Voicemail - No notification for forwarded messages

Hi - I’m currently troubleshooting some unexpected behavior with the Asterisk Voicemail (Comedian Mail?) on an AsteriskNOW installation.

AsteriskNOW version: 3.0
Asterisk Core Version: 11.8.0
FreePBX Voicemail Module:

The issue we are having is that when a voicemail message is forwarded from one mailbox to another (using visual voicemail app on Digium phones), the notification settings on the destination mailbox aren’t obeyed. No notification is sent at all - the message just remains on the phone - even if the mailbox is set to notify via email, attach the message, and delete it from the phone.

If a new call is sent to the voicemail mailbox, notifications, attachments, and deletion all work as expected. The problem only occurs when a message is forwarded to the box from another mailbox.

Is this expected behavior, or a bug? Is there any way to get it to send the notifications and process messages accordingly even if it’s a forward?



The internal mechanism for forwarding a voicemail using the voicemail application does a simple copy from one mailbox to another, using an internal mechanism to app_voicemail - it doesn’t know how to utilize any business logic. It’s expected behavior.


Thanks for your reply and for confirming this isn’t just something with our installation.

I’m having a hard time understanding the reasoning of why this is an expected behavior. If a user sets up their mailbox for notify them of messages, email those messages to them, and then delete them, why would they want forwarded messages to be handled differently? Our users who have selected these settings have done so because they would prefer to manage all of their voicemail via email due to being away from their phone. When they come back into the office and find voicemails on their phone that they were never notified of via email, they come to me complaining that the voicemail notification is broken.

If there is no legitimate reason why someone would want or expect a forwarded message to be handled differently, this feels like a bug, no?


I’m not familiar with the FreePBX voicemail module, and I’m away from a suitable workstation, so I can’t dig into it very well at the moment.

Are you using the delete=yes option in app_voicemail? If you’re setup to delete voicemail message from the server after they’re delivered as e-mail attachments, how are you viewing them within the phone’s voicemail application in order to forward them?

In our typical scenario, we have two users, mailboxes, phones, etc. The first phone/mailbox is a receptionist/operator mailbox. If someone calls in after-hours and doesn’t know a person to contact for a particular question or issue, they’ll request to speak with a representative and end up in a general mailbox, tied to a phone at our front desk. All messages in this mailbox are managed on the phone. Email notifications and deletion is disabled on this mailbox. The next day, someone will listen to this voicemail and forward it, using their phone’s voicemail app, on to whichever person is responsible.

The other mailbox/phone/user is in some other department. This would be a person who has their mailbox setup to notify their email, attach the message, and delete the message. If they are dialed directly, the message light never lights on their phone, and they’ll never see the message on the phone at all - it goes straight to email.

The problem occurs when a message is forwarded from the receptionist mailbox to the final user’s mailbox. In this case, no notification is sent, the messages aren’t deleted from the final user’s box, and the only way to know about and hear the message is using the phone (or dialing in and accessing voicemail, but people don’t know to do this because they have set their mailbox to deliver all voicemails in email and don’t expect to have to still manually call in to check for new messages). This is the unexpected behavior that’s causing confusion for us - most messages are getting delivered as emails, but forwarded messages are stuck on the phone without notification and email delivery - which is confusing because people don’t know why, and frustrating because it can cause messages to get missed for several days when someone isn’t in the office.

Hi All - I’m wondering if anyone had a chance to look into this further. We’re still having this issue where messages that get forwarded aren’t getting the email delivery and notification that users have configured for their mailboxes. I had another complaint about this not working properly this morning.

Nope, it’s not something that we’ve been able to devote any time to, to this point.


Here’s an interesting twist: same problem (no email notification of the voicemail), but it’s not the VM that’s forwarded, it’s the CALL that’s forwarded! This is a 100% reliable, replicatable bug:

  • Call comes in, answered by Person 1.
  • Person 1 forwards to Person 2.
  • Person 2 is not available (busy/no answer/DND), so caller leaves a VM
  • No email is ever sent to Person 2 notifying them of the VM.
    (BUT Person 2 ALWAYS receives an email when the incoming call goes to them in the first place)

This has to be fixed.