3CX and Small Business Server 2011

Discussion in '3CX Phone System - General' started by cwooster, Apr 13, 2012.

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  1. cwooster

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    I am installing 2 new Small Business 2011 Servers ( 1 Standard and the other Premium Add-on, which is 2008 R2 Server). The network switches are 2 Cisco SG300-28P's (layer 3) and will have a total of 2 to vlans (Voice(100) and Data(101)). We have outgrown our NEC phone system and have been testing the 3CX system with a couple Cisco SPA500 series phones and works great. During testing everything was on a flat network because the network is not operational yet.

    My question is....

    I understand that the SBS 2011 Standard server only supports 1 nic so how should I setup the server so that it can talk to both vlans? The vlans will be Voice-VLAN100=10.1.1.0/24 and Data-VLAN101=192.168.85.0/24. The phones will need to talk on the 10.1.1.0 network so the server will need that IP set up. I think my only option is to put the 3CX phone system on the 2nd Premium server, which does support multiple NICs. If I use the 2nd server, should I use both NICs or just apply 2 IP addresses to one NIC and let the layer 3 switch handle it. If I do that does the NIC need to support 802.1q vlan tagging?

    As far as DHCP, I was just planning on setting up 2 scopes on the primary SBS Std server (#1) and configuring a helper address on the switches to point to Server 1 for all DHCP requests. Will that work?

    Any help would be appreciated..

    Thanks

    Craig
     
  2. craigreilly

    craigreilly Well-Known Member

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    I would recommend putting 3cx on its own hardware. In our world - phones are everything - if a server needed rebooting for any reason ... well - our phones would not go down.

    We actually installed on a MacMini with VMWare / Windows 7 based on a recommendation of a local 3cx user. He claimed no issues what-so-ever.
     
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  3. cwooster

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    where is your DHCP server running? Are you running voice and data on different vlans's?

    Thanks,

    Craig
     
  4. craigreilly

    craigreilly Well-Known Member

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    We are still in the early stages. Our DHCP Server is one of our Windows 2003 Servers. The phone MAC Address is in as a DHCP Reservation so I can send proper 66 Configuration link.

    We have not created separate VLANS at this time. I am struggling with how to "get this done" - having trouble grasping this as the data/cpu traffic passes thru the phone. Also we need 3cx to communicate with out Exchaneg server to send voicemails.

    If anyone can help me with this it would be appreciated.
     
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  5. lneblett

    lneblett Well-Known Member

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    I guess the first question has to be - is there a compelling technical reason why a vlan is desired? Don't get me wrong, but I am unsure of the size of the network and given what appears to be multiple servers in play all serving a common user base on the same cabling, I am simply curious what the expectation is with virtually separating voice data from client data. There are times when I think it becomes more a case of how people perceive a difference yet discount the complexity involved in its maintenance and what ramifications (or future ones) involved with expansion or remote locations, etc. How many phones, clients, etc.?
     
  6. paul1

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    Your layer 3 switches will act as a router between the 10.1.1.0 and 192.168.85.0 networks. The 3cx server will only need one NIC on one VLAN for this to work. The server would need a route to the layer 3 switch for the phone network. Depending on your network structure your default route may be all you need. The DHCP-issued default gateway for the phones would also point to the layer 3 switch which would be able route to the 3cx server. No need for the server and the phones to be on the same vlan.

    You can modify your provisioning template for the phones to enable the VLAN for the phone interface while the PC port could still be on another VLAN (or not really VLANed - just default untagged network).

    Unless you have other things going on with your VLAN setup I would suggest creating something like VLAN 100 for the phones and configure it to be Tagged on all the phone ports within your layer 3 switches. The default (untagged) network would be the 192.168.85.0 network.

    The process would go something like this:
    Boot an unconfigured phone - DHCP would provide a 192.168.85.x address and Option 66 provisioning info.
    The phone would load it's configuration - which would activate the desired VLAN settings then reboot.
    After rebooting, the phone would request a new DHCP address on the tagged vlan 100 and receive a 10.1.1.x address. The PC port on the phone would still be untagged and accessing the default 192.168.85.0 network segment while the phone's traffic would be on the 10.1.1.0 network segment.

