AT&T Office@Hand

Learn how to use features from AT&T Office@Hand. Access our self-help options to set up and use this application to communicate with customers.

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Port Forwarding and Port Triggering

Summary: What is the difference between port forwarding and port triggering, and how to enable it.

Port Triggering and Port Forwarding are NAT/firewall-related features and functions. These features are available on most, if not all, SOHO (Small Office Home Office) routers; they are usually not available on higher-end routers or firewalls.

Port Triggering and Port Forwarding, DO NOT contribute to QoS/call-quality improvements. 

Set up port triggering or port forwarding only if:

1. Security changes were made to your network configuration, or router, and are now unable to make calls using the AT&T Office@Hand phone system, or experiencing one-way audio.  This is due to connectivity issues to/from AT&T Office@Hand’s SIP servers.

2. You installed a new router.  After confirming that internet connectivity is OK, and the phone is powered on, and you still are unable to make calls using the AT&T Office@Hand system, or experiencing one-way audio, then port triggering or port forwarding may be necessary.

Port Forwarding

Port Forwarding is a feature/function relating to the NAT (Network Address Translation)/Firewall. Computers and other devices behind your network’s firewall, or your router, are invisible to others on the internet.  They communicate through Private IP Addresses, and an associated, unique port number.  When Port Forwarding is configured and enabled, it allows remote computers (i.e., outside your network) to connect to a specific computer or service on your network.  The router forwards incoming traffic to the associated device on your LAN (Local Area Network), as configured.

Port Triggering

Port Triggering is also a feature/function relating to the NAT (Network Address Translation)/Firewall.  Its implementation affects how inbound traffic from the outside your network is allowed into your LAN. A computer/device on your network needs to initiate/open (trigger) the communications path with a device/service from outside your network first, in order to allow traffic from that external device/service in to your LAN. 

Advantages:  This method gives more flexibility than static port forwarding because it’s not necessary to set up for a specific ip address on your network.  It also improves security, since the inbound port is not left open when not in use.

How to enable port forwarding/port triggering?

The steps to enable the configurations differ depending on the brand of router you are using. You may refer to the links below to find out more.

Port Forwarding

How to Set Up Port Forwarding on a Linksys Router
How to Set Up Port Forwarding on a Netgear Router

Port Triggering

How to Set Up Port Triggering on a Linksys Router
How to Set Up Port Triggering for D-Link routers
How to Set Up Port Triggering on a Netgear Router

See Also:

VoIP QoS Frequently Asked Questions
Ports and Firewalls