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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Here's a quick tip:

When running a business, it's good to have a fax number at least for incoming faxes. Sometimes a vendor will need to fax you a proof of a design or a (maybe wholesale) customer may want to fax you some information.

Instead if spending money on a second (or third) phone line, you can get a free incoming fax number from companies like eFax: http://www.efax.com

The free version doesn't give you a "local" fax number, but for incoming faxes and when you're just starting out, that doesn't really matter. What matters is you can say "yes" when someone asks if you have a fax number and that you don't have to say "fax between 5pm and 7pm, that's when I'll turn my computer's answering machine/fax on and wait for you call". It's more professional to have a 24/7 dedicated incoming fax number.

What's cool about efax is that the faxes that are sent to you get automatically scanned and sent to you via email. Using their free fax reading software you can set them to be sent to you as easy to open PDF files.

For outgoing faxes, you can either go to your local kinkos or office supply store. Better yet, you buy an inexpensive phone/fax machine for less than $50 to use as your main phone line for your home office. You do have a separate phone line for your business right :)?
 

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Rodney, I have been using this service for over a year. I travel a lot and need to view faxes while on the road. This service allows me to get the faxes electronically when I get internet access. You can also keep the faxes in an electronic format if necessary. The free service only provides you a document in their specific electronic format (which is not a pdf file - it is an efx file). To get a true pdf file, you will need to have the upgrade service. But the efx file looks like a pdf file until you try to save it. You can save the efx file as a TIFF.

The only negative (as you have pointed out), is that you can't send faxes using the free service. I believe you can pay a nominal fee and forward faxes to others as a pdf file. However, I can always plug in my fax machine into my regular phone line and send it that way after printing it out. When done, I unplug the fax and plug the phone back in. I tried using the splitter plugs (two lines from 1 line), but I forget to unplug or turn off the fax machine and it fax picks up prior to the voicemail.

Ultimately, I do recommend this service to anyone that only has one line. I personally hated getting junk faxes and wasting ink / paper.
 

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Rodney, I have been using this service for over a year. I travel a lot and need to view faxes while on the road. This service allows me to get the faxes electronically when I get internet access. You can also keep the faxes in an electronic format if necessary. The free service only provides you a document in their specific electronic format (which is not a pdf file - it is an efx file). To get a true pdf file, you will need to have the upgrade service. But the efx file looks like a pdf file until you try to save it. You can save the efx file as a TIFF.

The only negative (as you have pointed out), is that you can't send faxes using the free service. I believe you can pay a nominal fee and forward faxes to others as a pdf file. However, I can always plug in my fax machine into my regular phone line and send it that way after printing it out. When done, I unplug the fax and plug the phone back in. I tried using the splitter plugs (two lines from 1 line), but I forget to unplug or turn off the fax machine and it fax picks up prior to the voicemail.

Ultimately, I do recommend this service to anyone that only has one line. I personally hated getting junk faxes and wasting ink / paper.
Can you set the voicemail to pick up on 3 rings, and the fax on 4?
 

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Unfortunately, it will not work this way. The voicemail will pick up on the faxes and it will not come through. There are some services that have you press a button to send a fax, but most of the suppliers will not pay attention to this. The current setup is not that bad. Even if I had a fulltime fax line, I would still need the fax to come electronically. I am very happy with the free service from eFax.
 

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I have tried K7 and I couldn't get it to receive faxes.
Then I got magicjack for my office, with a local number, then I gave up my K7 service.
Then I signed up with efax last week, I have send myself several faxes to test and it did work ok. I don't use a local number, but I don't care. In difficult times there are nothing cheaper than free.



Thank you Rodney for the info.
 
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