Asterisk VoIP News

Monday, January 31, 2005

Asterisk for Windows?

Asterisk Platform


Microsoft Windows™ users who want to deploy the popular Asterisk open source PBX system finally have a solution — sort of.

N2Net, a provider of mission critical communication hosting, announce the immediate availability of AstWind, a package allowing users of several Windows platform to run Asterisk, but only as a Voice over IP application.

"AstWind allows Windows users to safely install and test the Asterisk PBX with the click of a button." said Gregory Boehnlein, Vice President of N2Net. "Prospective users can test the software and become familiar with it before deploying a full Linux system. Developers can maintain multiple environments for testing and PBX Administrators can create disaster recovery plans to backup existing installations."

Most VoIP only features are available on the Windows version, although there is currently no support for any hardware interfaces. The AstWind package contains a full development environment and the Asterisk PBX pre-installed on a Debian GNU Linux filesystem.

Through the coLinux networking subsystem, Asterisk has access to the network and can participate fully as a unique server.

Cooperative Linux (short-named coLinux) is the first working free and open source method for optimally running Linux on Microsoft Windows natively. It is a port of the Linux kernel that allows it to run cooperatively alongside another operating system on a single machine. For instance, it allows one to freely run Linux on Windows 2000/XP, without using a commercial PC virtualization software such as VMware, in a way which is much more optimal than using any general purpose PC virtualization software.

"The creation of AstWind was remarkably easy, thanks to the amazing work of the coLinux project which allowed us to setup a Debian GNU Linux environment on Windows with minimal overhead," Boehnlein said. "The entire process took less than an hour. For obvious reasons, I do not advocate using AstWind for mission critical installations, but it does open some interesting doors for hobbyists and developers. With AstWind, users can experiment with the Asterisk PBX in a no-risk manner."

The AstWind installer can be downloaded as a single executable file from N2Net's high performance FTP cluster located at