Configuring Ooma

 | February 7, 2011 5:09 PM

Ooma is awesome.  I have had it for over two years and love the fact that I have never had to pay a monthly fee, never had to pay for long distance, never had to worry about it breaking, etc.

However I never tried to optimize the configuration of my Ooma until today.

Quality of Service

The Ooma is setup to be in front of my router “so that Ooma can intelligently prioritize voice traffic over other traffic.”

Ooma QoS Topology

Ooma’s Configuring Quality of Service document recommends configuring the upstream internet speed based on your SpeedNet results.  It turned out the default setting of 384 Kbps was about 10% of my actual upstream speed.  Ooma’s Learning more about Ooma Quality of Service (QoS) document recommended:

For the most optimum results, it is best to configure your "Upstream Internet Speed" to be 15-20% less than your measured upstream bandwidth.

I did three tests and got 3.46 Mb/s, 3.97 Mb/s and 3.60 Mb/s.  The average of these three is 3.68 Mb/s so I configured my Ooma to 85% of this value which is 3125 Kbps.

I was going to update the reserve bandwidth for calls from the default of 130 Kbps to 215 Kbps.  But after reading this forum about Quality of Service Settings I concluded it won’t make a difference.  I can’t change the codec used from the default codec (iLBC) to the high-bandwidth codec (G711) so I can only assume it uses the default codec.  In this forum it says to contact Ooma which I did and Ooma promptly changed it.  Ooma said the high-bandwidth codec takes up 90- 100 Kbps which is less than the default of 130 Kbps.

In conclusion changing the QoS settings doesn’t change the voice quality, it only changes how much data is available upstream when you are making a call.  But it was worth investigating since I found out how to improve the voice quality.

Port Forwarding

I set up port forwarding from my Ooma to my router for VNC and SSH.  First I forwarded ports 22 and 5900 TCP from Ooma to my router.  I found the router’s ethernet address on the 172.25.35 network using Airport Utility.

Then I configured the iMac to port forward.

  1. Configured to use DHCP with manual address (Settings –> Network –> Airport –> Advanced –> TCP/IP.  )  I chose 201 because that’s supposedly out of the range of normal DHCP addresses.
  2. Used Airport Utility to port forward.  Went to Manual Setup –> Advanced –> Port Mapping and added Apple Remote Desktop and added SSH port mappings.

Port Forward has instructions for setting up a static IP address and for port forwarding with the Airport Extreme but they are outdated.  However I couldn’t find anything better.

Real VNC has a page on port forwarding for VNC and on that page is a link to a test page to see if your port forwarding is working.

What I found was I was only able to truly test if port forwarding was working when I was off my LAN.  Even when trying to use the outside IP address while within my LAN did not work.

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