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Videoconferencing at UVa

Network Registration for an H.323 Client

If a videoconference client cannot connect to the network or get a DHCP address, it may not be registered. When must a videoconference endpoint be registered for network access, and how do you do it?

What types of videoconference devices does this affect?

Eventually all devices at U.Va. that use the DHCP service to obtain an IP address must be registered. The conversion of building networks is ongoing at this time.

Videoconference endpoints which are installed as part of a PC, such as the VCON Armada Escort Pro or the Polycom PVX, do not have to be separately registered; the host computer's registration is sufficient. Also, videoconference devices that have been assigned a static IP address do not need to be registered.

Free-standing endpoints (known as appliances) that use the DHCP service do need to be registered.

What are the symptoms of an unregistered device?

When the appliance is powered up it fails to obtain an IP address. For example, a Polycom Viewstation displays a blinking yellow icon at the lower edge of the video display when it is requesting an IP address from the DHCP server. When that request is successful this changes to a green light, and an IP address is displayed. If the icon stays yellow, the request has failed.

Is this the same as gatekeeper registration?

No. See Using the Gatekeeper for information about that service.

How do I register an appliance?

Since a videoconference appliance cannot be used to access a web page, a person must enter the information about the device from a computer.

  1. Go to the registration website. Skip filling in the form. Instead, click on View all options on the right-hand side.
  2. You will need to authenticate via the NetBadge system.
  3. Under User Actions choose Register a hardware address (MAC) for network access.
  4. The most important field is Hardware Address. See below for information about how to find this address on your videoconference device.
  5. If the videoconference device is not for your exclusive use, be sure to select the proper Contact group. Use the Identifying Notes field to record the brand/model of the endpoint.
  6. Submit the Registration Form.
  7. Reboot the appliance so it can obtain a DHCP address.

A device can be registered before the building network is converted to Mandatory Registration.

How do I find the Hardware (MAC) address? What does it look like?

A hardware address consists of 12 hexadecimal characters (0-9, A-F). It can be written several ways:

  • 001c222b66a4
  • 001C222B66A4
  • 00:1C:22:2B:66:A4
  • 00-1C-22-2B-66-A4

It may be called a

  • Hardware Address
  • Device Address
  • Physical Address
  • Ethernet Address
  • Media Access Control (MAC) Address

It is sometimes grouped with a device's serial number, software version, etc. Different manufacturers will refer to it by different names, and even models within one product line will record it in different places. Unlike a serial number, the Hardware Address usually must be found on a software menu rather than on a sticker on the device. All devices that connect to a network do have such an address ... somewhere.


  1. The Polycom Viewstation puts the MAC deep within the menu system:
    • System Info ->
    • Admin ->
    • Software/Hardware ->
    • Hardware
  2. The Polycom VSX requires that the user press a button on the front of the unit as it is powered up.

It may be necessary to call the manufacturer's Technical Support for a particular device if you cannot find its MAC address after a reasonable amount of hunting.


Page Updated: 2012-02-16