Who writes this stuff and why?

I’m a network engineer that is recovering from having  joined the “dark side” and done exclusively voice for about three years.  It was quite a learning curve, but now this blog will attempt to share in a humorous fashion some of the more entertaining exploits I encounter in my new role which covers not just voice, but route/switch, wireless, and security as well.

Not only have I been told I’m certifiable for having done voice, but I am actually certified – CCNP/DP, CCNP- voice, CCNA wireless, CCNA – voice, CCNA, LPIC- 1, MCSE, and PMP.


86 responses to “Who writes this stuff and why?

  1. Malik

    2011/09/20 at 00:30

    I love what you do Amy and I want to say i am really honored to know you 🙂
    Malik ❤ ❤ ❤

    • Mark

      2013/08/30 at 09:18

      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….

      • amyengineer

        2013/08/30 at 09:21

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

  2. Ed

    2011/09/24 at 11:39

    You have your PMP? I’m sorry… 😉

    • amyengineer

      2011/09/26 at 11:13

      LOL, we all have our cross to bear… 🙂

  3. Ricky White

    2011/10/01 at 13:45

    You mentioned you’re from Dallas in a post a couple of days ago. Are you still there?

    • amyengineer

      2011/10/01 at 19:06

      Yep, just north of Dallas these days.

      • Jerry Hubbard

        2011/10/22 at 16:46

        Back when dirt was created, I lived in Rowlett.

  4. Bill Carter (@billyc5022)

    2011/11/07 at 08:28

    Would you consider adding my blog to your blogroll?


    • amyengineer

      2011/11/08 at 12:32

      absolutely! I’ll try to get that done this evening! 🙂

  5. Bill Carter (@billyc5022)

    2011/12/05 at 12:27


  6. VirtuallyMikeB

    2012/01/14 at 23:42

    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!


  7. Jerry Hubbard

    2012/02/23 at 15:13


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


    • amyengineer

      2012/02/23 at 17:58

      You just totally made my day! Thanks for the kind words!!

      • Mohammed Moin

        2016/09/05 at 23:42

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

        i love it.


  8. akismet-d6a37a51c816108521a4c58723efa565

    2012/03/29 at 02:29

    Hi Amy, I am a Cisco Engineer working in the UK currently studying for my CCIE, would you consider adding my blog on your blogroll?

    Many Thanks

    Roger’s CCIE Blog

  9. akismet-d6a37a51c816108521a4c58723efa565

    2012/03/29 at 17:31

    Brilliant Thanks

  10. Chris Partsenidis

    2012/04/24 at 07:57

    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 ( in your blogroll links!

    Many thanks and keep updating frequently!!!

    • amyengineer

      2012/05/29 at 17:33

      Sorry for the delay! Blog is added! 🙂

  11. Rob Perez

    2012/05/30 at 07:51

    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

    • amyengineer

      2012/05/30 at 12:22

      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.

  12. Ash

    2012/08/01 at 04:03

    Just came across your blog while searching for our nice friend G722 and UCCX 🙂 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!

    • amyengineer

      2012/08/01 at 21:06

      Thanks so much for the kind words!! Appreciate the feedback!!

  13. cnperez

    2012/08/01 at 09:40

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

  14. Chris Muncy

    2012/10/09 at 07:02

    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.


    • amyengineer

      2012/10/09 at 08:17

      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.

  15. Osidc

    2012/10/11 at 03:03

    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.

  16. John Safarik

    2012/10/15 at 11:13

    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!!

    • amyengineer

      2012/10/15 at 17:19

      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!

  17. ericklounge

    2012/10/23 at 10:56

    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!

    • amyengineer

      2012/10/24 at 14:47

      thanks!! Good luck on your security endeavors, I’m sure it’ll be fun stuff to learn!!

  18. Shane

    2013/04/01 at 09:09

    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.

  19. Vaijanath S

    2013/06/05 at 19:46

    Hi Amy,

    Gr8 job!!! I enjoy reading your blog.

