Recently we acquired a nice Tandberg Video Conferencing system, we normally stick with the Sony range as its menu interface is very easy to use, but we decided to give Tandberg a try. What a beast, great slick menu system, loads of options, built in MCU (Multipoint Conference Unit), 2 XLR mic inputs (Phantom Powered), PCMCIA Wireless card slot…. just great….. until I tried to dial a URL and got the strange message on screen “Gatekeeper not registered” ….. it was like listening to the “Girl from Ipanema” song on a scratched LP disk.
Some guys out there will laugh and say, “clearly you need a gatekeeper for H323“, well that’s not my experience with the Sony equipment. Anyway, I saw it as an opportunity to learn something new and dove into setting up a simple gatekeeper. After some looking around I found the GNU Gatekeeper and got an old IBM e-server PIII and installed a pure Debian Linux distro which works beatifully on this old machine (FYI – with Gnome). Well without further ado, here are the steps I took:
1 – Downloaded and installed Debian Linux (using the netinstall version 34mb for the boot cd)
2 – Installed GNUGK easily with apt-get install gnugk (installs by default into /var/run/gnugk)
3 – Created the gatekeeper.ini file based on the tutorial on gnugk website (better to save it into folder /etc)
my gatekeeper.ini content
# main configuration
Name=GNUGK #put here any name you want for your gk
[RewriteCLI] # change this according to your network
[LogFile] # creates log files and rotate them – in this case daily @ 23:00
4 – restart gnugk with the following command (which can later be added to the startup runlevel)
gnugk -ttt -c /etc/gatekeeper.ini (-ttt will output lots of text and is good for finding any faults, but not essential for the functioning of the gk)
All done and I dialed to URL successfuly using my tandberg system.