Because our VOIP phone system is on the internet there is no geographical restrictions. That means we can purchase a telephone number in any country, and forward the calls to our FreePBX system. Many countries allow anyone to purchase a number in that country, some, such as France, place restrictions that you have to prove you are a resident in that country.
We are going to set up a phone number on our system from UKDDI, currently you can get free UK geographic numbers here.
These telephone numbers are referred to as “DDI numbers” or “DID numbers” depending on which country you are from!
There’s no denying that setting up an inbound number can be frustrating sometimes. If you’re a SysAdminMan customer and have set up an inbound number that’s not working then just open a support ticket and we’ll have a look why.
If you’re not a SysAdminMan customer then there’s a couple of troubleshooting guides here –
Sending the call to our FreePBX system
There are 2 different ways this could happen and will depend on which call provider you are using. The 2 different methods are –
- Our trunk “registered” with the call provider. This tells the call provider what IP to send the calls to
- We enter a SIP URI in the call providers control panel telling it where to send the calls.
If you enter a SIP URI in your call providers control panel I suggest keeping the number the same as the DDI number you purchased. For example if you purchased the number 441604123123 and your FreePBX server IP address is 22.214.171.124 I would suggest setting to SIP URI to send the call to as SIP:[email protected]
Setting up our number in UKDDI
Here’s our number set up in UKDDI. We are entering a SIP URI and forwarding the call to our FreePBX server IP. Notice I am keeping the number in the SIP URI the same as my DDI number, that’s important later on
UKDDI telephone number
If you get annoying telemarketing calls then it’s really simple to block the caller ID with FreePBX. First you need to ensure the caller ID module is installed, see here for more info – http://sysadminman.net/blog/2014/freepbx-2-11-guide-updating-and-installing-modules-5922
Blocking a caller via the Web GUI
First we need to go to the Blacklist menu option
FreePBX is very flexible and has many calling features. Most of these are deployed as modules that can be added to the system as required.
You should keep the modules on your system up-to-date for security reasons.
First select Module / Module Admin from the main menu
FreePBX module admin
When using VOIP to place telephone calls our call provider has no real concept of our exact geographical location, we could be anywhere. So there’s no ‘local’ area code by default.
In this set up guide we are using Voiptalk to place our external calls. As they are a UK provider they will accept UK numbers dialled in the regular national format. So if I want to dial a Northampton number (with the area code 01604) I can call “01604 838383”. But if my telephone users are based in Northampton they may be used to just dialling “838383”
We can implement this by manipulating a number dialled in to the format expected by the call provider. We are going to do this by setting up “Dialed Number Manipulation Rules” on the “voiptalk” trunk we created earlier.
The rule we want to create is –
- Any 6 digit number dialled that starts with a 7 or an 8 gets 01604 added to the front before being sent to the call provider
Adding the manipulation rules
Dialed number manipulation rules
This guide will be added to over time and is designed for new users to FreePBX.
System access, security and maintenance
more guides to follow ….
To make calls to a regular telephone we need an account with a call provider. Our FreePBX system will pass the call to the call provider (using SIP) and the call provider will pass the call to the regular telephone system. This is sometimes referred to as ‘call termination’
There are literally hundreds of SIP call providers to choose from. This guide uses voiptalk.org who are a large provider in the UK. First you need to sign up with the call provider and deposit some call credit with them. You will then receive SIP credentials which you will use to configure your connection (SIP trunk) to them.
They should also provide you with some configuration settings that you need to enter. Because FreePBX/Asterisk is so popular many providers will be able to let you know what settings to use. The settings can vary depending on the call provider.
There are 2 steps to this. First we need to set up the connection (SIP trunk) then we need to tell FreePBX what calls to send via that trunk. Don’t forget we could use many different call providers (possibly for different call destinations). We need to let FreePBX know what trunk to use for what calls.
Set up SIP trunk
Select Connectivity / Trunks form the menu
FreePBX SIP trunk
Setting up a SIP phone to connect to our FreePBX extension is fairly straight forward. All phones set up are a little different, and you can normally do the config through the phone itself, or a web GUI. Normally the web GUI is easier but below is a guide to basic configuration of a Yealink T22P handset. This is a good choice for a phone, and relatively inexpensive (although it seems no SIP phones are really inexpensive!) Setting up a softphone would be similar.
There are lots of screenshots below, but we only really need 3 bits of information –
- Server IP Address
- Extension Number
- Extension Password
Note: SysAdminMan servers run a security application called fail2ban. This monitors for incorrect registration attempts and blocks the IP if it sees too many incorrect attempts. While setting up your extensions it’s possible (likely!) that you will not get it correct the first time, so open a support ticket asking for your home/business IP to be whitelisted, so it doesn’t accidentally get blocked.
Here’s what I did to set up my phone and make a test call …
Enter the phones settings menu
Creating an extension in FreePBX is very straight forward. There are a lot options, but we only need to enter a few. We will be creating a SIP extension, most softphones and VOIP phones are SIP compatible.
Select Applications / Extensions from the main menu
Add FreePBX extension
After you receive the login details for your new SysAdminMan FreePBX virtual server the first thing you are going to want to do is log in and change the administrator password.
For extra security SysAdminMan servers use both Apache and FreePBX security to restrict access. Both these access methods use the same account details.
Also all SysAdminMan server use HTTPS to access FreePBX. Because this uses a locally signed certificate you will get a warning when you first connect. This is normal and you should only see it once. Once the certificate has been accepted you should not see the warning. If you’d like more information on what a locally signed certificate is please see here – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-signed_certificate
Browse to the URL in your welcome e-mail
Accept the web server certificate
It’s been just over a year since I posted an update on the number of visitors to the SysAdminMan website, so I thought it was time to do it again!
Below are some stats from the SysAdminMan blog, which includes mainly FreePBX and A2Billing documentation.
When I posted last year there had been just over 75,000 unique visitors in the previous 12 months, and things are still growing with around 115,000 unique visitors this time