For those just beginning the Incredible PBX® 13-13 adventure, start here. Once your system is up and running, you’ll be ready to kick the tires. And today we’ll cover the applications for Asterisk® that are included in the latest and greatest Incredible PBX Whole Enchilada. If you have questions, post them on the PIAF Forum for some quick and friendly assistance.

Here’s a Table of Contents to the Incredible PBX 13-13 Applications with hotlinks. Enjoy!

  1. Checking System Status
  2. Enabling Speech Recognition for Asterisk
  3. Wolfram Alpha for Siri-like queries by phone*
  4. Automatic Update Utility
  5. Resetting Incredible PBX Passwords
  6. Apache Authentication for Apps
  7. IPtables Firewall WhiteList
  8. PortKnocker Remote Access
  9. Travelin’ Man 4 Remote Access by Phone
  10. Conference Bridge
  11. CallerID Name (CNAM) Lookups
  12. Faxing with Incredible PBX
  13. Voicemail 101 with Incredible PBX
  14. Email Delivery of MP3 Voicemails
  15. Reconfiguring SendMail for SmartHosts
  16. SMS Blasting with Google Voice
  17. SMS Voice Messaging with Google Voice*
  18. SMS Messaging with VoIP.ms
  19. SIP URI Calling with Speed Dials
  20. IVR Demo of Incredible PBX Applications*
  21. Backup and Restore Options
  22. AsteriDex – The Poor Man’s Rolodex®
  23. Voice Dialing with AsteriDex*
  24. Speed Dialing with AsteriDex
  25. Scheduling Reminders by Phone or Web
  26. DISA Access with Incredible PBX
  27. Yahoo! News Headlines
  28. Weather Forecasts with Incredible PBX*
  29. ODBC Application Support
  30. Today in History
  31. Time of Day

* Requires Voice Recognition implementation. See #2 above.

1. Checking Current Status of Incredible PBX

There are several ways to check the status of your server. First, log into your server as root and type: status or pbxstatus. You can even add the default phone number for your server by inserting it in /etc/pbx/.phone.

The second option is to use a browser to access your server. Choose the Incredible PBX Admin option after pointing a browser to the IP address of your server:

Once you log in with your admin password, the Dashboard of your server will display the status of trunks, users, and active calls on your server. In addition, you can review the latest news and security alerts from the RSS Feeds of Nerd Vittles, Incredible PBX, FreePBX®, and Asterisk. For additional status information, choose Reports:Asterisk Info.

2. Adding Speech Recognition to Asterisk

Google changed the licensing of their speech recognition engine last year and now restricts use to "personal and development use." Assuming you qualify, the very first order of business is to enable speech recognition for your new PBX. We no longer recommend Google Speech Recognition because of the licensing issues and Google’s propensity to break things regularly. Instead, we recommend IBM’s Speech Recognition and TTS engines. For most users, there will be no cost. And the services are second to none. For a complete installation and setup tutorial, see our original article on Incredible PBX 13-13. Once speech recognition is enabled, the Incredible PBX feature set grows exponentially. You’ll have access to the Voice Dialer for AsteriDex as well as SMS Voice Messaging and Wolfram Alpha for a Siri-like encyclopedia.

Here’s how to activate Google speech recognition on Incredible PBX if you choose not to use the IBM solution. Don’t skip any steps!

1. Using an existing Google/Gmail account, you first must join the Chrome-Dev Group.

2. Using the same account, create a new Speech Recognition Project.

3. Click on your newly created project and choose APIs & auth.

4. Turn ON the Speech API by clicking on its Status button in the far right margin. HINT: If you forgot to complete Step #1, the Speech API option will be missing!

5. Click on Credentials in APIs & auth and choose Create New Key -> Server key. Leave the IP address restriction blank!

6. Write down your new API key or copy it to the clipboard.

7. Log into your server as root and issue the following command:

nano -w /var/lib/asterisk/agi-bin/speech-recog.agi

8. When the nano editor opens, go to line 70 of speech-recog.agi: my $key = "". Insert your API key from Step #6 above between the quotation marks and save the file: Ctrl-X, Y, then Enter.

