Saturday, September 10, 2011

Ooma optimization – Connection, Port forwarding etc

Got ooma VOIP device, so far so good. Here are a few things I did following some online discussions:

QoS (quality of service) Explain – The Proper Way:

First of all - it's best if OOMA is installed in-front of the router.
That's a #1 rule for any VOIP service if you want it to be the most reliable.
The difference in quality could be just in that 1 call out of 100 but the difference will be there.
OOMA in front of the wireless router is a MUST if you want to have the best quality of your phone service.
Rule #2 is to then properly setup QoS to ensure your phone voice quality will never suffer under any internet bandwidth usage pattern in your household. No matter how much bandwidth you have (DSL users normally limited with 3mbps in download, cable users vary from 10 to 15 to 25 mbps, FIOS is 50 mbps and higher) - there will be those few (or not so few) times when you'll be using a lot of bandwidth streaming some Netflix movies, downloading/uploading some movies, playing online games and so on.
So reserving bandwidth for OOMA calls is very important.
Below applies only to the configuration when OOMA is in front of the wireless router and thus can control the bandwidth.
The way OOMA does it is exactly as described in the first post of this thread:
- when OOMA QoS is not set and you are in a call - OOMA starts throttling down bandwidth it leaves for everything else very UNINTELLIGENTLY - it simply reserves about 70 to 80% of internet bandwidth for that ongoing call and let the rest to be used by the wireless router (your Internet). I guess the reason it's done is that with QoS is not set (empty or set to 0/0) OOMA doesn't know bandwidth capability of the internet line and by default assumes that it's the slowest line available thus reserving 80% of its bandwidth to ensure quality of ongoing call. I'm sure this not so smart behavior will be fixed eventually via firmware update but until those times not setting QoS or setting it to 0/0 is not recommended.
The way QoS works at this time is that OOMA will reserve approximately 20% of your Internet bandwidth if it's specified in your Upstream and Downstream settings of QoS on "Advanced" page. So if your cable provides 10 mbps on downstream and 1 mbps on upstream setting those settings in QoS to 80% of those values is actually INCORRECT. And the explanation is simple:
80% of 10 mbps = 8 mbps.
OOMA will now assume that your internet bandwidth is 8mbps and will reserve 20% of it when calls are in progress:
20% of 8 mbps = 1.6 mbps
So when you are in call your internet bandwidth of 10mbps will be throttled down by OOMA to (8 mbps - 1.6 mbps) = 6.4 mbps. If you receive a 2nd call and have two calls in progress at the same time - another 1.6 mbps will be used so your maximum internet bandwidth (or speed of downloads) will be decreased to (8 mbps - 1.6 mbps - 1.6 mbps) = 4.8 mbps.
So we are down to a very important question - OOMA had reserved 10 mbps - 6.4 mbps = 3.6 mbps to provide quality of one ongoing call - but does OOMA really needs so much bandwidth for one call? The answer is NO.
The highest amount of bandwidth used by the highest quality call is not more than 0.4 mbps.
You need only 0.4 mbps for one ongoing call or 0.8 mbps for two concurrent and ongoing calls (when you use both lines of OOMA at the same time). This numbers are EXAGGERATED by me - no more than 100 kbps (or 0.1 mbps) is actually required for high quality call.
So how do you setup QoS properly - without sacrificing too much bandwidth and without affecting quality of your calls?
You have to set your upstream and downstream values in QoS to much higher of your actual bandwidth.


In the example above with actual bandwidth of 10 mbps down and 1 mbps up (most common cable bandwidht in the USA) you should set your bandwidth to about 12000 (12 mbps) in downstream and 1200 (1.2 mbps) in upstream settings.
And the calculations will be as follows:
downstream bandwidth allowed for Internet = 80 % of 12 mbps = 9.6 mbps
downstream bandwidth allowed for 1 ongoing call = 20% of 12 mbps = 2.4 mbps
And here is the trick - OOMA will think that it's going to get it's 2.4 mbps for an ongoing call and will happily allow 9.6 mbps for Internet usage. But in reality your internet is limited to 10 mbps so the actual bandwidth you left to OOMA is 0.4 mbps per call which is more than enough to ensure excellent call quality.
If you have any other bandwidth - you can use the calculations above to approximate correct settings for your QoS values.
If you have DSL line and your bandwidth is limited to 3 mbps - I would make the calculations above to allow only 0.1 mbps per call to ensure you don't waste your bandwidth when you are on the call and on the internet (i.e. streaming Netflix movie) at the same time.
Hope this post will help someone to perform proper QoS configuration.


If you connect the ooma behind the router, you have to connect an Ethernet cable to its home network port to access the management page. Thankfully there is a way to get around this.


1. Setting Ooma Telo Port Forwarding, with Ooma Telo located behind (LAN Side) of your router. Add Port forwarding so that you don’t have to connect a computer to the Ooma Telo Home Port for viewing or modifying Ooma Telo settings.
a. Access your Ooma Telo home port by plugging in a patch cable from the Ooma Telo home port to a computer’s network card port. Sometimes you have to restart your computer after installing the patch cable, so that a proper connection occurs.
b. Type in you browser address window and hit enter. The “Ooma Setup” window opens.
c. In the left hand Navigation window, select “Advanced”.
d. At the top of the page record the Home Port IP Address: number (Probably
e. At the bottom of the page under Port Forwarding, select “Add New Rule”. Enter the following:
i. Start Port: block enter 80.
ii. End port: block No entry.
iii. Type: Select TCP
iv. Forward to IP address: Enter the Home Port IP address that you recorded above (Probably
v. Select “Add Rule” with your mouse.
f. From a computer connected to your router, in the browser address window, enter the Ooma Telo Static IP address, or IP address that your router assigned to the Ooma Telo. Looks Like
g. Ooma setup window should open, without the computer being connected to the Ooma Telo Home Port.


There is also another solution which is far more complicated than this, but it didn’t work very reliable. So just stick to this one!

Ooma suggests that you turn off Quality of Service settings in Ooma Setup, by setting upstream and downstream Internet speeds to Zero, if the Ooma device is connected (behind) to one of the router LAN ports. Than if your router provides VoIP priority, the Ooma device IP address is reserved with a permanent lease, in the router, and then the router VoIP priority is set for the Ooma device's IP address.
Ooma uses iLBC (default codec).
This is what Ooma lists for ports, but I have never believed the list is complete. ... vice-ports
More Information:
Star Commands
*15, *16, *17, *18, *19 - Call number using Bluetooth headset 1,2,3,4,5
*06, *06, *07, *08, *09 - Intercom with Bluetooth headset 1,2,3,4,5
*67 - Do Not Send Caller ID
*69 - Return last call
*70 - Disable Call Waiting Tone
*82 - Send Caller ID
*91 - ????
*96 - Use iLBC Codec
*97 - ????
*98 - Use G711 Codec w/o Fax mode
*99 - Data/Fax call
*#483 - Google Voice
*#*#001 - Speak the current Telo Version
*#*#191 - Unregister all handsets
*#*#501 - Bluetooth Discovery
*#*#511 - Turn off Telo key press sounds
**0 - Line1
**1 - Line2
dial *#*#099 on the phone attached to Telo to issue a factory reset

1 comment:

  1. I just read this article and am a bit confused by the author's calculation of the upstream/downstream settings to set on the Ooma. It appears this is the opposite of how Ooma indicates it's to be done per their website: