We are pretty close now to releasing an early beta of the FreePBX 16 ISO. Two of the primary goals of this release have been to get to a supported version of PHP and and OS refresh, this is the housekeeping part of the release. The FreePBX Distro has always been derived from CentOS, and we had been working toward a Centos 8 Distro OS when CentOS abruptly changed course for version 8. Luckily several projects appear to be working toward filling the void vacated by CentOS 8, but while we wait for that to happen, we are proceeding with a FreePBX 16 ISO based on SNG7 (CentOS 7). CentOS 7 still has several years of full support.
Here are the housekeeping highlights of what’s to come for the FreePBX 16 Distro ISO
- PHP 7.4
- Based on SNG7 (Centos 7.8) with SNG8 OS to come later
- Obfuscation engine for commercial modules changes form Zend to ionCube
- chan_sip disabled by default (enabled in advanced settings)
Another primary goal was an emphasis on security improvements. Some of the security features planned for 16 are already done and have been backported to FreePBX 14/15, others are still in progress. Some of which are:
- Major overhaul to the Firewall module and Intrusion detection (backported)
- Allow admin to enable/disable insecure SSLprotocols in System Admin https config (backported)
- user password complexity validation for userman (in progress)
- improvements to UCP login page (backported)
- AMI default bind settings (in progress)
Another goal of FreePBX 16 is more integration flexibility, evidence of which have been revealed in recent forum and blog posts. The engineering team has been busily adding GraphQL API methods and documenting them on the API wiki page. We have also recently announced a beta integration with Zapier and have a few other integration projects in the pipeline but not ready to announce yet.
There are things I am undoubtedly forgetting, but all will be revealed in the formal announcements and blogs that will follow the 16 beta release.