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One phone line – many uses – no incoming calls


I had a recent case where my business customer find that their phones were unusually quiet.

No incoming calls otherwise everything works fine.

Once on site I had to face with another dreaded situation where the wall connections were not labelled System distribution frameand no wiring records at the distribution frames nor the PABX.

The system used is an old Nortel PABX with digital extensions and an analogue port utilized for the Fax machine which also a network printer. The Fax when sending would take an available line from the PABX.NT phone system


Not a structured cabling site meaning there is no computer network cabling to a central location.Computer networking is done by some PC-s and laptops on wireless.

Others grouped in and open office and serviced by a switch under the desk.

For the line fault troubleshooting, the service provider asked to have the line ” unplugged ” and isolated.

It took half an hour time to investigate and identify the line in question. 

Since there were no distribution records and the line was hard wired to the ADSL splitter in a cupboard, not the same spot where the phone system was.

It should not, but still it adds some uncertainty to the situation when you were talking to your telephone service provider agent in the Philippines. At a call center from an office in a Western Australian suburb’s commercial office building.

He or she is at a call center overseas and troubleshooting a fault of a second-floor office located in a Western Australian suburb’s commercial office building.

The line in question had to be blocked at the exchange so calls would flow to the next available line in the ” hunt group” and calls can arrive in the meanwhile. 

Once find and disconnected the wires from the pins marked as ” Phone ” on the ADSL central splitter and toned back the wires from the Fax to the phone system, I realized where the problem originates. Adsl and tie cable to PABX


There was a double adapter plugged into the analogue line Fax’s wall socket, and someone plugged a digital PABX phone in the second outlet.

Similar mistakes are not likely to happen if wall outlets were labelled and employees were aware that the PABX phones are not interchangeable with other phone service connections.

Home line troubleshooting know-how from Telstra

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