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Integrate auto dialer

We just purchased BroadcastByPhone (BBP) to use in our credit processes here at Golden Valley Electric Association. We’re an electric co-op in Fairbanks Alaska. I could use a little help with automating our process of delivering a phone message. We have a Voicent gateway on a server in our datacenter and we’re planning a BBP client on a user’s desktop. For now the client is on my desktop. The goal is to have an automated process that ftp’s a list of phone numbers and billing account numbers from our billing server, imports them into BroadcastByPhone, delivers the message, exports the call results to a file and ftp’s the results back to the billing server. There are a few rough edges that could use smoothing.

When I start BBP from the windows menu or by command line, a dialog box, like the one in the attached Starting.doc, pops up. This doesn’t seem to cause a problem. It’s just interesting that the progress bar on the bottom never goes past where it is in the attached picture and the box doesn’t go away unless it’s closed by the user.

The initial dialog window show go away automatically when there is no error. From the picture you sent us, the error is “failed to connect to Voicent Gateway on this computer”.

Since Voicent Broadcast By Phone auto dialer is capable of utilize multiple gateways for making phone calls, it will try to connect to all gateway computer specified in the dialing hosts. In your case, the client program (BBP) will faill since there is no gateway installed on your desktop. To fix the problem, all you need to do is remove “localhost” from the dialing host list (Broadcast by Phone main menu > Broadcast > Broadcast Hosts…)

I’ve been attempting to accomplish importing a list of phone numbers and start the dialing process with the following command:

C:\Program Files\Voicent\BroadcastByPhone\bin\vcast.exe "n:\ecis\pns\play.voc" -wavfile "n:\ecis\pns\pnsmessage.wav" -import "n:\ecis\pns\import.csv" –startnow

If I have the –startnow parameter I get modal dialog box like the one in the attached file. If I leave the –startnow parameter out, the dialog box doesn’t appear but BBP doesn’t start dialing. I have to push the ok button to get dialing to start. Is my command correct? Where did I go wrong?

If you fix the “localhost” problem, you will not see the dialog box.

If I use the command line above to start BBP, I get a modal dialog box like the one in AfterEveryCall.doc. I have to push the ok button to get the dialing process to advance to the next entry in the list. It’s not automatic if the user has to push a button after every call.

Again, to get rid of this dialog box, you need to fix the error that cause this. The error complains about an invalid path “File\Voicent\AutoReminder\bin\vcase.exe”. The Windows batch handling seems to not taking care of the space in the path. Just quote the whole path in your command line like “C:\Program Files\Voicent\BroadcastByPhone\bin\vcast.exe” “…”. You could also first cd to the directory and just launch vcast.exe.

Also, try to run Broadcast by Phone manually first and try to fix any error if any.

Also if I may, I’d like to suggest an improvement to BroadcastByPhone. In the Broadcast Call Control options there is a Maximum Retry count. That’s good but it also needs a minimum time between retry parameter. It does no good to retry immediately after a failure. What ever condition caused the failure is not likely to clear immediately. If the minimum time between retries could be set to say 10 or 20 minutes, then the condition has a chance to clear.

This is a good suggestion and we have add that to our enhancement list. In practive, however, this may not be necessary. The retry call only happens after all other calls in your call list is finished. So for a normally list, the retry time will be far more than 10 to 20 minutes. Also, if you want to have control over individual calls, you can use Voicent AutoReminder.

Thank you for the quick response. I made the changes you suggested and now things are smooth. I’m very impressed. While I was at it, I forgot to request the list of possible statuses returned by BroadcastByPhone. Can you provide a list of possible statuses?

Please see auto dialer call status

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