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IP Office VPN Phone
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IP Office VPN Phone
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VoIP / VPN Expertise



IP Office VPN Phone Diagram

Need to work remotely? Have employees that work from home? Perhaps you work at a client for several days at a time. With IP Office and a VPN phone you can have a hardphone wherever you need it, connecting you with your office as if you were there. The IP VPN phone* (IP phone running VPN firmware) connects on a local network thru to your corporate VPN appliance (tunnel) and allows the phone to work just like it is on the office network. You're able to make calls, take calls, get messages and talk to co-workers as if you were in the office. Log in and out of calling groups or use DND when you don't want to be disturbed.

A VPN Remote IP phone is a great way to have dial access and be visible to co-workers at a remote office or home office location. We've had some users take a phone on the road so they can be reached wherever their work takes them, as long as they have internet access (restrictions of some networks may prevent the VPN Remote phone from connecting).

The VPN Remote phone is really VPN firmware running on the IP phone that can be configured to tunnel to the edge router of the customers network, not to the IP Office system itself. The tunnel is not built between the IP phone and IP Office. This setup also does not require a VPN appliance at the remote site but does require a compatible VPN device at a main site (where the phone will register with the IP Office).

IP Office VPN Remote phone firmware supports the 4610SW, 4621SW, 5610SW, 5621SW phones and 9600 series phones only. (16xx series are NOT supported)

In contrast, if there is a VPN appliance at the remote site with an established tunnel to the customer network, then a base IP phone and not the VPN Remote phone is all you should need.

First thing to consider is the network security gateway and if it is compatible with the tunnel protocols for the Avaya VPN Remote IP phones. Certain appliances have been tested with Avaya VPN Remote phones including Avaya Security Gateways devices however, several Non-Avaya VPN gateways with IKE Ext-Auth (xauth) with Preshared key (PSK) should work. Avaya does not guarantee support for non-Avaya devices. The following list of devices are some that have installation/application notes on the Avaya support site, login required.


Licensing is another area to review with differences between IP Office releases. Prior to release 6, IP VPN Extension licenses would need to be entered into the IP Office configuration to allow the VPN remote IP phone to register. Release 6 and later does not require the VPN remote license however, an Avaya IP Endpoint license is required.

Overview of some installations of IP Office VPN phones:

  • A utility company had to temporarily close an office due to flooding in the spring and so we set up several VPN phones which allowed them to continue to service their clients from their local fire department during the crisis.
  • A law firm in Chicago has several lawyers that work in different regions where deploying VPN phone allowed these workers to receive and make calls from published DID (direct in dial) numbers and communicate with their office associates by just dialing the extension and work from as far away as Boston.
  • One engineering firm has workers that spend several days at a time with clients but by having a VPN phone they can connect to their office and work and not miss calls while on the road.

Call quality is never guaranteed however, managed connections provide better assurance that VoIP calls should be prioritized over data traffic. Some networks may not support VoIP traffic which may not allow the phone to connect and register properly.

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