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Happy New Year

Happy New Year!
This is the greeting, which is likely said and heard many times during the days.
It's a good tradition and time when we may summarize activity done during the previous year and setup some goals for the new year.

The project continued to evolve during 2009, despite of the global financial crisis and resulted difficulties.
There were scheduled and periodically released five versions of UniMRCP, which introduced new features, provided bug fixes and ensured stability.
Integration with well know open source telephony platforms, utilization by several corporates, support contracts, custom development options and my strong desire keep the project going. This makes me think about the first major release of UniMRCP in 2010, which would be another value added release indicated a certain milestone. I'll follow up with the next 0.9 version during the days and come up with a few suggestions, proposals thereafter during this month.

Also it seems I've got another good tradition to polish the website of the project a bit during the holidays. Please checkout the new face.

Let it be a successful and prosperous year for all of us!
Arsen Chaloyan
The author of UniMRCP

64-bit Operating Systems Supported

At this time I'd like to declare UniMRCP can be compiled for and run on 64-bit operating systems as a native 64-bit application.

There were reports indicating UniMRCP successfully runs on 64-bit Linux, though I didn't try it myself before. However, things have been changed recently and I have tested UniMRCP enough on both 64-bit Linux and Windows.

- Linux
Everything is quite straightforward and usual on CentOS 5.3 x86-64 I tried. One should proceed with the regular installation.
make install

It's possible to cross-compile for 64-bit even on 32-bit Linux
CFLAGS=-m64 CXXFLAGS=-m64 LDFLAGS=-m64 ./configure
make install

- Windows
Visual Studio itself is a 32-bit application and it's a bit strange to me, but as of today, there is no native 64-bit version. Fortunately, 64 bit tools (compiler, debugger) are available, but those tools are not installed by default, even while installing VS on 64-bit Windows. So if you're going to play with this stuff, make sure you have 64-bit compiler installed.
I have added x64 configuration next to win32 to project files (vcproj) and property sheets (vsprops) in order to compile UniMRCP for a 64-bit platform. Now UniMRCP nicely works even on Windows 7 x86-64.
Corresponding APR and Sofia-SIP project files will be included in the dependency package to be released with UniMRCP 0.9.0 version after the New Year.

Happy Holidays,
Arsen Chaloyan
The author of UniMRCP

UniMRCP Integrated Asterisk Deployment

I'd like to announce the release of an open source connector bridge for Asterisk and UniMRCP.

The connector bridge is an implementation of Asterisk's Generic Speech API using UniMRCP client stack. This module allows Asterisk to connect to MRCPv2 or MRCPv1 compliant servers for speech recognition. It also allows to offload Asterisk using client/server architecture MRCP provides. Moreover, all the speech applications, which are written on top of Generic Speech API now can be easily used via MRCP too.

The complete package, which includes everything required for UniMRCP integrated Asterisk deployment, is now available for download

The open development model with community driven initiatives is what I started UniMRCP with and entered the open source world for. The integration with powerful telephony platforms such as Asterisk would allow the project to further evolve and accelerate.

I have been asked many times for such an integration. Now it's your turn to give it a try, provide feedback and help carefully test and evolve the solution.

Thanks for using UniMRCP,
Arsen Chaloyan
The author of UniMRCP

RTCP Implemented

The RTP control protocol (RTCP) has been implemented in the trunk.

RTCP allows to monitor RTP delivery. The protocol is based on periodic transmission of control packets. The primary function is to provide statistical reports such as Sender Report (SR) and Receiver Report (RR).

There are a number of options to configure.

1. Enable RTCP support
Currently RTCP is disabled by default, you should enable it first from unimrcpclient.xml and/or unimrcpserver.xml configuration files.
        <!-- enable/disable rtcp support -->
        <param name="rtcp" value="1"/>

2. Transmission of RTCP reports
The default transmission interval is 5 sec. This is the period RTCP reports are generated and sent with. Typically, RTCP traffic bandwidth should be fixed at 5% of overall RTP/RTCP session bandwidth. Anyway, you can adjust the interval by the following parameter. To disable periodic transmission set it 0.
        <!-- rtcp transmission interval in msec  -->
        <param name="rtcp-tx-interval" value="5000"/>

3. Transmission of an RTCP BYE packet
According to the specification (RFC3550), a participant should sent an RTCP BYE packet when he wishes to leave an RTP session. Typically, RTP is used in conjunction with higher level session management protocols such as SIP, H323, which provide own mechanisms for the participants to join/leave a session. Therefore, presence of RTCP BYE packet is usually optional.
However, the role of RTCP BYE in an MRCP environment was re-defined by well known vendor(s). It's intended to indicate end of input (utterance). All the mentioned options are supported by UniMRCP now.
        <!-- rtcp bye policies
             0 - disable rtcp bye
             1 - send rtcp bye at the end of session
             2 - send rtcp bye also at the end of each talkspurt (input)
        <param name="rtcp-bye" value="1"/>

4. Reception of RTCP packets
Currently this routine dumps received RTCP packets in the logs and it is mainly helpful for monitoring and debugging.
The period, which is used to check for new RTCP messages, can be adjusted by the following parameter. To disable the reception of RTCP packets set it 0.
        <!-- period (timeout) to check for new rtcp messages in msec  -->
        <param name="rtcp-rx-resolution" value="1000"/>

Give it a try by choosing options which best fit your needs.

Arsen Chaloyan
The author of UniMRCP

Recorder Resource Supported

Now UniMRCP supports recorder resource too.

This resource allows to capture and store audio and video streams. The
use cases are evident for telephony platforms which provide call
recording and voice mail functionality with limited capacity of local
Utilization of UniMRCP client stack facilitates usage of remote
storage for recording and allows to use any MRCP compliant server,
which supports recorder resource such as UniMRCP server. Currently
only audio streams are supported, but hopefully video will be
supported either.
Moreover, set of synthesizer, recognizer and recorder resources allows
to build distributed and fully decomposed solutions, where telephony
applications may stay out of media processing, but do signaling.

Also sample recorder scenario has been added to umc application. To
use it update your local umcscenarios.xml file and input "run rec"
from console.

Arsen Chaloyan
The author of UniMRCP

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