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Author Topic: OBi 100/110 GV Update request  (Read 954 times)
ChrisJ
Newbie
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Posts: 4


« on: December 08, 2017, 08:17:25 am »

Hi,

I understand the reasons why the OBI 100/110 is not being supported with the new google voice certificate changes and I understand that other options exist for me to restore my service.

Still, I wish to request that Obihai please consider developing an update for the the OBI 100/110.  I would be willing to pay for it.

Thanks for considering this request and thank you for your product.

Chris
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primerisk
Jr. Member
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Posts: 20


« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2017, 09:34:10 am »

ChrisJ,
     I understand your feelings, but it costs a lot of money to continue to develop for an old platform that may have other limits.  I love my 110A because of the outbound port on it as a backup.  My solution was to pay the one time $5.99 to simonics.com to bridge my GV service over to SIP.  It is very easy to setup and works flawlessly.  See the post here (http://www.obitalk.com/forum/index.php?topic=13147.0) that explains it step by step.

I know some will balk at paying $5.99 for this service, but this is a one-time fee.  If your Obi is out of warranty and you need support, you'd have to pay $10 to get a year of support.  So, if you really want to hold on to your 100/110/110A, this is a very fast and inexpensive solution.  I'm using it, it seems to work flawlessly, and it even adds additional features like CID.
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dissturbbed
Newbie
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Posts: 6


« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2017, 06:51:13 pm »

It doesn't take much to update certs, Ive done this with cable modems. It takes about ten minutes if that. The fix they used with the obi200 shouldn't be no different with the obi100...this is a fact.
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SteveInWA
Hero Member & Beta Tester
*****
Posts: 3972



« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2017, 07:01:57 pm »

It doesn't take much to update certs, Ive done this with cable modems. It takes about ten minutes if that. The fix they used with the obi200 shouldn't be no different with the obi100...this is a fact.

"I'm not a doctor, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn last night."

Then, go start your own ATA company and quit spamming the forum with your nonsense speculation.
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picazo
Newbie
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Posts: 1



« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2017, 07:10:01 pm »

I agree that this could be done and I would like it to be done, being an owner of the OBi 100.  I don't believe in "ending life" of products like this.  You stand behind your product, period, not send endless emails yapping about upgrading a perfectly good product due to "end of life".  I bought mine in 2013, along with a pair of cordless phones and a surge protector, and spent nearly $150.  The OBi is in fine shape and would continue to serve its purpose if the certificates were updated.  I expect more than 4 years out of a product like this.  I will not be purchasing a new OBi, but joined the forum so that I can be informed should Obihai decide to support all of its versions.  Meanwhile, we will not have a home phone and will use TracFones exclusively, leaving one of the cordless phones to be my alarm clock and the other out of commission like the OBi.

I'm sure it would make the company very happy should all the owners of the first version(s) upgrade without a real and good reason, but I wish Obihai would keep in mind that a company that stands behind its products from Day 1 can do very well with a product like this.  While some of us discovered this great product when that version was available, others will continue to discover it and purchase whatever the current version is.  And longtime users might just decide on their own for their own reasons that they want an upgrade.
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talkbot
Newbie
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Posts: 3


« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2017, 09:50:50 pm »

Yes it would take basically no effort assuming they didn't completely abandon their dev tools for obi1xx (unless it is more than a simple certificate change).  But as a business decision it is a tradeoff between new revenue and goodwill and most people would choose new revenue.

So let's figure out how to patch the firmware with the new certificate ourselves.  Anybody has unpacked the firmware filesystem?  Binwalk does not seem to recognize any compressed filesystems or kernel images in either the firmware update file or a raw flash dump.

If the firmware update has to be signed it should still be possible to modify the flash chip contents directly with an arduino or SPI programmer device which some people have laying around.
 
« Last Edit: December 09, 2017, 11:03:04 pm by talkbot » Logged
talkbot
Newbie
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Posts: 3


« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2017, 05:36:20 pm »

So I guess this is a MIPS-X device and not running linux.  But the firmware update file is more or less copied directly to the flash with the first part being the webpages at 0x80000 and the second part the firmware which is aligned with the end of the flash.  There seem to be some tables and headers and multiple compressed sections.  So it should be feasible with a little effort to find the sections and decompress them, find the certificate and replace it, and then pack it all back up again.  Anybody else looking at this? 
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SteveInWA
Hero Member & Beta Tester
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Posts: 3972



« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2017, 05:41:38 pm »

Discussions of firmware cracking will be cheerfully deleted.

Remember:  this forum is owned and operated by Obihai, who will frown upon people discussing cracking their firmware.

Just buy a new OBi or use the Simonics GVGW and get on with your life.
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talkbot
Newbie
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Posts: 3


« Reply #8 on: December 11, 2017, 12:25:52 am »

Remember that we own the devices and they are discontinued.  Firmware mods are not cracking.  And nothing other than information is being distributed.  

