Asterisk, FreePBX, PBX in a Flash

What is Asterisk? well basically it’s a telephone system you normally see in large companies, which have an IVR, many extensions, with voicemail and features like: conference calling, call transfer, music on hold etc.

So I have been trying to play around with this open source system they call asterisk, for a few years, but always without success.

When I first gave it a go, it was a little intimidating, what with all the command line linux stuff, and editing config files with 1000s of options. If you don’t know what your doing, reading a couple of tutorials might not be enough to get going…. so at first, I was unsuccessful and put it aside.

many months later, I bought a book “Asterisk for Dummies”, I got a better understanding of the system, and managed to get some basic tests working, but nothing fancy… so I dropped it again.

Finaly a few years go by, and the open source community really pushed it forward to make it way easier to setup, automating a lot of the basic configurations… there are many flavors like: Asterisk@Home, Trixbox, FreePBX, and the one I chose to go with was “PBX in a flash”. These are all based on asterisk, I haven’t tried them all but i really like PIAF.

So in the last couple of weeks, I’ve been setting up my PBX, and even though it’s really easy to use, I still found myself stuck on basic things I just didn’t know about. So I decided to document some of my findings.

I will update this post to link to future FreePBX/PIAF hints and tutorials that took me hours to find through google.

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