    I hope that helps. I think it is easier done than said ;)

    Paul
     
  7. craigreilly

    craigreilly Well-Known Member

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    Definitely doesn't sound easy at all.

    We are only thinking about it because I always hear "be sure to crate a voice vlan"

    We will have about 65 handsets with about the same number of clients passing thru the phones.
    In a few locations it will be phone only or phone with network copier/printer attached.

    We may have up to 5 remote users with handsets at their home office.

    I'd love to hear someone say "forget about it you don't need a vlan"

    I agree it would be much easier to manage.
     
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  8. paul1

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    I don't think you need it in that environment.

    I am using a VLAN similar to what I described above but I have around 200 phones and I needed a fresh network segment to allow enough IP addresses to make it all work.

    You could set it up without the VLAN and give it a try. If you decided later you wanted VLANs you could switch without any physical changes. Just the VLAN setup on the switches and provisioning files.
     
  9. lneblett

    lneblett Well-Known Member

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    How many simultaneous calls do you expect? How heavy a load of data might be encounterd and what is interface to outside world for both voice and data. Will the phones have embedded gigabit switches or will they be the more typical 10/100?

    Paul1 has provided a pretty good sceanrio if vlans are a must, but he also had the need given his IP limits.
    My sense is that the switches have more than enough switching fabric and port capability. You might also consider a stackable switch on a single lan. Not only does this simplify your set-up immensely but provides for some level of redundancy in the event that one of the switches ever goes down you can simply use the ports from the working switch to keep the critical items up while the other is being repaired/replaced. This will mitigate (not necessarily eliminate) the need to reprogram the switches to a large degree. Also keep in mind that the backup for one switch in your current thinking may not be the desired restore on the working switch should the other fail. Further, the management of the two switches will appear as one in a mangement console and your throughput is optimized on any device connected.

    Assuming that all 65 phones are in use at any one time and also assuming that a 711 codec is in play, you still have in execess of 80% of the port bandwidth (100mb) available, and if 1GB phones, then more than 90% and I am using the higher of the commonly accepted data rate 120kbs for voice with payload and all signalling (vlan, QOS, etc). Not knowing what other data will be present may make it a more challenging, but the sense I have by your use of two SBSservers with some 60 or so clients, makes me think that the need for vlans is not really needed in this case.

    Keep it simple is the best advise. If you only have the one cable, then the traffic is still all about the bandwidth. The vlan simply keeps one set of bandwidth "virtually" seperated from the other bandwidth, but collectively they still form one. If there were security concerns or large IP issaucce issues or other segmentation needs, then VLANs have their place. You can still QOS as that is what many will tell you the benefit is for a vlan. Your network seems to have more than enough capacity, is not "deep" so you can still implement, but I suspect that it will never be actively employed and QOS makes no difference once the traffic leaves your network or possibly that of your specific provider if he has the arrangement while within his carriage.
     
  10. craigreilly

    craigreilly Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the feedback. The phones are gigabit. With built in switch.

    I think I'll try pauls advice and try without vlan for now.

    The original poster had 2 sbs. I have a few more standard servers handling email, reporting, Citrix, oracle, MySQL, mssql, and blackberry supporting 200+ users in remote offices - and they are not going to be on the 3cx system.

    We'll see how things go.

    Thanks for all the advice and tips.
     
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  11. jpillow

    jpillow Well-Known Member

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    Depending on what switches you are using it can be done automatically from the switch. Most smart switches come with Auto Voice VLANs, all you have to do is enter the first few digits of the MAC addresses 004f and the switch will automatically put those devices on a VLAN.
     
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  12. craigreilly

    craigreilly Well-Known Member

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    The hp1910 has that feature but when I enabled the ports as voice hybrid ports (voice vlan and management/default vlan) the phones could not reach dhcp server and could not contact 3cx server when I put static address into phone. The positive part was the computer/data traffic still passed thru the ports properly.

    So after many recommendations here and my installer - we will be skipping vlans for now.
     
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