I'm currently studying for CCVP and i'm struggling to summarise the differences between FXS and FXO ports - ie what I can connect to what, such as phones, other PBX's, and which port can be used (via a lead) to which kind of port.
Any help on this would be appreciated!
Here is some background info;
Analog Telephony Protocols
Analog telephony signaling, the original signaling protocol, provides the method for connecting or disconnecting calls on analog trunks. By using direct current (DC) over two-wire or four-wire circuits to signal on-hook and off-hook conditions, each analog trunk connects analog endpoints or devices such as a PBX or analog phone.
To provide connections to legacy analog central offices and PBXs, Cisco CallManager uses analog signaling protocols over analog trunks that connect voice gateways to analog endpoints and devices . Cisco CallManager supports these types of analog trunk interfaces:
Foreign Exchange Office (FXO) Analog trunks that connect a gateway to a central office (CO) or private branch exchange (PBX).
Foreign Exchange Station (FXS) Analog trunks that connect a gateway to plain old telephone service (POTS) device such as analog phones, fax machines, and legacy voice-mail systems.
From this good doc;
FXS and FXO Interfaces
An FXS interface connects the router or access server to end-user equipment such as telephones, fax machines, or modems. The FXS interface supplies ring, voltage, and dial tone to the station and includes an RJ-11 connector for basic telephone equipment, keysets, and PBXs.
An FXO interface is used for trunk, or tie line, connections to a PSTN CO or to a PBX that does not support E&M signaling (when local telecommunications authority permits). This interface is of value for off-premise station applications. A standard RJ-11 modular telephone cable connects the FXO voice interface card to the PSTN or PBX through a telephone wall outlet.
FXO and FXS interfaces indicate on-hook or off-hook status and the seizure of telephone lines by one of two access signaling methods: loop start or ground start. The type of access signaling is determined by the type of service from the CO; standard home telephone lines use loop start, but business telephones can order ground start lines instead.
Loop-start is the more common of the access signaling techniques. When a handset is picked up (the telephone goes off-hook), this action closes the circuit that draws current from the telephone company CO and indicates a change in status, which signals the CO to provide dial tone. An incoming call is signaled from the CO to the handset by sending a signal in a standard on/off pattern, which causes the telephone to ring.
Loop-start has two disadvantages, however, that usually are not a problem on residential telephones but that become significant with the higher call volume experienced on business telephones. Loop-start signaling has no means of preventing two sides from seizing the same line simultaneously, a condition known as glare. Also, loop start signaling does not provide switch-side disconnect supervision for FXO calls. The telephony switch (the connection in the PSTN, another PBX, or key system) expects the router's FXO interface, which looks like a telephone to the switch, to hang up the calls it receives through its FXO port. However, this function is not built into the router for received calls; it only operates for calls originating from the FXO port.
Another access signaling method used by FXO and FXS interfaces to indicate on-hook or off-hook status to the CO is ground start signaling. It works by using ground and current detectors that allow the network to indicate off-hook or seizure of an incoming call independent of the ringing signal and allow for positive recognition of connects and disconnects.
From this very descriptive doc;
Hope this helps!