Device & User Mode - Feature Requests

So no problem changing D&U Mode to “supported” then?

No we will not as supported. Rob comment was their are no known issues in FreePBX. Lots of 3rd party apps have problems and NO commercial modules support D&U mode. If we mark not supported then we have to build all the test and regression testing for all combinations of how someone may use it. We do not have the resources for something very few people use at this time. Again if you find issues in core FreePBX please open bug reports.


@zinker518 - Disingenuous replies aside, if you stick with the non-commercial modules, you should be fine. Of the commercial modules, I know from my own setup that:

  • SysAdmin Pro is okay
  • Extension Routing is okay
  • I’m not so sure, but I believe EPM is okay so long as you set a default user for each device

@tonyclewis : trying to find the middle ground here… would you, based on the feedback from this and previous thread, perhaps chance it to change the wording to ‘(only) Community supported’, which would be a short what you are saying, plus backed by feedback & /lack/ of bug tickets against this feature, which is what @xrobau said ? The ‘C’ word is sometimes enough to fend off the more ‘commercially’ focused minds…

Blimey… why is everyone so damn serious around here? Have I got to insert a string of emojis in order to identify my response to Rob as “tongue in cheek”?


It seems that Sangoma/FreePBX have no interest at all in even discussing the notion that FreePBX should (and could) embrace the “mobile first” market which has emerged over the last few years. Shame – mark my words: this gruff, head-in-the-sand attitude is the beginning of the end for FreePBX. In just a few years time it will be labelled as “old-fashioned - can’t separate devices and users”.

Or maybe they’re already working on a D&U-based version of PBXact and don’t want to talk about it?

Either way, very disappointing.

Its quite the opposite. With PJSIP this is solved as you can have as many devices to the same extension that you want. Nobody has head in the sand. We are just saying its not needed in D&U mode with CHAN SIP EOL and not receiving any love from Digium anymore PJSIP is the future and this is natively solved in PJSIP.

What if, when different users need to grab a device that is ready (e.g. charged) and still have their own extension when logged in (like hot-desking but with softphones) ? which is what @jes1111 was asking for ?

Understand and that is where you can use D&U mode or a application can handle proper login and logout. Example Sangoma phones have true hot desking in the phone with no requirement of D&U mode. Login and out and no reboot of phones and it applies the users settings and button layouts for a user regardless of what phone they log into.

tough problem to solve but i do agree that longer term there needs to be a mobile solution. the easiest, although perhaps not in the sangoma roadmap, would be to build a softphone that supports log in/out like the sangoma phones do. or perhaps encourage some enterprising developer to build one (maybe work with counterpoint on such a solution). to think that softphone providers will do this on their own for the freepbx market is not realistic.

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PJSIP solves one side of the need - one user with multiple devices. (I haven’t tried it myself, but I seem to remember some limitations being mentioned.) But it does not address the shared device issue – one device with multiple users. If one acknowledges that “mobile devices are the future” and that shared mobile devices are currently the “hot spot” in this new market, then it makes sense to at least make plans to offer an appropriate solution. The issue is not Asterisk, as we know, and it’s not even FreePBX (as Rob points out) – it’s only the commercial modules, which were deliberately written to exclude the mode (presumably a valid choice at the time of the original decision but rapidly showing up now as a hindrance). I would suggest that placing D&U-capable updates of those commercial modules somewhere on the roadmap would be a smart commercial move today. Doing so would allow third-party suppliers to stay in sync - they, too, should enjoy the prospect of enhancing their offerings in line with the modern market. In terms of ease-of-use (and understanding) in the GUI, a smart interface design could adapt seamlessly to span both modes - although, as a point of fact, there would be no real need for both modes if the GUI dealt intelligently with the presentation of “1:1 device/user pairings”, i.e. what we now know as “extensions”.

Shared mobile devices are everywhere – hotels, hospitals, warehouses, retail, factory floors, etc… running a vast array of SaaS and proprietary apps needed by those businesses. Adding communications to those shared devices is the icing on the cake – “a single device to meet all needs” – don’t tell me there aren’t thousands of IT managers out there right now looking for just such a solution.

D&U is such a brilliantly elegant solution for EVERY business need. Let’s not leave it out in the cold.

Hot Desking without D&U mode…

Interesting that you mention the Sangoma phones. I commend you for them as a brave move so late in the life of “the desk phone” as we know it. What’s doubly interesting is that they solve a common problem (hot desking) with the most complex solution possible (the ability to re-register without a restart) - the proverbial sledgehammer to crack a walnut. I fully understand that, in 2016, there is still sufficient market for them to have made it a worthwhile commercial venture - but how long will that remain the case? Much of the current marketing of desk phones hangs on the offer of “junior” versions and “executive” versions (in a similar way to cars having base versions and luxury versions - deeply important in maintaining the executive pecking order). Let’s face it, though: most of the “executive functions” have to be there, of course, but the more “executive” the user, the less likely they are to be actually used. New companies, though, are not bound to this traditional idea of the executive ladder. They want flexibility, mobility, convergence, unification… out of the box. Repositioning FreePBX to take full advantage of the underlying D&U structure would give them exactly want they want (even if they don’t realise it just yet :slight_smile:).

