[How-to] Host PBXact or PBXact SaaS on Vultr (Uploading the ISO file)

This step-by-step guide aims to help anyone install and start using PBXact or PBXact SaaS on the Vultr hosting platform.


While no incompatibilities between the FreePBX ISO and Vultr's hosting platform have been detected at the time of writing this guide, Sangoma does not officially Support hosting FreePBX/PBXact on platforms other than Sangoma Cloud. This means that, while Sangoma Support Services may still be accessed, any platform-related issue will not be covered.


  • Download latest FreePBX ISO file from https://www.freepbx.org/downloads/freepbx-distro

  • Have a Dropbox account (free account can work) with enough free space to temporarily host the FreePBX ISO file in it (~2.2 GB for FreePBX 15 ISO).
    Note that Dropbox is just one of the (easy) available methods to transfer the ISO file, other methods are detailed in Vultr's documentation here.


Install a new Instance in Vultr using FreePBX's ISO file

In Dropbox:

  1. Upload the FreePBX ISO file to a Dropbox account (you need ~2.2 GB of free storage space for FreePBX 15 ISO)

  2. Once uploaded, Share it (generate and copy a sharing link) so that Vultr is able to reach and fetch it (here is the official guide for file sharing via URL link in Dropbox if needed)


In Vultr:

  1. Upload the ISO (under: Products > ISOs > plus (+) sign )

  1. Paste dropbox's sharing link of the FreePBX ISO file (generated on step 2 above) and click on Upload

  1. After upload is complete, create a new Instance (under: Products > Instances > plus (+) sign )



  1. Select Cloud Compute as the server 

  2. For the Server Location, select the location closest to where most of the PBXact/PBXact SaaS users (phone extensions) will be connecting from

  3. For the Server Type, select "Upload ISO" and then click on the ISO you uploaded on step 4 above

  4. For the Server Size, choose a plan according to your PBX processing needs (number of users, concurrent calls, if the calls will use demanding features such as recording, queueing, transcoding, encryption, etc.).

As examples of general approximates: 2GB-1CPU could prove to be enough for up to 25 users doing up to 15 concurrent simple calls, while 4GB-2CPUs could prove to be enough for up to 100 users doing up to 60 concurrent simple calls. It all depends on the specific needs of each particular scenario. 


10. Click on "Deploy Now" at the bottom of the page


11. The Instance will now get deployed. After its "Installing" status changes to "Running", open its Console by clicking on the three dots (...) to the right and then on "View Console"




Note: if FreePBX's installation screen is not showing, you may need to wait a few minutes for the Instance to get completely deployed as indicated when going to the Server Details:



Just close the Console window and open it again after a few minutes. If still not seeing FreePBX's installation screen, press the "Send CtrlAltDel" button at the top right corner of the Console window.


12. Install FreePBX normally as you would install it locally on any server with a mouse and keyboard. Refer to FreePBX's Installation Guide for additional details.



Transform FreePBX to PBXact or PBXact SaaS

The final step is just to transform the FreePBX brand new installation into PBXact or PBXact SaaS. For this, just use your previously acquired PBXact/PBXact SaaS Deployment ID when activating this FreePBX instance: open an SSH session and execute the following command as root user:


fwconsole sysadmin activate depID_of_pbxact

fwconsole ma downloadinstall iotserver


If, after the complete execution of the command above, the webUI would not yet reflect PBXact's style, execute the following additional commands:



fwconsole ma downloadinstall sysadmin

fwconsole ma install oembranding



Appendix - Portmapper


Vultr may start sending periodic emails to the email address registered to the Vultr account indicating possible DDoS risks if portmappers are not properly firewalled. This does not represent a real risk in FreePBX/PBXact systems with their firewalls appropriately configured but you could opt to disable rcpbind (used only when doing NFS file sharing which is normally not common, even less so for hosted instances) to stop receiving these emails; just execute:


systemctl stop rpcbind

systemctl disable rpcbind


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