3. Using Wolfram Alpha with Incredible PBX

Ever wished your Asterisk server could harness the power of a 10,000 CPU Supercomputer to answer virtually any question you can dream up about the world we live in? Well, so long as it’s for non-commercial use, today’s your lucky day. Apple demonstrated with Siri™ just how amazing this technology can be by coupling Wolfram Alpha® to a speech-to-text engine on the iPhone. Now you can do much the same thing using voice recognition on the Incredible PBX for Asterisk-GUI.

Before using Wolfram Alpha from any phone connected to your PBX, you first must configure it by obtaining and adding a Wolfram Alpha application ID to Incredible PBX. Here are the simple steps:

1. Obtain your free Wolfram Alpha APP-ID here.

2. Log into your server as root and issue the following command:

nano -w /var/lib/asterisk/agi-bin/wolfram.sh

3. When the nano editor opens, insert your IBM STT and Wolfram APP-ID credentials in the spaces provided. Then save the file.

To use Wolfram Alpha, dial 4747 (that’s S-I-R-I backwards) from any extension.

Here are some sample queries to get you started:

Weather in Charleston South Carolina
Weather forecast for Washington D.C.
Next solar eclipse
Otis Redding
Define politician
Who won the 1969 Superbowl? (Broadway Joe)
What planes are flying overhead now?
Ham and cheese sandwich (nutritional information)
Holidays 2015 (summary of all holidays for 2015 with dates and DOW)
Medical University of South Carolina (history of MUSC)
Star Trek (show history, air dates, number of episodes, and more)
Apollo 11 (everything you ever wanted to know)
Cheapest Toaster (brand and price)
Battle of Gettysburg (sad day 🙂 )
Daylight Savings Time 2015 (date ranges and how to set your clocks)
Tablets by Samsung (pricing, models, and specs)
Doughnut (you don’t wanna know)
Snickers bar (ditto)
Weather (local weather at your server’s location)

4. Automatic Update Utility for Incredible PBX

A key security component of Incredible PBX is its Automatic Update Utility. Each time you log into your server as root, the Automatic Update Utility is run. It installs the latest fixes and security patches for your server. Don’t disable it! In fact, don’t delete anything from the /root folder. You’ll need all of it sooner or later.

We recommend you log into your server as root at least once a week to keep your server current. Ditto for the web interface to Incredible PBX. Insofar as security is concerned, we make a best effort to keep the components of Incredible PBX up to date. The Linux operating system was installed by you before the Incredible PBX install began. That’s a nice way of saying Linux security is primarily your responsibility. When an egregious Linux vulnerability comes along that we know about, we will try to notify you of the issue on the PIAF Forum and on the RSS Feed that is part of the Incredible PBX GUI. Check the RSS Feeds at least once a week as well. As a condition of use of the free Incredible PBX product, you accepted ultimate responsibility for the security and reliability of your server. None of this discussion changes any of that.

5. Resetting Incredible PBX Passwords

Yes. It happens to all of us. We forget our passwords. Incredible PBX includes a convenient utility that lets you reset many of the passwords associated with Incredible PBX. Just log into your server as root and issue the command: /root/update-passwords

To reset Incredible PBX GUI admin password, issue command: /root/admin-pw-change

To reset the AvantFax admin password which is accessible within the Incredible PBX GUI, issue the following command: /root/avantfax-pw-change

6. Apache Authentication with Incredible PBX

With the exception of the Admin GUI and WebMin, all web-based applications included in Incredible PBX require successful Apache authentication to gain access. When you installed Incredible PBX, you should have created an admin account for Apache. If not, issue the following command using a secure password after logging in as root:

htpasswd -cb /etc/pbx/wwwpasswd admin newpassword

With the exception of AsteriDex and Reminders, you gain access to other Incredible PBX applications with the admin Apache account. For the remaining apps, you may wish to (but don’t have to) assign different account names and passwords to various departments in your organization. To set up these accounts, use the syntax above substituting the name of the department for "admin" and the department password for "newpassword."

