I run a home office and use voice over IP (VOIP) as my business telephone line. I have an Optus cable broadband connection (10Mbps download/256kbps upload) and found that if someone was on a VOIP call and another person was browsing the internet or sending an e-mail, the receiver’s call quality would be distorted. I have three computers and two VOIP phones on the network and was running a Netgear FVS318 router, which does not have quality of service (QoS).
I have recently purchased a Netgear FVS338 router, which is advertised as having QoS suitable for VOIP. However, plugging the router in straight out of the box, the receiver’s call still distorted when I was sending or receiving e-mails. My conclusion is that the router does not automatically have QoS for VOIP implemented.
So how to do it? — there does not appear to be any easy explanation on the internet, not even on Netgear’s own web site. But it is easy to do! Here is how I did it.
Firstly, make sure that you have upgraded to the latest firmware available from Netgear’s web site. The latest version at the time of writing was 3.0.3-13. You can do this in the FVS338 configuration manager (go to 192.168.1.1 in your web browser, assuming that you have not changed the router’s default IP address — but if you have done that, then you probably know what you are doing anyway!) under Administration -> Settings Back-up & Upgrade. (This menu may be different for earlier firmware versions.)
Once you have done that, again in the configuration manager go to Network Configuration -> LAN Settings -> LAN Groups. Here you should see the name and IP address of everything on your network. In the group column, the default name is Group1. Identify your VOIP phones, and click on edit beside each one. Change the group for all your VOIP phones to another group. In my case, I changed all to Group2.
Now go to Security -> Firewall.
Under Outbound Service, click add and apply the following settings.
Action: Always allow
LAN Users: Group2
WAN Users: Any
QoS Priority: Minimise-delay
Click apply, and you are all done! Easy!
Whatever you do, don’t try to set the VOIP QoS through the Security -> Services tab. While the default SIP port number is 5060, the actual transmission port number is something entirely different! Way too hard!