There are two ways to email to a fax machine: through an online fax service or an enterprise level fax server.
There are other ways to fax from a computer that involve a connected fax machine or fax software (having the computer act as a replacement fax machine) however these approaches do not have the benefit of being able to be managed through email, and also require a land-line phone line.
Online fax service
Most online fax services have a function that will allow a user to send an email and have it converted to a fax.
The system can work across devices (on computers, smartphone, tablets, or anywhere that email can be accessed).
A typical approach to emailing a fax machine with an online fax service is to attach the document to be faxed, and compose the cover page in the main body of the email. The fax is sent by sending an email to the fax number @ the email provider’s domain (for example, [email protected]). Once the email is received by the fax service, the fax service then does all the work for converting the information to a fax and sending it through the phone network.
A message is sent back to the sender when the transmission is completed or does not go through for some reason (such as a bad connection or busy signal).
To save time, cover page information (such as sender name and phone / fax number) is automatically inserted into each cover sheet by the fax service.
If the receiver wishes to send a fax back, the system can also convert a received fax back into an email – doing all the work of receiving a fax and converting the document to a PDF that is attached to an email
Outlook, Mac Mail, Gmail, and Hotmail Compatibility
Any email service will work with these systems – faxes are sent by emailing the fax service and the fax service does the work of converting the email to a fax as well as making the fax call.
The only restriction to be aware of is that some services only allow for 1 email account per fax number.
Enterprise level fax server
Enterprise level fax servers operate very much the same as online fax services, except they are run internally in an organization. Most of the same functions and features are available, however they depend on the specific fax server put in place.
Connected fax machines and fax software
Both of these require a land-line phone line and fax modem.
Sources and External Resources
- Mozilla Thunderbird Support Forum – Can I send an email to a fax number?
- Wikipedia – Internet Fax
- Wikihow – How to email to Fax: 6 Steps
- Windows 8 and 8.1
- Windows 7
- Windows Vista
- Windows XP
- Mac OS X
- Linux (Ubuntu, Mint, Chrome OS, and other Distributions)
- Fax Software
- Fax Modems
- Smartphone or Tablet
- How to email a fax
- How to fax a PDF
- How to fax from a VoIP phone (such as Vonage, Skype, Magic Jack, or Google Voice
- How to fax from Google (Gmail, Google Docs, and Drive)
- How to fax from Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Outlook, and more)
- How to fax to an email address
- How to email a fax