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Using DirecTivo over Vonage (VoIP) - a solution

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by RedGrey, Oct 2, 2003.

  1. ibleedblue

    ibleedblue New Member

    Jul 28, 2004
    Raleigh, NC
    Just make 110% sure that the lines are NOT connected to the phone company's lines still. If they are still connected and the line rings, it will fry the ATA. The best way is to disconnect the little RJ11 jack in the phone box where it mounts outside the house. That's what I've done and I backfed every line in my house to the Vonage ATA.
  2. lairc

    lairc I need FOLDERS!!!!

    Mar 27, 2003
    Arlington, TX
    I even went so far as to remove said RJ11 jack from the network interface box.
  3. F18fxr


    Oct 2, 2003
    Anyone else having luck with dialing straight through with the v17 upgrade??
  4. GDN

    GDN New Member

    Dec 3, 2002
    Dallas, TX
    Sorry to hear of the problems different folks are having. Don't want to rub this in (in fact - knock on wood) but I've never seen anything much easier than getting Vonage installed and working.

    I'm a new Vonage customer - about a month now - the service is great and my Directivos dial and work great through the system.

    I don't know for sure - but equipment/hardware may have something to do with this. I know Vonage no longer ships the Cisco ATA (at least that is what I've read - maybe it just didn't have the quality for modem calls) - I've got a Motorola VT1005 running v17 of the firmware. You can connect to the "PC" side of the VT1005 with a PC running DHCP and then http:\\ and see the status page - click on help - you'll see the version number. You can do this from the "WAN" side.

    To further clarify - my Moto is behind a Linksys WRT54G running the latest version of their firmware (actually the modified HyperWRT). I'm using QOS in the router to dedicate some bandwidth to the Moto box and I use 90kb on the "Bandwidth Saver" option in Vonage.

    I'll attach a drawing that I did for a friend of my wiring. It's basic - but lays it all out - I looked forever for something that showed all the connections when I first started this and couldn't find it. When you are learning or just starting out - it can be confusing - once you follow it through and see it all together - it's rather simple.

    As others mention - I've disconnected SBC from the premise box outside - and the connection you see from Vonage (after it passes through my Brinks alarm) is plugged into one of my normal existing house outlets. I then have my new Vonage phone available and working at all of my existing outlets.

    The alarm - was the biggest issue I had - it used to connect out at the premise box - I couldn't get that to seize the line - so I did rewire that portion in the RJ31X box after some research and much trial and error and testing.
  5. GDN

    GDN New Member

    Dec 3, 2002
    Dallas, TX
    The attachment didn't show up with that last post - here it is.

    Attached Files:

  6. The Bird

    The Bird Member

    Mar 31, 2001
    New England
    Alarm systems generally have low speed modems so vonage should work fine with them. The problem here is series 2 DIRECTV TiVo's have higher speed modems that cannot be slowed down.

    Your diagram does not show a DVR nor do you say what type of DVR you have.

    RJ31x wiring, incoming line to pins 4&5 and house wiring to pins 1&8 then the alarm system plugs into the modular jack. House phones should work with both the alarm system plugged into the jack and not plugged into the jack.
  7. GDN

    GDN New Member

    Dec 3, 2002
    Dallas, TX
    You are right on the RJ31X wiring - I've got a picture of it with the cover off - can post it later if anyone is interested - don't have it at work with me. I mentioned Directivos - specifically - both of mine are Samsung 40hr. I didn't put the DirecTivo's on the diagram because they are simply other devices that plug into the house wiring once I get the Vonage signal to it. Maybe it would make sense if they were on there - but didn't think much of it - since the real problems seem to be with the way people get the Vonage signal to the house wiring. Will work on an update this weekend and post the picture which you described for us - that is what is going on inside of the RJ31X.
  8. F18fxr


    Oct 2, 2003

    After much work I was able to get my oldest TiVo to make a test and daily call, it is now updated.

    My newest TiVo is still struggling to download the latest software. It has never made a phone call until now. The longest it was connected was about 30 minutes, I have to keep forcing a call.

    I got Vonage to upgrade to v17, packetization of 10ms. For a while it worked with no prefix, but then I hit a wall and it would not work. So I added the ,#401 prefix and it now works. I have to use an adsl filter though, otherwise it wouldn't connect.
  9. SecureTalk

    SecureTalk New Member

    Apr 8, 2002
    What brand ATA did Vonage give you? My Vonage service came with a Cisco ATA 186.

    How can you determine the version of the software?

  10. F18fxr


    Oct 2, 2003
    Originally posted by ibleedblue
    Plug your ethernet cable from the NIC to the PC port on the moto box. You need to bypass the router (leave the moto box hooked to router) is the IP addy for the moto box. This will get you into the ATA setup. You should be able to find the software version from there. Can't be more specific because I'm at work and the ATA is at home.
  11. ibleedblue

    ibleedblue New Member

    Jul 28, 2004
    Raleigh, NC
    The above was for the Moto ATA. I don't know if it will work on the Cisco ATA as well.
  12. dtv_guru

    dtv_guru New Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    Huntsville, AL
    for anybody that would like a yes/no if your dvr is calling dtv using vonage, send me an e-mail w/ your handle and acct# or ph # and i will check at work. depending on reply volume, it may take a few days and i may not get to everybody, but i hope to confirm as many as i can. e-mail is jwinland@mchsi.com
  13. pigvig

    pigvig TiVo Underling

    Sep 3, 2001
    Houston, TX
    I'm a little confused - are you using the code on your older unit or the series 2 DTivo?