7. Managing the IPtables Linux Firewall

As installed, Incredible PBX includes a preconfigured, locked-down Linux firewall that restricts incoming IPv6 traffic to localhost and, via a Travelin’ Man 3 WhiteList application, limits incoming IPv4 traffic to your server’s public and private IP addresses, your desktop computer’s IP address (that was used for the install), private LAN and NeoRouter VPN traffic, and a collection of our favorite VoIP providers. You can WhiteList additional IP addresses for additional providers or for SIP and IAX phones located outside your firewall. The following firewall management scripts are accessible from the /root directory:

  • ./add-ip — WhiteList an additional IP address or IP address range (CIDR)
  • ./add-fqdn — WhiteList a site using a fully-qualified domain name (FQDN)
  • ./del-acct — Remove previously designated entry from the WhiteList
  • ./ipchecker — Check whether specified FQDNs have changed & update IPtables
  • iptables-restart — Used exclusively to restart IPtables and test for failed FQDNs
  • iptables -nL — Check the current status of your IPtables firewall

IPtables can be manually configured (if you know what you’re doing) by editing iptables and ip6tables in /etc/sysconfig. Additional IPtables rules are included and managed in /usr/local/sbin/iptables-custom. NEVER use traditional iptables commands such as iptables save to update your IPtables configuration, or you will permanently delete all of your FQDN entries! Instead, use the provided utilities to whitelist additional sites and then restart IPtables using iptables-restart. This protects the FQDN entries in your setup while also checking for invalid FQDN entries and removing them temporarily so that IPtables will successfully restart. If you use service iptables restart to restart IPtables and there happens to be an FQDN entry for a host that is either down or has disappeared, IPtables will fail to restart and your server will be left with NO firewall protection! Using the traditional IPtables mechanisms also will disable Fail2Ban. Incredible PBX periodically checks for changed FQDN entries using the ipchecker script configured in /etc/crontab.

If you elect to integrate Facebook into your Incredible PBX setup, you will need to manually uncomment the last 3 lines in /usr/local/sbin/iptables-custom in order to whitelist the Facebook servers. Then restart the firewall: iptables-restart

WARNING: By default, Incredible PBX whitelists all of the non-routable LAN subnets including 10.0.0.0/8, 172.16.0.0/12, and 192.168.0.0/16. If you elect to install Incredible PBX in the Amazon Cloud, be advised that Amazon treats the 172.16.0.0/12 subnet as routable IP addresses. This means that anyone in the Amazon Cloud (including the bad guys) will have direct access to your server. While they still need a password or vulnerability to gain access, it nevertheless exposes your server to needless hacking attempts. We strongly recommend that you comment out the 172.16.0.0/12 entry in /usr/local/sbin/iptables-custom if you intend to deploy your server in the Amazon Cloud. Then restart the firewall: iptables-restart

8. PortKnocker Remote Access

IPtables is a powerful firewall that keeps the bad guys out. It also will keep legitimate users (including you) from gaining remote access to your server unless you had the forethought to WhiteList your remote IP address before you left on that family vacation. Unfortunately, you don’t always know your IP address in advance. And dynamic IP addresses assigned with hotel WiFi frequently change. To address this problem, Incredible PBX includes a preconfigured PortKnocker utility. This lets you send three secret "knocks" on random TCP ports to your server to tell it to let you in either temporarily (until IPtables is restarted) or permanently.

