The Role of Voice Gatekeepers

Gatekeepers help VoIP networks scale to large sizes. Companies that have geographically dispersed voice networks, or networks that have become so large that they are unwieldy, might opt to segment their network. In a CallManager network, you can create multiple clusters. In that case, you would need to configure a full mesh of connections over the IP WAN to link all the segments or clusters. You would need to configure dial information for every remote location on every gateway and CallManager cluster. A better alternative is to use gatekeepers. In a network that has gatekeepers, trunks are needed only to the gatekeeper, and the gatekeeper maintains remote endpoint information.

When you use gatekeepers, gateways and CallManagers register with their gatekeeper. Gatekeepers divide the network into "zones," or groups of devices that register with a particular gatekeeper. When an H.323 gateway receives a call that is destined to a remote phone, it queries the gatekeeper for the location of the endpoint. If the call is destined for a different zone, you can configure the gatekeeper to allow it only if sufficient bandwidth is available. In more complex networks, you can use a Directory gatekeeper to maintain information about all the zones. You can configure Cisco routers with the appropriate Cisco IOS as H.323 gatekeepers.

Figure 1-2 shows an example of a company that has three CallManager clusters and a gatekeeper. Each cluster has an intercluster trunk over the IP WAN to the gatekeeper. Each cluster is its own zone.

Figure 1-2. H.323 Gatekeeper Example

Gatekeeper functionality is part of the H.323 standard. A voice gatekeeper provides the following services:

  • Address resolution A gatekeeper resolves E.164 telephone numbers and H.323 IDs to endpoint IP addresses.
  • Call admission control A gatekeeper permits or denies a call between clusters.
  • Bandwidth control A gatekeeper can refuse to admit calls that exceed the allocated bandwidth.
  • Zone management A gatekeeper can register and manage endpoints within its zone.
  • Optional Security A gatekeeper can authenticate and authorize calls on an endpoint-by-endpoint basis.
  • Optional call management A gatekeeper can maintain information about the endpoint call state.
  • Optional routing of call control signaling A gatekeeper can reroute signaling to allow endpoints to communicate directly.

Part I: Voice Gateways and Gatekeepers

Gateways and Gatekeepers

Part II: Gateways

Media Gateway Control Protocol


Session Initiation Protocol

Circuit Options

Connecting to the PSTN

Connecting to PBXs

Connecting to an IP WAN

Dial Plans

Digit Manipulation

Influencing Path Selection

Configuring Class of Restrictions

SRST and MGCP Gateway Fallback

DSP Resources

Using Tcl Scripts and VoiceXML

Part III: Gatekeepers

Deploying Gatekeepers

Gatekeeper Configuration

Part IV: IP-to-IP Gateways

Cisco Multiservice IP-to-IP Gateway

Appendix A. Answers to Chapter-Ending Review Questions


Cisco Voice Gateways and Gatekeepers
Cisco Voice Gateways and Gatekeepers
ISBN: 158705258X
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2004
Pages: 218 © 2008-2020.
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