Who writes this stuff and why?

Amy Arnold is a security networking engineer, blogger, and active member of the IT community, whose skills set includes security, routing/switching, wireless, and voice networking.

She maintains many industry recognized certifications and has over 15 years of experience. Amy publishes her own technical blog as well as contributes to other websites and publications dedicated to networking and security tips, tools, and analysis.

She can be found on Twitter as @amyengineer, sharing IT wisdom and camaraderie, along with a pinch of humor and a helping of snark.

86 thoughts on “Who writes this stuff and why?

  1. I love what you do Amy and I want to say i am really honored to know you πŸ™‚
    Malik ❀ ❀ ❀

    1. Hey Amy just listened to Packet Pushers show 159 – Finding a way to test it……like how you guys touched on the mentoring topic…..networking can be hard to break into when your new to it….

      1. Agreed! It the Catch-22, no one wants to hire someone without experience but you can’t get experience unless you’re hired!

  2. Hi Amy,

    I came across your Twitter feed which led to your blog. You’ve been awful busy with so many posts and tweets. Keep up the good work. I’m a virtualization guy but enjoy all tech, and your humorous posts make VoIP that much easier to read about. Thanks!


  3. Amy,

    You are incredible, laughing frustration away! You are a great teacher..


      1. i like how you play with technology , i follow “an expert only can coach in simple and fun terms”.

        i love it.


  4. Hi there Amy! I really love your writing style – Unique , fun and easy to read through! I’d love it if you could add my site (www.Firewall.cx) in your blogroll links!

    Many thanks and keep updating frequently!!!

  5. I truly enjoy reading your blog; you add some much needed humor to the voice arena. I am new to the voice world, I was actually handed UCCX with no formal training and learned through trial and error and reading as much material as I could find on the web and from blogs such as yours.

    I was wondering is there any reporting software you use other than the Historical Reporting engine Cisco provides. Historical Reporting has limitations and our Call Center manager wants scheduled reports that breakdown to hours. Unfortunately Historical Reporting (at least I haven’t figured out how to do it) will not let one schedule reports that drill down to a specific hour every day.

    If you have any advice on reporting I would love some direction.

    Thanks so much in advance,
    Rob Perez

    1. Humm, there are third party reporting packages – my experience with them has been limited. I am aware of ISI because I have a few customers using their reporting capabilities but I cannot speak for the functionality since I haven’t really used it myself. I can ask around and see if there are any other recommendations floating around.

  6. Just came across your blog while searching for our nice friend G722 and UCCX πŸ™‚ You have a nice entry there regarding this codec. So surprised that we are in touch on twitter for sometime now but never came across your blog before..I would say it’s a wonderful blog. Keep it up!

  7. Great Blog! Thanks for all of the detail on some of the annoying errors/issues in the UC environment.

  8. Good morning Amy!
    I figured I’d add a quick note to say thanks for posting about your experiences, specially the last about the boot camp as I can see myself in exactly the same place as you describe.


    1. Thanks Chris!! I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one! It’s definitely a challenge of epic proportions, still defining a good method for overcoming! I’m sure more lab time will be key.

  9. amyengineer, you are a geek. Been laughing a lot as i was going through your posts.I am in Africa and striving to strike gold in the networking world.Been reading a lot and i am nw CCNA/CCNP and i have just started CCNA Voice but i lack the practical experience.You js giving me the practical experience i am lacking.Any recomendation of putting up simulated CUCM so tht i can familiarise wth the configuration before tackling the exam wc i hve set fo end of October. So far bn listening to Jeremy.

  10. Amy, I’ve been having jtapi errors lately and decided to do some browsing and came across your posts. Its an intermittent issue with a few users here and there, anway, here I am an hour later still reading your stuff, completely blowing off my daily duties. I do believe this is the first time, I actually stayed focus for more than 5 minutes while reading troubleshooting tips with UCCX. Your stuff is great. I can’t stop laughing and have to pass this on. Keep up the good work!!

    1. Thanks John for all the positive feedback! I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the posts, always a great thing to hear! You totally made my day!

  11. I came across your blog after seeing you tagged on Twitter. I just got my CCNA certification not long ago, and will be getting into the Security path soon. Your blog seems cool, bet I could learn a trick or two with you!

