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Online Faxing

Has anyone tried to integrate faxing capabilited to an web application ... i was thinking of doing it to my application . if any one has any expericence or any pointers regarding this will be really helpful .
Friday, January 14, 2005
Well, I've done this in a couple of ways:

1. By using 3rd party FAX software that supports a basic API that you can integrate with. Requires outoging FAX line, of course.  Some of these APIs amount to dumping a text file to a directory (or a PDF, Word document, etc.)

2. Using an external FAX provider company (outsourcing), again, that offers a Web-based or email API.  Basically you send them an email in a certain format, with an attachment, and they FAX it for you.  You can get a confirmation email in response.  Or some have a Web service that behaves the same, except you can query the status.

Not sure if your app is internal or commercial, but if it's internal - I'd go for option 2 if its mission critical and medium to high volume.  For low volume, RightFAX or similar product should work for you.  I think there's even one built into Windows as a printer driver or something.

Good luck
Dave C Send private email
Friday, January 14, 2005
Thanks for the Information ... do you know of any external providers .
ours is an internal app plus it not a very high volume faxing ... just tryin to figure out how easy or tough it i to have the feature ...
Friday, January 14, 2005
Also tell me abt the 3rd party fax software you were using . i think it should be relatively easy to add a phone line to the webserver ...

thanks for your information
Friday, January 14, 2005

Is the FAX software we used internally.  Integrates with Email, and actually supports both inbound and outbound FAX also.

As far as 3rd party providers, there's a ton of them, but the ones I've had experience with are:

Also see:
Dave C Send private email
Friday, January 14, 2005
We used GFI FaxMaker at my last job.  It was a relatively inexpensive product that did a good job, though its monitoring tools were non-existent.  We wrote a Delphi app that scrubbed its CSV log on a five-minute basis, moving the data into a real database that we could query.

The originating software would create a "transaction" for Outlook, as an Outlook outgoing fax message.  GFI integrated with Exchange to grab these and send them on their way.

This all worked great.  The thing we really had problems with were the cheap-ass US Robotics modems we used.  The company sent about 2,000 faxes a day (medical reports) and the USR's would constantly have problems.  They just don't do a good job with the myriad variety of fax machines in the world.  We ended up buying a BrookTrout modem with error correction and ALL of the problems went away.  The modem cost $1,200 (eight outgoing lines) but saved our $5M business.
Karl Perry Send private email
Friday, January 14, 2005
Look at hylafax for a linux box, supports alot of modems, very customizable, very reliable with the right modem.
moseswhitecotton Send private email
Friday, January 14, 2005
We use these guys, and they're not too bad:
Friday, January 14, 2005
Thousands of medical reports sent over fax? That sounds like like thousands of privacy lawsuit just waiting to happen... Faxes are great though, if you make use of it, multi-lingual (everything is a bitmap to it), relatively spam-free, cheaper than talking, and easy to use. It's a big mystery why it hasn't advanced much. I am not asking for Acrobat, but at least give us 300dpi color! :-)
Li-fan Chen Send private email
Friday, January 14, 2005
No, we were protected.  It's common for medical reports to be sent via fax.  The HIPAA rules say that the fax machine must be in a secure location only accessible by those who are authorized to get the faxes.  We typically owned the fax machines, paid for the fax lines, and placed the fax machines in the receiving offices ourselves.  If it was a customer-owned fax then they were told at the beginning of the relationship that they were responsible for securing it, and it was understood that it was up to them.

So ... no problems there.
Karl Perry Send private email
Saturday, January 15, 2005
hylafax is a great solution on Linux or other Unix variants.

we used to send 10,000-15,000 faxes/night from a crappy homebuilt P90 running rh 5

The only problem with it is that it "just works", and you don't get a chanceto learn much about it.
Duff Send private email
Thursday, February 03, 2005

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