Of course maybe this is not the best place to discuss it so anyone may suggest an alternative venue and the owners are free to delete any content they want but maybe let's just live and let live.

Rescuing old/obsolete electronics is a fun hobby for some and e-waste via firmware obsolencence is sad so feel free to participate or not.

I plan to get my asterisk pogoplug setup back running if I can't revive the obi and have already instituted workarounds in the meanwhile.  So this is mostly just for the fun challenge.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2017, 12:32:25 am by talkbot » Logged
WelshPaul
OBi Phone Beta Tester
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Posts: 405



« Reply #9 on: December 11, 2017, 12:52:01 am »

This will happen again with the OBi2xx series ATA's and OBi1000 series IP phones at some point. It's likely that the OBi1000 series IP phones will be marked as EOL soon considering that the OBi2000 series IP phones have been made available.

Remember, everything has a shelf life. All ATA's have an EOL and all stop receiving firmware updates at some point regardless of the manufacturer. Even if OBIHAI allowed users to upload certs via the GUI there is no guarantee that GV wouldn't implement other changes that would render an OBi device unusable at some point.
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For everything VoIP
www.ukvoipforums.com
GPz1100
Full Member
***
Posts: 119


« Reply #10 on: December 11, 2017, 08:27:32 am »

I would take this discussion over to dslreports, specifically - their voip forum.

https://www.dslreports.com/forum/voip

Such development topics are welcome over there and no hall monitor to make noise.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2017, 08:34:04 am by GPz1100 » Logged
vtsnaab
Sr. Member
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Posts: 257


« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2017, 04:43:38 pm »

As a man who chose long ago to avoid coding...I see this differently=>
From a customer relations & business POV.

Before I collect any sniping comments from anyone here:
Yes, I am qualified to utter such as follows simply from managing to operate a thriving IT business for 20+ years, which I attribute to dedicated support along with reasonable pricing.

My thoughts on these matters:
Many business folks fail in their works because of profit-centeredness;
When too solidly concerned with the 'bottom line' folks tend to give too little attention to the BOSS...who pays them..the customer.

So instead of 'how do we scrape more $ out of this ?', a better starting query is:
What do we know about our customers ??

In the case of the original Obi box customers, there are some very simple facts which easily apply to most:
  • We wanted an alternative instead of expensive landlines;
  • We tend to be at the technophile vs. the technophobe end of the scale;
  • We wanted to keep using our landline style phones;
  • We were thrilled with the idea of ONLY spending $40 to ditch a large monthly bill;
  • We were OK with making changes to accomplish all the above.

Most likely many of us are also very economy-minded (call us frugal or cheap if you wish, its not any insult to those whom it fits properly !!).

Now, having made those points - it becomes obvious that from a customer service POV, the most efficient way to push such folks away will be to kill off their devices & service access.

No matter who or what may be bottom-line responsible, they will look to the seller of their equipment for help first & foremost, and if/when that seller does not help - they made no friends that day.

Specifically in the case of 'older' Obi boxes, the seller could have made & kept such good friends by simply engaging a 3rd party for needed updates, then setting a date for users to change to that update provider.

This replacement update provider will naturally charge a reasonable fee either per update, or per year; and is independent of the original seller - allowing them to move forward minus that problem.

This way keeps the users in control of their choices of whether to keep the old stuff, or to spend a bit more and get newer stuff from the original seller.

The actual way that this matter was handled was the exact opposite of the suggestion above, and it obviously ignored the full range of other, inexpensive VOIP options as well as rather obviously assuming that there is an infinite number of potential buyers to replace those being repelled by making such forced changes without friendly alternatives being offered by the original seller.

An extreme example of such silliness was shown in the antics of a company called 'RingPlus' that has failed spectacularly - followed by another called 'Cellnuvo' which is presently in the process of haltingly trying to reinvent itself after making very similar blunders as that other company did.
The silliest part of the above was that when the 1st company failed - plenty of users went to the 2nd company, which could have been a great opportunity for them - but instead they continued to provide their users with 'the mushroom treatment' rather than engaging them...and missed out thereby.

My bottom line suggestions to the Obi Folks:
Find a way to make friends with your users so as to keep them willing to buy from you;
Earn their trust and be there for them, even if that means helping them to keep your well made devices longer by paying a 3rd party for updates.
This is better than having to suffer their permenent loss as paying customers.

Just my 2 cents as such a customer; I am not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned in my observations & opinions written here.
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david2
Newbie
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Posts: 8


« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2017, 04:34:32 am »

This will happen again with the OBi2xx series ATA's and OBi1000 series IP phones at some point. It's likely that the OBi1000 series IP phones will be marked as EOL soon considering that the OBi2000 series IP phones have been made available.

Yeah and that's going to make a lot of people, including myself, angry. I purchased 6 OBi2xx products this year. Didn't think something so simple would become obsolete until many, many years to come.

