VPN:PBX – Using FreePBX Endpoint Manager

VPN:PBX is a new offering from SysAdminMan combining Asterisk, FreePBX and OpenVPN. More details can be found here – http://sysadminman.net/sysadminman-vpnpbx-hosting.html

While using FreePBX Endpoint Manager is possible with a normal SysAdminMan system, using it with VPN:PBX is really simple as no firewall or router changes are required.

Endpoint Manager is a FreePBX module that allows you to configure VOIP handsets centrally – no settings are required to be entered on the handset itself – just plug it in!

Here is the way it works –

  1. The phone is switched on and given a DHCP address by the TP-Link TL-WR1043ND router
  2. It is also given the IP address of the Asterisk server as it’s TFTP server – in this case of a SysAdminMan VPN:VPS that’s 10.98.0.1
  3. The phone contacts the TFTP server (10.98.0.1) and asks for it’s configuration settings. It gives the server its MAC address to identify itself
  4. EPM manager identifies the handset based on its MAC address and configures the phone

Brilliantly simple and also makes it very easy to deploy new phones and make changes to deployed phones. Endpoint Manager supports lots of different manufacturers handsets including – Aastra, Grandstream, Polycom, Snom, Cisco and Yealink.

So, how does it work in practice? Here is a quick guide for deploying a new handset with Endpoint Manager –

First get the MAC address of the handset. In this case an Aastra 6755i –

Aastra 6755i MAC address

Next create an extension as normal in FreePBX. The only settings required are User Extension, Display Name and Secret –

Add FreePBX extension 1

Add FreePBX extension 2

Next enable the required handset template in Endpoint Manager / Endpoint Configuration –

Endpoint configuration 1

Endpoint Configuration 2

Finally add a device in Endpoint Manager End Point Device List –

Endpoint device list#

and clink on Rebuild Configs for All Phones –

EPM rebuild configs

Now when you connect your handset to the network it should connect to Endpoint Manager and download it’s configuration. Here’s mine making an echo test call –

Aastra 6755i Endpoint Manager

 

Because the TP-Link router creates a OpenVPN tunnel to the VPN:PBX server no NAT, firewall or router changes are required.

4 thoughts on “VPN:PBX – Using FreePBX Endpoint Manager

  1. Eric

    Hi, I am trying to add a Cisco SPA509g IP phone to my Freepbx server and after following your guide, I can’t seem to make calls nor is it downloading it’s configuration files. Is there something else that I am missing that I should do?

  2. matt Post author

    I would check that the TFTP port (UDP/69) is open for your IP.

    Also make sure that the TFTP daemon is listening –

    netstat -an | grep 69

  3. Lanny

    Hi Matt,
    Is this designed to manage phones in an office where the PBX is remotely hosted? If it is, why don’t phones show up?

  4. Matt Newcombe Post author

    Hi Lanny

    Yes, you can use end point manager to manage phone not on the LAN. It doesn’t have to be local to the phones.

    Regards – Matt

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