Asterisk on OS X


Last time I tried to run Asterisk on OS X it was on Panther (10.3), and it really failed to work. It seems since I last looked, things have come a long way. When rearranging how my personal VoIP was configured, I was looking for a simple SIP proxy - however, the only one I could find immediately was Java based, and lacking on a few features that I wanted. Hence, I decided to check out if there were any better Asterisk packages available. I found the packages over at, and wow. Not only does their Asterisk build work properly (Voicemail, IAX2, and SIP-wise at least), it comes with some really nice modules. For example, the res_bonjour module announces your Asterisk server out over your local LAN as a Bonjour service - definitely useful if you’re trying to work out whether there’s a facility for VoIP outgoing calls for something like calling out straight from Address Book. However, the best thing here is app_notify.

Now, when I receive an inbound call - app_notify is invoked on the Asterisk server, which sends a message to my Mac Pro. The listener on the desktop then pops up a Growl notification that I’m receiving a call. However, there’s also a script interface to the notify app on OS X, one of the included scripts is to add an event to a calendar in iCal when you receive a call - great for being able to check when you received a call without having to dig out the Asterisk logs, or the recent calls list on your deskphone.

Even more awesome, is the fact that if your phone numbers are correct (i.e. domestic, rather than having the international prefix), the application looks up the number in the local address book, and puts this information in the calendar too!

Now, this is why we need VoIP. Integration between my phone and my computer SHOULD be this easy, it’s great!