Remember, everything has a shelf life. All ATA's have an EOL and all stop receiving firmware updates at some point regardless of the manufacturer. Even if OBIHAI allowed users to upload certs via the GUI there is no guarantee that GV wouldn't implement other changes that would render an OBi device unusable at some point.

Google can't seem to let things be. Constantly tinkering with things. All changes they implement should be done on their side and require no changes from the client side. In other words, a standard. Yeah, I know it's a free service, but who knows how long that will be the case.
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drgeoff
Hero Member & Beta Tester
*****
Posts: 2727


« Reply #13 on: December 12, 2017, 04:59:34 am »

@david2

The telcos and the computer industry have very different philosophies, possibly arising from the fact that the former had, in many cases, a long history of public service whereas the latter never did.  Telcos have been wedded to standards, backward compatibility and long investment/amortisation periods to a degree never adopted by the computer industry.  Not hard to figure out which group Google is in!
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SteveInWA
Hero Member & Beta Tester
*****
Posts: 3972



« Reply #14 on: December 12, 2017, 08:48:01 am »

If the computer industry adhered to the same "make it so it will work for 50 years" approach, we'd still be using these:


* 1024px-CoCo3system.jpg (109.57 KB, 1024x710 - viewed 19 times.)
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vtsnaab
Sr. Member
****
Posts: 257


« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2017, 02:22:00 pm »

How very silly Steve !!
Things have not changed so very much in the IT world, really.
Telecom as well as most infrastructure still depends upon COBOL, which was ALL there was during my college years.
The main differences are that now there are display screens vs. only teletypes & punchcards that 'talked' with mainframes, but the foundations still remain the same, as shown here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gx2YCbIxYPI
(Yes, it ends with a short promo, AFTER making some very good, clear points.)

Fortran is still very much alive & kicking too.

As to Personal Computers - the form factors have changed, but even the 64 bit systems are still just glorified & updated descendants of the 80386 platform.

What HAS changed seriously are handheld devices, mostly due to the wonders of Google having morphed Linux into Android, as you surely know being as you are a Google guy.

My measure of success with regards to tech gear is reliability;
The tech world shifted its focus to handheld devices, but still has never presented the consumers with any means to place print on paper with 99% reliability.
Cars loaded with glitchy tech gear are another great example showing how things have NOT changed all that much.

We, as a species (as far as the general public has been allowed to see) have not progressed in our tech adventures very far from the Z80 and the 8086.

The graphics have been added to overwhelming levels in everything, making so much into childish, cartoony silliness - whilst convergence has blurred the lines between TVs, phones & PCs to the point where PEOPLE have become confused - but the technology is not so different.

Lots of psychology has also been inserted to 'help' folks in accepting when they are being 'guided' in spending - like by having to buy new stuff just because someone else says so.

With the possible exceptions of 'smart devices' along with extra spending - our lives are not so different now from what they were 50 years ago - I testify here as a 1st hand witness to that.

PS: The Tandy TRS-80 & CoCo lines were actually quite advanced for their time & pre-dated PCs, being based upon the Z80 chips mostly - giving folks an ability to experience personal computing at a time when very little else was available at any affordable price.
Yes - I was very involved with that series as well - so please don't try teaching grandpa history as you may have had it told to you - I was there.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2017, 02:41:34 pm by vtsnaab » Logged
Terp
Newbie
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Posts: 3


« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2017, 03:49:42 pm »

I had a TRS-80, too....right after I stopped using my Timex Sinclair w/ the membrane keyboard and the old-school tape-drive (reads: hit play to load something, go made a sandwich, have a drink, check the TV, and pop back semi-frequently to see if game/program has loaded yet). Smiley

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lottamoxie
Newbie
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Posts: 10


« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2017, 04:20:29 pm »

As an owner of an OBI 110, purchased exactly 6 years ago in 2011, I guess it's finally time to upgrade my device, especially because my OBI recently stopped working  Tongue.  Just placed an order for the OBI 200.

Yes I know there's another option for Obi 110 users, that being the Simonics Gateway, but that service is not accepting new signups right now, according to what I read on the website.

And yes, I know the OBI 200 will reach its EOL at some point too, such is the reality of progressive technology.  I hope that will be many years away (at least 6).

I'm thankful to still have Google Voice (previously GrandCentral); I've used this service a very long time, was a GrandCentral customer back before Google purchased them.
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mamin
Newbie
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Posts: 5


« Reply #18 on: December 12, 2017, 07:24:39 pm »

I request every user who has working device but became paper weight to go out to Amazon put out review on all OBI Device and make upcoming aware about what they could get into based on experience what we had. Dumping customer out of woods should be big no no for any business and that lessons must be taught. We should not let other customer suffer same as what we did. I have spent hours and hours to figure out company itself is dumping customer after knowing their old device does not work at all. It may be simple fix which can be distributed without warranty but they did not
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