To reconfigure PortKnocker to permanently whitelist IP addresses from which you issue a successful knock, login as root and issue the command: iptables-knock activate

For PortKnocker to work, you obviously need to know the secret knocks. You’ll find them in /root/knock.FAQ. Record them in your wallet or inside your suitcase for that rainy day! There are PortKnocker apps for almost all smartphones as well as for Windows, Mac, and Linux computers. Install your favorite AND test access before you leave town. You can change the ports by editing /etc/knockd.conf. Then restart PortKnocker: service knockd restart

Finally, be aware that PortKnocker does not need any special access to your server to work; however, if your server is behind a hardware-based firewall, then you must map the three PortKnocker TCP ports to the private IP address of your server, or the knocks obviously will never get delivered to your server.

If you installed Incredible PBX on a cloud platform, then your server may use a network port other than eth0. Typically, it’s venet0:0 on OpenVZ servers. You can decipher the name of your network port for your public IP address by issuing the command: ifconfig. In this case, the config file needs to be modified and then PortKnocker needs to be restarted. Edit /etc/sysconfig/knockd and insert the following: OPTIONS="-i venet0:0". Restart PortKnocker with the command: service knockd restart

Review our PortKnocker tutorial for additional configuration tips.

9. Travelin’ Man 4 Remote Access (dial TM4)

In addition to PortKnocker, Incredible PBX also includes a telephone-based solution to temporarily gain remote access to your server. This does require a bit of preplanning since you must create account credentials for the person to whom you wish to give remote access via a phone call. The complete tutorial for Travelin’ Man 4 is available on the PIAF Forum. All of the pieces already are in place on your server so skip down to the Configuration & Operation sections for details on implementation. The tutorial also covers the Administrator Utilities in /root/tm4 which let you set up remote user accounts.

10. Using the Conference Bridge (dial CONF)

A new turnkey Asterisk 13 Conference Bridge has been added to Incredible PBX. A conference bridge allows a group of people to participate in a joint phone call. Typically, participants dial into a virtual meeting room from their own phone. This virtual meeting room supports dozens or even hundreds of participants depending upon server capacity.

You do not need a timing source for conferencing with Incredible PBX! Old-style Asterisk Conference Rooms which required a timing source are disabled.

To access the Conference Bridge, dial C-O-N-F (2663) from any phone connected to your server. Remote users can be added to a conference by providing a DID that points to an IVR which includes Conference Bridge access. Once connected to the conference bridge, a caller is prompted for the Conference Bridge PIN and his or her name. You can decipher or modify the user and admin passwords to access the Conference Bridge in the Incredible PBX GUI: Applications:Conferences. Then edit 2663 and review the User and Admin PINs.

11. CallerID Name (CNAM) Lookups

By default, Incredible PBX is configured to automatically provide OpenCNAM CallerID name lookups for the first ten calls received each hour. These lookups are only from cached entries in the OpenCNAM database; however, you can enable the commercial lookup service if desired. The cost is four tenths of a cent per successful query.

To enable the OpenCNAM Professional Tier, set up an account at OpenCNAM.com. Once you’ve obtained your credentials, edit the OpenCNAM entry in Admin:CID Superfecta:Default. You may also wish to enable AsteriDex lookups and move the scheme to the top of your list of lookup schemes.

To activate CallerID Superfecta for incoming calls, edit each of your Inbound Routes and Enable Superfecta Lookup with the Default Scheme in the Other tab.

12. Faxing with Incredible PBX

If you can press the ENTER key 25 times, you are fully capable of installing Incredible Fax on your new server. Log into your server as root and run /root/incrediblefax13.sh. Provide an email address for delivery of incoming faxes and press ENTER each time you are prompted to make a selection. Once you reboot your server, you’re all set. As part of the install, you provided an email address for delivery of incoming faxes. That’s all the setup that is required to have incoming faxes sent to most of your DIDs delivered via SendMail in PDF format. The best way to figure out whether a particular provider supports fax technology on their DIDs is to send a test fax to yourself. FaxZERO lets you send 5 free faxes of up to 3 pages every day. Give it a whirl.

