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Has anyone used Web-ex for remote conferencing?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Joerg, Jun 6, 2008.

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  1. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Ok, a client wants to do a net meeting on Web-ex. Never done it with
    that provider so I gave it a test, they offer a "test meeting" to make
    sure that PC and browser are up to snuff.

    First it wanted Java enabled. Ok, done. Then it started loading some
    stuff and the "progress" bar said 8 minutes (!). This is a modern
    dual-core PC with tons of memory on a >1MB/sec internet link. Is Web-ex
    really that slow or could soemthing be wrong here?
     
  2. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Well, I've got to use what the client does. The other thing is that
    we'll have to look at numerous documents simultaneously during the
    conference. I am not sure whether Skype can do that. Seeing each other
    won't be important for us. At least I hope it won't be, else I'd have to
    install a web cam and stuff here.

    I always wonder what the catch is with Skype. They say it's free but as
    we all know there ain't no free lunch. Maybe except for LTSpice.
     
  3. It costs money if you need to connect to the PSTN. Skype-to-Skype is
    free.
    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
     
  4. Rich Grise

    Rich Grise Guest

    Well, the free software is right there, but when I went to look into the
    rates for Skype-to-ground, it asked me to sign up.

    And I don't really know whom I'd call anyway - everybody I know has email
    ^
    [ghaw, sometimes it's uncomfortable being an inflexible grammarian! ;-) ]
    or is right here in the shop. ;-)

    Cheers!
    Rich
     
  5. Joop

    Joop Guest

    I have used it a year or two ago. We logged a problem with
    Siebel/Oracle and one of their support people wanted us to demo what
    the issue was. Webex allowed us somehow to share the windows desktop
    over the Internet.

    On another occasion we used the webex recorder. That creates some kind
    of video of all actions you do on your PC. The recorded session can be
    played later.

    It was not too much of a hassle I recall. But I have not used it for a
    while. I don't think it was appearing slow.

    Cheers,

    Joop
     
  6. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Well, tried it again. It took over 5 secs just to launch the demo
    meeting and then it loads the whole meeting software. Again. 8 minutes
    left ... trundle, trundle, trundle. I would have thought Cisco could do
    better than that. Nah, not my cup of tea. So I'll just log in 15 mins
    before the client to get through that dreaded loading of Java in time.

    I found the pricing a tad steep as well. Somewhere on their site I read
    33c/min/participant. That's a lot more than Missy Bell charges for
    overseas calls.
     
  7. Charlie E.

    Charlie E. Guest

    Hi Jeorg,
    Yep, it is that slow. Takes a long while to get all the programs for
    that application. The bad news is, it ain't secure. Back when I was
    at Cadence, they quit using WebEx and when to Space Cruiser for the
    same functions. Spacecruiser is encrypted in its links.

    Charlie
    Edmondson Engineering
     
  8. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    This one?
    http://www.oridus.com/products_prof_spcim.htm

    Not a lot of info, looks like one of those high-priced software
    packages: "For SpaceCruiser Trial and Download, please contact Oridus
    sales team"

    Maybe Webex changed security. The lock indicator on the browser comes on
    when you enter the meeting, at least it did for the test meeting. Just
    like when doing online orders.
     
  9. | Ok, a client wants to do a net meeting on Web-ex. Never done it with
    | that provider so I gave it a test, they offer a "test meeting" to make
    | sure that PC and browser are up to snuff.
    |
    | First it wanted Java enabled. Ok, done. Then it started loading some
    | stuff and the "progress" bar said 8 minutes (!). This is a modern
    | dual-core PC with tons of memory on a >1MB/sec internet link. Is Web-ex
    | really that slow or could soemthing be wrong here?
    |
    | --
    | Regards, Joerg
    |
    | http://www.analogconsultants.com/
    |
    | "gmail" domain blocked because of excessive spam.
    | Use another domain or send PM.

    Lots of companies use Web-ex. works well. Ofcourse you need the java package to get it to work.
    perhaps their servers were busy.

    I also was on a www.gotomeeting.com webinar, which worked just as well.


    Cheers
     
  10. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Then they should get more server capacity. It wouldn't be cool if it
    bogged down in the middle of a meeting.

