Totally new to this, very basic questions time!

If I have understood the details all I need for a set up for a small office with 3 users is:
1 ADSL broadband line (or 1 for voice and 1 for data)
1 simple LAN (no need for server)
3 phones or ATA adaptors
1 virtual PBX
1 good router (currently Vigor 2600 plus)
3 accounts with Voipfone
and probably a lot of patience to set it up!

I do not need to have additional ordinary telephone lines (currently using NTL centrex)

I could probably port my NTL numbers.

It seems too good to be true so what have I missed?

Does anyone rely entirely on this set up or does everyone have telephone line backup?

What is the timescale to get started?


Rather than one Virtual PBX and 3 accounts with Voipfone, you should sign up for a Virtual PBX account and add three extensions to it in the Voipfone Package Builder.

You need some kind of backup - not just in case Voipfone's service goes down, but also in case of an Internet failure between you and Voipfone.

You can set up a "PSTN Failover" divert within the Voipfone system, so that if connectivity to you is lost, incoming calls will get redirected to that number.

This can be a different number for each extension if you want, so you could use mobiles as your incoming call backup.

Thanks Davidgu for such a quick response.
This seems to be exactly what I need.
The only thing that puts me off is the queries on how to get them to work properly, and probably posted by people with more IT knowledge than me.

3 more questions if I may:

If I want to extend it to my home or other locations as well I just add extensions?

I see the phones are more expensive than adapters. Are there benefits to one over the other?

The Snom 300 looks reasonable and I think got good comments in the forum. Does this still work with the PC turned off?


I'd recommend starting with a single phone first, so that you can get to grips with the basics. Set up a Voipfone subscription for a Virtual PBX with a single extension, and order your phone at the same time. Voipfone will do most of the configuration of the phone for you.

You can add extensions to your Virtual PBX at any time, and the physical phone can be anywhere you can get a broadband internet connection. Each extension can be in a different physical location - they don't all need to be on the same LAN.

To my mind, VoIP phones are preferable to adapters. With an adapter, functions like call transfer, do-no-disturb and so-on have to be accessed by cryptic * commands, whereas a VoIP phone has specific buttons for call actions. You also have less wires to worry about, and it looks like a business phone rather than a home phone. The only adapter we use here is for a "frisbee" style conference phone in our boardroom.

Yep, the Snom phone works with the PC turned off - it's a true standalone phone (as opposed to the USB phone handsets you buy in Tesco's!).

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