You must specifically enable a fax device to receive—it is not enabled by default. A fax device can be configured to answer incoming calls automatically or manually. (The manual option is useful if your fax and telephone share the same incoming line.) And you can specify the number of rings before answering. (A higher number of rings before answering is useful if your fax and telephone share the same incoming line, to give you time to answer the telephone.)

As part of this process, you can also specify an optional Called Subscriber ID (CSID) string, a text string used to identify a fax recipient to a fax sender.


A fax device cannot send and receive faxes at the same time.

To enable a fax device to receive
  1. Open Fax Service Manager.

  2. In the left pane, double-click Devices and Providers, and then click Devices.

  3. In the right pane, right-click the device you want to configure, click Properties, and then click the General tab.

  4. To configure whether calls are answered automatically or manually, select the Receive faxes check box and then do one of the following:

    • Click Automatic Answer to enable the fax device to answer calls automatically, and then type a number for the value in Rings before answering . The default number of rings is 5. If your fax and telephone do not share a line, you should decrease this number. If your fax and telephone do share a line, and you decide to increase this number, do not increase it so much that the fax sender stops transmission.

    • Click Manual Answer to enable the fax device to answer calls manually.

  5. To configure a CSID, in Called Subscriber ID (CSID), type a CSID string. This string is limited to 20 characters.

  6. Later, if you want to disable the fax device from receiving faxes, right-click the device, and then click either Auto Receive or Manual Receive to clear the check mark.

Additional considerations

  • To configure fax components, you must be a member of the Administrators group or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority.

  • To open Fax Service Manager, click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Fax Service Manager.

Additional references