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VoIP Hacks by Theodore Wallingford

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Hack #96. Build a Standalone Voicemail Server in Less Than a Half-Hour

If you're a decent typist, it might take you only 15 minutes.

Asterisk comprises many quality applications, and voicemail is one of them. In fact, Asterisk is perhaps best known for the feature set of its voicemail system. In this section, I will demonstrate how you can harness Asterisk's extremely powerful voicemail application in 30 minutes or less. This way, everybody in your house (or your office) can have a customized voicemail greeting and message recorder, even if they don't have a desktop phone. Think of this as a road-warrior voicemail solution.

First, you will need to download my Asterisk distribution, AstLinux. AstLinux is made to run from CompactFlash, but it doesn't have to be that way. (Incidentally, if you'd like to run it from CompactFlash, check out "Build a SoftPBX with No Hard Drive" [Hack #95] . Pay attention to the keydisk portion, as you'll want one for this hack!) But because we want our voicemail server to be as reliable as possible, I am going to assume that you have a fair amount of storage space—CompactFlash or hard disk—available for use on this hack.

To build a standalone voicemail server, you'll need the following:

  • A standard PC with AstLinux

  • An IDE-to-CF adapter

  • A CompactFlash card of 32 MB or greater (a 256MB SanDisk is recommended)

Depending on what type of technology you are going to integrate this server with, your hardware needs will vary. If you are looking for an all-VoIP solution ...

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