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How To Share An Extension Between An IP Phone and Softphone?

I am looking for a way to share an extension between my IP phone and a softphone.

I don't want to get into a situation where they are fighting for the registration of the phone number, I would like it so that if I am out with my laptop my softphone can be connected with out it disconnecting my IP phone.  So ideally the call could be answered on either the soft phone or the IP phone.

I know this can be done in Asterisk with a Call Queue, or ringing 2 different extensions at once, but what I want is 1 phone number that can be answered on both phones with out disconnecting each other and fighting for the registration.  So essentially I want to share the "line" as it were.

Is this possible to do?
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purestealth
Asked:
purestealth
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1 Solution
 
feptiasCommented:
Asterisk does not allow two SIP devices to register using the same credentials - at least, only the most recent registration details are stored and the previous details get overwritten (what you refer to as "fighting for the registration").

However, as you point out, the dial plan does allow several devices to be be rung at the same time using a single call to the Dial command. Why don't you just have different registration details for the softphone and the IP phone, and then accommodate the multiple-ringing of those devices within your dial plan?
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purestealthAuthor Commented:
The way the system is coded right now it dials one extension, the idea here was not to have to assign a new extension just for the soft phone.

As to residential accounts, it would mean I would have to assign a second phone number for the soft phone - this solution is messy and not cost effective.

Any other ideas how one could go about accomplishing this task?

Thanks!
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feptiasCommented:
If you are trying to set up a VoIP service that you are running as a business then I suggest you look at OpenSER (now called Opensips) which is a proxy server that supports multiple registrations. I would use it alongside Asterisk - they perform different and complimentary roles.

If, on the other hand, you are trying to set up a one-off office telephone system that can support home based/roaming users who also have a desk phone in the office, then it will make more sense to find a solution using the tricks available in the Asterisk dial plan. Are you clear about the differences between SIP device ID, SIP account credentials and dial plan extension phone numbers? Understanding this is the key to designing a neat and logical dial plan. I could put together some sample CONF file snippets to explain this if you like - let me know.
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purestealthAuthor Commented:
Hello

When you say the differences between "SIP device ID, SIP account credentials and dial plan extension phone numbers" I am clear on the account details (UN/SECRET) and Dial Plan Ext/Num, but not sure what your trying to get at with SIP device ID.

Sure I would be happy to see a sample CONF, it may spark some ideas, thanks in advance.
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feptiasCommented:
In SIP.CONF you define the devices like this:
[deviceid1]
username=UN1
secret=pass1
etc
[deviceid2]
username=UN2
secret=pass2
etc

In EXTENSION.CONF you could then define the dial plan like this:
[mycontext]
exten => 2300,1,Dial(SIP/deviceid1&SIP/deviceid2|30)

and it would ring both SIP devices at the same tiime whenever the dialled number is 2300. So you could say that the extension number is 2300 (because that is what you dial to call it) but it will actually ring two different SIP devices. Those two SIP devices don't have to use 2300 as their username (in the registration credentials) and they don't have to use 2300 as their device ID.
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feptiasCommented:
Normally, the SIP device ID and the extension number would be the same. Furthermore, the IP phone may even reject the INVITE from Asterisk if the username and extension number don't match. However, because the entities are independent within Asterisk it means you can do tricks like this:

SIP.CONF:
[2300desk]
type=friend
username=2300desk
secret=pass1
etc
[2300soft]
type=friend
username=2300soft
secret=pass2
etc

EXTENSION.CONF:
[mycontext]
exten => _2XXX,1,Dial(SIP/${EXTEN}desk&SIP/${EXTEN}soft|30)
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purestealthAuthor Commented:
Its funny I was just thinking the same thing as you as you posted your last comment.

I would try OpenSER, but I hear its a beast to learn and has a real learning curve.  I found Asterisk easy to learn but I also spend a lot of time with it.  I hear some good things about OpenSER, I just don't know how to admin it or configure it, so yea it likely leaves me with Asterisk and its bag of tricks.

Thanks again!
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