my greatest problems have usually been at my end. I have had cable modems fail, line splitters die (I was genuinely surprised finding out how frequently cable line splitters fail - the service tech. replaced the 8 year old splitter out near the street and my signal improved ...well, you get the idea. So, except for the few times ooma service has gone down (2 that I remember, each for a short period of time), I have been happy with the service.

First - about the *99. I believe (translation - this is a blind stab in the dark) this changes how the ooma handles packets. If you want to send a fax using your ooma line you need to dial *99, you then get another dialtone and continue to do the fax as you would using a land line. If I do not dial *99 first my fax will fail, every time.

I have pondered what this 'magic' *99 does. Well, there is one thing that is most likely. Remember, the ooma system uses 'PUREVoice' or 'PUREVoice HD' if talking to another phone that supports it (https://www.ooma.com/products/ooma-purevoice). This is some voice compression algorithm that 'reduces bandwidth consumption by 60% over standard VOIP technology'. It probably does this a number of ways - just think of how mp3s compress audio files by dropping non-audible frequencies and such. Well, when sending a fax (where the digital information is converted to analog sound and back on the other end) this is not very helpful. I am sure this compression is 'lossy' (just as a jpeg is 'lossy' vs. a png or gif). While it may be intelligible to you, it is not to a fax machine. I am willing to bet that *99 changes the settings to the voice compression and removes less information. There are a few other interesting 'clues'. When 10 digit dialing is enabled and you dial a 7 digit phone number, there is a slight delay while ooma 'decides' if you are done dialing. I think that I read somewhere that you don't get this delay if you dial *99 first (I have never bothered to confirm this). This makes me think that *99 makes other changes. It may reduce the packet size or 'force' the telo to send packets (even when they are not 'full' by reducing some timeout setting). This makes sense, because if the telo was waiting for enough data for whatever packet size it wants (with some type of timeout) it may not send your dialing information as quickly. There would also be nulls or places with NO audio in fax calls. By shortening the timeout (and forcing the telo to send packets) the dial would go through faster, faxes could also have no places without audio.

Well, enough of *99. On to router battles.

Yes, I have fought the good fight here too. First, my RoadRunner cable is not blessed with fantastic bandwidth. I have around 15 mb down and 0.37 mb up - my telo download is set in the 340K - 350K range right now. I used to have a Linksys router. I did everything imaginable to make the telo happy connected to it (QoS, setting ports, the works), but it was an ongoing struggle. There were times I would get a dialtone and not be able to dial out. My experience leads me to believe the telo generates the dialtone - it does so when it is 'connected' to the ooma servers. If I pick up the phone when the 'cable goes down' before the telo is aware of it - I get a dialtone - impossible if it is not generated at the telo. So getting a dialtone does nothing to indicate that outgoing packets will be handled correctly. I eventually ended up putting the telo between the router and cable modem. It was happy, life was good, but my pings were terrible (http://www.pingtest.net/) for gaming. After a particularly memorible lightning storm I ended up with a Belkin Surf N150 modem. It is nowhere near as configurable as the Linksys was (no QoS support) but it was going after the telo so I did not care. Well, eventually I got sick of having good bandwidth but bad ping (and jitter) so I put the telo after the router a few weeks ago. I expected it not to work (based on everything I tried with the Linksys router) but - much to my surprise, I have had no problems so far. I have not tried using the phone while gaming yet, though. We all think of hardware (routers) as really fast - but I can't help but wonder about how the firmware was programmed and if packets were not being handled correctly by the other router. Perhaps the difference in router hardware (and firmware) plays a bigger role in all this then I want to admit. I never plan ahead to buy a router (router is dead - go get another one at wally-world now - working from home makes this a rushed decision). I may just take a look at the DD-WRT (open source router firmware) support list and proactively buy a supported router this time. Just wondering if proprietary firmware could be the 'wild card' here.

The other thing to note, as I said before, was to have your line checked. Since you have a much faster download then upload I suspect you have cable. Your bandwidth is much higher than mine (x green with envy x) , but I did not notice a great loss in bandwidth from the splitters failing. Nor did I see many more dropped packets - yes, I tested through speedtest.net and pingtest.net - but it definately affected the telo's performance. Since this was something I did not have access to (nor do I own that part of the line) I did not consider it. I think of splitters & connectors as 'passive components' - but, after all, passive components do (and can) fail. The tech told me splitters 'go bad' frequently (it's not like the contract installers are using 'top of the line' hardware all the time - they use what is provided) - he defined frequently as a typical lifespan of 5 - 10 years. I have not tried to confirm this - but next time I have problems I will be on the phone with them - I pay my bills - let them earn it.

There's my 2 cents. Back to work for me.

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