  20. Joan M Mauri Barbosa

    2013/08/20 at 15:55

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

    • amyengineer

      2013/08/22 at 10:51

      Belated thanks!! Glad you enjoyed it!!

  21. king_slayer

    2013/08/30 at 03:48

    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

    • amyengineer

      2013/08/30 at 09:21

      Thanks!! Glad you enjoyed the show and hope my blog is helpful!!

  22. Dev Oka

    2013/09/23 at 12:58

    Amy, big fan! Can you add my tech ramblings to your blogroll?
    Thanks! – Dev

    • amyengineer

      2013/09/26 at 07:08

      Sorry for the delay! Link is added! I love that you have a category on your blog called “weird NX-OS stuff” 🙂

  23. techbsmith

    2013/12/21 at 16:37

    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 –

    • amyengineer

      2013/12/24 at 10:38

      Thanks so much for the positive feedback! Would love to add your blog to my list as well, good stuff there!

  24. Ashiesh

    2014/01/28 at 15:58

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

  25. Steven

    2014/02/03 at 18:06


    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!

    • amyengineer

      2014/02/05 at 08:13

      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!

  26. Jonathan woodard

    2014/05/02 at 06:20

    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?

    • amyengineer

      2014/05/05 at 22:34

      Yep! I’ll be there! We’ll have to meet up!

  27. Aloysius Timothy Carey

    2014/05/09 at 09:35

    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

  28. Ken

    2014/12/17 at 18:07

    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.

  29. Johnny

    2014/12/23 at 10:04

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

  30. Nemat

    2014/12/31 at 05:51

    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 😀

    • amyengineer

      2015/01/22 at 21:23

      Thanks for the suggestion – I will look into that. I do have a search bar for now, hope that helps some!

  31. scott

    2015/01/13 at 07:57

    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

    • amyengineer

      2015/01/22 at 21:25

      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.

  32. Richard Krvaric

    2015/03/10 at 14:40

    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?

    • amyengineer

      2015/03/10 at 15:13

      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.

      • Richard Krvaric

        2015/03/11 at 05:51

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

      • amyengineer

        2015/03/11 at 08:21

        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. 🙂

  33. Keith Filippo

    2015/04/01 at 08:37

    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.

  34. Keith Filippo

    2015/04/01 at 08:38

    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!

    • amyengineer

      2015/04/03 at 07:26

      Thank you so much for the positive feedback, it’s really great to hear!! 🙂

  35. mike

    2015/04/23 at 18:57

    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!

  36. joey

    2015/08/13 at 12:25

    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 🙂

  37. Jonathan

    2015/10/12 at 06:00

    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?

    • amyengineer

      2015/10/30 at 12:46

      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.

  38. mdecamp

    2016/03/18 at 10:51

    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!

    • amyengineer

      2016/03/22 at 16:18

      Belated thanks!! So cool, and much appreciated!

  39. roddie

    2016/04/26 at 18:11

    You have a blog?

    • amyengineer

      2016/04/26 at 20:09

      yep, it gets a bit neglected from time to time. 🙂

  40. yournextchaptercoaching

    2016/08/16 at 14:30

    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! 🙂 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! 🙂

  41. Emily

    2016/12/02 at 07:49

    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.

    • amyengineer

      2016/12/05 at 17:32

      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!!

      • Emily

        2016/12/06 at 10:48

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

  42. Abteen (@Abteenz)

    2017/02/28 at 13:47

    Thank you so much for you great posts. I respect women in tech.

  43. Jeremy Higgs

    2017/03/13 at 16:01

    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!

  44. Russell

    2017/06/03 at 05:30

    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?

    Thanks, Russell

  45. thepacketwizard

    2017/11/29 at 22:00

    Hi Amy, Would you mind adding my blog to your blog-roll? I am going to add a blog-roll to my site, would you mind if i added your blog there?



  46. Moe Shea

    2018/01/15 at 10:10

    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

    • amyengineer

      2018/04/19 at 17:30

      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.

  47. Don Reeves

    2018/01/22 at 14:48

    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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