Learning by watching, using and participating: BareSIP


While we are still working on preparing our code for launch, we’re learning by looking at various other project, participating in the work and studying licenses, way of handling bug reports, mailing lists and much more. What makes a project successful? What are the winning factors? Is it just about getting thousands of likes on Facebook or is there something else to look for?

Apart from all the open source libraries we’ve used to build the IRIS CCM, there’s one small piece of software we are using for experimenting and production – BareSIP – we would like to talk about in this blog post.

BareSIP is, compared with other projects we’re using, a very small project. While projects like Kamailio have a large group of developers contributing, committing and making decisions, bareSIP has a team leader, Alfred Heggestad, that writes most, but not all, of the code. The project has been around for many years and is very stable. It’s been tested at SIPit test events and implements a lot of the recent SIP additions. When bugs are filed, questions are asked there is always a response. Things move forward in the project.

BareSIP is built on a media and a signalling library

Alfred has created a set of libraries to build SIP implementations. LibRE is the signalling library and libREM is is the library for all multimedia handling. These libraries has been used in many implementations, both by Alfred and third party developers. Softphones for cell phones, embedded software, server implementations and much more. BareSIP is built on these libraries and started off as an example of what you can do with the libraries.

BareSIP comes without a user interface which makes it very good for use when building larger systems. It supports audio and video and is easily modified if needed.  As a developer, having a command-line SIP implementation is very handy for testing or embedding in scripts.  If you are interested, you can find the source code on GitHub.

As a summary, we see BareSIP as excellent software and a successful open source project. Alfred has done great work and we owe him our thanks. Many hours of live radio every day is produced using BareSIP. But you won’t find the project on social media, the web site is very down-to-earth and there are no BareSIP-con conferences.

A successful project is not about the social media likes

When evaluating software to use, it’s not always about the size of the team or the code. It’s not always about a fancy user interface or a state-of-the-art web site. A history of managing the code and staying on top of the standards used is important. Responsiveness and open-ness for contributions is also a plus. Fast responses on mailing lists and bug trackers adds to the karma of the project.

We have a lot to learn as we move forward and rest assured that we’re not standing still. Code is cleaned up, we’re testing installations and we’re trying to find inspiration to write a lot of helpful documentation. Mailing lists are soon coming up and we will try to be as responsive as Alfred!

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