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Configuring MS Exchange Server 2013/2016 Unified Messaging with 3CX Phone System

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Step 1: Exchange Configuration

Step 2: Configure 3CX Phone System to use the MS Exchange UM

Optional Step 3: Create an MS Exchange Auto Attendant


This article describes how to setup Microsoft Exchange 2013 SP1 server as a Unified Messaging Server and then configure 3CX Phone System for voicemail and auto attendants. If you decide to use Exchange’s Unified Messaging with 3CX Phone System, all you need to do is use the voicemail in MS Exchange. The auto attendants in Microsoft Exchange and 3CX Digital Receptionists can run side by side.

This guide is for 3CX Phone System version 15.0 and above. Please make sure to not install 3CX Phone System on the same machine as the MS Exchange Server. Exchange integration is available in the Professional and Enterprise version of 3CX Phone System.

Important Note: Office 365 Exchange cannot be used and is not supported. Only On-Premise installations of Exchange Servers are supported.

Step 1: Exchange Configuration

  1. Open the ECP console (i.e. where is the IP of the exchange server).
  2. Navigate to “unified messaging”.
  3. Create a new “UM dial plan” and configure it as follows:
  • Name: 3CX Phone System.
  • Extension length: Must match the extension length set in 3CX Phone System.
  • Dial plan type: Telephone extension.
  • VoIP security mode: Unsecured.
  • Audio language: Default English, or any other installed language.
  • Country/Region code: 1 for US, 49 for Germany or 44 for UK (or your country code without 00).
  • Click “Save”.

  1. Open the newly created “UM dial plan”.
  • Edit the “3CX Phone System Default Policy” under “UM Mailbox Policies”.
  • Go to “PIN policies” and change the values to your security needs.

  • Save and close the “3CX Phone System Default Policy”.
  • Close the “3CX Phone System” UM Dial plan.
  1. Go to “UM IP gateways”.
  2. Create a new “UM IP gateway”.
  • Name: 3CX Phone System GW.
  • Address: Enter the IP Address of the 3CX Phone System Server. e.g.
  • UM dial plan: Choose the prior created UM dial plan “3CX Phone System”.
  • Click “Save” to save the new UM IP gateway.

  1. Navigate to “recipients”.
  • Select a user from the mailboxes page and click “Enable” under “Unified Messaging”.

  • Select the “3CX Phone System Default Policy” in “UM mailbox policy”.

  • Enter the user’s Extension Number as configured in 3CX Phone System.

  • Click “Finish” to save the settings.
  1. Repeat step 7 for every user you would like to have a voice mailbox system.

Step 2: Configure 3CX Phone System to use the MS Exchange UM

  1. Go to the 3CX Management Console and click on the “Settings” node
  2. Go to “Voicemail”
  3. Enable the Use Exchange Server for Voicemail feature
  4. Enter the Hostname or IP, and port of the machine running the Exchange Server.

NOTE: The Hostname must be the exactly written FQDN of the exchange server with caps and lowercase letters (Case Sensitive).

After saving the configuration, all voice mail calls will be handled by Exchange. All voice mail messages will be stored in Exchange.

Note: The System Extension status for the Special Menu extension (which is used for voice mail in 3CX) will be shown as disabled (in RED)!

Optional Step 3: Create an MS Exchange Auto Attendant

Note: Due to an integration problem, when an Exchange Auto Attendant is used, and an extension number is entered via DTMF, there is no feedback or music on hold played from exchange side until the destination answers the call.

  1. Create a new Digital Receptionist in 3CX Phone System
  2. In the “Options” section of the Digital Receptionist configuration, enable Redirect to MS Exchange

  1. Go to the ECP of the MS Exchange Server.
  2. Open “Unified Messaging”.
  3. Open the “UM dial plan” for 3CX Phone System which was created using the previous steps (“3CX Phone System”in our example).
  • Within the “3CX Phone System” dial plan, add a new “UM Auto Attendant”.
  • Set the Name to “3CX Auto Attendant”.
  • Set the Access Number to the virtual extension of the Digital Receptionist created in 3CX (“800” in our example) redirecting to the MS Exchange server.
  • Click “Save”, and you will be asked if you want to enable the new UM Auto Attendant.

You have now successfully configured MS Exchange Server 2013 Unified Messaging with 3CX Phone System.

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