On Monday, March 3rd, Asterisk 12.1.0 was officially released. In addition to fixing many bugs reported by the Asterisk community, this release contains several new features that improve the usability and functionality of Asterisk 12. As the first point release following our new policy of allowing limited new features and improvements in Asterisk 12, I thought it would be nice to review what some of these new changes are – and how this policy will continue to help build solutions on top of Asterisk 12.
- A new set of modules was added that let application developers control Message Waiting Indicators (MWI) through ARI. Combined with ARI’s existing media resources, developers can create their own voice mail applications. This includes everything from recording messages, playing IVRs and recordings to listeners – while asynchronously controlling the media operations – and now, making a phone MWI turn on and off at will. All of this is in a programming language of their choice – letting Asterisk act as the communications engine while keeping the business logic of their voicemail application outside of Asterisk.
- Asterisk’s security events have been available in a comma delineated format since Asterisk 10. Now these events are available over AMI as well, under a new class authorization of ‘security.’ Users who are interested in real-time notifications of security events can use AMI to integrate this security information with other external systems.
- The PJSIP stack in Asterisk now has support for the Path header. This new feature was made available for chan_sip in 12.0.0 as well; there, it was implemented by Klaus Darillon, with help from Olle Johansson. This useful addition to both SIP stacks in Asterisk allows Asterisk to operate better in networks where there are intermediate proxies between SIP UAs registering to Asterisk, and Asterisk registering to other SIP UAs.
So what’s on the horizon?
- Several new PJSIP CLI commands are currently in review and being finalized for inclusion in the Asterisk 12 branch, as well as some useful new dialplan functions that allow dialplan writers to drill down into PJSIP configuration information. These features will make it easier for system administrators to configure and deploy Asterisk with PJSIP.
- An extension to the ARI API that allows developers to specify the unique ID for any resource they create in Asterisk – be it a channel, bridge, media operation, or other item. This helps to tie events about resources to the actions that created them, making life easier for developers who must deal with asynchronous communications.
- And much, much more!
It’s an exciting time in the Asterisk project – stay tuned for more updates on Asterisk 12 and the work the community is doing in it!