We have a software vender that is installing our new phone system.
They say that they need a public IP address for the new system to
administer it. I said "No problem which ports in the firewall do you
want opened" the response I got was not some, or even all, but "It
needs to bypass the firewall."

CAN a BM 3.8 sp4 firewall be bypassed? NAT is evidently ok but the
vender reacted in horror when I tried to talk to them about what
specifically they needed and just got "No firewalls".