DrayTek Roadshow 2016
I had an opportunity to go to the DrayTek Roadshow at the Hilton hotel in reading this week hosted by:
- CEO – Michael Spalter
- CTO – Alex Shuker
- Sales and Marketing Manager – Julian Hubble
- Technical Support Manager – Manoj Khatri
- Senior Technical Support Engineer – Joe Deacy
I’ve been to quite a few events like this in the past so I can report it was a great success. The Venue was great and presentations showed off plenty of new features and products to inspire me to try a few out over the next few weeks.
The agenda was broken down into the following sessions but focused on giving a quick technical overview of each topic.
- Product Positioning
- Wireless Solutions
- Business Continuity
- Best Practice
- Central Management
- IPBX Solutions
There was a great turn out and the event was fully booked
One of the big topics covered was business continuity and how businesses need to protect themselves against internet outages. So many businesses rely on their connections to function so why do so many go without even the most basic backup solutions. DrayTeks answer to protecting businesses against internet outages is the DrayTek Vigor 2860 LTE. This router includes a built in 3g/4g modem with automatic failover and comes with two antennas. The antennas are great where the unit is installed in a cabinet or rack because the bases are magnetic so they can be placed outside the rack to get better signal.
The 2860 LTE comes with standard WiFi and includes two SMA connectors on the back for the 4g connections. The SIM card slot on the back accepts a large format SIM, meaning you can use any sized SIM card using an adapter.
The 2860 LTE is a great solution for businesses who want to protect against internet outages.
One of the other great bits of information gained from the roadshow was the fact that DrayTek support Active / Active hardware failover capabilities. This is something I didn’t realise and is a fantastic feature available on the Vigor 2925, 2860, 2960 and 3900 series routers using the latest firmware. Basically you install two identical routers and configure high availability. Set one router as a primary and configure a virtual IP address which is shared between both devices. Any changes you make to the primary router will automatically be copied over to the secondary. If the primary router fails the secondary takes over control and because it uses the same IP address as the primary, clients on the network don’t even notice the primary router failed.
They even had a cabinet setup for hardware redundancy using two 2930’s and two switches. Also those lights are very handy, think ill have to get a couple of those myself!
One of the other sessions focused on their Vigor BX2000 which is a wireless router with built in PBX functionality. Great for the small office who doesn’t want to go fully hosted with their telephone system. You keep control of configuration of the handsets, group, extensions and IVR setup but utilise VOIP via a SIP provider. Draytek have teamed up with VTech as their partner for handsets and they look to provide hardware with good build quality at a great price.
The BX2000 comes with an analogue output port to connect a phone for FAX machine and a second port to connect to an analogue BT socket for failover should the SIP provider fail.
There were lots of other products on show including the AP910 which is another DrayTek product I’ve not used before.
All in all a great day and I learned a lot about some products I don’t normally use. There were lots of tips on setting up high availability and best practices and the grub was pretty good too!