In the process of developing a course on the topic of IP Telephony, I've been expanding my bibliographic horizons on the subject matter. Along the way, I've come across a few new books I'd like to recommend to those interested in this fascinating topic. These include everything from basic introductions to a short e-book focused on implementation and deployment issues.
Mark A. Miller: Voice Over IP Technologies: Building the Converged Network, John Wiley & Sons; March 15, 2002, ISBN: 0764549073. Mark Miller's been writing about protocols and networking issues for nearly 20 years and his books are nearly always worth reading. This one does as good a job of providing a reasonably technical overview and introduction to the field as any book I've ever found, but is probably best used to help technical people understand VoIP and IP Telephony rather than to educate non-technical professionals. Definitely a worthwhile addition to any networking or communications professional's bookshelf.
Lawrence Harte: Introduction to IP Telephony : Why and How Companies are Upgrading Private Telephone Systems to use VoIP Services, PDF format, Althos, May 12, 2003, ISBN: B00009RB1D. Short, cheap, and directly to the point, this e-book examines options and trade-offs involved in converting telephone systems to IP or in interconnecting private PBX systems to IP carriers instead of other options. Covers equipment, quality of service, bandwidth requirements, and more. Also available in paperback.
Ken Camp: IP Telephony Demystified, McGraw-Hill Professional; October 23, 2002, ISBN: 0071406700. This is a good introductory guide to IP telephony starting with network equipment, performance, and bandwidth analysis all the way through protocol and equipment selection, and implementation. In its balance between business and technical issues, it tries to serve both viewpoints, but does a better job with the business side than the technical side. That makes it a great book for technical people to recommend to managers and executives who need to be educated on this technology, and guided to help make investment commitments (or not, as the case may be).
Coming in June: Stephanie Carhee: The Road to IP Telephony : How Cisco Systems Migrated from PBX to IP Telephony, Cisco Press; (June 4, 2004), ISBN: 1587200880. A member of the always interesting Network Business Series, this book tells the story of the technical professionals at Cisco, and their business partners, as they migrated the entire company from conventional PBX-based phone systems to IP-based telephony through and through. It deals with interesting migration and switchover issues, and helps provide a blueprint for other companies who may wish to follow in their footsteps, even if it is predictably Cisco-centric in its outlook and coverage.
Any or all of the first three titles are worth getting; if past publications in the Cisco Network Business Series are any indication, Carhee's book should also be worth looking into. If I've overlooked any of your favorites, or other obvious choices, please shoot me an e-mail so that I can add coverage in a future tip that returns to the IP Telephony bookshelf topic.
Ed Tittel is a regular contributor to numerous TechTarget Web sites, and the author of over 100 books on a wide range of computing subjects from markup languages to information security. He's also a contributing editor for Certification Magazine, and series editor for Que Publising's Exam Cram 2 series of cert prep books. E-mail Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org.