  12. Good blog Amy. I have enjoyed reading it so far. I do a network blog as well and I like to see others and what they are doing. Very interesting Amy. Take good care.

  13. Hi Amy! I just ran into your SNR post and it cracked me up!! thanks for sharing your experience!

  14. just heard you in the packetpushers podcast, really nice :), Im starting in this networking world, is amazing how many resources exist! thanks for the good blog

  15. Amy – just found your blog and love it! I really enjoy the real world descriptors used when you talk about your engineering exploits! If you don’t mind, I’d like to add a link to your blog on the links section of my blog .. I just started mine, but it’s been a lot of fun and really, the best way to entrench something into your head is to write it out so that someone else can learn from it!

    Best wishes for the rest of the year and the new one coming up!

    Bill – http://www.techbsmith.com

  16. I loved the way you write. Seems like I want to say the same things.
    Will be a regular reader now – keep blogging πŸ™‚
    bets of Luck

  17. Hey,

    I stumbled across your blog recently it’s interesting read. I see you are skilled in Cisco gear. One question, when you said you went to the “dark side” from data to voice, did you have any experience with voice prior to? Hope to see more posts of your work!

    1. Before I became a voice consultant for a VAR, I supported a Cisco phone system & voice mail, handling moves/adds/changes and troubleshooting, so that definitely helped in the transition!

  18. As someone thrown into the VOIP world, your site has given me a lot of good info. Are you planning on attending SF Cisco live in may?

  19. Please keep up the Tweets as I look forward to them, they are outstanding. Wow!, you must be able to type fast and we get the benefit of that skill almost daily from looking at this blog that I will now subscribe to. Best of luck in your CCIE quest. It is refreshing to see someone who actually enjoys things because they are hard and not because they are easy. I’m certainly envious and appreciative of your ability to share information so simply by your prose writing. Consider writing a book after you obtain CCIE (“xxx for Dummies”, “Exam Cram”) etc…for all of us to learn from.


    Aloysius Timothy Carey – CCNP-SP – Ericsson

  20. I’m glad I found your blog. Voice Engineering is (or feels like) a small niche and very few of us have enough time to share our experiences, so this is a valuable resource.

  21. Amy, great web site you have, I appreciate that you share your knowledge. That is very great!

  22. Dear Amy,

    really love your post. can you please make some changes to your webisite i.e in the archive, support to share the headings of what inside the months list so that we can easily switch to specific topic and not searching all the months.

    If possible πŸ˜€

  23. Hi Amy, Have you ever come across this problem. From the user page, after associating device and primary extension, I cannot add permissions group. I click on the “Add to Access Group” and nothing happens. I can see the button being pushed down, but nothing happens. I’ve tried to delete and re-add user and still nothing. Also I’ve rebooted the pub and sub… Thanks in advance for any help

    1. Have you checked the bug archives? I thought I remembered reading one like thet while I was searching for another issue. Also, are you using Firefox or IE? Chrome does weird things like this. IE does sometimes as well, but not as often.

  24. Amy, I’d love to find out how to change an external number coming in, to reflect an internal number.
    Let me explain.
    We have elevator emergency phones that use POTS lines.
    When they call our internal police department (we’re a Community College in Texas), they just see a weird Caller ID that they don’t know where it comes from.
    If I could transform say 713-123-1234, into becoming 45123, I can attach a caller ID to that number that is descriptive, such as LabElev7.
    Perhaps an idea for a post?

    1. If the calls are coming into your voice gateway, you should be able to use translation patterns to change the calling number. Something like this maybe?

      voice translation-rule 7
      rule 1 /^7131231234$/ /45123/
      voice translation-profile CHANGEELEVATORNUMBER
      translate calling 7
      dial-peer voice 4445 pots
      translation-profile incoming CHANGEELEVATORNUMBER

      Then the incoming calling number should be changed then. The ^ in the rule says must start with and the $ says must end with. You would want to be as specific as possible.Not sure how you would attach a new calling name to this, though, but it should change the calling number.

