UPDATED: NASA's new VOIP system crashes

Editor's Note: This story was updated at 11:15 a.m. April 21, 2006, to reflect that the new VOIP system is from Cisco.

This week, a new voice-over-IP (VOIP) telephone system at NASA headquarters sparked an outage that cut off computer network and phone service for hours, forcing key NASA employees to communicate via cell phones and personal digital assistants.

On April 12, around 1:30 p.m., headquarters’ workstation network and VOIP connectivity went down when workers were configuring the new Cisco VOIP system.

Technicians restored workstation connectivity by 3 p.m., but VOIP service was out until 7:30 p.m.

NASA headquarters began installing the VOIP system in January.

“As a result of this unfortunate event, NASA [officials] have made some procedural changes and have also nearly completed planned mechanisms to more quickly restore VOIP service should a problem of this nature occur anytime in the future. NASA will proceed as planned with the system upgrade to improve future performance,” NASA spokeswoman Sonja Alexander said today.

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