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receiving faxes with computer

sunrush asked
I have been looking for a way to be able to receive faxes with my computer without messing up my phone line. If I leave the application open, waiting for call, and someone calls me on the phone, I get an awful earful of high pitch noise cause the program thinks it is a fax...I guess...
I want to be able to receive faxes day and night...so I did a bit of hunting on the web and found efax.com
Says I can receive faxes by email...for FREE!!
Just sign up and they will assign me an efax number to use.
Sounds great to me, and almost to good to be true....
Has anyone used this type of service or are there better solutions for this?

I run a small business and would like to eliminate the cost of a fax machine and second phone number.

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I have never used efax but I have heard it was OK.
It is not a good idea to use a shared line for your fax and your voice line for business, it works out OK for personal use but not for business. I have called businesses before and gotten the fax machine instead of them answering the phone, I only tried twice then called another company (result = one lost sale) When I call a business I want to speak to a person not listen to their fax machine, I know you may only want to receive a fax occasionaly  but chances are while you are waiting for the incoming fax you could also get the important business call (which you will miss)
You should consider the "distinctive Ring" feature from your local phone company. For a modest monthly cost, a 2nd phone number can be added to your existing phone line.
You can set your fax software to answer only calls placed to the new number.
A good fax program such as winfax should give you no problems, properly configured.

free efax is emailbased and will not let you send, among other things.
The idea is to upgrade you to efax plus, but it's still cheaper than another phone line.
You can always ttry it and drop it if you don't like it.
Good luck.
Top Expert 2004

I have used efax, and it is good for recieving, but you will still need a fax program for sending
you may want to check out callcenter at

Efax is a great service.   We use it here at my company for the traveling individuals.  There are two parts to the service.  The free part does just what you say.  Allows you to receive faxes sent to your own personal fax number that they assign to you.  This can be a pain since the number is not always a local call to your area.  (I think some of my free ones were in Oh instead of CO.)

The second service they offer is a pay service.  For a monthly fee you can send via the email faxes that will be transmitted through their service and you will receive faxes the same way.  One of the differences is that the fax number you get is usually a local number to you.


Use the free fax software that comes with windows to send and use efax to receive.  You won't pay a dime.  The only problem with efax is, its a long distance number.  Thats how they make money.  It does work great though.
I don't know if they still have it, but ZDnet Onebox offered free FAX service via the interenet.  The phone number is local (and therefore free).

There is an issue you should be aware of (and probably the same with efax). They give you an extension added to the phone number.  I found many senders did not know how to enter the extension in their faxing system and got irritated or gave up.  Ok for family maybe, but not particularly good for business use.  Your associates will want EASY.


You all have brought up good points to ponder...looking like efax or Onebox has its drawbacks.
I am checking out winfax, that looks to be the most promising if it will work quitely in the background.

The fax program at callcenter sure has a nice interface...I am checking that one out also. It seems alot nicer then the one I currently use...RingCentral Fax.


One thing to keep in mind with winfax, it does need much resources, so don't use if you don't have a fast pc.
other than that it's excellent.
You may be able to download a trial vrs at their site.


Winfax is working like a charm...

Thank you all for a piece of your time and knowledge.

You all are worth your weight in gold!


Thanks and much success to you in your ventures!

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