      1. Is there no way I can do this in the CUCM itself… or does it have to be in the VG?

      2. Oh, I think you could do this with translation patterns and calling search spaces in CUCM, it would take some thought as to design. You could leverage the Calling Party Transformation Mask on a translation pattern, make sure the translation pattern was in the inbound CSS of the gateway the call comes in on. It really depends on how the dial plan is setup now and if there would be anything in place already that would conflict with this approach, how inbound calls are routed, and how partitions and search spaces are setup. In theory, however, I believe it’s doable. πŸ™‚

  25. Richard, I would follow Amy’s advice here. It would probably be much easier to do the translation in the gateway rather than CUCM. Without actually sitting down to design it, I would guess it would be similar to the hoops you have to jump through in order to block calls based on the caller’s number. It might not be worth all the extra work.

  26. Amy, your site has saved me more than a few times. Just wanted to let you know how great it is to have resources like this out there. Thank you!

  27. Just found your blog, love it. I have been a voice guy since tin cans were used, I recently joined the “dark side” when I took on Cisco. Now I have my ccna voice and loving it.
    Keep up the posts!

  28. This blog site is flipping awesome! Thank you for taking the time out of your busy life to post useful information! Thank you again from one Network Engineer πŸ™‚

  29. Nice blog. Interestingly, I came across it while doing a search on licensing of network engineers (Is what we do the “practice of engineering”? Should people have to take the “fundamentals of engineering” exam – heavy on math that is not normally part of what we do – before they get a network engineering job?)

    Did you do a blog entry on the subject, and if not, what are your thoughts?

    1. I don’t have a blog post on the subject, but I do think that can be a problem with how networking is taught. Heavy on subnetting at first, for example, can cause someone to lose interest, especially when they don’t have an understanding of why it’s important or how it’s applied. Math is important, don’t get me wrong, but I find the other fundamentals to be just as important and those usually help in understanding concepts that are more math intensive.

  30. Hi Amy, I hope you don’t mind, but I included your handle in a list of my top Twitter users to follow in an upcoming post on The Plug (Eaton blog for IT pros). It’ll have a link your blog as well and is scheduled to go live next Thursday. Thanks for keeping Twitter interesting!

  31. Hi Amy,
    I came across your blog while trying to find an answer to a question about Single Number Reach. I provide end user training for many different Cisco products and your blog was extremely informative, funny, and helpful! πŸ™‚ Thank you! We work with a lot of engineers and it was a pleasure reading something that was already translated into End-User-Speak! Thank you! πŸ™‚

  32. I appreciate your blog posts and Thank you for sharing your experiences. I find It’s rare to find an online resource such as yours that applies to real life situations in our field, conveyed in a complete manner. You inspire me to create a blog of my own every time you help me resolve an issue through your posts.

    1. Thanks for the great feedback!! I love being able to share with the community and help someone in the same situation! You are right, there are few resources for voice engineers! FWIW, I think your experiences would make a great blog!!

      1. Aww Thank you! I think to myself, what would I call it? Then I get stuck lol.

  33. Just found your post, and I find it great. I just had to do a CCX upgrade and I completely sympathized with your blog post about it. Thanks for the entertainment!

  34. Hi Amy, just found your blog. Thanks for your continuing contributions. I’ve found so many Telecoms and ICT blogs that get abandoned. It’s nice to see someone stick with it.

    My blog helps Telecoms Pros build their careers. Would you consider adding my blog to your blogroll? https://bangkokbeachtelecom.com/

    Thanks, Russell

  35. Hello Amy,

    Excellent blog, lots of flavors here. I was wondering if you can assist me with Xmedius Fax Server. This is connected to an Opentext Analogue Gateway. We have hooked up two analogue lines (channel 1 & 2) to this Gateway. Each channel is in a different hundred group.

    Is there any way to force faxes sent by user A to use channel 1 and user B to use channel 2 one the Opentext Fax Gateway. I want the Xmedius server to somehow tell the Gateway to use channel 1 for user A and channel 2 for user B


    Moe Shea

    1. I’m afraid I don’t know the answer to this. I’ve worked with xMedius a lot but I don’t know of a way to make it use a certain channel when it’s a certain user sending but xMedius support has always been fabulous and I bet they could answer that.

  36. Hey Amy,

    Found your blog a veiw months ago and it has been very helpful. I too am an “old School” Network Engineer making the jump to Voice. It’s been fun and your blog has been helpful.



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