Monday, February 12, 2007

Fax via Fritz!Box

For some weeks I have been using the AVM Fritz!Box 7170 as my DSL modem/router. I do not know how commonplace AVM products are outside Europe, so suffice it to say they are just great! In the past I have used their ISDN cards, now I switched to the DSL box. The reason mostly was that my previous DrayTek Vigor 2500We could only do WEP but not WPA or WPA2 wireless encryption. Apart from that I did not really miss anything.

However when I got a letter last week that asked me to fax back an answer I noticed that I could not do any faxing from my computer. Granted, until then I had not even thought about faxes for almost a year (when I got the previous letter of that kind :)), and back then I had just used the office fax machine. But this time I remembered the Fritz! software suite that came with the ISDN cards.

As the Fritz!Box 7170 can act as a DSL modem/router, a WLAN access point and a VoIP/ISDN/analogue telephone system I it would be very unlike AVM not to include some way of using the ISDN part from a computer. And I was right: ftp://ftp.avm.de/fritz.box/tools/fax4box/ has a version of the Fritz!Fax application that allows you to fax from any machine that can reach the box via Ethernet or wireless or is hooked up to the USB port. If you allow the installer to do so, it will configure the box correctly and install the Fritz!Fax virtual printer. Just make sure your Fritz!Box's firmware is recent enough to support it (read the notes included).

AVM does not offer official support for it, but it just plain works. Unfortunately as far as I know there is no way to get it running on WINE, but as I am not going to use too frequently, this is something my VMware'd Windows will come in handy for :)

4 comments:

vak said...

it doesn't seem to work via VoIP (at least i don't know how to do it)

Daniel Schneller said...

As far as I know, faxing via VoIP is not a good idea. The compression scrambles up the frequencies that are not used in human voices but in the fax data signal.

pantelis said...

What kind of line have you used it with? ISDN or PSTN? We don't seem to be able to use it on PSTN or VOIP lines in Greece

Daniel Schneller said...

ISDN.