Stop Calling, I’m trying to listen to Music

By Malcolm Davenport

Okay, this is sort of product related, but it’s also a bit on the fun side.

(this posting inspired by the shoutout Russell gave me on the commit list, detailed in this comment)

I like to listen to music, a lot (frequently), and a lot (quantity) of it.  I even started a group that’s populated with some other Digium-ites including Josh Colp, Jason Parker, Russell Bryant, Matt Robinson, Mr. Kevin P. Fleming, and more.  Apparently our favorite artists right now are The Doors, Tool, The Cranberries and Kansas.  Myself, I’m apparently really into Peter Gabriel, Hed Kandi, George Thorogood & The Destroyers, Michael Jackson, Eels, ZZ Top, Paul Simon, and RATM.’s great.  And now, back to the point of this posting.

Having this great love of music, and having spent a number of years in the Sales department before I moved over to Marketing, I was constantly having to mute the music playing on my PC before I took or made a customer call.  Most of the time, I didn’t fail to mute the music.  Most of the time…

To remedy my oopsies, Mark wrote a little program for me called muted.  Muted can presently be found in the Asterisk source directory under the “utils” subdirectory.

What’s it do?

It connects across the Asterisk Management Interface (AMI), watches for any calls that get directed to my Polycom phone, and then mutes the main ALSA channel on my PC.

The music stops, I sound professional on the telephone, I hang up, and…the music returns.  Bliss. 🙂

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There Are 4 Comments

  • Alex says:

    Here in the office we have a Squeezebox hooked up to an amp and some speakers. We use SNOM 360s/320s. We have put the “set volume to 5” URL in the SlimServer interface into the “phone off hook” action URL of the phones.

    It works exactly the same way as your example, and occasionally when a customer is in the office and sees it work, gets some very impressed reactions!

  • malcolmd says:

    Good call. 🙂
    I wasn’t familiar w/ the Squeezebox; Sonos has/had a better marketing push in the periodicals I read – Wired, US Weekly (it’s *not* a tabloid, I swear), and National Geographic. In fact, Sonos had the only push as US Weekly and National Geographic don’t seem to cover much in the tech industry; except for last month’s iPhone back cover on National Geographic. Great aesthetics and pricing on the SlimServer; though, its remote doesn’t seem as snazzy as the Sonos.

    We also have a bit of fun with btpd, the Bluetooth Presence Daemon. USB Bluetooth adapter, btpd, a Bluetooth mobile phone, Asterisk, and you’ve got yourself a little bit of roaming presence and call direction.

  • I am big fan of myself ( I’ll have to see if I can find your group. Skype has some kind of plug-in I’ve used in the past but I don’t recall if it had the “Muted” feature. I am ready to join the open-VoIP ranks now that I just received my unlocked VoIP telephone adapter. Next I’ll get started with Asterisk, I want to see what opportunities are out there to start saving and making money with VoIP.


  • malcolmd says:


    We’re the Asterisk, very creative I know, group on ( I didn’t realize Skype had a plugin. A lot of the Linux-lovin folks here use Amarok and it’s plugin.

    Good luck with Asterisk. 🙂

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About the Author

Malcolm Davenport

Digium lifer, celebrator of 17 Digium birthdays, and Digium employee #4."I like telephony and I cannot lie. You other vendors can't deny; When a call comes in with MOS so you can't hear and some echo in your ear you get angry!" - Sir Mix-a-Malcolm

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