High Availability Asterisk Solutions

Asterisk High Availability (HA) solutions, once reserved for mission critical deployments, are now commonplace in normal contact center setup. With VoIP, clustering solutions make it relatively straightforward to move IP traffic. Setting up a main and standby Asterisk system will allow such an arrangement to ensure continuous availability of an Asterisk system. Since telephony systems are not mere data systems using IP traffic, such arrangements to ensure immediate availability of the system is inadequate in ensuring the continuation of the calls that were underway when a hardware or software failure happened. Voice solutions require better options. One such option is the call survival capable high availability for Asterisk systems based on US Patent US 20110310773 A1 – a method and system for fail-safe call survival.

One of the most exciting technology to shake the telecommunications landscape in the last decade is Asterisk. Its use in unified communications (UC) and contact centers is unparalleled. Therefore high availability solutions for Asterisk have gained significant attention.  The high availability implemented using the above mentioned patent provides the technology to recover calls and successfully continue the on-going calls and conversations in the event of a failure. This technology is available as a part of a call center ACD that manages and scales to multiple Asterisk servers in a cluster to handle very large call volumes.

Essentials of a Cloud Contact Center Service Platform

Gartner makes available for public distribution, a write-up called “Magic Quadrant for Contact Center Infrastructure”.  Aside from the market analysis and evaluation of some of the contact center solution providers, the narrative dated June 18, 2013, also provided insight into how the market perceives the technology. Under “Market Overview” it articulates that more and more solutions are now shipped as contact center software which can be run on properly configured commercial off-the-shelf servers.

Now this may be a recent phenomenon for proprietary solutions that are closed but it has always been the case with open source software driven technology platform particularly the Asterisk based contact center solutions. Linux O/S, Asterisk Telephony, MySQL Database, Apache Web Server, and all the dominant Web Browsers are open source and they form the backbone technology stack of the contact center solution. They are to a great degree, hardware vendor independent. There are many Cloud platform vendors like Rackspace and Amazon who offer the computing power and the backbone technology as a service, for deploying a cloud based contact center solution.

Cloud contact center service providers will require a contact center software that leverages a comparable technology stack and offer the essential functionality required for a contact center operation. Multi-tenant capability with a multi-channel ACD is a must for every Cloud based service provider. Skills based Routing, Dialer, and robust API for CRM integration are some of the other key elements required.

Distributed computing has been around for years. The unprecedented growth of network infrastructure and the evolution of Internet Protocol (IP) based technology methods has made it possible to move distributed computing capabilities to new heights. Cloud  platforms assemble the technology backbone and the contact center software to make it accessible through the IP networks. The shift to a service on demand model is one of the significant advantages offered by Cloud based contact center solutions.