Trailing 3CX phone system : Problems encountered

Discussion in '3CX Phone System - General' started by Bry, Jan 24, 2010.

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  1. Bry

    Bry

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    I've been testing this system for most of the weekend, and I'm really very impressed. But there are some serious issues if you are planning on deploying this to a large corporate network:


    Softphone

    Interface really needs to use native window frames and widgets, and not try to look like an iPhone. - okay, hardly a serious issue, but it will be an issue for many staff. Windows has standard widgets for a reason, and changing the way an app works just confuses many people. We can always use an alternative softphone, but then we lose the integration of the assistant!

    A major failure of the softphone is the fact that it doesn't work with roaming profiles. We don't want to have to configure every user on every workstation. (For example a company that uses hot desking with as few as 20 users and 20 computers requires the software be configured 400 times!). This could be easily resolved by having the application's configuration moved from "%PROFILEPATH%\Local Settings\Application Data\..." to "%PROFILEPATH%\Application Data\...". I can't imagine a situation where you wouldn't want this to be part of the user's roaming profile!


    Assistant

    Again, the assistant should be able to work with roaming profiles, however under certain circumstances, it's better off not working with roaming profiles. For users with softphones, the assistant should store its settings in the users roaming profile, however for users using computers with physical phones next to them, some settings should not be stored in the roaming profile.


    Digital Receptionist

    No major problems, however:

    If user dials extension, would be nice if they heard ringing tones rather than hold music.
    Is it possible to not play the 'Please wait whilst I connect your call' message and instead just get on with connecting the call?


    Summary

    Very impressed, but the profile issue is pretty serious for corporate networks (and could be the show stopper for us!). I'd be interested to hear if 3CX can offer any assurances that this will be fixed in a future release? (I'm assuming there isn't currently a work around for this problem, as the system manual doesn't offer any suggestions)
     
  2. Bry

    Bry

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    p.s. I'm happy to discuss the profile problems offline in more detail if needed.
     
  3. Vali_3CX

    Vali_3CX Well-Known Member
    Staff Member 3CX Support

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    Hi
    1 - Xlite, EyeBeam, SJPhone, Ninja, Skype - some of most used softphones. Do they have standard Windows interface?
    2 - Could you tell me how you accomodate computers specific resources - such audio drivers, webcam, network interface, codecs - to a "unified" profile? Could you tell me how you can "unify" phone's extension, authentication ID, password? Could you tell me how you want to share your contact book with your boss or your employees? Could you tell me why, for instance, Xlite, Eyebeam, Skype works also with separate profiles? Or why, when you switch user, Microsoft Outlook, IE ask you for creating their user profile?
     
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  4. Bry

    Bry

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    Hi Vali,

    Firstly thanks for replying.

    I've not tried many of those if I'm honest, but I'll take your word that they don't. All of the ones listed above that I'm familiar with are products aimed at home users. The 3CX VoIP system certainly isn't targeted at home users. The products that I believe you are competing with don't do this.

    Of course, I would have thought it obvious that these details are specific to the machine and have no place in the user profile.

    Yes, actually. Such a modification to enable the assistant to work with a roaming softphone or a static desk phone should be pretty trivial.

    Sorry I don't understand how this is relevant?

    Because that's how profiles work! Are you familiar with the concepts behind roaming and local profiles?

    I have to say, I'm a little disappointed with the response from 3CX. I've posted on here as a customer who is likely to spend well in excess of €1000, and the response I've received doesn't exactly inspire me with confidence in the company or its products.
     
  5. Vali_3CX

    Vali_3CX Well-Known Member
    Staff Member 3CX Support

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    Bry,there is a confusion: 3CX Phone System certainly isn't targeted at home users, but 3CXPhone is - is a freeware softphone intended to be a general one, to be used including by home users.
     
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  6. Bry

    Bry

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    Fair point. However if we want to use a softphone and retain the functionality of the assistant and the Outlook plug in, then am I correct in thinking that the 3CX softphone is the only option?

    Edit: Thinking about it, I guess it would be possible to use the softphone as if it were a real phone? (i.e. configure the outlook plugin to dial via the PBX), therefore, I could use any softphone.
     
  7. mhanson

    mhanson New Member

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    Exactly. I dont use the 3CX softphone at work, I prefer a hard phone and have no issues dialing via outlook.

    In defense of the softphone, it is still in it's infancy in my opinion. It has grown by leaps and bounds in the last 6-8 months and should continue to improve.

    I think the Smartphone looks has mass appeal to end users who are more impressed with shiny buttons than functionality.

    I agree with the roaming profile issue, that is a valid request.
     
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  8. Vali_3CX

    Vali_3CX Well-Known Member
    Staff Member 3CX Support

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    Hi, Matthew

    Matthew, in case of a roaming profile, how you can see solved two issues:
    - computer-specific resources: IP, port, audio/video drivers, webcam, codecs.
    - concurential access to manage what is supposed to be per-user data (configuration file, address book, call history, recordings and so on) since, in case of roaming profile, may exist two "instances" of the same user logged-in at the same time.
    I'm asking because this subject, the roaming profile for 3CXPhone, has been discussed here, obviously, and I'm curious to hear another opinion.

    For Bry, I repeat what I explained some time ago: unlike other phones, 3CXphone provide a way of "sharing", in terms of "unique install" (let's name like this): install 3CXphone on a server, and provide to all client machines (running a Windows OS, obviously) a simple shortcut to the 3CXPhone.exe. This is not the solution you want, but is suitable for a centralized update. However, it has a trade-off: starting time is considerably longer, since common resources (sound files and skin) are loaded through network.

    Also for Bry: I specified for you and Igor, on 3CXPhone's section, there is no discussion about "standard Windows interface". However, with skin support, it could be possible to create "standard-Windows-like" skins, but, as in the case of actual look, is just a picture, a "snapshot", and this one depends by the one who creates the skin - a snapshot of Windows classic, a Windows Xp, with blue theme, red theme and so on.

    Regards
    vali
     
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  9. mkuntic

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    Everything specific to the computer should stay in AppData\Local. User-specific settings must be moved to AppData\Roaming.

    There is no concurrent access in case of roaming profiles. The profile is copied to the machine where the user is logging on and copied back to the server upon logoff.
    Concurrent access exists in case of AppData redirection, but in this case SMB locking does all the required work.

    Unnecessary, because 3CXPhone is already a deployable and GP-manageable MSI package (I hope; haven't tested GP deployment yet as it's practically useless in managed environments without per-user roaming settings).
     
  10. Vali_3CX

    Vali_3CX Well-Known Member
    Staff Member 3CX Support

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    Ok, noted these - thanks 8)
    Regards
    vali
     
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