New Server?

Looking at moving to FreePBX from Trixbox. Been using Trixbox for the past 4-5 years without an issue for the most part.

We have a small office with a dozen exts and a handfull of SIP trunks.

If you were going to build a new server what would you use with todays new hardware.

Mounting it a rack would be nice but not nessary, to this point we have not used a PSTN/POTS/FXO card but would like to keep that option open.

No spinning drives would be nice, low heat, decent speed, supported harware out of the box, etc.

What would you build today?

The RaspberryPI is a really neat idea! Thinking something between that and a I7 would work!

Edit: Never thought of 64/32 bit either for a phone server?

Depends on the scale you want to have and what hardware features you want down the road. These days there are a lot of standalone POTS gateways (basically they do FXO to SIP translation) that are just as reliable and arguably a more versatile option since they mean you only have to deal with SIP rather than all the signalling/echo/etc related to analogue lines on your actual PBX.

Really it’s all down to size/growth vs costs. I would avoid a RasperyPI at this point unless you’re planning to connect an external SSD or at least a very good USB drive, as the only storage on those guys is a the SD card. SD cards are great, but they tend to have rather short term life cycles when you use them for a production system that hasn’t been optimized to reduce writes to disk.

If you still want small form, any of the Zotac Z-Box products work fairly decently. If you’d prefer rack mount and really want the option of a PCI card later on then go with any of the 1U Atom servers that are out there, put in a nice SSD and just let things hum along. In my experience 64 bit VS 32 bit performance for the type of scale/volume you’re looking at really won’t make any significant difference, so again it’s whatever fits your budget.

The Supermicro 1U Atom’s with onboard baseband management are the best 1U’s Atom’s on the market and work great with the Distro.

I had no idea of an external POTS gateway, that changes my ideas a fair bit, thank you.

I always keep 2-3 Trixboxes up to date and running just in case. Used some old crap (CAD boxes) for backup servers, to be honest the old crap works just fine. About every three months or so I turn one off and then fire up another one.

In this case I will start with 2 new boxes install FreePBX and move one, I like the external gateway concept, only will need one of those.

Do you have a suggestion for an external 4-8 port switch? Their have been a few times a POTS line would have been nice with what we have now.

Skyking, nice to see you here, thanks for the help here and for the past help over at Trixbox.


Is this what you had in mind?

Yes, that’s it. I have run systems over 100 extensions on it.

If you are doing heavy recording or queue’s, giant conferences etc. would be the only reason you need something bigger.

They are very reliable.

Yea those SuperMicro D525s are perfect, agree with everyone on that one.

I assume here that 4-8 port switch you mean 4-8 port POTS gateway? Or?.. If you’re after POTS Gateway (they’re called FXO ports), then AudioCodes makes some really decent units (echo cancellation and quality is fantastic) that are available in various port counts/setups (i.e. MP118, MP114, etc). Just make sure you get FXO if you are connecting to analogue lines. The configuration on the AudioCodes can be a bit of a pain but there are plenty of guides online if you google…

Otherwise Cisco makes a 4/4 combo unit (4 FXO ports for lines, 4 FXS ports for analogue phones), but I’ve heard echo cancellation on it is not fantastic since it’s basically a beefed up old Linksys unit. If you don’t care about echo and want to go cheap then there are a few others out there too, just look for “SIP FXO”

Thanks everyone for your time.


The Cisco/Linksys gateways are a bit turdish. They run hot and have marginal quality.

Now if you are a Cisco router guy the FXO ports on a regular Cisco router are the best around. The cool thing is the two port card is $50 on Fleabay.