FreePBX Hosting Setup & Configuration Guide

Everything You Need to Know About Setting Up Your FreePBX

Your FreePBX VPS or Dedicated server was just provisioned and now you want to configure your PBX. Below you will find tutorials, Getting Started Guides, Support Information and links to our partner sites for services that you might find useful. If you have additional questions please contact us.

We suggest reading through this whole process before beginning. After you make changes via the FreePBX web interface see a red ‘Apply Config’ at the top. You will need to click APPLY CHANGES to actually apply the changes to the PBX.

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Here are the basic steps to get your PBX configured. We suggest reading through this whole process before beginning. After you make changes you’ll see a red ‘Apply Config’ at the top. You need to click that to actually apply your changes to the PBX. FreePBX and Asterisk are powerful software plans but the setup can get rather complicated at times. If you find that configuring your PBX yourself is beyond your current ability you can always contact for configuration support or consider upgrading to our fully managed PBX offering.

Updating FreePBX

Updating your FreePBX server and keeping it to date is important to keep your system secure and stable. Please read our guide on how to update your FreePBX server for details.

SysAdmin Pro & End Point Manager Module Installation

With every VPS and Dedicated Server we include both the SysAdmin Pro and End Point Manager Modules for FREE. This is a $175 Value and every customer receives a license for both modules for FREE.

Once you have purchased your VPS or Dedicated Server you will need to go through the FreePBX Getting Started Wizard to register your PBX at the portal and activate your free modules.

Firewall Setup

After you complete the Getting Started Wizard, you will want to set up the FreePBX firewall. This process will enable and configure the responsive firewall.

Help, I’ve been blocked!

Were you setting up a phone and suddenly you can’t access the web interface? All your phones go offline at once? Did you type an incorrect password a few too many times? Are you accessing FreePBX from a new location? If so, you might be blocked either passively by the firewall, or actively by Intrusion Detection. Don’t worry, it happens to all of us from time to time. Read our article on how to deal with this issue and prevent it going forward.

SIP Trunk Configuration

If you are using SipStation follow the instructions via the FreePBX wiki.

If you are using another SIP provider you will need to contact your SIP provider and ask for a tutorial on how to configure your SIP trunks. Your SIP Provider should provide you with details like the trunk server hostname/IP, username, secret password, registration string, etc.

Then within the FreePBX web interface, you would click CONNECTIVITY -> TRUNKS -> ADD SIP (chan_pjsip) TRUNK and configure the SIP trunk as directed by your SIP provider. If your SIP trunk provider requires you to use chan_sip, please note that on FreePBX 14 chan_sip is on port 5160 by default so you may need to alter your configuration.

Outbound Route Configuration

Outbound Routes are how you tell your PBX which Trunks (phone lines) to use when people dial certain telephone numbers. A simple installation will tell the PBX to send all calls to a single trunk. However, a complex setup will have an outbound route for emergency calls, another outbound route for local calls, another for long distance calls, and perhaps even another for international calls. You can even create a “dead trunk” and route prohibited calls (such as international and 976 calls) to it. If you don’t add a pattern for international calls, then no one can call an international number.

  1. To add an outbound route click CONNECTIVITY -> OUTBOUND ROUTES. In the top / left choose Add Route.
  2. Give the route a name (only has to have meaning for you).
  3. Scroll down to Dial Patterns
  4. Look for the Dial patterns wizard and choose:
    1. Local 7/10 digit
    2. Toll free (if you want)
    3. Long Distance
    4. Any other patterns you want
    5. A blank pattern gets added to the top, so make sure you delete that
  5. Click Submit changes

Setup Extensions

Extensions are where you setup the extensions that you will use on your system. In this module, you’ll create an extension number and set a password for each extension and set-up voicemail (if desired). Note that this module only configures FreePBX and Asterisk. You must separately configure the phones themselves to connect to your PBX, either by configuring the phones manually, or by using the Endpoint Manager Module.

