Looking for advice on moving home phone line to FreePBX system

We’re getting tired of paying Vonage $45/mo, which is just a glorified SIP trunk anyway. I would like to set up a FreePBX system in our house, while retaining our analog phones and wiring. I’ve been experimenting with FreePBX as a VM on my ESXi server using a cheap SIP trunk from Go\Trunk and some softphones + zoiper app on an Android phone. I’m really happy with the way it works.

So, what would be the best way to switch our live home phone system over to this? I’ll probably get away from Go\Trunk. I like them, but they are pretty new and I don’t want something to happen with them and then we lose our home phone number that we’ve had for four decades. I’m thinking about FlowRoute for long-term service.

Also, what do I need to connect our existing home wiring as a single analog extension for cheap? If I need multi-hundred dollar FXS/FXO telephony cards, it’s not worth doing. Would an OBi200 box do the job for $50?

I am going to set it up with a temporary phone number first once I figure out everything that needs to be done, and test everything out, then get our existing number ported over.

Am I going about this the right way? Thanks!

You need exactly what you have now with Vonage, an ATA device that you can plug your analog phones into. You’re basically replacing Vonage with FreePBX+Flowroute so the concept is still going to be the same.

You’re going to create extensions on the PBX, you program the ATA to register to that account and you plug your phone into it. If you got your devices from Vonage, they’ll probably want them back so I’d recommend SPA112’s to use as the ATAs.

Thank you, yes our device is from Vonage. I just ordered the SPA112, it looks pretty good and it’s even cheaper than the OBi200.

So it sounds like I’m on the right path here. Just wanted to be sure. I’m a pretty technical person, but new to SIP and telephony. I’ve been trying to learn a bit for the last month.

As much as I love FreePBX, I would not do this. Instead use VoIP.ms and hook your ATA straight to their service as a sub account.

For the ATA, I recommend the Grandstream HT800 series. If you only want one port, use the 801.

I’m just curious why you say you wouldn’t do it this way. Is it because FreePBX is overkill for this situation, or because there may be problems?

It’s way overcomplicated for your need. You’re going to continually have to perform updates make sure things are all online etc. etc.
Running a full PBX for a single extension is just a crazy lopsided amount of work when there are no cost solutions.

I kind of enjoy this stuff, so I think I’m going to give it a shot anyway. Besides, I’m trying to learn as much as I can by using it because I want to switch our PBX at work to this later in the year. I want to play with all of the different features. I really want to move us away from our garbage MBX IP system in the office. We have all kinds of issues with it.

If it turns out to be too much effort, I can always switch to something more simple. Thanks for the input though.

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If you truly want to learn this skill it’s a great skill to learn. But how many times are you going to do this? How much money are you going to spend, have your company spend, to pay you to play with it and learn it to maybe convince the business owners to switch your system?

I work for a consultancy so I do this all the time it makes sense for me to have this skill. One of my good friends is in charge of information technology for a company and this would make no sense at all for him or any of his employees to have this skill. They would put in a phone system today and not need a new one again for years. So why should he pay his employees to learn how to install set up configure and troubleshoot beyond the basics?

I understand what you’re saying, but it comes back to me enjoying learning new technologies, even if I never use it at work. I just like getting my hands dirty. The company isn’t paying for this (they don’t even know I’m looking at it), but I don’t consider the time spent at home on this wasted.

I already have an extremely overcomplicated setup at home, including a server rack with multiple ESXi hosts, self-hosted email, web servers, a Windows domain, etc. I might as well add FreePBX to the list of unnecessary, but fun things I’m using. :slight_smile:

They’ll probably want to move to this anyway, we looked into different PBX systems last year, but the costs were insane. So, we’re in the market for an upgrade, but the $20-30k quotes from vendors were just too much. We can probably get into a full FreePBX environment for less than $4000 including all the phones and other hardware. We already have several suitable rack servers that could run it. I think management will be pretty happy when I explain this system to them.

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