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Markus Schneider
Cisco Employee
Cisco Employee



CUE Editor Express


One of the best features in CUE 3.0 is the Editor Express scripting tool  which allows users to create simple auto attendant scripts directly from the CUE  GUI. For basic scripts--even to generate a simple script example to be used in  the full-blown editor later on--this is the place to start.


The entire premise of the Editor Express is that most customers need  something that's really close to CUE's canned auto attendant, but have a few  minor changes that they'd like to customize for their own requirements.


The full documentation is here. This guide is to describe the usage of the tool to deploy  a simple CUE auto attendant.


Deploying a CUE auto attendant involves three steps:

  1. Creating the script
  2. Recording audio prompts for your script
  3. Creating an application that references the script
  4. Make sure the phone system is set up to route calls to the application


This terminology may seem a bit confusing at first. Let's try to define each  piece:


  • A script is a file with a .aef extension that contains the steps that  create a call flow for handling each call. In the Editor Express example, this  means a GUI that has a bunch of pre-built items for the user to select; in the  case of the full blown editor, each instruction step must be manually entered.  For example, the script may simply be to Accept (i.e. answer) the call, play a  prompt, and Terminate (hang up).
  • An application is a configured script with all variables define. It  may seem that we're splitting hairs, but for example, let's say in our script  that answers, plays a prompt and hangs up we want to have different prompts  played depending on what number was called in. Instead of playing a hard-coded  "Welcome.wav" file, it may play the WelcomePrompt variable and the allow the  application to define what WelcomePrompt is configured with. So there may be a  TelemarketersApp application configured with DontCallBack.wav configured for the  WelcomePrompt variable.
  • A trigger or Call-in number is the number that is dialed that  invokes a particular application. So when someone dials 1234 the phone system  routes the call to CUE which starts the TelemarketersApp application.


We'll see these items in use in the following section.


  • A prompt is a audio file that CUE plays to callers.


Creating a Script


Getting started with Editor Express is as simple as pointing your browser to  the IP address of the CUE module and logging in with an account that has  administrative credentials. Once logged in, navigate to the System >  Scripts drop-down.





To create a new script, click the New button. We're presented with the  first and only screen of customizations for our new auto attendant.


We're presented with two sections, a Settings section and a Call  flow section.




Every script generated with the Editor Express will follow a fairly confined  path.


  1. The prompt configured as the Welcome prompt is played. This is a very  brief introduction, such as "Thank you for calling Cisco Systems". As with all  prompts in Editor Express, it can be configured with None, so that it would go  straight to the next configured audio prompt or call handling. For instance, if  you really just need a menu, then you can configure all of these next prompts as  None and only use a single Main Menu Prompt.
  2. If the Play alternate (emergency) greeting, if active checkbox is  checked then it is played. To learn more about this, see Emergency Alternate  Greeting in the CUE documentation. In a nutshell, this allows an admin to call  in and record a snow day or some sort of emergency message which would be played  at this point. You don't specify a prompt name yourself; it is created and  removed as someone calls in to the Administration Via Telephone (AVT) system in  CUE and enables/disables this feature.
  3. Depending on CUE's configured holidays (under System > Holiday  Settings), the configured Holiday prompt audio file is played.
  4. If it is not a configured holiday (i.e. the Holiday prompt did not  play), then depending on the configured Business schedule (under  System > Business Hours Settings), which define a time period when a  business is considered open or closed, the appropriate Business open  prompt or Business closed prompt is played.
  5. Regardless of which prompt (holiday, business open, or business closed) was  played the next prompt to be played is the Main Menu Prompt. This is the  prompt that should explain what the menu options are. For instance, "for sales  press 1, for support press 2, etc".
  6. At this point, the caller can make a choice which may present more audio  prompts, but for now, let's assume they press nothing. The Main Menu Prompt (not  all the prompts) will repeat 3 times and then the configured Good bye prompt is  played.


Note: To make this configuration process easier the best idea is to  start recording prompts before even writing the script. Since you now know what  they prompts are used for and the order in which they're played, it should be  pretty clear what needs to be done. The best way to record the prompts is to use  the Administration via Telephone (AVT) feature in CUE. This allows you to call  into the system and record an audio prompt. Although it will get a non-intuitive  name (basically it will contain the time stamp in the file name of when it was  recorded), the file can be downloaded and re-uploaded. While a bit cumbersome,  it eliminates any sort of issues with recording formats, codecs, etc.


As mentioned, these prompts are always played out in exactly the same order.  Except for making them play no audio, the sequence cannot be changed with the  Editor Express feature. What can be changed and customized is the actions under  the Main Menu.


To add an entry under the Main Menu, simply press the Add  action>> button, press a digit(0-9, * or #) and select an action for  that key, which can be either to Play a prompt, dial-by-name, dial-by-extension,  transfer to extension, transfer to mailbox number, sub-menu, or disconnect the  call. Let's look at these individually.


