Category: virtual machines

Link: 10 VirtualBox Tricks and Advanced Features You Should Know About

VirtualBox is packed with features that you may have never used, even if you frequently use it to run virtual machines. VMware keeps many of its best features to its paid versions, but all of VirtualBox’s features are completely free.

Many of the features here require Guest Additions installed in your virtual machine. This is good to do anyway, as installing the Guest Additions package will speed up your virtual machines.

Full article here:
10 VirtualBox Tricks and Advanced Features You Should Know About (How-To Geek)

Avoid Bluestacks until they fix their nasty bug!

This started out as a simple link to an installation tutorial that we found:

Now days Android is leading mobile operating system , there are wide range of app and games in android , If you are really fond of using android applications but unfortunately you don’t have any android supported Phone. Then don’t worry you can still enjoy all the Android application and Games on your PC and Laptop, One software will helps you to make your dream come true. Now days Bluestacks is one of the famous and working Software Which convert any android apps in Windows or Mac version. By using Bluestacks software you can run easily any android app on your pc or laptop.

Full article here (but DON’T DO THIS until they fix the bug!):
How to run android apps on pc using bluestacks? (Techypassion)

In addition to the Windows versions, there is also a Mac version of the Bluestacks software, and that’s what we tried. But as soon as you install it and attempt to run it, to comes up with an error message that reads:

“Network Issue. The network is experiencing some problem. Please retry or cancel.”

If you put this error into Google, you find that many other potential users, using both the Windows and Mac versions of this software, have run into this issue. And when one user attempted to get help, what did the company do? They addressed a completely different issue and then marked the thread as “answered”, basically washing their hands of the issue.

Well, this bug still exists, and it stops you cold after you have installed the software. So for now, Bluestacks earns our “avoid this software package” designation. Don’t waste a minute of your life trying to install and run this thing, because several users with more experience than us have apparently tried and failed. But if you ignore our advice and somehow manage to get it working, please leave a comment telling us how you did it!

EDIT: In the meantime, here’s another way to run Android on your PC or Mac, though we haven’t actually tried this one yet:

The Complete Guide to Run Android 4.3 in VirtualBox (Make Tech Easier)

How to keep one group of extensions from being able to call another group of extensions in FreePBX

 

Important
This is an edited version of a post that originally appeared on a blog called The Michigan Telephone Blog, which was written by a friend before he decided to stop blogging. It is reposted with his permission. Comments dated before the year 2013 were originally posted to his blog.

FreePBX is NOT designed for multi-tenant use. Yet a lot of people will still try to, for example, run two small companies off the same FreePBX server. The question then invariably arises “How do I keep one company’s users from calling the other company’s extensions?”

Just yesterday in the FreePBX forum, someone asked:

Imagine I have extensions 100-110 and I name those CustomContext “GroupA” and I name 200-210 as “GroupB”. Can anyone tell me how I’d eliminate GroupA and GroupB from dialing each other?

And I replied as follows:

Create two new contexts in /etc/asterisk/extensions_custom.conf (just add these to the bottom of the file):

[from-group-a] exten => _2XX,1,Goto(app-blackhole,congestion,1)
exten => _[*0-9]!,1,Goto(from-internal,${EXTEN},1)
exten => h,1,Hangup()

[from-group-b] exten => _1XX,1,Goto(app-blackhole,congestion,1)
exten => _[*0-9]!,1,Goto(from-internal,${EXTEN},1)
exten => h,1,Hangup()

After you do that:

Go to the extension configuration page for each extension in Group A and change the context from from-internal to from-group-a.

Go to the extension configuration page for each extension in Group B and change the context from from-internal to from-group-b.

The way this works is if someone in Group A attempts to call an extension in the 200-299 range, OR if someone in Group B attempts to call an extension in the 100-199 range, the call is diverted to “congestion” (a fast busy signal). Otherwise, the call goes to the from-internal context and is processed in the normal way.

No nice way to do this from a GUI page, unfortunately. But, this is pretty simple, I think.

EDIT: There may be a slightly more elegant way to do this, that only involves adding ONE additional context to /etc/asterisk/extensions_custom.conf:

[from-restricted-exts] exten => _2XX/_1XX,1,Goto(app-blackhole,congestion,1)
exten => _1XX/_2XX,1,Goto(app-blackhole,congestion,1)
exten => _[*0-9]!,1,Goto(from-internal,${EXTEN},1)
exten => h,1,Hangup()

Then you would change the context for all “restricted” extensions from from-internal to from-restricted-exts — this should have the exact same effect as the above contexts (if you don’t understand why, see Asterisk hiding a useful feature in plain sight by giving it a “cute” name).

What I did not really go into in that reply is that this does NOT provide 100% separation.  Although it prevents a user in one group from calling a user on the other directly, it does not address a host of other issues that could arise.  Just as one example, there is nothing that would stop a user in “Group A” from transferring a call to a user in “Group B”.  Did I mention that FreePBX is NOT designed to be a multi-tenant system?

Probably the best solution for multi-tenant use is to run separate installations of Asterisk and FreePBX for each tenant.  You can run them on separate servers, or on separate Virtual Machines on the same server, but be careful if you do the latter, because some VM’s work better than others for the purpose.  The PBX in a Flash folks would tell you, for example, that they’ve never had a problem running PBX in a Flash under Proxmox, but always seem to have issues if trying to run it under VMware.  But others will say that with the right tweaks (and by installing VMware Tools) they’ve made it work under VMware.  But I think that if you only have one server available, running two installs of Asterisk and FreePBX in Virtual Machines is better than trying to make FreePBX (and perhaps Asterisk itself) do something it is clearly not designed to do.

Link: Monit: Disk space monitoring

 

Important
This is an edited version of a post that originally appeared on a blog called The Michigan Telephone Blog, which was written by a friend before he decided to stop blogging. It is reposted with his permission. Comments dated before the year 2013 were originally posted to his blog.

This article was originally posted in February, 2011 and may be out of date. You may also wish to read Link: How to Install and Setup Monit (Linux Process and Services Monitoring) Program.

A hard disk drive with the platters and motor ...
Image via Wikipedia

Here’s an article that will be helpful to may of you who are running PBX servers under CentOS, especially (but not limited to) those running on virtual machines with low disk storage space.  Note that if you installed from an “all-in-one” distribution ISO, this possibly might already be installed, but may still need to be configured.

One thing you definitely don’t want to happen to your server is for it to run out of disk space, especially the root partition.

There are lots of pieces of open source monitoring software, a popular one being monit.

Below is a quick guide to installing monit and generating alert e-mails for disk space and cpu/memory usage. The installation was done on a SysAdminMan VPS running CentOS 5.5

Full article here (SysAdminMan)

The instructions should work for any system running CentOS 5.5.  You might be tempted to take a shortcut and just do “yum install monit” but please be aware that (at least as of the day I’m writing this) it will get you a much older version of the software, so I suggest you stick with the instructions in the article.  I have just now installed this on one system and have not fully tested it, but it did send an e-mail confirming that it had started.

This is just another tool you can use to make your life a little easier and help you avoid a problem before it becomes a major headache!

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