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Understanding Outdialing

 

Applies to: Exchange Server 2010 SP3, Exchange Server 2010 SP2

Topic Last Modified: 2009-10-03

There are many outdialing settings used on a Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Unified Messaging (UM) server to dial internal and external calls for users. To configure outdialing, you must configure dialing rule groups, dialing rule entries, and dialing restrictions on UM dial plans and UM mailbox policies. Additionally, you can also configure UM dial plans to have dialing or access codes, a national number prefix, and in-country/region or international number formats that enable you to control outdialing in your organization. This topic discusses dialing rule groups, dialing rule entries, and dialing restrictions and how they are used to control outdialing for your organization.

Contents

Overview

UM-Enabled Users

Outdialing Settings

Configuring Outdialing

Applying Configured Dialing Rule Groups

Applying Dialing Rules

Outdialing is the process used by users when they call in to a UM dial plan or UM auto attendant and place or transfer a call to an internal or external telephone number. When a user calls in to a UM dial plan or a UM auto attendant and places a call, a Unified Messaging server will use the settings configured on the dial plan, auto attendant, and if appropriate, the UM mailbox policy to place the call. The outdialing process happens when:

  • A Unified Messaging server places a call to an external telephone number for a caller.

  • A Unified Messaging server transfers a call to an auto attendant.

  • A Unified Messaging server transfers a call to a user in your organization who is UM-enabled or not UM-enabled.

  • A UM-enabled user uses the Play on Phone feature found in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 or Outlook Web App in Exchange 2010.

For outdialing to work correctly, the following settings must be configured correctly:

  • Dialing group rules   Dialing group rules determine the types of calls users within a dial group can make.

  • Dialing rule entries   Dialing rule entries define the number that is dialed by the UM-enabled user and the actual number that will be dialed by the Private Branch eXchange (PBX) or IP PBX.

  • Dialing restrictions   Dialing restrictions determine the restrictions that will be applied to prevent users from incurring unnecessary telephone charges or from dialing long distance calls.

To enable outdialing for users who call into a dial plan or auto attendant, you must:

  • Make sure the UM IP gateway or IP gateways associated with the dial plan will allow outgoing calls.

  • Create dialing rule groups by creating dialing rule entries on the UM dial plan.

  • Create dialing restrictions on the UM dial plan or auto attendant associated with the same dial plan as the UM IP gateway.

There are two types of users who can use the outdialing feature in Unified Messaging: authenticated and unauthenticated. The users who call in to a subscriber access number configured on a UM dial plan are unauthenticated at first. All users who call in to a UM auto attendant are unauthenticated. When users call in to a subscriber access number, they are considered unauthenticated because they haven't provided their extension number and PIN and signed in on to their Exchange 2010 mailbox. The following figure illustrates the outdialing process for an unauthenticated user.

Outdialing process for an unauthenticated user

Outdialing unauthenticated

Users are authenticated after they provide their extension number and PIN and successfully sign in to their Exchange 2010 mailbox. The following figure illustrates the outdialing process for a user who has been authenticated.

Outdialing process for an authenticated user

Outdialing authenticated user

When users call in to a subscriber access number configured on a UM dial plan and try to place or transfer a call without signing in to their Exchange 2010 mailbox, only the UM dial plan outdialing settings will apply to the call. Users are unauthenticated because they didn't sign in to their mailbox. However, when anonymous or unauthenticated users call in to a UM auto attendant, both the outdialing settings configured on the auto attendant and the outdialing settings configured on the dial plan associated with the auto attendant are applied to the call.

When users call in to the subscriber access number configured on a dial plan and successfully sign in to their Exchange 2010 mailbox, they become authenticated users. The configuration settings from the UM dial plan and the UM mailbox policy associated with the authenticated user are both applied to any outdialing calls the user makes.

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There are several settings that you must configure to apply outdialing rules for your organization. To control outdialing, you must configure the UM dial plans, UM auto attendants, and UM mailbox policies that you have created. The following outdialing settings are configured on dial plans, auto attendants, and UM mailbox policies:

  • Outside line, country/region, and international access codes

  • National number prefixes

  • In-country/region and international number formats

  • Configured in-country/region and international dialing rule groups

  • Allowed in-country/region and international dialing rule groups

  • Dialing rule entries

  • Dialing restrictions

For you to successfully configure outdialing for your Exchange 2010 organization, you must first understand how each component can be used with outdialing and how the component must be configured. The following table introduces each component that must be configured on UM dial plans, UM auto attendants, and UM mailbox policies to enable outdialing to function correctly.

Outdialing components

Component Description

Dial codes, number prefixes, and number formats

Dial codes, number prefixes, and number formats are used by a Unified Messaging server to determine the correct number to dial when placing an outgoing call. You can configure dial codes, number prefixes, and number formats to restrict outgoing calls for users who dial in to a UM auto attendant associated with a UM dial plan or for users who dial in to the subscriber access number configured on the dial plan.

For more information about dial codes, number prefixes, and number formats, see Understanding Dial Codes, Number Prefixes, and Number Formats.

