A window into the technology and business of fax...


It's Not the End of the Line for Fax


Is 2022 the End of the Line for Fax?


Introducing the Mainpine IQ Express "Rev4"


Beginning in December, 2021 Mainpine will begin rolling out its IQ Express “Rev4” Fax Board models in lieu of the IQ Express “Rev3” Fax Board models.


Call Forwarding and Number Porting


Mainpine recommends to its on-line fax service customers that they request faxes to be sent directly to the fax number that Mainpine provides.


Problematic March 9th, 2021 Windows Update


This update can cause image quality issues while printing a TIFF document


Introducing SSL Fax: internet fax for real


SSL Fax makes faxes nearly instantaneous and avoids phone line audio quality problems.


How does eClinicalWorks EMR interface with Mainpine?


Occasionally we are asked how the eCW EMR interfaces with Mainpine's products. Here is the basic idea...


Inexpensive Long-Distance Services Actually Cost More


Inexpensive long-distance telephone rates abound. Historically, before VoIP services became widely used by average long-distance carriers, and when the PSTN dominated telecommunications, most US consumers expected about 10 cents per-minute long-distance toll charges. However, over the last ten years consumers – both residential and business – have largely migrated to much less-expensive long-distance carrier services that can run 5 cents per-minute or less. The cost difference between the 10 and 5 cent per-minute services is primarily fueled by telecommunications competition leveraging VoIP services.


Line Audio Quality Testing


Last year we discussed "VoIP and the Perils of Poor Audio Quality".  In that article we discussed various kind of factors that can influence audio quality.

When Mainpine support is called upon to troubleshoot and diagnose problems with failing faxes, partially-received faxes, handshaking issues, or transmission time issues Mainpine technicians perform "line audio quality testing" and in such cases the result is almost perfectly consistent: poor line audio quality.  We will then advise the customer to bring the matter up with their phone service provider, long-distance service provider, and their local telephone company to test the line and make sure that the factors discussed in last year's article are not involved.


Mainpine IQ Express (Rev3) Driver for Windows 8 / Server 2012

16 May 2013

Valued Customer,

Mainpine is pleased to announce the release of our newest Windows driver for our IQ Express (Rev3) fax boards.  This driver release includes support for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 (as well as all Windows versions from XP through Server 2008 R2 - both 64-bit and 32-bit).  This driver version fixes minor "blue-screen on shutdown/restart" bugs that were present in the MPCD20MAR09/ driver (which was previously the latest driver which worked on Windows 8 and Server 2012).  It also adds a new feature which is capable of electronically identifying the serial number of most IQ Express (Rev3) fax boards.


The Mainpine Online Fax Service

5 November 2012

We've been discussing the future of fax technology in our last blog entries.  We've demonstrated just how critical good audio quality is to traditional faxing and why recent telephony developments such as VoIP are so problematic for fax.  We've explained why present attempts to cope with those recent developments, such as T.38, are not a reliable solution.  We've discussed how fax must become decoupled from voice communications.  And in our last blog entry we explained that on-line fax service providers will play an important role in moving forward by bridging the gap between phone network connectivity and internet connectivity.  For these reasons Mainpine has launched its own on-line fax service.


The Future of Fax

19 October 2012

In our last blog we discussed the present and future need to decouple fax communications from voice communications.  In the past, when the only network connecting most homes and businesses was the telephone network, driving fax communications on the telephone network through voice communications was necessary.  However, in modern times many homes and businesses have two different networks connecting them: telephone and internet.  Indeed, some are still only connected to one network, but increasingly that one network is the internet and not the telephone network.


Why not T.38?


The proliferation and ubiquity of the internet have brought about an upending of several industries.  For example, many newspapers and magazines have been completely replaced by on-line versions.  The postal service has transitioned away from being strictly a letter carrying service and expanded package and advertisement delivery services.  Music distribution has moved away from physical media towards on-line download services.  Likewise, movies and television distribution are transitioning towards internet media.


Fax, VoIP, and the Perils of Poor Audio Quality


So once you have well-functioning hardware such as the IQ Express and well-functioning software such as Mainpine's IQFSP with Windows Fax Service or HylaFAX+, what is left that could possibly go wrong for reliable fax operations?  Just as important to fax reliablity as the hardware and software is the line audio quality delivering the fax audio to the modem.



11 May 2012

Historically Mainpine had not been in the business of developing or distributing fax application software.  This was the case for at least a couple of reasons.  First, getting into the software business would certainly increase the volume of customer support as Mainpine would be expected to provide product support not only for the hardware but also for the software.  Second, many of the resellers in Mainpine's product distribution were, themselves, developing or distributing fax application software, and Mainpine did not want to offend them by appearing as competitive in the software segment.  Indeed, Mainpine customer support attempted to treat all fax applications fairly by producing hardware that was standards-compliant and by assisting its customers experiencing problems with fax application software by attempting to troubleshoot fax session failures and serving as an advocate for the customer in working with the third-party fax application software support department.


About Updating


Recently (February 2012) Mainpine released new firmware for the IQ Express fax boards (all revisions). Because Mainpine felt that the problems addressed in the firmware update were significant, Mainpine sent out an announcement via e-mail to as many customers as it could and made telephone contact for many more in order to ensure as wide of a distribution of the firmware as possible.  The response was tremendous and was exactly what was wanted out of the announcement.  Mainpine has been very busy ever since in performing and providing firmware updates for its customers.