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Fax over VoIP Killing Me

(Itzik) #42

This is just for incoming, i assume you cannot send faxes with this setup. Correct?


I’m not sure what was said that maid u think that. No we use the obi200 to both send and receive.


I am using right now for fax only.
They have a grandstream (and other devices) set up page. I simply followed their guide and has worked since day one.
Wonder if my obi had one setting off by 1/1000th of some obscure parameter. Most of our faxing is with a foip cloud service, but we still occ send some faxes. Wish we had better options to avoid fax completely but HIPPA will probably keep it going for a while.

(Peter Arnold Nott) #45

edit on that: My success rate with the SPA112 has fallen away. It is especially a problem with increasing page numbers. Still around 75%, but quite frustrating for the staff. Should I invest (looks like about) $80 for an Obi 200 to chase the fantasy of reliable faxing over IP? Or should I just accept what I have?? (Its ok, that’s rhetorical).

The problem with eg efax, and other options available in Aust. is that if you send a lot of faxes, like still occurs in the medical world, then it really gets expensive. 10c per minute is standard.

(Steven Sedory) #46

Absolutely. We experienced the same thing. Can’t say for 100% it will increase your success rate, but I would bet money on it.

(Yois) #47

I wish I had some of your fairy dust!

I have a SPA112 with about 40% success rate over T.38, and i’ve tried replacing with an Obi200, but I can’t get even a single fax out. When the T.38 handoff takes place, the call goes dead and Asterisk logs:

res_rtp_asterisk.c: RTP Read too short

I’m using the default settings on the Obi200 with Asterisk 13.19.1. How did you set UDPTL? Are you sure you didn’t change any RTP settings on the OBI?


Get a grandstream and a t38 service. My obi didn’t always work.
Vitelity has their own device (they ship to you configured) with their service and some attractive rates.


Or use Hylafax and t38modem(s) directly to your t38 compliant VSP, no asterisk/FreePBX needed, but is much better suited to try by any method available to get your fax through, even after repeated failures.

Also FusionPBX, which is FreeSwitch based, also is a piece of cake to configure as a faxserver (t38 or G711) in a GUI. Maybe run it as a “Docker” instance :wink:

(Tony Lewis) #50

Or go sign up for Sangoma FAXStation product for 100% faxing starting at 9.95 a month or 25 a month for basically unlimited faxing and no magic needed. Just plug in our Black box to your LAN and your FAX machine into the device and everything just works.


I like that for hardware bound folks, but what if you don’t have a FAX machine ?

If you just want to send and receive faxes , via email would be the one method that everyone is very comfortable with . . .

(Tony Lewis) #52

Well that’s the beauty of the setup. It not only let’s you fax from a fax machine but also from our efax panel and all faxes you sent or received from the fax machine are also in your efax panel. You can also setup to receive faxes on any DID to the fax machine and/or email.


Though there are many reasons to fax (regulatory, policy, culture and sometimes economic), I see virtually no use for the fax machine. In probably 99% of cases, the base document was created on a computer by you or received via web, email or fax. It’s typically something to fill in, edit and/or sign. Do that on the computer! If you print the document, mark it up by hand and feed it to a fax machine, there are several issues:

  1. Your handwriting may be misread by the recipient.
  2. Document suffers a generation loss and may become unreadable after a few exchanges.
  3. You likely won’t have a computer record of what you sent.
  4. Wastes time and trees.

Once the modified document is on your computer, securely upload it to a fax service. FAXStation, Faxage, Nextiva and Vitelity (among others) are HIPPA compliant. For casual use where privacy is not a concern, there are several free ones. Or, run a fax server on your PBX and send via any trunking provider.

I have Vitelity ($3/mo. + $0.03/min. + USF) including a toll-free fax number. For high volume, FAXStation is a good value. It’s been more than 10 years since I’ve used a fax machine. On rare occasions, I don’t get the base document in machine-readable form (it came by post or was handed to me). But these are usually really important (insurance policy, papers for new house or car, etc.), so I would scan them anyhow to have an easily accessible record.

(Tony Lewis) #54

If only that was the case. I am.amazed the number of customers we have that need a fax machine still. I am talking thousands upon thousands of customers using fax machines still and adding hundreds a quarter of new customers using actual fax machines.


I’m curious. Does the fax machine often result in a better workflow, or are the users just stuck in their ways?

Examples of good uses for fax machines?

(Itzik) #56

Can we get the FCC to ban Fax?

Literally, some people still believe that faxing is the most secure way to send a document…

Companies who still have fax, is just because “other companies have it too”

If everyone decides together to stop using fax, we’ll definitely make our IT lives much easier.

(Yois) #57

OK, I figured out my problem with the OBi.

After analyzing the SIP packets, it seems the OBi only supports a maximum UDPTL datagram of 176 bytes, but Asterisk 13.19.1 was setting up the call ignoring that and the OBi couldn’t handle it. Adding a max datagram value of 172 into sip.conf [general] section fixed the problem.

(Andrew Nagy) #58

HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) requires the use of FAX to transmit medical data between clients and patients. Notice the date of 1996 when fax was hot and the internet was not.

Therefore any medical practice (your local GP to a huge hospital) has to transmit medical data for patents between themselves over fax. They can not do is over mail or email.


Anecdotally, strict HIPAA adherance would probabbly require the fax machine be in a locked room, with access trestricted only to approved medical staff, (never seen that one followed yet :wink: )


Since you store faxes on your server, do you sign business associate agreements for HIPPA bound entitties?

(Tony Lewis) #61

We do for large revenue customers but not for simgle trunk type customers.

Also you can turn off us storing faxes and only use fax to email and fax to the fax machine without us storing anything.