Dialing rule groups

Dialing rule groups are created to enable telephone numbers to be modified before they are sent to the Private Branch eXchange (PBX) for outgoing calls. Dialing rule groups remove numbers from or add numbers to telephone numbers being placed by a Unified Messaging server. For example, you can create a dialing rule group that automatically adds a 9 as a prefix to a 7-digit telephone number to provide access to an outside line. In this example, users who place outgoing calls don't have to dial the 9 before the telephone number to reach someone external to the organization.

Each dialing rule group contains dialing rule entries that determine the types of in-country/region and international calls that users within a dialing rule group can make. Dialing rule groups apply to the users who are associated with a UM dial plan or UM auto attendants and UM mailbox policies associated with the UM dial plan. Each dialing rule group must contain at least one dialing rule entry.

Dialing rule entries

A dialing rule entry is used to determine the types of calls that users within a dialing rule group can make. When you create a dialing rule group, you configure one or more dialing rule entries.

When you configure each dialing rule entry, you must enter the name, number mask, and dialed number. You can also enter a comment. Comments can be used to describe how the dialing rule entry will be used or to describe a group of users to whom the dialing rule entry will apply. When you add a number mask and the dialed number to a dialing rule entry, you can substitute the letter x to replace a digit in a telephone number, for example, 91425xxxxxxx. You can also use an asterisk (*) symbol as a wildcard character, for example, 91425*.

Dialing restrictions

A dialing restriction uses dialing rule groups to apply dialing restrictions for users who are associated with a specific UM mailbox policy. They can also be used when you want to let users place calls to in-country/region or international telephone numbers.

After you create a dialing rule group on a UM dial plan, you add the dialing rule group to a UM mailbox policy. After the dialing rule group is added to a UM mailbox policy, all settings or rules defined will apply to UM-enabled users who are associated with the UM mailbox policy.

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We recommend that you follow the steps in the following figure when you configure outdialing on your dial plans, auto attendants, and UM mailbox policies, to ensure that outdialing functions correctly.

Configuring outdialing

Configuring outdialing

A dialing rule group is a collection of one or more dialing rule entries configured on a UM dial plan. There are two types of dialing rule groups that can be configured on a UM dial plan: in-country/region and international. In-country/region dialing rule groups apply to telephone numbers dialed within the same country or region. International dialing rule groups apply to international telephone numbers dialed from one country or region to another country or region.

Each UM dial plan can contain one or more dialing rule groups. However, to apply a dialing rule group to a set of users, after you create the dialing rule group, you must add the configured dialing rule group to the list of allowed dialing rule groups on the UM dial plan and on the UM auto attendants and UM mailbox policies associated with the UM dial plan.

Dialing rule groups enable you to specify dialing rule entries that you want to apply to a group of UM-enabled users who fall into a specific category. For example, you can use dialing rule groups to specify which group of users can place international calls and which group can only make in-state or local calls. You can create a dialing rule group using the Exchange Management Console or the Set-UMDialPlan cmdlet in the Exchange Management Shell. When you create a dialing rule group, you must define at least one dialing rule entry for the dialing rule group.

When a number is dialed by a user, the Unified Messaging server takes the telephone number and looks for a match in the dialing rule entries. If a match is found, the dialing rule entry configured on the dialing rule group is applied. The Unified Messaging server looks at the dialing rule entry to determine the number to dial by looking at the telephone number or digits listed in the DialedNumber section of the dialing rule entry. The number listed in the DialedNumber section of the dialing rule entry will be dialed by the Unified Messaging server.

The following table shows an example of dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries. In this example, Local-Calls-Only and Low-Rate are the dialing rule groups that have been created. The dialing rule group Local-Calls-Only has two dialing rule entries: 91425* and 91206*, and the dialing rule group Low-Rate also has two dialing rule entries: 91509* and 91360*.

Dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries

Name NumberMask DialedNumber Comment

Local-Calls-Only

91425*

91*

Local calls

Local-Calls-Only

91206*

91*

Local calls

Low-Rate

91509*

9*

In-state calls

Low-Rate

91360*

9*

In-state calls

For example, when a user dials 9-1-425-555-1234, the telephone number that the Unified Messaging server dials is 4255551234. The Unified Messaging server will remove any nonnumeric characters (in this example, the hyphens) and apply the number mask from the dialing rule entry. In this example, the Unified Messaging server will apply the number mask 91*. This tells the Unified Messaging server not to dial the 9 or the 1, but to dial all the other numbers in the telephone number that appear to the right of the number 1. This includes all the numbers represented by the asterisk (*).

You can use the EMC or the Shell to create and configure single or multiple in-country/region and international dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries. However, if you're creating many or complex dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries, you can use a comma-separated value (.csv) file in the Exchange Management Shell. You can import or export a list of dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries.

To import a list of dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries that you've defined in a .csv file, run the Set-UMDialPlan cmdlet, as follows.

Set-UMDialPlan "MyUMDialPlan" -ConfiguredInCountryOrRegionGroups $(IMPORT-CSV c:\dialrules\InCountryRegion.csv)

To retrieve a list of the dialing rule groups configured on a UM dial plan, run the Get-UMDialPlan cmdlet, as follows.

