I have recently been testing a new version of ASTLinux on an Alix board (Alix 2D2 to be precise) behind my preferred pfSense firewall.

This distribution is very interesting for all persons wishing to configure a simple yet powerful Asterisk device at a very low cost. 

The distribution is quite simple to install and relatively easy to configure… if you have a good guide to help you setup Asterisk.  

The GUI is very limited, It mainly allows you to edit the numerous config files of your device, it is easy of use and functionalities are many light years away from what we are used to in pfSense… But all in all it'll allow you to configure a steady and reliable IPBX for less than 200€ if you are able to configure It on your own. 

Very basic settings and examples can be found here and there on the Internet and should allow you getting up and running in no time. 

 

Best of all if you are running a sip client on your phone (I recommend using the iPhone SIP client from Acrobits  which is fully compatible with ASTLinux and has an excellent quality and many codecs available). You can also download It from the AppleStore

You will of course need to allow port 5060 TCP & UDP and 10000 to 20000 UDP to be opened in order to allow SIP and RTSP to access your network fluidly. 

 

Once you are ready, you only have to connect your new Alix / AstLinux device to your LAN and allow It to get an IP using DHCP (for example). This will allow you to access the GUI 

 

You will then have to manually edit all files which need to be edited, mainly sip.conf and extensions.conf

This is the most difficult part as you have to constantly browse on the file list (which is quite important) to select the right file, edit it and save it. This is not to funny once you have edited it 15 times, you'll get bored of browsing the file list for the hundredth time… 

 

You can test / debug your setup very simply if you connect / ssh or terminal to your Alix box and use the following command: 

# asterisk -vvvr 

 

This will allow you to have a CLI interface directly connected to your SIP device. 

Starting from there you can imagine whatever you want: connect two offices together permanently, create a complex dialplan to allow everyone at home to give and receive their phone call…  

 

And finally, the good news, as my testings have been quite positive, I will start to distribute the ASTLinux from today on the Alix boxes I am reselling (as an option).