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Woe is the at-home user that uses VPN for their Cisco phone

Hello Experts -

We have installed and activated SSL VPN to ASA using AnyConnect to allow at-home employees to have 7962 Cisco phones.  We have been using this for about 6 months.  The whole experience has been extremely frustrating.  Is anyone else using this and experiencing the same issues?

Cisco and our partners claim that this feature is easy to install and administer......that statement could not be any farther from the truth.

Setup was a nightmare.  Instructions were sparse and scattered.  This was the best documentation we could find.  I find if very strange that Cisco does not provide formal documentation, that the best documentation was found here in forums.

We had to call TAC several times for assistance in setup, it took several hours even for their techs to resolve our issues!

Now that this is set up, tested, and working, deployment has just been the 2nd phase of the nightmare.  I always thoroughly test the phones and log into the VPN before I ship them to the users.  A couple of times, when the user tries to log in, the trust list is "lost" or "all concentrators failed" errors occur.  How does this happen????

Depending on the user's home network, sometimes I have to walk the user manually through setting the TFTP settings.  Not too awful, but just another annoying step that has to be taken.

Some users have to purchase routers if they are using older modems.  Yes, I realize this is the user's home network issue, not a Cisco issue, but it's just another part of the frustration in supporting this feature.

My latest headache is that many of these phones are getting the VPN disabled.  When you log into the VPN on the phone, there is an option on the screen to "disable."  If you press that "disable" button it does disable the VPN, but the users CANNOT manually enable the VPN again, they get an error, "that feature is not active here" or something like that.  The only was to enable the VPN again is to ship the phone back to our office to be put back onto the corporate network again.  A few of the employees have admitted to pressing the "disable" button, but a couple of people are ADAMANT that they did not disable the VPN. 

Is it even possible for the VPN to be disabled other than manually by the user?

Is there any way to enable the VPN on the phone without completely re-doing the VPN configuration?  (which would probably require the phones to be brought back onto the corporate network, something that we would not want to do)

Thanks for the vent, and any help that you can provide!

Sarah P

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