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In version 2.11 and above, your FreePBX Distro, PBXact, and Sangoma PBX GUI software allows the creation of busy lamp field (BLF) hints for voicemail boxes. You can then program a BLF on your phone to light up when there is a voicemail message waiting.

Since this feature is not enabled by default, you will need to visit the Advanced Settings module to enable it.

  • Go to Settings → Advanced Settings
  • Find the Voicemail Module section at the bottom of the page.
  • Click the Yes button for Create Voicemail Hints.
  • Click the Submit button
  • Click the Apply Config button. A hint for each voicemail box will now be auto-created.


If you log into the Asterisk CLI and issue the command core show hints, you will see the hint for each voicemail box.

localhost*CLI> core show hints
       -= Registered Asterisk Dial Plan Hints =-
                    *98101@app-dialvm                     : MWI:101@default                State:Idle              Watchers 0

In our example above, voicemail box 101 has a hint that you can program to a BLF button as *98101. Note that if the default feature code for Dial Voicemail has been changed from *98, the voicemail hints will use the feature code prefix as set in Admin → Feature Codes.

Now any time voicemail box 101 has one or more new messages waiting, the phone's BLF light will turn on.

Pressing the BLF button will prompt you to log in with the password for voicemail box 101.


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  1. Currently, there are no explanations as to what would be the best course of action to modify "hints".  We can "show" them, but the actual 'subscribtion' process is not described.  Should it be handled through CLI commands?  Where in Freepbx GUI should we make modifications, should it needed to be done there?

    I landed on this page trying to figure out how to make one voicemail light up two phones  (General voicemail that both my sales people monitor) - ideally the buttom button (4th extension) on SPA942 phones..    I'm trying to learn how I can better use the lights on the phones... If I could also use a BLF on the phones of the sales people to warn should the PBX rounting calls to the 'outside of business hours announcement" (red) or if the routing is going to the ring group (green).

    1. Everything you need to know is on this page, if you are having trouble understanding the content, start a help thread in the forum:

    2. Please take your questions to the forums. The wiki is not a place to discuss things like this.  Its where we document things and we ask you use our forums for question gathering.