Anyone run FreePBX in a virtual machine?

I’m considering putting FreePBX on my Windows servers (using Hyper-V). Will it run if it’s virtualized? Any issues with Windows seeing the cards? I’d be putting in a digital card and an 8port FXO analog card (both PCI-e).


You can not virtualize a FreePBX instance that uses Hardware trunking cards on a Windows Hyper-V Host.

You could set up the primary system to use SIP trunks and then have a hardware box that was trunked to the Virtual machine with SIP trunks - we have done that for a couple of customers.

But if you are using Hardware Cards, the machine has to be Physical.

Oh, why is that? Does Windows not properly present the cards to the virtual machine or something?

Windows can’t present the card in any way shape or form - there are no Windows drivers for the cards - Only Linux Drivers.

DAHDI drivers are Linux Kernel Drivers and subsystems.

I run freepbx in a VMWare environment, but like Greg said, I use all SIP trunks. works great!

Yes, all SIP on google cloud.

Yes, I run FreePBX on a Proxmox host. Analog lines are connected to a Patton Gateway, but most calls are handled through SIP trunks. Works perfectly too. Absolutely no call quality issues at all.

Technically to present hardware IO to a hosted virtual machine you would need VT-D (intel) or AMD-Vi (AMD) available on your CPU hardware (and BIOS) to have half a chance , BUT it would also require the Virtualization manger to fully support that “IO passthrough” and you would have to know how to do that,I know KVM/QEMU/XEN does it, I know others don’t maybe M$OFT does.

Another alternate that always works is to run DAHDI on the host with the hardware and use dynamic-eth to pass it through on layer2 to the dahdi running on the slave machine(s)

You can do that easily in a PROXMX VM if your hardware support is there, it’s in TFM

Why not just use a SIP to Analog gateway like these:

This allows you to move the hardware requirement outside of the computer completely. These things are cheap, like a few hundred bucks for a 4 port, more expensive for more lines.

This is of course if you are looking to use analog lines, I don’t think you mentioned if you want to use PRI or analog or…

I use one of these for an install ad a school and personally much prefer not having to deal with the cards. If one of these goes out, I just swap it out with a new device and never have to open up the PC.

Just my opinion, others may feel differently in particular those that sell cards :slight_smile:

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Hi Chasemixon:

I’ve heard some folks doesn’t recommend running on virtual machines. I’m planning to install 120 phones on a VMware Machine. Do you know if is stable and reliable to run it on that platform?


Depends on the utilization - that is a fair number of phones - how many will actually be on a call at any given time? If it’s a normal office environment, you should be fine assuming you give it enough RAM (I would go with 8-Gig for that many phones), CPU (At Least 2 with a Passmark of at least 4K) and disk (Hardware RAID or SSD).

If it’s a Call-Center with everyone on the phones at all times and recording the calls to boot, you will need a BEEFY machine.

We are a trucking company, and logistics company, we have 80 phones, and 20-40 people are on the phone at any given time during the day. My VM has 8 GB of ram with raid1 drive, the host server is a dell R730 with 512 GB of Ram, and 2 16 core Procs. pretty spiffy right? :slight_smile: our setup is we have one main office with 35-40 phones and two other remote offices connected via site to site VPN’s two other offices have 25, 10 phones respectfully. all running on one asterisk server. I will tell you this, having a vm pbx has saved my hiney on at least 3 occasions… the veeam backup and restore, it was just so easy to restore that server to yesterday’s config. :slight_smile:

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VM here with 500 odd extensions. 400 DID lines and about 30 concurrent calls at any given moment. No issues with the VM other than running a snapshot that includes RAM will kill phone registrations. I’d be interested to see if Veam will do the same thing since it uses snapshots to create the backups.

Have some performance issues, will troubleshoot with Sangoma once we are upgraded to the new version. They are reluctant right now with the major release out.

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I have never noticed it dropping all the calls, but I only run a nightly backup with veeam. it runs at 7 PM and takes about 3 minutes to backup the servers… I run a full backup once a month. it takes about 15 minutes. only 1 - 5 people using phones during those hours for me.