Incidentally, Apple’s forthcoming iOS10 fully integrates third-party VOIP apps into the native Dialer app – contacts, history, etc. I don’t know whether this will open the dialer app to third-party extensions, but we can see the direction things are going, right?

Not just Sangoma phones…

  • Sangoma
  • Aastra (Mitel)
  • Digium
  • Obihai
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After much debate in this thread and others I still see zero feature requests or bug reports on User and Device mode. Which direction are we suppose to go? What do you want to see?

OTHER than Sangoma saying it’s “supported” (sorry won’t happen) what do you want out of User & Device mode?

Feels like we are beating a dead horse

Which modules do you think specifically don’t work with U&D mode. Besides endpoint (of which you confessed does actually work). I can’t think of a single commercial module that doesn’t work with U&D mode.

I find it surprising that you use the word deliberately when you’ve not seen the code yourself so how could you come to this conclusion? In fact three weeks ago I fixed a bug in parking pro for U&D mode because a user opened an issue about it in the tracker

This is also completely contradictory from everything you’ve said

And then…

No you don’t and no we aren’t serious. You are inferring emotions based on a text based medium. You can’t assume how we are reacting about anything. As for your replies,

does not seem tongue in cheek at all.

Bug reports…Feature Requests… anyone?

This thread is filled with a ton of case-examples. Great. I’m trying to find out what is actually wanted to improve U&D mode? Something that, CANNOT, go away. As in ever.

I am thinking bulk handler. Ok cool. Yup no feature request on that one…

And how do we do that? Please give us something to go on!

I gave you contributor access to our wiki a week ago…


Hi Andrew - thank you for taking the time to respond here - I appreciate I’m being a bit of a PITA but it does seem we’re getting somewhere. Obviously at the moment I’m wanting to sound out your feelings/attitude - which, I’d say, have softened a little through the course of the previous thread and this one. Great! But I also need to understand more of the underlying issues (through these discussions and my own hands-on) and, frankly, gain some level of agreement from your side that I’m not all alone in my beliefs (thank you, @bksales). Also, please realise that I’m not full-time on this (I have three businesses to run) so it may take me some time to write up actual bug reports, feature requests or documentation - but I will get there.

I’m confused by this:

You and your colleagues have declared otherwise, on multiple occasions! The incompatibility of commercial modules has been quoted as THE reason why you don’t support D&U mode. For sure I don’t know which modules don’t work - I was simply following your lead! Could you offer some clarification here?

Again, I was going on something stated in another thread - along the lines of “when writing the modules we always assume we have control of both sides”.

Not so! There’s suggestions of them throughout much of what I’ve written, but very little specific response to them. Actual “Feature Requests” can follow, but first we’ve all got to “dream a while”, kick some ideas around a bit, see what holds water and what doesn’t.

‘Not Supported’ does not mean ‘Doesn’t work’. It means ‘Not Supported’. As in if you call support, and say ‘I want support with Device and User mode’, they will say ‘Sorry, that’s not supported’.

This has been said MANY MANY times in this thread, but you don’t seem to be reading it.

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100% agree with this. Rob and I have both said this numerous times in this thread and the original thread.

The same as freepbx has custom files. We don’t support them but they won’t ever go away.

Not sure why this unsupported versus supported to you is such a sticking point and you want to keep poking and poking on it.

90% of my software on my computer is not supported or certified by Microsoft or Mac but we all use this software daily in our lives. In the Open Source world un-supported means the exact same thing. I cant call Apple because HipChat keeps crashing my Mac. But at least in FreePBX world if D&U mode is broken in some core FreePBX module and it gets reported we still fix it for the community. It not being supported means if you buy a support contracts from us we wont fix it under the support contract or if you buy a commercial module we wont warrant the commercial module using it with unsupported methods like D&U mode.

Can we please let this whole unsupported versus supported die. Its a decision we have made as a project and company decision as we can only take on so much with everything inside FreePBX and all the testing we have to do when we modify any code in FreePBX. Again its open source and if developers want to take D&U and make it even better or build a cool softphone or whatever more power to everyone and we always look for git pull request on changes. We spend countless hours a month helping new developers get started in FreeBX at a developer level and our own stats prove the last few years their is more outside active development in FreePBX then ever before and more inside development and commits.

Hey! I didn’t raise the support issue again - Rob misread my post: I was talking about “modules working under D&U”, not about support. I totally agree - can we stay off the support thing? - it’s well understood!

Nevertheless, I should point out that your position on D&U has been immensely clarified by these two threads. Previously, you guys may have understood your position re: bug fixes, etc. but it was not stated anywhere “official” – I’m sure many readers have been encouraged by the clearer explanation.