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Intercom/Paging w/ Aastra VOIP SIP Handsets w/ Asterisk Server

Posted on 2009-04-09
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Our ISP/Hosted VOIP PBX provider is just finishing up the installation of about 45 new Aastra handsets running the newest firmware w/ SIP. Two of the phones are the 57i and 57i CT. All the other phones are the 9143i model.

They've figured out how to 'intercom' individual handsets but we need to 'intercom' various 'groups' of handsets. This I've been told is actually called 'paging' using multicast packets. We've been told that in order to intercom to groups, we must utilize 'paging/multicast' and program a key on each phone for each 'group' of handsets. We were hoping to have an 'intercom' group with a specific extension number and then simply hit the intercom button + the 'group' intercom number. Our ISP has tried to assign an extension to several handsets but when we try that, only the 1st handset get the intercom and all other handsets don't.

We don't want to tie up additional 'soft keys' on the 9143i and we are running out of 'softkeys' on the 'sidecar (560M)' of the 57i handsets for these 'paging' groups.

Is there any way we can get these 'intercom groups' to not tie up any more keys on the Aastra phone handsets?

NOTE: Our ISP is using a 'full-blown' Asterisk implementation. Not a 'bundled/pre-packaged' one like Trixbox, PBXInAFlash, etc.

Thank you in advance for anyone that has a chance to reply!
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Question by:JJNoe
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darrickhartman earned 2000 total points
ID: 24116122
A few notes on this and then the answer:

1).  By default the Aastra phones will autoanswer, even if a call is in progress when you 'page/intercom' to a phone or group of phones.  I usually disable this because it makes no sense to allow this behavior.

2). This is pretty easy to accomplish by creating one or more 'ring groups', then calling those groups with a few sip headers added.  Below is the dialplan code you'll need to add.  I usually do this with a macro.

[macro-intercom]                                        
; ARG1 - intercom extension                        
exten => s,1,SIPAddHeader(Call-Info:answer-after=0)                                                
exten => s,n,SIPAddHeader(Alert-Info:alert_info=RA)                                  
exten => s,n,Dial(SIP/${ARG1:1}|20)                                    
exten => s,n,Congestion  

[intercom]                                    
exten => 7XXX,1,Macro(intercom,${EXTEN})

Now if you dial 7101 for example, you'll be able to "intercom" to extension 101

If you need to 'page' groups of people, you'll want something like this

[paging]                                                    
;page all                                        
exten => 777,1,SIPAddHeader(Call-Info:answer-after=0)
exten => 777,n,SIPAddHeader(Alert-Info:ALERT_INFO=RA)
exten => 777,n,Page(${PAGEOFFICE}&Zap/7|20)      
exten => 777,n,Hangup()    

The PAGEOFFICE is set as a global variable that contains a list of the SIP devices to page.

PAGEOFFICE=SIP/100&SIP/102&SIP/103&/SIP/104

You can then dial 777 (or program a speed dial to be 777) from any phones that include the page context.  You can have any number of these paging groups, just pick a different extension (778, 779...)
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Expert Comment

by:ctarbet
ID: 24815422
Does this work with other brand phones?  Granstream Budgetone in my case... ?
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Expert Comment

by:darrickhartman
ID: 24820454
It does work with Polycom for sure.  The phone needs to support auto answer functions.

This page seems to indicate it's possible with the Grandstream's too, if you have a new enough firmware.

http://www.voip-info.org/wiki/view/Asterisk+Grandstream+Paging
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Expert Comment

by:ctarbet
ID: 24869360
Thanks for the comment.  Grandstream's site says that BT-100 and BT-200 support auto-answer function.
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