Summary:ASTERISK-01392: [request] for a ztdummy that uses usb-ohci (and works with SMP)
Reporter:chrisorme (chrisorme)Labels:
Date Opened:2004-04-10 18:45:12Date Closed:2011-06-07 14:04:45
Versions:Frequency of
Description:Please please please could you consider writing or modifying ztdummy to use usb-ohci as we have slave *'s talking to *'s with Digium cards via IAX but no actual cards in these slaves.   They are dual processor and currently using zaptelrtc (with kernel rtc timing turned off) but I'm not convince this is a good or stable solution and if ztdummy used usb-ohci instead we'd be able to use it on these Dell Poweredge boxes (which I think are pretty common in the states as well as over here).  Many thanks for considering my request.
Comments:By: Brian West (bkw918) 2004-04-10 21:12:29

why how much are you willing to pay? its only 99 bucks for a x100p that you can clock against.  Forgot to mention that ztdummy isn't very good for clocking under a load.

edited on: 04-10-04 20:05

By: chrisorme (chrisorme) 2004-04-11 05:52:25

So a hardware clock might well be better.   Ta.

Is there anyway I can test if the zaptelrtc module running on our PIV 2.4 w/SMP/hyperthreading (but only physical 1 CPU) and rtc disabled in the kernel whether or not the zaptelrtc bit is doing its job or a decent job ?

Might zaptelrtc may well have the same problems under load too or is it fundamentally very different to ztdummy in how it works?

By: hex (hex) 2004-04-11 10:04:04

I agree with bkw's suggestion on the X100P, but some other avenues you can try are using TDMoE with one channel to clock the other boxes or just figure out a way to avoid using those extra machines with no zaptel hardware in them.  Timing is only needed for IAX2 trunking and meetme conferencing.  If you are on a LAN between the two just don't use trunking and I would imagine you are OK.

By: zoa (zoa) 2004-04-11 10:06:50

sometimes there is no such option, on 1 1u server, i need the only pci slot for a raid card, thus leaving no option for a digium card.

hex, did you try out the tdmoe ? is it working fine for you ? (never tried it as i'm affraid nobody uses it.)

By: chrisorme (chrisorme) 2004-04-11 10:31:21

Thanks zoa, you know where I'm coming from!  As not much harddisk space is used by asterisk we use 1U boxes with 2x drives in RAID 1 as zoa says and I think he uses?

Sadly I can't avoid the boxes without zaptel hardware as the PSTN lines we use are external to the site where the servers are (ie with the provider) and to get new lines at the colo would cost several thousand pounds plus take about three months.

Thanks for the tip about not using IAX2 trunking, it will cost more in bandwidth, but you're right it should solve the timing issue.  

As for meetme I still need timing, any thoughts on zaprtc for this on an SMP box. It compiles and seems to load but I've not fully checked to see if it's working yet - but 'trunk=yes' didn't go very well - ie. I got one way audio etc.. - going back to 'trunk=no' and all was fine and dandy.

[root@raven.vodare.com root]# lsmod
Module                  Size  Used by    Not tainted
zaprtc                 11636   1
zaptel                182528   2  [zaprtc]

I don't begrude digium the $99 at all!  It's just finding somewhere to put the card!  I know there's the USB item in the dev kit but for production use ?

I assume there isn't a voltage issue with this card?  Anyway at $99 it's worth ordering one and trying to find a 2U server with a slot free and this TDMoE suggestion I guess.

Is writing ztdummy for ohci a really big deal then ??

By: hex (hex) 2004-04-11 10:45:41

You may have an absolute requirement for hard drives but some have been booting asterisk from compact flash cards in IDE adapters, or USB flash with newer motherboards that support booting from it.  To push the envelope, another programmer/admin and I are trying to make Asterisk work with the uClibc "buildroot" distribution which can be loaded into ram disk with initrd.  Going solid state usually means you don't need RAID, and you store CDRs and so forth elsewhere on a database server.  This is somewhat off-topic but maybe you can try this instead of taking up a slot and the extra money for a RAID if you don't need it.

That USB item in the development kit probably isn't gonna give you any better timing than ztdummy...  I bet writing ztdummy code for ohci isn't too hard, but maybe bkw or someone else can comment about how its not a reliable enough source of timing for heavily loaded boxes.

By: chrisorme (chrisorme) 2004-04-11 10:54:19

Sounds pretty cool what you're trying hex ...  Good luck !!

I don't think our boards support boot from that flash though but I could probably boot off a CD or even a floppy and NFS perhaps too and yup the CDRs are definitely the task of a remote database server.
This isn't as good as your USB flash but it's not something I'd thought about doing until now.

Do you think it's likely that bkw's comments about what goes for ztdummy also goes for zaptelrtc too on heavy load?

I know zaptelrtc isn't part of * or exactly how zaprtc works and that I don't even know if it is working in my SMP environment (possibly not), but it's really my only option left - any thoughts?

As far as off-topic goes:  Hopefully * is happy with SMP and gets something out of multiple processors.  I wonder if anyone ever compiled it with IA-64 too.

By: zoa (zoa) 2004-04-11 11:33:08

if IA-64 = AMD 64, then just i compiled it and use it but i do not recommend it for production use yet.

By: chrisorme (chrisorme) 2004-04-15 17:32:02

How about Itanium II I wonder if asterisk compiles with that..

In the meantime I've ordered myself some of Digiums 1xFXO cards to provide timing and hope I can put them somewhere and link them w/TDMoE as suggested.

A ztdummy w/ohci would still be very handy for w/1U servers though and incase I can't get TDMoE to play ball also with the prices of colo space this side of the atlantic these are the way to go.

How about a TDMoI ( TDM over internet ;) now that would be a winner lol ! )

Thanks for the suggestions...

By: chrisorme (chrisorme) 2004-04-23 13:55:34

Maybe another reason to think about having this type of ztdummy might be if your Dell server doesn't like the X100P because of how it might do its PCI bus. :)

By: Brian West (bkw918) 2004-04-24 15:45:24

ok in a 1U box you usually have some room... what if we could come up with a short choped off PCI card that just plugs into the slot is about 1 inch tall?

Just throwing ideas out.


By: chrisorme (chrisorme) 2004-04-24 20:12:42

Well my dell poweredge uses 3.3V on its pci slots so an x100p that I ordered doesn't work (5v) and the dell complains horribly.  At the moment my options are limited to (as far as I can see)

a) e100 apx $600 ? (and I probably won't have a need for an E1)
b) e410? apx $1500 ( see a, or 4 x e1 )
c) ztdummy for ohci - not avail
d) zaptelrtc with rtc compiled out of the linux kernel, may be working, may not, not checked yet - but again load problems potentially???

So yes, basically if you can give a clock source and work on 3.3v and cost less than $600 you're probably onto a winner in that for high load ztdummy isn't fab even if it were rewritten for ohci.

Thanks for listening  - Chris

By: Brian West (bkw918) 2004-05-05 01:30:11

Well here


Use that.

By: Brian West (bkw918) 2004-05-05 01:33:00


That should help...