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Understanding Outdialing

 

Applies to: Exchange Server 2007 SP3, Exchange Server 2007 SP2, Exchange Server 2007 SP1, Exchange Server 2007

Topic Last Modified: 2007-05-22

There are many outdialing settings that are used on a Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Unified Messaging 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.

Outdialing is the process that is 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 that are 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 that is found in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 or Outlook Web Access in Exchange 2007.

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 that is configured on a UM dial plan are unauthenticated at first. All users who call in to a UM auto attendant are unauthenticated. When a user calls in to a subscriber access number, they are considered unauthenticated because they have not provided their extension number and PIN and logged on to their Exchange 2007 mailbox. The following figure illustrates the outdialing process for an unauthenticated user.

Outdialing Unauthenticated

Users are authenticated after they provide their extension number and PIN and successfully log on to their Exchange 2007 mailbox. The following figure illustrates the outdialing process for a user who has been authenticated.

Outdialing Authenticated User

When a user calls in to a subscriber access number that is configured on a UM dial plan and tries to place or transfer a call without logging on to their Exchange 2007 mailbox, only the UM dial plan outdialing settings will apply to the call. The user is unauthenticated because they did not log on to their mailbox. However, when an anonymous or unauthenticated user calls in to a UM auto attendant, both the outdialing settings that are configured on the auto attendant and the outdialing settings that are configured on the dial plan that is associated with the auto attendant are applied to the call.

When a user calls in to the subscriber access number that is configured on a dial plan and successfully logs on to their Exchange 2007 mailbox, they become an authenticated user. The configuration settings from the UM dial plan and the UM mailbox policy that is associated with the authenticated user are both applied to any outdialing calls the user makes.

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 2007 organization, you must first understand how each component can be used with outdialing and how they 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 that is associated with a UM dial plan or for users who dial in to the subscriber access number that is 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 telephones 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 that are 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 will not 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 that are associated with the UM dial plan. Each dialing group rule 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 given 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 that are defined will apply to UM-enabled users who are associated with the UM mailbox policy.

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 will function correctly.

Configuring outdialing

Configuring Outdialing

A dialing rule group is a collection of one or more dialing rule entries that are 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 that are dialed within the same country or region. International dialing rule groups apply to international telephone numbers that are 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 that are on the UM dial plan and on the UM auto attendants and UM mailbox policies that are associated with the UM dial plan.

Dialing rule groups enable administrators to specify dialing rule entries that they 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 by 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 that is configured on the dialing rule group will be 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 that are listed in the "DialedNumber" section of the dialing rule entry. The number that is 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. For each dialing rule group, "Local-Calls-Only" and "Low-Rate", there are two dialing rule entries: 91425* and 91206* and 91509* and 91360*, respectively.

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 non-numeric 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 that are represented by the asterisk (*).

You can use the Exchange Management Console or the Exchange Management Shell to create and configure single or multiple in-country/region and international dialing rule groups and dialing rule entries. However, if you are 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 have 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 that are 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 that are all 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

Dialing rule groups are created on a UM dial plan. You can create in-country/region or international dialing rule groups by using the Exchange Management Console or the Set-UMDialPlan cmdlet in the Exchange Management 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:

  • The same dial plan   The settings will apply to all users who call in to the subscriber access number but do not log on to their Exchange 2007 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
    
  • A single or multiple UM mailbox policies   The settings that are configured on a UM mailbox policy will apply to all users who are associated with a given UM mailbox policy. The settings that are configured on a UM mailbox policy apply to users who call in to a subscriber access number and log on to their Exchange 2007 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 Exchange Management Console or use the Exchange Management Shell Set-UMMailboxPolicy cmdlet, as follows.
    Set-UMMailboxPolicy -Identity MyUMMailboxPolicy --AllowedInCountryOrRegionGroups MyAllowedDialRuleGroup
    
  • Single or multiple auto attendants that are 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
    

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 logs on to their 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 that is found in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 or Outlook Web Access in Exchange 2007.

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 that is being dialed. In other outdialing scenarios, the Unified Messaging server may apply all the outdialing rules that are configured to the telephone number that is being dialed. The outdialing rules that are applied based on how the call was initiated are illustrated in the following figures.

Figure 1 illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user uses the Play on Phone feature to place a call.

Play on Phone Outdialing

Figure 2 illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user places a call to a personal contact.

Personal Contact Outdialing

Figure 3 illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user who is enabled for Unified Messaging places a call to another UM-enabled user.

UM-enabled User Outdialing

Figure 4 illustrates how outdialing rules are applied when a user who is UM-enabled places a call to a user who is not enabled for UM.

Non UM-enabled User Outdialing
To ensure that you are reading the most up-to-date information and to find additional Exchange Server 2007 documentation, visit the Exchange Server TechCenter.
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