You also can send faxes using standard document types with the AvantFax web application. Log into AvantFax from the main Incredible PBX GUI by clicking on the AvantFax icon. The default credentials are admin:password. Choose the Send a Fax option from the main menu, fill in the blanks, and attach your document. AvantFax uses the default dialplan so use the prefix desired to send the fax using your preferred provider. HINT: Google Voice does an excellent job with both incoming and outgoing faxes, and the calls are free in the U.S. and Canada.

With the latest release of Incredible PBX 13-13, fax recognition is supported on incoming calls. Edit each of your Inbound Routes and enable Detect Faxes with Detection Type=SIP, Fax Ring=Yes, Fax Detection Time=4, and Fax Destination=Custom Destination:Fax (HylaFax) in the Fax tab.

Copies of all incoming faxes also are available for retrieval within AvantFax.

13. Voicemail 101 for Incredible PBX

Voicemail functionality is enabled on an extension-by-extension basis as part of the extension setup under the Voicemail tab. Once enabled, you can set up your mailbox and retrieve your messages by dialing *97 from the mailbox extension, or dial *98 to retrieve messages from any extension. Shortcut dialing is also supported, e.g. *98707 would retrieve messages for extension 707. You can leave a message for or forward calls to any extension’s mailbox without actually calling the extension. Just prepend * to any extension number before dialing, e.g. *701. A number of the system settings for voicemail can be tweaked under the Voicemail tab as well. For example, you can automatically delete voicemails once they have been delivered by email. Voicemail Blasting to multiple mailboxes is also supported. Just choose this option under the Applications tab and follow your nose.

14. Email Delivery of MP3 Voicemails

Speaking of email delivery, your voicemails also can be delivered to any email address of your choosing. For every extension under the Voicemail tab for the Extension, simply add an Email Address and enable the Email Attachment. With Incredible PBX, the voicemail message will be attached to the email in MP3 format so it’s suitable for playback with most email clients on desktop PCs, Macs, and smartphones. Be advised that some Internet service providers (such as Comcast) block downstream SMTP servers. You can check whether your outbound email is flowing by accessing WebMin (below) and choosing Servers -> SendMail Mail Server -> Mail Queue. Or you can issue the following command using your destination email address:

echo "test" | mail -s testmessage your-name@your-email-provider.com

If you find outbound mail is accumulating after checking in WebMin, then you’ll need to add your ISP’s SMTP server address as a SmartHost for SendMail as documented in the next section.

15. Reconfiguring SendMail for a SmartHost

Many residential Internet service providers block downstream SMTP servers such as the SendMail server running with Incredible PBX. If you’re sending emails but they never arrive and you’ve checked your SPAM folder, then chances are your ISP is the culprit. The simple solution is to add your ISP’s SMTP server as a SmartHost for SendMail. This means outbound emails will be forwarded to your ISP for actual email transmission over the Internet. Here’s how. Edit /etc/mail/sendmail.cf and search for DS. Immediately after DS, add the FQDN of your ISP’s SMTP server, e.g. DSsmtp.comcrap.net (no spaces!). Save the file and then restart SendMail: service sendmail restart. Your email and voicemail messages with attachments should begin flowing without further delay.

16. SMS Blasting with Google Voice

Out of the box, Incredible PBX supports SMS Message Blasting if you have a functioning Google Voice account set up. Before first use, you must add your credentials, address list, and text message to the SMS Blaster scripts in the /root folder.

In smsblast, insert your credentials:

GVACCT="yourname@gmail.com"
GVPASS="yourpassword"
MSGSUBJECT="Little League Alert"

In smslist.txt, insert one or more recipients for your message. These can be a combination of SMS addresses and email addresses and will be delivered accordingly.

NOTE: For most cellphone providers, you also can send an email message for SMS delivery by the provider. The complete list of providers is available here. Email messaging for SMS requires that you know the cellphone provider for your recipient while standard SMS messaging does not.

# In lieu of SMS number, email is also OK
8431234567 Doe John
mary@doe.com Doe Mary
8435551212@txt.att.net Mr T

In smsmsg.txt, enter the text message to be sent.

