Strongly Suggested Linux Distro for a Cloud PBX on Google or AWS

For the last three weeks, I’ve communicated with many globally about the issues I received with building a Cloud PBX from the ground up and received some qualified replies to all of my questions. All points to using Debian, I received this information from integrators in Ukraine, Israel, UK, Australia, South America and Canada. Is this defacto the decision is mine to make but I have witnessed and participated in phone calls with these folks, and the voice media traveled in and out of the instance. However, there are other design considerations I need to take into account for this next installation. Not all are using Asterisk two are using 3CX but all are using Debian. @johnkiniston @jcolp how does the community feel about this information?


I would say it was much more important to avoid virtual machines than to have a particular OS. However, early development on Asterisk was on CentOS.

We have people using Ubuntu and Fedora mostly for development these days. Maybe one or two in the community on Debian.

I’m a fan of Debian personally. It’s what I run for all my little stuff.

Thanks for the update. Interesting you write early development of Asterisk was on Centos. Earlier this year I tested Ubuntu and Centos in a virtual environment and Ubuntu 16.04 was more compatible with Asterisk than Centos. I was able to make phone calls from both but Centos needed extra attention to get it working. I will keep this in mind when testing and update.

Thanks I am going to create instances for Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian and Centos. Record the results and update.

You have an working pbx on Debian?

:Ubuntu is derived from Debian and the two are probably very similar for what Asterisk systems use.

Several yes.

I use Debian as my base OS when building VM’s for testing things, Apt-get makes it easy to install dependencies.

NICE and I aware that Ubuntu is a derivative of Debian. The persons I communicated with in different locations do not know each other and it was interesting the majority has this working on Debian. Will update as soon I finish designing the installation and place phone calls.

Yeah I am aware it is derivative. Thanks for the update.

What should not be ignored is that you will need to operate in the environment (build packages, perform system updates, monitor, etc) so it is important to use a distribution your team is comfortable with. At Thirdlane we started with CentOS a long time ago and still use it without any issues. I am almost certain that Debian or Ubuntu would have been equally fine so use whatever works for you.

@thirdlane @johnkiniston @david551 @jcolp thanks for the insight and you are correct. We are still going to have to look at Centos but there is a significant difference in establishing a cloud pbx with this distro. This time benchmarking will be between Ubuntu, Centos and Windows to get some answers, have to calculate cpu utilization, activate load balancing for tcp/udp protocols and observe stackdriver monitoring log files. Updates to follow.:metal:

FreePBX is based on Centos, and they have a huge community. So I guess that could add an extra layer of support for you running it on Centos.

@Acoolov this good to know. From the beginning, since 2006 always built an IP PBX using Asterisks’ only from the ground up. I have installed all of the GUI’s Telephony Apps. Was not aware that FreePBX is based on Centos Linux Distro. Thanks for the insight. It is apparent a PBX can exist and work in a cloud environment and the components to be aware of is there is no special hardware to install or configure such as a TDM card. Update to follow :metal:

@david551 could you explain why we should avoid virtual machines? I run a couple FreePBX instances in a KVM based virtual environment, and they are pretty stable. But, if there are known issues, I would love to be aware of them.

Jitter. Asterisk needs scheduling latencies of around 2ms to avoid degrading the jitter significantly on VoIP. Most VMs are designed to give a fair share over much longer timescales.

Thanks @david551, I appreciate the insight. I wonder if I can tune latency in KVM/libvirt to mitigate this.

We haven’t noticed very much jitter in our calls, but it does happen occasionally. I generally assumed our internet connection was the culprit, but it could be virtualization.

I am liking the development of this topic a lot. It was suggested to scale cpu utilization for a number of concurrent messages for VoIP/SIP/Asterisk. I am going to give this a try, run monitoring plus logging, check application performance management after placing a couple of calls and update this conversation. This installation will not be GUI based. @david551@ringdom @jcolp @johnkiniston @thirdlane