    FWIW, code #401 is used to activate a turbonet card and I can't see how this would affect your dialing at all.
  14. scottt

    scottt Macintosh Guru

    Sep 6, 2002
    Springfield, VA
  15. maxview

    maxview New Member

    Oct 4, 2002
    Is this 4.0 that can phone home over ethernet really ever coming for the existing HDVR2s or will it be in a the next generation DirecTivo models?
    It will be much faster and reliable over ethernet broadband than a 14.4 modem speed psuedo analog connection through Vonage.

    Or will Vonage clean up their connection in the next year so the HDVR2 will dial through Vonage without modification?
  16. TXTivoUser

    TXTivoUser Jeep Ninja

    Nov 27, 2002
    Denton, Texas
    FWIW - my 2 d* hdvr2's work fine over vonage with no speical codes. I'm starting to think it's not so much Vonage (well, to a degree it is) as it is the quality of the phone line from Vonage's systems to what ever modem bank you're calling.
  17. Sentinal

    Sentinal New Member

    Jan 15, 2004
    So this is really getting old. I've tried the external modem thingy with the special custom-made cable to no avail.
    I've tried to get into my cisco ata as described above but I'm assuming it needs to be attached to a machine issuing DHCP addresses and since I don't have a DHCP server other than my Linksys router I can't do that.
    I tried the ,#401 ,#019 and ,#096 dialing prefixes and that won't work either.
    I have an ADSL filter on the line. Nothing - and I've been trying for almost a year now.
    I can't even make a test call.
    I read the thing on the vonage website about using the HMO but I don't think that will work for me.
    I'm running a Linksys BEFW11S4 v4 router, a Hughes HDVR2 behind a 3COM 3CR29220 cable modem. Ports are forwarded on the router based on this article https://www.vonage.com/help_knowledgeBase_article.php?article=188 and selecting the BEFXS41 model (since they don't have mine listed).
    I'm just outside of Seattle, WA.
    Can anyone lend any definitive insight as to how I can get this setup to work?
    Thanks (sorry for ranting)
  18. Xipper

    Xipper New Member

    Oct 21, 2002
    greater DC...
    I have been using Vonage successfully now for about 2 weeks. I ran into a few glitches, but it has pretty much worked from the very begining.


    DTivo: DSR6000R ver 3.1.0c2-01-1-001
    Vonage ATA: Motorola V1000 ver VT20_01.1.17
    router: Linksys WRT54GS ver v2.02.7
    cable modem: Scientific Atlanta WebSTAR DPX2100
    (also tested with RCA wireless jacks model RC926)

    I have tested the system with the ATA "in front" of the router and "behind it" with both configurations working. I currently have it "behind" the router with no port forwarding enabled.

    Dial codes using: Calll Waiting prefix: ,*99,*70,1
    (would not connect with *99 without dialing as a long distance number, thus the 1)

    Vonage Bandwidth saver: 30Kbps, 50Kbps, 90Kbps
    I was able to get Tivo to connect at all bandwidth settings using the prefixes listed above. I ran into a problem with not getting DMTF tones to work consistently (access bank or 'foriegn' voicemail) at 90Kbps, but so far work fine at 50Kbps. I tested 30Kbps just to see if it would work, please keep in mind if you can't get normal phone calls to work consistenly at 90Kbps you will likely not get Tivo to work.

    My success rates for daily calls and test calls connections with the at the different bandwidth saver settings:
    90Kbps with no dial codes was 100%; with dial codes 100%
    50Kbps with no dial codes was 0%; with dial codes 100%
    30Kbps with no dial codes was 0%; with dial codes 100%

    I hope this helps someone else, as I was able to find this solution with the help of this forum and a few VoIP related forums.
  19. namydnas

    namydnas New Member

    Sep 17, 2004
    I received my Vonage (Mot) box on Monday and was very happy with it. I soon found that my RCADVR40 couldn't dial-up, and then I found this thread. The bottom line is, Vonage has difficulty with high-speed modem connections. There's an easy workaround on Series 1 Directivos, just lower the speed on your modem. Unfortunately this does not work on Series 2. This thread goes into great detail about connecting external modems, serial connections to your PC, and a few other "interesting" ways of solving the problem. One thing nobody seems to realize is that you don't need to use a jackhammer to drill a hole.

    All that is required to make a successful call is to connect with a lower modem speed. If you have a series 2 tivo, you cannot (easily) change the speed on your side, but you can let Tivo do the work for you. They have access numbers in cities around the country. Guess what? Not every number is going to connect at 56k. In more rural areas, some will connect at 9600. You have Vonage and are paying the same to the entire country, so pick a different area code, and pick a city there with only one number. I did this last night and can now successfully connect to the service every time, when I couldn't even complete a test call before.

    Since so many people here like doing extra work, I'll leave you with this. Connect a modem to a PC, and using HyperTerminal, dial-up to each of the access numbers listed for a given area and document the connection speed you experience. You will then know which number works best for you.
  20. skaeight

    skaeight New Member

    Jan 20, 2004
    Why not be a good guy and just tell people which number connects at 9600? Great idea though, I hadn't thought of that.

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