Once you have all three files configured, run the script: /root/smsblast.

NOTE: Google has tightened security for using plain-text Google Voice passwords as this application and the next one require. Before you begin, log into your server as root and issue the following command: gvoice. Try logging in with your Google Voice credentials including @gmail.com in your username. If the login fails, perform the following steps using a web browser after logging into the same Google account: (1) Perform the Google Voice Reset Procedure. (2) Enable Less Secure Apps using this Google tool. Then immediately try logging in to gvoice from the CLI again.

17. Voice-Activated SMS Messaging (dial SMS)

In addition to message blasting, you also can dial 767 from any extension and dictate an SMS message to send through your Google Voice account. When prompted for the destination, simply enter the 10-digit SMS number of the recipient. This new implementation of SMS Dictator requires both Google Voice and IBM STT credentials. Follow this tutorial to get started with the latest code.

18. SMS Messaging with VoIP.ms

Incredible PBX for Asterisk-GUI also supports SMS messaging through VoIP.ms if you have an account and an SMS-enabled DID. See the VoIP.ms wiki for setup info on the VoIP.ms side.

To install the VoIP.ms SMS scripts, follow these steps:

cd /root
mkdir sms-voip.ms
cd sms-voip.ms
wget http://incrediblepbx.com/voipms-SMS.tar.gz
tar zxvf voipms-SMS.tar.gz

Edit voipms-sms.php and insert your VoIP.ms number that supports SMS messaging (no spoofing allowed!):

$SMSsender="8005551212";

Edit class.voipms.php and insert your VoIP.ms API credentials:

    /*******************************************
     *  VoIPms - API Credentials
    *******************************************/
    var $api_username   = 'yourname@youremail.com';
    var $api_password   = 'yourpassword';

Send an SMS message through VoIP.ms with the following command where smsnumber is the 10-digit number of the SMS recipient and "sms message" is the text message surrounded by quotes:

/root/sms-voip.ms/voipms-sms.php smsnumber "sms message"

NOTE: VoIP.ms has indicated that sooner or later there will be a penny per message charge for SMS messages; however, as of today, they’re still free.

19. SIP URI Calling with Incredible PBX

With one line of dialplan code, you can add Speed Dials for free SIP URI calling worldwide. The dialplan code is stored in the [CallingRule_SIP_URI] context in extensions_custom.conf. Just clone one of the existing entries, designate an extension to dial to connect to the SIP URI, and enter the SIP URI for the destination. Numerous SIP providers support assignment of SIP URI’s to DIDs for unlimited free calling from anywhere in the world. Here’s a sample using a speed dial code of 53669 that connects you to SIP URI 2233435945@sip2sip.info: exten = 53669,1,Dial(SIP/2233435945@sip2sip.info)

20. IVR Demo of Incredible PBX Apps

The easiest way to try out a number of the Incredible PBX applications is to take the IVR Demo for a spin. Just pick up any phone and dial 3366 (D-E-M-O). The sample code for the IVR is available for review and modification in the IVR section of the GUI. There’s also a sample Stealth AutoAttendant. This plays a brief greeting and then rings an extension or ring group. During the greeting, you could configure the application to allow button presses to branch to other applications on your PBX, hence the Stealth name since the codes are not disclosed to callers.

21. Backup & Restore with Incredible PBX

Incredible Backup and Restore scripts are still under development for Incredible PBX 13-13 because of recent changes in Asterisk. If backups are important to you, we strongly recommend you consider a $2.50/month cloud server at Vultr using our referral code. For an additional 50 cents per month, you get weekly image backups of your server that can be restored with a couple of button clicks. It’s the cheapest insurance you can buy for your PBX!

22. AsteriDex – The Poor Man’s Rolodex

AsteriDex is a web-based phonebook application for Incredible PBX. You can access it from the main web menu. Scripts are also available to import your contacts from Outlook and Google Contacts.

