SECN Softphone Support

Revision as of 20:18, 7 June 2015 by Terry Gillett (talk | contribs) (Updated softphone account creation information)
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The SECN firmware supports the use of softphone applications installed on cell phones, tablets and other devices.

Calls may be made between softphone equipped devices (eg cell phones), between softphone devices and Mesh Potato devices equipped with FXS ports, and between softphone devices and the PSTN via a SIP/VoIP provider.

To use softphones in a SECN network, one node is set to be a Softphone Master. The copy of Asterisk running on this device is used to route calls as required on the mesh network or out to the PSTN.

The Softphone Master node can be any of the supported SECN devices with Asterisk installed. This includes the Village Telco MP02, TP Link WR842, WDR3600/4300 and Ubiquity Nano M, Bullet M and Rocket M devices.

On a SECN network, MP devices are assigned 'Phone Numbers' automatically based on the IP address of the MP node, typically in the range '001' to '250'

Softphone accounts may be set up with numbers in the range '300' to '399' using the SECN web configuration Softphone page.

Softphone Master Node Configuration

In a SECN mesh network, only one node must be set up as the Softphone Master node. This node uses a fixed IP address of .252 in the subnet range in use, and if more than one node is set to Master then there will be IP address contention.

To set up a SECN node as a Softphone Server it is simply necessary to go to the SECN Advanced configuration page and the Asterisk section, then enable Asterisk and select Softphone Mode as Master.

  • Note that this will set the IP address of the device to have a last octet of .252, so that when the device is re-started it will appear on this address

The softphone devices may be attached to any node in the SECN network (typically via WiFi for a cell phone), and their softphone data requests will be routed to the Softphone Master node. In this way, a large physical area may be covered by a SECN network and cell phones with softphone applications can roam over the whole area, attaching to the best available node.

Some care should be taken in the design of the network layout to ensure that the Softphone Master node is located at the centre of the network so that there are as few mesh links as possible between the Softphone Master node and the furthest node to which a softphone client will attach.

The Softphone Master node may also act as a gateway node to connect the SECN mesh to upstream network resources (eg Internet) by enabling its WAN interface.

Note that there will typically need to be a DHCP server running on the SECN network so that client devices such as PCs and cell phones can obtain IP addresses automatically when attaching via wifi. The Softphone Master node may also be used to provide a DHCP server for the SECN network by enabling its DHCP Server on the SECN Advanced configuration page.

PSTN Access

Access to the PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) may be provided by setting up a SIP/VoIP account on the Softphone Master node. This may be done on the SECN Basic or Advanced configuration screens in the Asterisk section.

Once the account is set up and the device has registered to the service provider, then a softphone user can make a call to a PSTN number simply by dialling the Dialout sequence and the required phone number. The default setting for dialout is 'Auto', which means that any number string longer than six digits will be routed to the SIP provider. If required, Dialout prefix digits of 0, 9 or # may be selected.

Softphone Device Configuration

Softphone applications may be installed on any suitable device including Cell Phones, Tablets and PCs/Laptops.

Softphone Applications

The following softphone applications have been tested with the SECN system:

 CSipSimple (Android)
 TitanvoX   (Android)
 Jitsi      (Linux, OS X, Windows)
 Media5     (Apple iOS)
 Zoiper     (Android, Apple iOS, Linux, OS X, Windows)

Softphone Accounts

Softphone accounts may be set up using the SECN Advanced / Softphone web screen.

To set up a new account, enter the required details for the softphone number, display name and password, for example

 Softphone Number: 300
 Softphone Name:   Fred 
 Password:         mypassword 
 Repeat Password:  mypassword

Click on the Save button, and when the screen has refreshed, check softphone entry in the Directory box . It should look like this:

       [Number: 300]
         Name:  Fred

The Asterisk softphone account details are stored in the file /etc/asterisk/softphone.sip.conf on the SECN Softphone Master node.

The account identity is 'softph<xxx>' where xxx is the Softphone Number e.g. for softphone number 300, the account identity is 'softph300'.

The account identity is known by various names in different Softphone application. See below for examples.

Softphone Settings

To set up the softphone client it is necessary to enter the the relevant softphone account information in the softphone application configuration screen on the client device.

Example Configurations


 Account Name:   SECN 301
 User:           softph301
 Password:       mypassword


 Display Name:   SECN 302
 Extn / Auth ID: softph302
 Password:       mypassword
 Server Addr:
 Server Port:    5060


 File > Add New Account
 Select Network: SIP
 SIP id          softph303@
 Password:       mypassword


 Settings > Configure SIP Accounts
 Title:          SECN 304
 Username:       softph304
 Password:       mypassword
 Servers >
   Port:         5060


 Settings > Accounts
 Account name:   SECN 305
 User name:      softph305
 Password:       mypassword
 Caller ID:      SECN 305