(Get-UMDialPlan -id "MyUMDialPlan").ConfiguredInCountryOrRegionGroups | EXPORT-CSV C:\incountryorregion.csv

The .csv file must be created and saved in the correct format for the file to be used. Each line in the .csv file represents one dialing rule entry. However, each dialing rule entry is configured on the same dialing rule group. Each entry in the file will have four sections separated by commas. These sections are name, number mask, dialed number, and comment. Each section is required, and you must enter the correct information in each section except for the comment section. There should be no spaces between the text entry and the comma for the next section, nor should there be any blank lines in between entries or at the end. The following is an example of a .csv file that can be used to create in-country/region dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries.

Name,NumberMask,DialedNumber,Comment

Low-rate,91425xxxxxxx,9xxxxxxx,Local call

Low-rate,9425xxxxxxx,9xxxxxxx,Local call

Low-rate,9xxxxxxx,9xxxxxxx,Local call

Any,91*,91*,Open access to in-country/region numbers

Long-distance,91408*,91408*,long distance

The following is an example of a .csv file that can be used to create international dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries.

Name,NumberMask,DialedNumber,Comment

International, 901144*, 901144*, international call

International, 901133*, 901133*, international call

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Dialing rule groups are created on a UM dial plan. You can create in-country/region or international dialing rule groups using the EMC or the Set-UMDialPlan cmdlet in the Shell. After you create the appropriate dialing rule groups on a UM dial plan and define the dialing rule entries, you can apply the dialing rule groups that you created to a UM dial plan, a UM auto attendant, or to users who are associated with a UM mailbox policy, depending on how the user accesses the Unified Messaging system.

You can apply the dialing rule groups that you created on a UM dial plan to the following:

  • Same dial plan   The settings will apply to all users who call in to the subscriber access number but don't sign in to their Exchange 2010 mailbox. To apply an in-country/region dialing rule group named MyAllowedDialRuleGroup to the same dial plan, use the Exchange Management Shell Set-UMDialPlan cmdlet, as follows.

    Set-UMDialPlan -Identity MyUMDialPlan -AllowedInCountryOrRegionGroups MyAllowedDialRuleGroup
    
  • Single or multiple UM mailbox policies   The settings configured on a UM mailbox policy will apply to all users who are associated with a specific UM mailbox policy. The settings configured on a UM mailbox policy apply to users who call in to a subscriber access number and sign in to their Exchange 2010 mailbox. To apply an in-country/region dialing rule group named MyAllowedDialRuleGroup to a single UM mailbox policy, use the Dialing Restrictions tab in the EMC or use the Set-UMMailboxPolicy cmdlet in the Shell, as follows.

    Set-UMMailboxPolicy -Identity MyUMMailboxPolicy -AllowedInCountryOrRegionGroups MyAllowedDialRuleGroup
    
  • Single or multiple auto attendants associated with the UM dial plan   This will apply to all users who call in to a UM auto attendant. To apply the in-country/region dialing rule group named MyAllowedDialRuleGroup to a single UM auto attendant, use the Exchange Management Shell Set-UMAutoAttendant cmdlet, as follows.

    Set-UMAutoAttendant -Identity MyUMAutoAttendant -AllowedInCountryOrRegionGroups MyAllowedDialRuleGroup
    

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The following table summarizes the way that dialing rule groups are applied in Unified Messaging.

Applying outdialing rules

Caller type Scope Outdialing settings applied

Subscriber access or Outlook Voice Access

User calls a dial plan subscriber access number and signs in to the mailbox

UM mailbox policy

Anonymous caller

User calls a dial plan subscriber access number

UM dial plan

Anonymous caller

User calls an auto attendant pilot number

UM auto attendant

Caller from inside the organization

User calls the Play on Phone number

UM mailbox policy

The outdialing process happens when:

  • A Unified Messaging server places a call to an external telephone number for a caller.

  • A Unified Messaging server transfers a call to an auto attendant.

  • A Unified Messaging server transfers a call to a user in your organization who is UM-enabled or not UM-enabled.

  • A UM-enabled user uses the Play on Phone feature found in Outlook 2007 or Outlook Web App in Exchange 2010.

In each outdialing scenario, a Unified Messaging server will apply the outdialing rules that have been configured, and then place the call for the user. However, depending on the scenario and how the call is initiated by the user, a Unified Messaging server may apply only some of the outdialing rules to the telephone number being dialed. In other outdialing scenarios, the Unified Messaging server may apply all the outdialing rules configured to the telephone number being dialed. The outdialing rules applied are based on how the call was initiated and are illustrated in the following figures.

The following figure illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user uses the Play on Phone feature to place a call.

Play on Phone outdialing

Play on Phone Outdialing

The following figure illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user places a call to a personal contact.

Dialing a personal contact

Personal Contact Outdialing

The following figure illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user who is UM-enabled places a call to another UM-enabled user.

Outdialing for a UM-enabled user

UM-enabled User Outdialing

The following figure illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user who is UM-enabled places a call to a user who isn't UM-enabled.

Outdialing for a user who isn't UM-enabled

Non UM-enabled user outdialing

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