23. Voice Dialing with AsteriDex (dial 411)

If you have voice recognition enabled on your server, you can call anyone in your AsteriDex database by dialing 411.

24. Speed Dialing with AsteriDex (dial 000+)

For those without voice recognition, Incredible PBX includes two speed dialing utilities. The first is accessed by dialing 412. Then enter any 3-digit dialcode from your AsteriDex database to complete the call. If you’d prefer to skip the intermediate step, dial 000 + the 3-digit speed dial code desired. The call will be placed immediately using your default outbound routes.

For a complete listing of your AsteriDex dial codes, execute this query:

mysql -u root -ppassw0rd asteridex -e "select name,dialcode from user1 order by name"

To automatically generate the 3-digit speed dial codes for everyone in your AsteriDex database using the first three letters of each name, run the following script from your web browser: http://your-server-ip/asteridex4/dialcode.php.

25. Telephone Reminders (dial 123)

Incredible PBX includes a sophisticated reminders system that lets you schedule individual or recurring reminders using your phone by dialing 123 or a web browser. A complete tutorial is available here. For phone reminders, a password is required to access the reminder system. Typically, these reminders set up a return call at a scheduled time that then plays back either a recorded message or a TTS message generated from the text you entered in the browser application. Incredible PBX also includes a new addition that lets you schedule web reminders that are delivered by email or SMS message.

26. DISA Access with Incredible PBX

Direct Inward System Access (aka DISA) is one of the great PBX inventions of the last 50 years. It’s also one of the most dangerous. It lets someone connect to your PBX and obtain dial tone to place an outbound call using your trunks… on your nickel. Typically, it is offered as an option with an IVR or AutoAttendant. The DISA extension is not preconfigured with Incredible PBX; however, you can easily set it up in the GUI by choosing Applications:DISA. Make up a very secure PIN before exposing DISA access to the outside world. It’s your phone bill.

27. Yahoo! News (Dial 951)

Yahoo! news headlines are available by dialing 951. The news option also is included in the sample IVR application.

28. Weather Forecasts by Phone (dial 947)

You can obtain a current weather forecast for most zip codes by dialing 947 (Z-I-P) and entering the 5-digit zip code.

29. ODBC Application Support for Asterisk

If you’ve recently logged into your server as root, Automatic Update #4 added ODBC/MySQL application support for Asterisk. You can try out a few sample applications that are included to get you started. Dial 222 and enter 12345 for the employee number. This retrieves an employee name from the MySQL timeclock database using Asterisk. Dial 223 to retrieve an AsteriDex name and phone number by entering the 3-character dialcode. You then have the option of placing the call by pressing 1. Once you have created accounts for Travelin’ Man 4, you can dial 864 (T-M-4) to WhiteList an IP address for that account after entering the account number and matching PIN. Use the * key for periods in the IP address.

30. Today in History (Dial T-O-D-A-Y)

It’s always interesting to find out what happened Today in History. And Incredible PBX now delivers it by phone. Just dial 86329 (T-O-D-A-Y) for a walk down memory lane.

31. Time of Day

Speaking of yesteryear, if you grew up dialing TI-4-1212 for the time of day, Ma Bell may have discontinued the service, but we haven’t. Now you can do it on your very own PBX.

If you want your users to be able to dial in for the time directly by dialing extension, here’s how. In the GUI, choose Admin:Custom Destinations:Add Destination. Set up a Time of Day description with a target of new-time,s,1 and save your entry. Now Enable an Application:Misc Application:Add Application with a Feature Code of 8463, Time of Day description, and point it to Custom Destination:Time of Day. Save your entry and then dial 8463 (T-I-M-E) for the Time of Day.

WebMin: The Linux Swiss Army Knife

There is no finer Linux application than WebMin. There is no more dangerous Linux application than WebMin. You’ve been warned. We heartily recommend WebMin as a tool to LOOK at your server’s settings. We strongly discourage changing anything in WebMin unless you totally know what you are doing. This is especially true with management of Linux applications that make up the core of Incredible PBX: the Linux kernel, SendMail, IPtables, Apache, MySQL, PHP, and…

To access WebMin, visit the following link with a web browser using the actual IP address of your server: https://ip-address:9001/. The username is root. The password is your root password. WebMin has root privileges to your server. Reread paragraph 1 and act accordingly.

For an exhaustive tutorial on WebMin, download The Book of WebMin by Joe Cooper. For a more recent commercial offering, take a look at Michal Karzyński’s WebMin Administrator’s Cookbook.

Enjoy your new Gotcha-Free PBX, and… Happy Cyber Monday! It’s always been one of the happiest days of the year around our office.

Originally published: Monday, November 27, 2017



Support Issues. With any application as sophisticated as this one, you’re bound to have questions. Blog comments are a terrible place to handle support issues although we welcome general comments about our articles and software. If you have particular support issues, we encourage you to get actively involved in the PBX in a Flash Forums. It’s the best Asterisk tech support site in the business, and it’s all free! Please have a look and post your support questions there. Unlike some forums, ours is extremely friendly and is supported by literally hundreds of Asterisk gurus and thousands of users just like you. You won’t have to wait long for an answer to your question.



Need help with Asterisk? Visit the PBX in a Flash Forum.


 

Special Thanks to Our Generous Sponsors

FULL DISCLOSURE: 3CX, RentPBX, Amazon, Vitelity, DigitalOcean, Vultr and others provide financial support to Nerd Vittles and our open source projects through advertising or referral revenue. We’ve chosen these providers not the other way around. Our decisions were based upon their corporate reputation and the quality of their offerings and their pricing. Our technology recommendations are reached independently of financial considerations except in situations in which comparable products at comparable pricing are available from multiple sources. In this limited case, we support our sponsors because our sponsors support us.

Awesome Vitelity Special. Vitelity has generously offered a terrific discount for Nerd Vittles readers. You now can get an almost half-price DID from our special Vitelity sign-up link. If you’re seeking the best flexibility in choosing an area code and phone number plus the lowest entry level pricing plus high quality calls, then Vitelity is the hands-down winner. Vitelity provides Tier A DID inbound service in over 3,000 rate centers throughout the US and Canada. When you use our special link to sign up, Nerd Vittles gets a few shekels down the road to support our open source development efforts while you get an incredible signup deal as well. The going rate for Vitelity’s DID service is $7.95 a month which includes up to 4,000 incoming minutes on two simultaneous channels with terminations priced at 1.45¢ per minute. Not any more! For our users, here’s a deal you can’t (and shouldn’t) refuse! Sign up now, and you can purchase a Tier A DID with unlimited incoming calls and four simultaneous channels for just $3.99 a month. To check availability of local numbers and tiers of service from Vitelity, click here. NOTE: You can only use the Nerd Vittles sign-up link to order your DIDs, or you won’t get the special pricing! Vitelity’s rate is just 1.44¢ per minute for outbound calls in the U.S. There is a $35 prepay when you sign up. This covers future usage. Any balance is refundable if you decide to discontinue service with Vitelity.


​​3CX is a software PBX that’s easy to install & manage. It includes integrated softphones, WebRTC conferencing and essential add-ons out of the box, at no additional cost. Try the free edition at www.3cx.com. Better yet, download the PIAF5 ISO powered by 3CX. Free version includes support for 8 simultaneous calls with a SIP trunk.

  • Run on Premise or in the Cloud, on Windows and now on Linux
  • Softphones for iOS, Android, Win & Mac
  • Easy install, backup & restore, version upgrades
  • Automatically configures IP Phones, SIP Trunks & Gateways

  • RentPBX, a long-time partner and supporter of PIAF project, is offering generous discounts for Nerd Vittles readers. For all of your Incredible PBX hosting needs, sign up at www.RentPBX.com and use code NOGOTCHAS to get the special pricing. The code will lower the price to $14.99/month, originally $24.99/month. It’s less than 50¢/day.


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