  • Play a prompt - This allows you to play a prompt, say for directions  to the business, or a prompt that contains the staff directory, etc. After the  prompt is played, one can either disconnect the call, or repeat the Main Menu  again.
  • Dial by name - Implements a dial-by-name search function that can be  either last-name-first or first-name first. This will result in the call being  transferred to the user or, if something goes wrong, the Main Menu will be  repeated or in some cases the dial-by-name menu. Note that the dial-by-name  audio is still the system audio prompts and cannot be customized with Editor  Express.
  • Dial by extension - allows the caller to enter in digits to dial.  Note that the system will use the default system prompts to tell the user to  enter the desired party's extension followed by the # sign. This parameter is  completely independent of the "Allow Dial-by-extension any time during the main  menu" check box in the Settings section. You could even have both if you  like.
  • The Transfer to Extension does just that. This is completely  unaffected by the Allow external transfers parameter in  theSettings section. If the transfer fails, the Main Menu will be  repeated (assuming the call is one which has not been completely handed off to  the phone system, as with the SIP BYE/Also transfer mechanism, for example).
  • Transfer to mailbox number sends the caller straight to a voicemail  user's greeting. Note that at time of configuring the script with Editor  Express, there's no check done to make sure that mailbox actually exists, so  special care should be taken to make sure an error here doesn't occur and the  caller is suddenly transferred to a prompt that says the mailbox with that  extension does not exist.
  • The Sub Menu setting allows you to create another menu layer. It can  have its own prompt and a whole new set of the above-mentioned settings.


About the Settings section We've discussed the Allow Dial-by-extension at  any time during the main menu option a bit earlier. It really allows the  caller to start dialing an extension they know any time, right when the call is  answered. This is probably the single most requested feature for an auto  attendant. Once selected, two other options become available. First, Menu  options overlap with extenion dial-plan.


Let's say your voicemail system's  extensions start with 1 (e.g. 1000-1999) but you really want your auto attendant  to say 'for hardware, press 1'. With this option unselected, when you press 1,  it'll immediately transfer you to the 'hardware' department. If you check this  box, then after pressing 1, it will wait a bit for some additional digits to see  if you didn't really want to dial a particular extension. The disadvantage, is  that now every call has to wait a bit since we can't be sure if you're trying to  dial an extension or you really want the "1" option in the menu. The Extension  length should be set to the number of digits in the dialplan. If your extensions  are in the 1000-1999 range, then set it to 4. After 4 digits, CUE will  immediately attempt to transfer the call. In Editor Express, you cannot set a  termination digits (such as #) so that the caller can press # or just wait for  the number of digits. It will always expect to collect the number of digits  configured in the Extension length setting.


Regardless of whether dial by extension is implemented by using a menu option  or using the any time during the main menu checkbox, by default the only numbers  that can be called are ones configured and assigned to voicemail boxes in the  CUE system, not random numbers that may even be external to the phone system  itself. With the Allow external transfers checkbox set in the  Settings section, the system will attempt to transfer the call to any  number entered. This should be used with extreme caution, since it could  potentially be exploited for toll fraud if the phone system allows calls to  external numbers from CUE. Especially when dial-by-extension is implemented as a  menu option, the Extension length setting does not apply, any string of  numbers (up to 30 digits) could be entered and the transfer attempted.


Once all the configuration options have been made and prompts assigned, the  script can be saved by pressing the Save button. When the Close button is  pressed, the web page will refresh with the scripts listing. You'll see an Edit  button next to the script name which will allow you to go back in and make any  changes, such as selecting a different prompt or something.


So let's look at a sample configured script.




This script will play the MyWelcome.wav file, then depending on the day  (whether or not it's a holiday) and the time of day, either ThanksgivingMsg.wav,  BizHours.wav, or AfterHours.wav. Next, MyMenu.wav will be played. It should  sound something like "If you know your party's extension you may dial it at any  time. For store hours, press 1. For directions, press 2. For a company directory  press 3. To reach the operator, press 0." If a caller presses 3, then the  CompanyDirectory.wav file is played. This isn't meant to be a comprehensive  directory listing. Those typically take too long to read through even in a small  office. It simply has "For Jill in sales press 1, for John in service press 2,  to leave a message for the field tech press 3; if you would like to look up you  party's name press 9."




Now that the script itself has been created, we can create the application  that references the script. From the CUE GUI, we select Voicemail > Auto  Attendant and press the Add button.


The first thing to do is to give the new application a name, such as  CompanyAA. The Call-in Number will be the number that a user calls to reach this  auto attendant. In the drop-down next to the Script parameter we need to  select the .aef file we created earlier as part of the script creation. This may  change what is displayed below the parameter.




For scripts created with the Editor Express, that's usually it. There are no  configurable script parameters because we configured all extensions and  variables right into the script file itself.

To save, press the Add button.


Setting up the phone system


In the earlier application configuration we configured call-in number. This  number must be configured on the phone system (CME or CUCM) so that a call  placed to this number is routed to CUE. For Cisco CallManager Express, this  means a dial-peer must be configured in the router:


dial-peer voice 101 voip
destination-pattern 1000
session protocol sipv2
session target ipv4:
codec g711ulaw
no vad

The is the IP address of the CUE module.


For Cisco Unified CallManager deployments, a Route Pattern must be  configured. This Route pattern must have this number configured as a directory  number and then associated with the JTAPI user that CUE uses. For Survivable  Remote Site Telephony (SRST), the SRST router must also have a SIP dial-peer,  exactly the same as in pure CME environments, so that the calls can be handled  when the CUCM is unavailable. When configuring the application as shown above,  if a CCM license is installed on the system, then adding a call-in number on the  application will add a call-in number for both SIP and JTAPI, so that calls will  be serviced regardless if they come in via SIP (for SRST and/or CME) or JTAPI  (CallManager). To see these call-in numbers by themselves, the System >  Call-in Numbers menu can be viewed.


Beyond the Basics


The Editor Express feature provides a nice way to get a script for something  that will meet the needs of most basic auto attendant requirements. When using  Editor Express as a starting point it's important to remember that although the  scripts created with Editor Express can be downloaded, openend, and edited with  the regular CUE Script Editor application, once re-uploaded, they can no longer  be opened or edited with the Editor Express web-based tool. The Edit button that  normally appears next to the file name will no longer be present.

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