nexVortex BLOG

Definitive Troubleshooting
Stops the Finger Pointing

Chuck Harris

Pin-pointing Call Quality.

Common sense insists that if you don’t know what needs to be fixed then you can’t solve the problem. Furthermore, if you don’t know WHERE a problem is occurring – where do you even start to begin fixing it?

The fact is the average VoIP call can involve multiple parties and multiple networks (average 3-4) including the business user; the local access provider, and the long distance provider.

Often VoIP providers neglect to provide a platform to effectively troubleshoot resulting in two overarching frustrations: 1) nobody claims responsibility; and, 2) problems remain unfixed, leading to customer dissatisfaction.

Delivering VoIP involves a chain of collaborative parties – or when there’s a glitch, maybe not so collaborative. The lack of cooperation isn’t as sinister as it might seem. Each entity wants to resolve the issue; they just lack the foundation and tools to pinpoint causation.  Without them, finding the “quality impacting” problem is impossible.

How to Definitely Troubleshoot VoIP

In short, definitive VoIP troubleshooting requires the ability to measure, monitor, and peel back the layers of each call to determine where the issues are occurring. It’s one thing to say, “I’m lost,” but when you can give GPS coordinates to your location, you’re essentially found – that’s where nexVortex mSIP comes into play.

Before getting into the details, it’s important to understand the parties and networks involved in a VoIP call. First there is the customer’s onsite (LAN) network; then the Internet access provider (Comcast, Verizon, etc.), and finally, the SIP provider which must ride over those networks to get to the premise-based PBX.  Obviously, there’s a myriad of moving parts within each of these three entities, that’s one of the main reasons troubleshooting has been so difficult – if you can’t locate the problem, then good luck fixing it!

Then nexVortex came along and changed everything.  Our mSIP service which includes nVSM (nexVortex Service Monitor) allows us to measure and monitor each leg of the call to determine which leg is negatively impacting voice quality (the LAN? the access? The WAN?).

First and foremost, if you don’t measure call quality (QoS), then you’re not going to recognize there’s even a problem until it’s affecting your calls.  mSIP takes voice quality measurements before the call leaves the premise, again after it crosses the access network, and again before it hits the PSTN gateway where it is sent on its way to the called party. These measurements reveal the nature of the problem and since they are taken at multiple points along the call path, the network location of the problem can be pinpointed.

The end result of processing all this data is a visual representation of call quality accessed from our nVSM tool.  It’s quick, decisive, effective, and a welcome-end to “non-definitive” finger pointing.  We call it definitive troubleshooting.

PRI/PSTN Quality Without the Expense

The point of all this is so businesses can confidently move off legacy PRIs to mSIP to save money while having the confidence that the service they are using will perform with quality.

It takes resources and know-how to build a service like mSIP.  nexVortex prides itself on being the cloud communications company focused on delivering voice quality.  To learn more contact us today.


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