Configuring a Tunnel between a EdgeRouter X and PFSense

PFSense is great because it can be installed as a VM in a datacenter and handle enterprise grade routing and reporting. EdgeRouters are great because they’re readily available and at a very reasonable cost.

Both support Openvpn which tends to be a reliable easy to use VPN protocol that allows the vpn client to not have a static IP address. There is no GUI for Openvpn on the EdgeRouter but it is pre-installed and can be easily be configured in the console.

Once you’ve configured the OpenVPN server in the PFSense interface, there is a export feature that allows a ovpn file to be created that contains the configuration information required for the client side (EdgeRouter).

I initially had issue as the config file included a “pull” command that the Edgerouter complained was not valid without the TLS-Server or TLS-Client specified.   I manually edited the file and removed the “pull” line and then the tunnel connected without issue.

From the EdgeRouter config, do:

# configure
# set interfaces openvpn vtun0 config-file /config/nameofyourconnection.ovpn
# commit
# set service nat rule 5020 description 'masquerade for Tunnel'
# set service nat rule 5020 outbound-interface vtun0
# set service nat rule 5020 type masquerade
# set service nat rule 5020 protocol all
# commit # save

Other Notes:

  • Log files in EdgeOS are in the /var/log/messages file
  • I manually added a push route command to the client config file
    push "route"
  • EdgeOS 2.x uses OpenVPN 1.2.4 as does PFSense 2.4.x
  • Tunnel status is at: /var/run/openvpn/status/vtunX
  • To update, delete the interface and re-create. Delete with delete interfaces openvpn vtun0


Cordless Phone Alternatives for the Nortel Phone System and the T7406

There are better solutions for using a cordless phone with a Nortel phone system. The cordless phone that Nortel created for use with their phone system is the T7406. Its been practically 20 years since Nortel closed shop and these phones were deployed. Cordless phone and battery technology has become generationally better in that time.

Analog phone ports built in that work in a similar way to the ports from Telus, Bell or Shaw. This means that you can plug an analog phone directly into the Nortel phone system without any additional equipment. If your Nortel system didn’t ship with analog ports built in or if those ports are already in use, Nortel created an accessory called an ATA to allow analog ports to be added. The device you’ll need is a Nortel ATA2 and is available as a refurbished product.

Recommended Cordless Phone for Business

We’ve used a lot of cordless phones over the years but our favorite is the Motorola XT801. This is a bright orange cordless phone that is ruggedized, waterproof and has excellent range and battery life. Always buy the single handset with the single charging base model. There are models that come with multiple handsets but this will make the usage of the phone confusing as the multiple phones will all share the same extension. By ordering multiple of the single handset / single charging base model, each cordless handset will have its own extension and its own voicemail on the system.

Cordless Phone Features on a Nortel Phone System

When connecting an analog cordless phone on your Nortel phone system, you retain all the features of any other desk phone on your phone system including ability to transfer calls, received calls directly on an extension, be part of a ring group, voice mail, call restrictions and more. The limitation of the using a phone like the Motorola XT801 is that there are not dedicated buttons for these features and “star codes” will need to be used to initiate the transfer. Its easy to do but not as simple as a dedicated button.

There is some Nortel programming that is required to configure a new extension like this analog cordless phone extension. If you would like support, we can open up a support ticket to help configure your Nortel phone system and have a technician reach out to you.

The British North American Act

I’m hearing people say that Equalization payments have been part of the Constitution since confederation and then I hear that Canada really never had a Constitution until 1982 and there really never was something called Confederation and certainly not from our first Prime Minister, John A MacDonald. So where does this stuff come from?

I imaging a fraction of a fraction of people have read the British North American Act (also known as the Constitution Act) I’m going to dig into it and see if this stuff is in there. For anyone thats interested. The B.N.A. act can be found at: