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Back to the Basics – VoiceMail

The voicemail protocol is quite a bit of fun and super easy to use. Let’s just jump right into it.

From the Voip-Info respository, here is how the command will go in your dialplan.

VoiceMail([flags]boxnumber[@context][&boxnumber2[@context]][&boxnumber3])

You will insert the VoiceMail command after the “exten =>” (as per usual)  then unleash all the excitement at the end. Now, there are so many things that you can do with this command that I won’t really get into a lot of it. There is also so much more once you get into the actual voicemail.conf, which we will touch on later.

Where it says “flags” you can place a couple of things. If you put “s” in there, it will skip the usual “Please leave your message after the tone” recording. If you use “u” it will say the user is unavailable. Then “b” is short for busy. You could come up with a script to change this realtime I’m sure.

After your flags, you will put the number of the VM box that you are looking to send a message to. If you leave this portion blank, then you will get a prompt asking for the box number. Simple stuff.

As for the context section, I’ve NEVER had to use that, so we won’t really bother with it.

What about Voicemail.conf you ask? Well that’s another whole article right there. We will touch base really quickly though. Let’s say that you are just trying to set up a basic voicemail box within your Asterierk PBX that doesn’t have outgoing call capabilities. Let’s save as much money as we can :)

Just for ease of use (and because I don’t need to create large networks) I keep all of my voicemail box information under the default context. You can find this under [default] just like you would in the dialplan. Here is a short example of what your box information would look like.

100 => 321,Users Name,email@address.com,pager@address.com,saycid=yes|review=yes|operator=yes

Let’s tear it apart now.

100 – First it the box number, 100. Nothing more to say here.

321 – This is the password for the email box. It can be as long or short as you feel like.

Users Name – This is for CID. What you put here will show up as the callers name.

email@address.com – This one is easy… the email address of the user.

pager@address.com –  This one will go to their cell/pager.

saycid=yes – When the user calls up and checks his VMB, then this will enable the box to read off the callers ID so if they did not leave a number on the message, they will be able to identify the caller.

review=yes –  If the user wants to review the messages again, they can.

operator=yes – This enables the option menu after the messages are reviewed.

Well guys, that’s all we are going to talk about on voicemail today, but check back soon because we will be doing another article on voicemail.conf which is going to be a very informative one. Check back!

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