Quick Start Guide for Asterisk

Asterisk is a complete open source software-based IP PBX solution that runs on a variety of platforms. It supports VOIP in several protocols, and can seamlessly integrate with almost any standards-based telephony equipment using relatively inexpensive hardware.

This guide is a quick-start set of notes that should help you get the Asterisk service up and running with the web-based graphical user interface. Much of this was taken from the various README files that come with the software download, but I thought it would be nice to have the directions all in one place so that I don’t have to search for them in the future. I did this on a new RHEL 5 install. I would imagine that the same procedure should work on most Linux distributions.

Configuration and implementation of Asterisk is fairly complex and is beyond the scope of this document. I should also say this this guide does not include directions for installing and configuring other Asterisk related software that is required to integrate with telephony equipment.

Enough disclaimers… Let’s get started.

  • Download the latest source package of Asterisk, untar it and CD into the newly created directory.
  • Run “make
  • Run “make install
  • Run”make samples” (Doing this will overwrite any existing config files you have, so don’t do it if you are upgrading or something like that)
  • Run “make config” (This creates the `/etc/rc.d/init.d/asterisk’ file so you can crontroll the
  • asterisk service with chkconfig and service.)

You are now done installing Asterisk. Now let’s install the GUI.

  • Download the latest source package of the Asterisk GUI client, untar it and CD into the newly created directory.
  • Run “make
  • Run “make install
  • Run “make samples” This installs the sample configuration files. Again, don’t do this if you are upgrading because it will overwrite your existing files.

Now let’s configure it.

You need to edit a few Asterisk configuration files to enable the GUI

1) In /etc/asterisk/http.conf:

        enabled = yes
        enablestatic = yes
        bindaddr=xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx (The IP address of your Asterisk server)

2) In /etc/asterisk/manager.conf

        enabled = yes
        webenabled = yes

3) Create an appropriate entry in manager.conf for the administrative user

        secret = YourFavoritePassword
        read = system,call,log,verbose,command,agent,config
        write = system,call,log,verbose,command,agent,config

4) Run “make checkconfig

Look for the following lines… They will tell you how to get to your GUI.

  * GUI should be available at
  * http://xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx:8088/asterisk/static/config/cfgbasic.html

  * Before using the GUI, Please visit the install page at
  * http://xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx:8088/asterisk/static/config/setup/install.html 

5) We should be all set Let’s start or restart asterisk:

Run “/sbin/service asterisk restart

6) Lastly, grab a web browser and go to your install page. It should look something like this:


Configure it up and have fun with your new Asterisk server.

Mounting ISO Image Files On Solaris

More and more, software is distributed in the form of a downloadable ISO image. This is handy because you can then burn it to a CD or DVD, but many times you just want to install it without having to make a disk first. Linux makes this fairly easy, but it’s a little trickier with Solaris. You have to use the “lofiadm” command to first create a block device for the image before you can use “mount” to mount it as a filesystem. Here is the commands.

Make the block device with “loviadm”:
lofiadm -a /path/to/your/image.iso /dev/lofi/1

Mount the image as a read-only filesystem:
mount -F hsfs -o ro /dev/lofi/1 /mountpoint