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NIIF Gatekeepers Network

A H.323 gatekeeper is an important element of a H.323 network providing the following services:

  • Number based dialing and call routing: calls can be initiated using normal phone numbers. Using of IP addresses or domain names are not needed - apart from that you have the possibility -, calls can be placed by typing usual phone numbers (e.g. 00361001234).
  • Call admission: after placing a call from a terminal, the local gatekeeper is needed to decide wether the calling party is allowed to originate or receive calls.
  • Call authorization: authorization of the terminal to enter the network, to place calls, etc.
  • Bandwidth control: controlling call bandwidth.
  • Accounting information: generating call detail records (CDR).

In order to use gatekeeper services with a H.323 endpoint (e.g. videoconference endpoint, Microsoft Netmeeting, GnomeMeeting, etc.), the endpoint must register at the gatekeeper. The gatekeeper keeps track of registered endpoints and handles calls initiated by them.

A so called "zone" belongs to every gatekeeper, identified by a unique phone number prefix. For example the phone number of a terminal in zone 100 would be: 00361001020 (where 1020 is the identifier of the endpoint within zone 100). The gatekeeper of a zone provides the above listed services and is responsible for handling incoming and outgoing calls to/from endpoints located in its zone.

NIIF videoconference network zones

The NIIF gatekeeper network and connecting zones can be seen on the below diagram. Prefixes are also shown according to the call routing rules.

Hungarian high education and research videoconference dialing scheme zones

HU zone

Gatekeeper: HU-GK

Domain name: hu-gk.vvc.niif.hu

Prefix: 0036 (or 06)

Function: connecting in-country institutional gatekeepers and providing international GDS connection. HU-GK responsible for call routing between gatekeepers, registration of endpoints is not allowed.

(Remark: you can also use 06 instead of 0036 for in-country calls)

NIIF zone

Gatekeeper: NIIF-GK

Domain name: niif-gk.vvc.niif.hu

Prefix: 0036100 (or 06100)

Function: gatekeeper service for HUNGARNET institutions that doesn't own a gatekeeper. In addition, the NIIF-GK connects the NIIF MCU (Multipoint Control Unit) to the videoconference service. MCU prefix is: 003610030.

Free gatekeeper zone

Gatekeeper: FZ-GK

Domain name: fz-gk.vvc.niif.hu

Prefix: 0036900 (or 06900)

Function: gatekeeper freely available for everyone to use NIIF videoconference services with a simple H.323 endpoint (e.g. Microsoft NetMeeting, GnomeMeeting). Endpoints registered at the FZ-GK can place calls using NIIF dialing scheme and the GDS.

Global Dialling Scheme

GDS (Global Dialing Scheme) is an international dialing scheme for the academic community, connecting more than 100 zones in approximately 30 countries. The GDS scheme provides international reachability to research institutions and universities using ordinary international format phone numbers.