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As communications systems have grown, so have their needs for scalability, fault tolerance, high-availability, extensibility and performance. Asterisk SCF is a totally new framework for addressing these needs, built on advanced, proven, message-oriented multi-platform middleware.

In the past decade, 'over IP' real-time communications have expanded from voice-only PSTN emulation to include video, multi-channel audio, wide and ultra-wide band audio, interactive text, desktop sharing, and various other forms of media. In addition, the ability to directly connect IP-based communication clouds, whether they are enterprises, service providers or other types, has allowed for endpoints to support these new media types for end-to-end sessions, putting pressure on the network elements in between to be able to support them. Asterisk SCF is being designed to support this ‘new media’ world as a part of its basic architecture, and will be extensible to support other media types that become available in the future.

Asterisk SCF is designed as a distributed system of components that can be deployed in clusters on a single system or on many systems, transparently. Implementing Asterisk SCF as a cluster of small components allows it to naturally take advantage of the ever-wider multi-core CPUs being produced today as well as the movement to off-site or cloud-based computing. In addition, all operational data elements required by Asterisk SCF’s components are themselves managed by their own Asterisk SCF components, allowing for active/passive failover models with no disruption of service. The design also ensures active/active failover and load-sharing models can be supported. These design elements allow capacity to be added to an operating Asterisk SCF cluster by simply enabling additional component instances.

Asterisk SCF Focus Areas:

  • High availability and Fault tolerance
  • Scalability
  • APIs - Designed for stability, longevity and extensibility
  • High performance - Message-based architecture naturally exploits modern servers

With the announcement of Asterisk SCF, Digium, in collaboration with the open source community, is launching an Alpha of the new framework. Over the next 12-18 months, this framework will evolve into a released platform, suitable for building the next generation of communications solutions. Digium invites developers and users to learn more about Asterisk SCF by visiting www.asterisk.org.

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  1. Timeline needs updating and a looking forward message seems warranted.