Developing a Private Cloud Based IP Telephony Laboratory and Curriculum

Developing a Private Cloud Based IP Telephony Laboratory and Curriculum

Dongqing Yuan (University of Wisconsin-Stout, USA), Cody Lewandowski (University of Wisconsin – Stout, USA) and Jiling Zhong (Troy University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0957-0.ch009
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Abstract

Internet Protocol (IP) Telephony and Cloud Computing are the two technologies that have been growing rapidly in the IT industry in recent years. Private cloud computing model offers attractive advantages to higher education such as providing scale on demand through the network, rapid platform deployment, and lower costs. IP Telephony curriculum, on the other hand, is very new to IT education and because of the high cost of laboratory equipment; there are very few universities that offer IP Telephony courses. The documentation on IP Telephony laboratory and curriculum is also under-developed. In this chapter, the authors explore how an IT Telephony laboratory can be built upon the private cloud to serve the class. They also develop 21 IP Telephony labs that allow students to practice hands-on skills.
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1. Introduction

The cloud-computing market is projected to grow from $40.7B in 2011 to $240B in 2020 (Ried & Kisker, 2011). Many researchers and IT practitioners believe that cloud computing is going to be the new revolution following the advent of the Internet (Khmelevsky & Voytenko, 2010). Cloud computing has been considered as the fifth generation of computing after mainframe computing, personal computing, client-server computing and the web (Khmelevsky & Voytenko, 2010). Cloud computing is an approach to “increase capacity or add capabilities on the fly without investing in new infrastructure, training new personnel, or licensing new software” (Knorr & Gruman, 2007, p. 3). Cloud computing provides Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) (Desisto, Plummer, & Smith, 2008). A private cloud employs cloud computing within an organization’s own local or wide area networks. The infrastructure in the private cloud is operated solely for an organization to provide services utilizing virtualization and distributed computing (Head, Sailer, Shaikh, & Shea, 2010). Private cloud computing model offers attractive advantages to higher education such as providing scale on demand through the network, rapid platform deployment, and lower costs (Kim, Dermott, & Kang, 2010).

IP Telephony is growing rapidly in the telecommunication industry. Many major phone companies, such as AT&T, T-Mobile, and Vonage, are competing to gain customers in several markets around the United States (Rodchua, Kangas, & Mead, 2010). However, there are very few universities that offer IP Telephony courses (Imboden & Strothmann, 2010); there is even less documentation on curriculum and laboratory development, due to two factors: 1) IP Telephony curriculum is very new to IT education, and 2) the high cost of laboratory equipment (Rodchua et al., 2010).

To meet the challenges of these new technologies and the needs of IT students, in this chapter, we provide a detailed account of developing an IP Telephony curriculum and the laboratory development using private cloud computing. With private cloud computing, we are able to lower the overall cost of installing and maintaining the laboratory. We believe the lectures and hands-on experience provided by an IP Telephony course help the students gain the knowledge and skills in the areas of configuring a unified communication call manager, local, long distance and international calls, single site and multi-site distributed call dialing. This research can serve as a reference guide for other IT educators who want to deploy IP Telephony laboratory and curriculum in their institutions.

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