[asterisk-dev] SIP: So you mean you want to be able to *dial* something?

Joshua Colp jcolp at digium.com
Mon Feb 25 12:31:27 CST 2013

Since the conversation has gotten so... large... I'm snipping and 

A lot of excellent points have been raised but I'd like to keep us 
focused on things here relating to how we dial things and how that is 
expressed to the end user. Stuff relating to registrar support and 
additional functionality that would entail I would prefer that we wait 
until we get to that feature before talking about it. It's a bit 
premature for this discussion. The design and usage of location 
shouldn't preclude the implementation.

I've heard throughout the years that people want to register multiple 
*devices* to an account. I personally would use that in an instant and 
an actual user, Jared, has expressed interest in this thread itself for 
that. We've also got multiple contacts for a single device these days as 
Olle has raised. These are all things to take into account. 
Fundamentally though why is this hard? Well... it's not something that's 
really ever been done in Asterisk. Does that mean we shouldn't do it? I 
don't think so. It's just uncharted territory.

We seem to really be coming at this from a few different views:

1. Only allow multiple contacts for a single device, use multiple 
accounts for multiple devices

2. Allow multiple devices and expose this minimally to the core by 
allowing channel drivers to return multiple channels when dialed

3. Allow multiple devices and change the core to be better aware of it 
by extending view 2 to include automatic hint updating, device state, 
and per-contact and per-device capability knowledge

4. Allow multiple devices and expose without using the core, use a 
dialplan function to return contacts and allow user to iterate as they 
see fit and pick/choose

I think really from my personal perspective a combination of 2 and 4 is 
what we should do at this point in time, using the approach that Mark 
has mentioned. Yes it's a compromise but I came to that conclusion based 
on what I feel we can achieve and what I've seen people ask for 
throughout the years.

Changing the core slightly to allow returning multiple channels is a 
minor change that is not terribly invasive. Providing the ability to 
retrieve and explicitly dial specific contacts is also minor.

Making the core better aware of this should be a goal in the future but 
at this point in time I think with the above we can meet what a lot of 
end users want.

Joshua Colp
Digium, Inc. | Senior Software Developer
445 Jan Davis Drive NW - Huntsville, AL 35806 - USA
Check us out at:  www.digium.com  & www.asterisk.org

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