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Integrating Lync with a T1: What to make sure you and the customer ask the phone company

When integrating Lync with a T1 PRI via a media gateway there are some questions that you might wish to ask the customer prior to beginning the Lync / Telephony integration that can save you and the customer some time:

• For calls to the PSTN: How does the T1 PRI expect to receive the Called Number and Calling Number fields from Lync? For example, should those numbers be 10 digits or 11 digits or is the T1 provider capable of accepting both?
• For calls from the PSTN: How will the T1 PRI provider send the Called Number and Calling number fields to the media gateway? For example, while they be 10 digits, or 11 digits, (Phone providers other than SIP providers won’t send E.164).
• What T1 PRI protocol(s) does the T1 PRI that has been provisioned support, (e.g. NI2, 5ESS, 4ESS or DMS100)? This is needed to configure the media gateway to communicate with the T1 PRI.
o Make sure to avoid the customer purchasing a T1 PRI that is utilizing CAS. CAS does not support CallerID, (i.e. you won’t know who is calling)
• What phone numbers are being routed to the T1 PRI? For example, is it a block of numbers or a list of numbers out of sequence? If all numbers are going to a single Lync server/pool, then the gateway can be configured to route all calls on the T1 PRI to Lync’s IP address. However, if you have multiple locations you may need to set up routing tables on the media gateway that depending on the Called Number may dictate to which Lync server/pool the call is routed.
• Before going onsite ask the customer, “Has the T1 PRI local loop has been turned-up and accepted”. When a phone provider, (i.e. the CLEC) technician goes onsite, they will connect the T1 to a box known as a DMARC (demarcation point). At that time the phone technician will verify that the T1 can communicate back to the phone company, (i.e. the “CO” – central office). After that is done, the customer will be asked to call the phone provider, and “accept the local loop” for that T1. At that time, the customer should ask the person on the phone to verify that BOTH the data and voice channels are “up”. Very often a phone provider will “turn up” the data channel, (the “D” channel) and not “turn up” the voice channels, (really).
• After the T1 PRI “turn up” is verified, then make sure that the customer also calls the phone provider to accept the block of phone numbers, (i.e. DIDs) that have been provisioned. This is a separate call since it will be a separate work order for the phone company, (really). The customer should tell the phone provider to go ahead and “point” those numbers to the new T1 even though the media gateway has not been yet connected.

Hopefully this is helpful when rolling out a media gateway with Lync and a T1 PRI by saving you some time onsite engaging in thumb-twiddling exercises 

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