Sunday, November 30, 2008

Adding res_mysql to F10 Asterisk

The Fedora 10 pre-packaged 64-bit version of Asterisk comes without res_mysql. To add it, you'll need to download asterisk-addons from the Asterisk web site and compile it yourself. One issue though: if you accept the default install paths, you're going to need to copy from /usr/lib/asterisk/modules to /usr/lib64/asterisk/modules. Regular configuration requirements should work after that, including realtime meetme (which I'm working with now).

Thursday, November 27, 2008

F10 Asterisk bug fix

If you've got the initial version of F10 and you've installed Asterisk from packages, you're probably noticing that Asterisk isn't working properly. It's caused by a bug in the startup script. $AST_CONFIG is defined in line 27 and redefined using itself in line 88

  27 AST_CONFIG=/etc/asterisk/asterisk.conf
  88 ASTARGS="$ASTARGS -C $AST_CONFIG/asterisk.conf"

The fix is to drop the "/asterisk.conf" from the end of line 88.

Fedora 10

If you didn't pick up from the previous post that I'm installing Fedora 10, I am. Not to jinx the install but, except for the video driver issue, it appears to be going smoothly. There's even a 64-bit version of IMAP voicemail storage for Asterisk (that is usually a real head-banger to get compiled and installed properly). MythTV also installed cleanly, though I need to get it configured. The good news is that I think the package is from the guy that wrote the "Hacking MythTV" book.

In any case, it appears to be going much smoother than previous Fedora installs. Sparks is doing a similar install across town. He has voiced similar opinions.

Fedora 10 and NVidia cards

If you're trying to install Fedora 10 on an HP box, you're probably having issues with not being able to see the cursor. While the repair is to add 'Option "HWCursor" "off"' to the [Monitor] section of xorg.conf, you're also probably noticing that xorg.conf doesn't exist.

The problem is that F10 has a chicken/egg issue involving installation. You need the NVidia driver to get the xorg.conf you need to modify to see the cursor and you need the cursor so that you can click on the link on the NVidia website.

The bad news is that you'll have to guess where the cursor is, on the screen, a number of times. The good news is that it isn't that difficult. I had mine working after about 5 minutes of frustration.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Improved Conference Manager

I'm working "wikifying" the notes for the improved conference call manager. The work in progress can be viewed here. The current feature set includes:
  • Volume controls for talking and/or listening for individual callers
  • Volume controls for talking and/or listening for the entire conference
  • Hangup a specific caller
  • Kick (hangup with message) a specific caller
  • Mute/unmute a specific caller
  • Mute/unmute all callers in conference
  • Lock a conference (block anyone else from joining the call)
  • Unlock a conference
  • Record/stop recording the call
  • Make a call from the conference room
  • Create/edit/delete conference rooms on the fly
As it's a bit detailed and lengthy, it's going to take a few days to get it entered. Please bare with me.

Friday, November 21, 2008

When worlds collide

My project list for the weekend:
  • generate wiki pages to show off the conference room manager
  • solder together a serial-to-IR interface for MythTV and document it
My wife's project list:
  • clean the entire house, top to bottom (company coming)

I wonder how much this will conflict with... What's that? Yes, dear...

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Norfolk to Detroit to St. Louis to O'Fallon to St. Louis to O'Fallon to St. Louis to Chicago to Norfolk in 67 hours is exhausting. Fattening too, but that's a different story.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Back online

The system upgrades took much, much longer than expected. If no one else has commented on it, it appears that MP3 functionality has disappeared from just about all of the leading Linux distributions. Avoiding the reasons why this is happening, it creates a number of issues which must be worked around.

One loss is the ability to use LiquidSoap as a source for hold music in Asterisk (even though the capbility can be recovered, it doesn't yet "fit well" with Icecast or Asterisk inputs).

At first, I attempted to use 64-bit Linux, with the objective of using LiquidSoap for a number of features. I had so much difficulty in getting Liq to work that I abandoned the 64-bit effort. Little did I know that it wouldn't work in 32-bit either.

To make a long story short, time constraints have left me with a 32-bit box with a borked Liq (only plays OGGs) and a number of work-arounds to get a few functions (Asterisk, MythTV, etc.) working. I've even resorted to using SqueezeCenter as a hold music source in Asterisk. It's overkill, using way too many processing cycles to provide a single function, but it works.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Temp offline

I'll be offline for at least part of the weekend, updating OSs on a couple boxes (translation: recompiling a number of kernel modules and fighting packaged installs). Hopefully won't be for more than a day or so.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


You've gotta love AOL. Ten plus years after the first infected email with a spoofed source address and their virus scanner still sends complaints back to the spoofed address (in this case: me!!), with instructions to contact my email administrator (again: me!).

If 1 in 200 messages is infected, I'd guess that 1 in 400 is a return message (I receive a lot of these). Although the mail was sent with good intentions, it demonstrates a lack of understanding of infection vectors and is basically a waste of resources. For AOL, the message size was 4K. Because it was an error message, it was sent to my account and root on my mail server, so I get to delete this twice. This also ate up 8K of bandwidth. For me, it's not that bad. For AOL, it has to be monstrous (i.e., they're wasting their own money).

If your anti-virus utility scans inbound email for viruses, please TURN OFF your auto-response feature. It actually compounds a number of problems (bandwidth, storage) rather than prompting the owner of an infected machine to fix his junk.