  1. Click APPLICATIONS -> EXTENSIONS. This will let you add the extensions for your phones.
  2. Click Add Extension
  3. Choose “Add New Chan_PJSIP Extension” and click Submit
  4. Put an extension number in User Extension (you can basically use any numbers you want but avoid very common ones such as 100, 101 or 1000.)
  5. Put the name / purpose of the phone in Display Name Scroll down to secret and make note of the string. You need the extension (user-id) and secret (password) for the phone to connect to the PBX. We recommend using the complex secret that’s automatically generated.
  6. Go to Advanced and change “Rewrite Contact” to “Yes”
  7. Click Submit
  8. Repeat for each extension you need to setup.

Setup Zulu UC Softphone

If you have remote staff, having an application that allows them to connect to your PBX from any device as though they were in the office is a huge benefit. Zulu UC is the application you need; it’s built to work with FreePBX and we have a comprehensive guide to setting it up.

Ring Group Configuration

Ring Groups allow you to create a single extension number (the Ring Group Number) that will call more than one person. For example, you could make a Ring Group so that when any user dials extension 601, extensions 10, 11, 12, and 13 ring for 15 seconds, and then the call goes to the voicemail for extension 17.

  2. Note the ring-group number
  3. Give the ring group a name (sales, support etc. Something that has meaning to you).
  4. In the extension list you can put extensions (i.e 100, 101) or actual phone numbers. If you put a phone number in you have to add a # at the end (i.e. 8005551212#)
  5. At the bottom you have to choose what will happen if no one answers. Most people send it to voicemail, but it’s up to you.
  6. Click Submit Changes

IVR Recording

This is the module where you configure an auto attendant. This is the most complicated part. The IVR is the “Press 1 for …, Press 2 for …”. First, you need to create recordings. You need to have an extension working on the system so you can ‘call’ it and record or you need to make your recordings outside of the phone system.

To get started click ADMIN -> SYSTEM RECORDINGS and then follow the instructions below based on your situation:

If you recorded your greeting outside of the phone system and have a .WAV file on your computer:

  1. Choose File and find the recording.
  2. Name the recording
  3. Click Save

If you want to record the greeting via your phone:

  1. Put your extension in
  2. Click Go
  3. Follow the on-screen directions
  4. Name the recording
  5. Click save

IVR Configuration

  2. Click Add a new IVR
  3. Give the IVR a name
  4. Give the IVR a description
  5. Choose the Announcement that you recorded above
  6. Scroll down to IVR entries
  7. Under Ext, you need to put in the number you expect to be pressed (i.e. 1, 2, 3)
  8. In Destination, you choose Ring Group
  9. Choose the correct ring group
  10. Add and repeat for as many options as necessary
  11. Click Submit

Inbound Route Configuration

The Inbound Routes module is where you tell the PBX how to handle incoming calls. Typically, you tell the PBX the phone number that outside callers have called (“DID Number” or “Direct Inward Dial Number”) and then indicate which extension, Ring Group, Voicemail, or other destination the call will go to.

This procedure will route incoming calls to the IVR you setup in the previous steps.

  2. Click Add incoming Route
  3. Give it a name
  4. Scroll to the bottom / Set Destination
  5. Choose IVR and the IVR you created above
  6. Click Submit

Phone Configuration (EndPoint Manager)

The End Point Manager allows you full control to configure over 220 devices and change settings on a per template basis all from within your GUI. The Endpoint Manager module is provided for free with your hosting service.

Once the Endpoint Module is installed you can follow all the instructions via the Endpoint Manager Module wiki page.

FreePBX Security (OPTIONAL)

All of these settings are optional and depend on your specific needs, SIP provider, and areas of concern.

You should now be able to click the red Apply Changes (you can actually do that any time) and all your changes will be applied to the system. Your system is now setup and you can begin to test.

While this tutorial provides the basic steps to get your PBX online we recommend that you review the FreePBX wiki for more information on the setup of additional features:

End User Documentation

End User training can always be difficult but if you are using Aastra IP Phones and you have the correct functions/features enabled for each phone you will find this end user documentation wiki article very useful.

Green phone illustration

FreePBX Getting Started

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