Cisco CallManager Attendant Console, a client/server application installed on a PC, allows you to set up an Attendant Console to use with Cisco IP Phones. Employing a graphical user interface, the Attendant Console uses speed dial buttons and quick directory access to look up telephone numbers, monitor line status, and direct calls. A receptionist or administrative assistant can use the Attendant Console to handle calls for a department or company, or other employees can use it to manage their own telephone calls.
The Attendant Console installs on a PC with IP connectivity to the Cisco CallManager system. The Attendant Console works with a Cisco IP Phone that is registered to a Cisco CallManager system. Multiple Attendant Consoles can connect to a single Cisco CallManager system. When a server fails, the Attendant Console automatically fails over to another specified server in the cluster.
The Cisco CallManager Attendant Console client application is shown in Figure 18-1. The client is downloadable from the Cisco CallManager plug-in web page. (Choose Applications > Install Plugins, and click Cisco CallManager Attendant Console.) The client installs on end-user systems running Microsoft Windows 98, Me, 2000, and XP. The installation program places a Cisco CallManager Attendant Console icon on the attendant desktop and can also be accessed using Start > Programs.
Figure 18-1. Cisco CallManager Attendant Console
Terms and Definitions
Table 18-1 defines the terminology used for the Cisco CallManager Attendant Console application.
Cisco CallManager Attendant Console client
Client application; web browser user interface; maximum of 96 clients per Cisco CallManager cluster
Cisco CallManager Attendant Console user
Cisco CallManager database entry; represents the Cisco CallManager Attendant Console client; one per client
Cisco Telephony Call Dispatcher
Server application; distributes calls, monitors line state, and performs call control; one per Cisco CallManager
Ordered list of directory numbers (DNs) to which Cisco TCD distributes calls; maximum of 32 per Cisco CallManager cluster
Pilot number or pilot point
DN that points to a hunt group; one per hunt group
Hunt group member
Either a DN (extension) or user-line pair; maximum of 16 per hunt group
The Telephony Call Dispatcher and Attendant Console Directory
The following sections provide additional detail about the Cisco Telephony Call Dispatcher (TCD) and the Cisco CallManager Attendant Console Directory.
Cisco Telephony Call Dispatcher
As shown in Figure 18-2, the Attendant Console application registers with and receives call-dispatching services from Cisco TCD. Cisco TCD, a Cisco CallManager service, provides communication among Cisco CallManager servers, Attendant Consoles, and the Cisco IP Phones that are used with the Attendant Consoles.
Figure 18-2. Telephony Call Dispatcher Service
Cisco TCD handles Attendant Console requests for the following items:
Cisco TCD monitors the status of internal devices and telephones only. An Attendant Console user cannot see the line state for a telephone that is connected to a gateway.
Cisco CallManager Attendant Console Directory
The CallManager Attendant Console directory is used to allow the Attendant Console application to maintain an active list of the corporate directory of users. Using this list, a receptionist can verify the state of any IP phone in the corporation and transfer calls simply by dragging and dropping the active call to the applicable user in the directory.
The Attendant Console server reads and caches the user directory entries at startup. After an initial handshake determines whether the directory entries have changed since the previous login, the Attendant Console downloads the user list. The Attendant Console also downloads the user list when the interval in the Directory Reload Interval field in the Attendant Settings dialog box expires or when the user clicks the Reload button in the Directory window.
The Attendant Console searches the following files (in order) for the user list:
To modify the Directory Sync Period service parameter, choose Service > Service Parameters. Choose the appropriate server from the Server drop-down list and choose the Cisco Telephony Call Dispatcher Service from the Service drop-down list.
The user list file is in Comma-Separated Values (CSV) format and contains the following information:
Pilot Points and Hunt Groups
A pilot point, a virtual DN that is never busy, alerts Cisco TCD to receive and direct calls to hunt group members. A hunt group consists of a list of destinations that determine the call redirection order.
For Cisco TCD to function properly, make sure that the pilot point number is unique throughout the system (it cannot be a shared line appearance and will probably be the corporate primary DID number). When configuring the pilot point, you must choose one of the following routing options:
Part I: Cisco CallManager Fundamentals
Introduction to Cisco Unified Communications and Cisco Unified CallManager
Cisco Unified CallManager Clustering and Deployment Options
Cisco Unified CallManager Installation and Upgrades
Part II: IPT Devices and Users
Cisco IP Phones and Other User Devices
Configuring Cisco Unified CallManager to Support IP Phones
Cisco IP Telephony Users
Cisco Bulk Administration Tool
Part III: IPT Network Integration and Route Plan
Cisco Catalyst Switches
Configuring Cisco Gateways and Trunks
Cisco Unified CallManager Route Plan Basics
Cisco Unified CallManager Advanced Route Plans
Configuring Hunt Groups and Call Coverage
Implementing Telephony Call Restrictions and Control
Implementing Multiple-Site Deployments
Part IV: VoIP Features
Configuring User Features, Part 1
Configuring User Features, Part 2
Configuring Cisco Unified CallManager Attendant Console
Configuring Cisco IP Manager Assistant
Part V: IPT Security
Securing the Windows Operating System
Securing Cisco Unified CallManager Administration
Preventing Toll Fraud
Hardening the IP Phone
Understanding Cryptographic Fundamentals
Understanding the Public Key Infrastructure
Understanding Cisco IP Telephony Authentication and Encryption Fundamentals
Configuring Cisco IP Telephony Authentication and Encryption
Part VI: IP Video
Introducing IP Video Telephony
Configuring Cisco VT Advantage
Part VII: IPT Management
Introducing Database Tools and Cisco Unified CallManager Serviceability
Configuring Alarms and Traces
Using Additional Management and Monitoring Tools
Part VIII: Appendix
Appendix A. Answers to Review Questions