    I am surprised how much competition is out there. But it's pricey. For a
    small biz that doesn't do more than 1-2 short meets a month $39/mo or
    $49/mo is a lot. Wonder why ISPs or web site hosting companies don't
    offer some basic virtual meeting capability, maybe at per minute fees.
     
  11. Charlie E.

    Charlie E. Guest

    Yes, that is the one. It worked pretty well, but I have no idea on
    the costs associated.

    I could be that Webex enhanced the security. I just know that, since
    we deal with a lot of DoD customers, we couldn't use Webex at the
    time...

    Charlie
     
  12. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    The firewall is HW and would show me any pounding. None there. Well,
    I'll just see how it goes.
     
  13. JosephKK

    JosephKK Guest

    An Internet firewall that is purely hardware? You embarrass yourself.
     
  14. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Nope, it's the sensible thing to do. Of course it runs firmware and
    there is additional protection on the PC side. A HW firewall is the only
    way I'd connect to the web since I do not trust any Windows OS in that
    respect. All it takes is one security whole and the best firewall SW on
    there is essentially toast.
     
  15. JosephKK

    JosephKK Guest

    I knew you would respond correctly. Unlike that other poster, whom i
    expected better of. In my arrangement the ISP provides the first
    level, the modem provides some more, and my top level router provides
    yet more. Running Linux adds to that. I have a lot of hosts blocked
    as well.
     
  16. I have used WebEx a couple of times and have no complaints. It was
    fast and installed quickly. I think you must have some kind of SW
    problem on your PC.

    With respect to security my impression was that it is a point to point
    connection and that WebEx controls which users are on via the m eeting
    list, so it is very secure. Is that a wrong assumption?

    Regards

    Klaus
     
  17. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Well, we did the conference yesterday and I was not the only one having
    problems. IMHO Webex really needs new software and procedures. Those
    would be my main gripes:

    a. It requires the loading of some Java that takes minutes. I was hoping
    that joining a sample meeting would get that done for good so it doesn't
    have to load again and again when the real meetings begin. Nope, must
    load again every time :-(

    b. It did not let me on before the meetings start time, and even then
    not before the client had logged on. Meaning we had to waste several
    minutes of everyone's time. Not efficient at all.

    c. The client had my document uploaded because it was the item to be
    talked about. It's a very long one and neither I nor any other
    participant could scroll past page 9 but that's were the schematics
    started. At that point we all hung up on Webex, loaded the document onto
    our individual desktops and did the discussionn the old-fashioned way.

    For the next meet I'll suggest to go without such online services
    because it just wastes our time. I annotate lengthy docs with paragraph
    numbering so it's easy to run the meeting "blind", via a good old phone
    conference.

    I think you may be right. When joining the meeting the browser's
    "locked" indicator comes on and it is also a https URL. But: Right after
    I tested the site before the meeting I got an email from a sales guy. I
    replied asking about safety. Didn't get a response other than a sales pitch.

    I wonder whether this would be a good market for Skype. The technology
    should be there. It would be ok if they'd charge for the service. But
    not 33c/min/participant, that's a bit steep.
     
  18. JosephKK

    JosephKK Guest

    It seems to me that it is MSwin paradigm oriented, and they are "cusp"
    technology (or at least think they are). The biggest issue is that
    same quality equivalent FOSS technology requires doofiii to allow
    "strange stuff" into their ideologies.
     
  19. With respect to WebEx, they claim to have fast connections world-wide,
    but your case could be an indicator of them having a problem on the
    american net.

    Rarther than uploading a document, just share the desktop. Then the
    speed of the document roll up and down is only determined by the PC
    that has the document. Moreover only information send is the screen
    capture, and that resolves fast when the immage is freezed.

    Regards

    Klaus
     
  20. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    That's the scenario that I had hoped for. However, they did not even let
    me into the meeting without loading this slow meeting manager Java
    stuff. Completely takes the fun out of it. At least they could offer to
    let it reside on individual PCs after having used their demo meeting to
    see if things work. But no :-(

    IMHO they could use some fresh IT talent and they should definitely
    listen to users. For example send out a request after a whole group
    became fed up and abandoned a session like what happened in this case.
     
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