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Old CS410's worth using still?


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I've got a couple CS410's and about 15 phones (a mix of Snom 320's and 360's) sitting in our "IT boneyard" collecting dust. They've not been touched in about 4 or 5 years at least. The CS410's have some old PBXNSIP firmware on them. Originally, I authorized purchase of them to deploy in a couple small branch offices of ours, but after trying for months and months to get them to function reliably, I made the decision to scrap the project. We encountered constant issues between the PBXNSIP software and SNOM firmware (there always seemed to be a couple of glitches between the two back then). Each time we'd upgrade one or the other to fix a problem, they'd seemingly introduce some other issue. hehe... They've sat in storage ever since.


Now present day, a friend of mine who owns a small business said he was looking for a simple cheap pbx to deploy, and I casually said he could have one of the CS410's and as many Snom phones as he'd like if wanted to try them. He'd probably use no more than 4 or 5 phones. I'd have to help him get it all setup and working properly, so I would like to avoid a big time sink if these just aren't up to the task.


My questions are:

- Are the CS410's still supported?

- What are my firmware options for them at this point?

- Are the CS410's considered reliable/stable at this point?

- Is this worth my time, or should I tell my friend to look for a different option?


Thanks for any thoughts, advice or comments. :)




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We don't support the CS410 any more. There are a couple of reasons for that.


The first and most important is that we were never able to get the multitasking working properly with the Linux (which is also a couple of years old). We had to call yield() all the time all over the code to keep the PBX from freezing. This is like Windows 3.1, and it does not help to have a competitive product in the market.


The other problem was that the overall production volume of the CS410 was relatively low. Quality assurance in the hardware world is all about volume or military-grade prices. A PBX should be very reliable, and consequently it is a excellent idea to go for mainstream, high-volume server products if you don't want to risk a downtime of your employees until new hardware can be purchased. Here comes the next problem: If the device breaks, how long does it take to get a new one? If you have a standard off the shelve server breaks, you have a new one the next day or you already have a space one in your server rack anyway.


By the time when the CS410 was designed, 128 MB was a lot and a 400 MHz processor was mind boggling. Today, every smart phone has a lot more and so does the CS410 hardware look outdated.


If your friend does not want to go for a 19" server, I would look for a small home server or consider a snom ONE mini (at least it has 1.4 GHz). For the PSTN termination I would go for a standard PSTN gateway; they are made in high volume and the quality is great.

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