System Overview

Introduction

This section provides an overview of the applications and principal file types of the CopiaFacts system.

It includes a Quick Reference section covering the basic steps to send faxes using CopiaFacts.

We suggest that you read first the topics in this overview if you are new to Copia software.

Meeting your Communications Requirements

CopiaFacts software is the most comprehensive set of fax and e-mail solutions on the market today. The system is infinitely expandable, both in size and features, and if you have a requirement for something which you that you think that CopiaFacts may not offer, please ask us. Copia's technical support staff are ready to help: don’t hesitate to call with any problem. Developers at Copia strive to make the product friendly and straightforward while retaining its versatile, technical prowess.

Hardware Requirements

The hardware requirements for a CopiaFacts server are dependent on the number of telephone lines, ports and e-mail threads to be supported.  To support a fax board with a couple of fax lines, and a few e-mail threads, a typical modern business desktop machine is more than sufficient (provided that it has a free slot for the fax board, if used).  A machine of this type is also fine for running the CopiaFacts client software.

In general, adding more voice and fax boards/lines does not greatly increase the CPU load, because the boards that are supported by CopiaFacts contain their own processors and this minimizes the load on the main CPU(s).  However using fax modems, multiple VoIP or FoIP ports, and large numbers of e-mail threads may require more powerful processors and/or multiple processor cores and additional memory. Please contact Copia for assistance in specifying hardware for larger servers.

Most of the CopiaFacts screen dialogs can be resized.  However we recommend a minimum screen size of 1024x768 or 1280x720.

CopiaFacts servers that do not require fax or voice hardware (that is, those that use only FoIP, VoIP, e-mail or SMS) can run in a virtual machine.

Hardware and OS requirements table

Operating System Requirements

CopiaFacts software runs under Workstation and Server versions of Windows, major versions 5 (XP / Server 2003) and 6 (Vista / Windows 7, 8.1, 10 / Server 2008/2012 R2).  A few CopiaFacts components may also run under Windows 2000 but full compatibility is not guaranteed (see the notes below).

Earlier versions of Windows are no longer supported by CopiaFacts version 8.x, but an earlier CopiaFacts release may still be available which will run on an earlier Windows version. Windows XP and Server 2003 are no longer supported by Microsoft and are insecure: we recommend urgent action to move from these operating systems, and we no longer recommend attempting to run CopiaFacts on these operating systems.

Code-Signing: Since January 1st 2016, Microsoft have changed the rules about what code-signing certificates are acceptable, to counter security issues. SHA-1 certificates are no longer accepted except by Windows XP and Windows Server 2003. Copia is therefore dual-signing executable programs and DLLs with both SHA-1 certificates and the more secure SHA-2 certificates which are standard on current Microsoft-supported operating systems.  The SHA-1 certificate should still be accepted on Windows XP or 2003, but only if you have kept up-to-date with Windows Updates to ensure that your root certificates list is current. If not, you may find that the certification path is reported as invalid if you check it in Explorer properties for the file. Because Microsoft updates have now ceased for these OS, it may not be easy for you to rectify this issue.

Both 32-bit and 64-bit operating system versions are supported.  For 64-bit, we have only tested Vista, Windows 7, Server 2008, Server 2008 R2, Server  2012.  Most CopiaFacts applications are 32-bit applications but some DLLs and printer drivers are provided in 64-bit versions also.  The CopiaFacts DLL names have a '64' suffix and are currently installed in the Program Files (x86) folder on 64-bit systems, alongside the 32-bit applications and DLLs.

CopiaFacts is not officially supported on Home editions of Windows.  Some customers use CopiaFacts on these OS, but Copia reserves the right to make a special charge for support if you need assistance to get programs installed or working on a Windows Home edition.

When you run on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008R2, or Windows 2012, it is very important to disable the operating system caches which prevent CopiaFacts nodes from seeing the up-to-date state of files on the network.  To do this, create the Registry keys described in the Microsoft documentation at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff686200(v=ws.10).aspx and set all these values to zero.  The COPIAFACTS engine will record the settings of these values in the system information at the start of each trace file.

Some CopiaFacts programs require GDI+ (in gdiplus.dll) which is not always installed on earlier Windows versions.  See the notes below if you receive a pop-up telling you that this Windows optional component has not been found.

GDI Plus Notes
Windows 2000 Notes

Thanks to its file-based queue mechanisms, CopiaFacts servers can also accept faxing and e-mailing tasks generated from other operating systems such as Unix and Linux, although Copia does not supply software for this purpose.  The Fax API topic describes this.

Network Requirements

CopiaFacts is designed to operate in a network environment with multiple connected machines, though you can also run a standalone fax server.

It is very important that all machines have the same clock time, and we recommend that all machines that can access the Copia Application Data on your file server are synchronized with an external time server.  We also recommend that you check the time-zone settings: even if two machines show the same time, if one is set to Daylight Savings Time and another is not or if one is set to a different time zone, serious problems may result.

Internet Requirements

If you are using FoIP or sending large e-mail volumes, you must consider the amount of Internet bandwidth you require.

Unlike traditional digital telephone calls, which require a bandwidth of 56-64 kb/s per call, a typical FoIP call over a VoIP line in G.711 mode (alaw or mulaw) requires 80 to 100 kb/s bandwidth.  This leads to one of the principal advantages of using T.38 mode, which typically only requires 45 kb/s of your Internet connection.

T.38 mode is also highly recommended because it fixes many of the problems of using VoIP circuits for fax, such as packet delays, packets out of order, long faxes failing, and the ability to negotiate higher baud rates (above 14,400) while at the same time being unable to support such speeds after the call has been established.

E-Mail bandwidth requirements can be calculated from the number of concurrent e-mail threads and the average size in bytes of the e-mails you will be sending.  Unlike FoIP, transmissions will not immediately fail for lack of sufficient bandwidth, instead transmissions will start to take much longer, and are eventually likely to result in server timeouts.

Supported Hardware

Table of Supported Fax and Voice Hardware

See also the Hardware documentation topics.

Installation

Copia provides separate installers for Server components, Client Components, and Service Components.  See the Installation Notes topic for more information on installation procedures.