Home Box to Trixbox
The most complex part of the phone system is handling the incoming calls as designed. There are three parts to configure for incoming calls: audio messages to be played to the caller, Digital Receptionist menus, also known as Interactive Voice Response (IVR) menus, and the Time Conditions that determine which Digital Receptionist will handle the call.
To keep the system simple, I used only two outgoing messages. The first, titled Night, says: “We are unavailable at this time, please press 1 to leave a message, or if this is an urgent matter press 0 to ring all the phones.” The second message, titled Weekday, says: “Thank you for calling. To ring the house, enter 21; to ring the office, enter 22; to ring all the phones, enter 20 or stay on the line.” Using these scripts, I select System Recordings from the left-side menu and select Add Recording to get to the first screen (Figure 18). It is possible to upload a WAV file directly, but I used an extension to record directly into the system. After clicking Go, I saw the screen shown in Figure 19 with instructions for recording the message. After recording each message to my satisfaction, I gave the recording its name and clicked Save.
The Digital Receptionist is only a bit more complex with three menus. I defined each of these by selecting the Add IVR link at the top of the right-side menu. The configuration of a Digital Receptionist menu is quite straightforward, once a person knows what each option does. The general section at the top allows for defining or changing the name of the IVR; next, is the number of seconds the caller has to enter an option, after which the t option is used; Enable Directory and Directory Context allow the caller to go to the automated directory system by entering #; Enable Direct Dial means that the caller can enter directly any extension defined in Extensions; Announcement is the audio message played to the caller before making the dial options available. Below the general section are other choices callers can select to take them to other parts of the system. Options for the caller to enter must not conflict with any Extensions. What can be chosen for destinations depends on the modules installed in the system, and most are self-explanatory. One of the possible destinations is another IVR menu that allows for very powerful cascading menu systems.
With this understanding of Digital Receptionists, we can look at the contexts I defined. Access Extensions is intended for the work/school day (Figure 20). It plays the Weekday announcement, allows direct dialing of any Extension, defines options to ring the Ring Groups, and if the caller does nothing (the t extension), all phones ring. RingAll-dflt is for evenings and weekends (Figures 21 and 22). It plays the same message, but it does not allow direct dialing any of the extensions. Rather, all extension numbers entered are redirected to ring all phones. The last IVR, Voicemail-dflt, is for calls arriving after all the children are in bed (Figure 23). The Night message is played to the caller, who can enter 0 to ring the whole house or enter 1 (or do nothing) to go to the family voice-mail box. Direct dialing extensions is not allowed. With those three message menus, the system was ready to handle all incoming calls.
Next, to define which of the Digital Receptionist contexts handles calls based on the time they are received, I used Time Conditions. There are three categories of time I want to differentiate: the normal workday, non-workday waking hours and everything else. I first defined the weekend and evening Time Condition (Figure 24) so that calls between 7 am and 10 pm (22:00) go to the RingAll-dflt IVR, and outside of that time, calls are handled by Voicemail-dflt. Then, I created a Time Condition to handle the weekday times (Figure 25), which checks to see whether the time is during the work/school day, and if so, it passes the call to the AccessExtensions IVR. If it does not match, it is passed to the WeekendEve condition for further testing. So, if a call comes in on Monday through Friday and between 7:30 am and 5 pm (17:00) the AccessExtensions IVR handles it. If a call is not in that time frame, the WeekendEve Time Condition takes control. If the call is between 7 am and 10 pm any day of the week, the RingAll-dflt IVR handles the call; otherwise, the Voicemail-dflt IVR takes control.
The remaining segment for handling incoming calls is to decide what to do with calls when they arrive in the system. Inbound Routes examines the Dial-In Direct number and caller ID and direct the call accordingly. I have only one route (Figures 26 and 27) for all incoming calls, so I left the DID Number and CID fields blank, and the Destination is the Time Condition Weekday, which routes the call to the initial time condition.
The Inbound Route screen also allows for fax handling and setting a distinctive ring on SIP phones (but not for ZAP channels). For added security against phone solicitors, the Privacy Manager can be activated, requiring callers with no caller ID to enter their phone number before proceeding through the system. I do not have caller-ID service, so I left that off. I have found that the phone system itself deters many of the automated phone solicitations we used to get.
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
July 20, 2016 12:00 pm CDT
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
Free to Linux Journal readers.Register Now!
- SourceClear Open
- SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager
- Tech Tip: Really Simple HTTP Server with Python
- My +1 Sword of Productivity
- Doing for User Space What We Did for Kernel Space
- Returning Values from Bash Functions
- Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!
- Managing Linux Using Puppet
- SuperTuxKart 0.9.2 Released
- Parsing an RSS News Feed with a Bash Script
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide