Remote Caller-ID


Senior Member
I was sitting here reading a post when i got a little pop-up in the right corner of my desktop telling me i have new e-mail... Then i got to thinking... It would be cool if i could get a pop-up like this for Phone Calls.


I know you busy but i think this would be a great idea for another project for you. Basically you would have a program that would capture your calls and load them to a file on your webserver. Then you would have a client program that would constantly check for new calls. If a new call come in the a little box woul slide up just above your desktop clock saying that a new call has arrived and possibly that you have messages on the phone.

What do you guys think?
Check out the Message Server plugin on the HomeSeer board. I think it might give you the capability you're looking for (maybe not in exactly the same format).

I currently get my caller-id info from a NetCallerID box and use my own scripts to do something about it - in my case calls are announced by TTS if I'm home or email to my cell phone if I'm not. The script also sends a message out to Audrey's that are running ACID (caller id information is displayed on the screen).

I think I actually have a line in the script using message server to send a message to the computer I'm usually looking at, but it's commented out - the voice announcement and Audrey displays are enough.
YaC does exactly that, you can also use Girder to do this. Smee's suggestion is another good solution, but I might end up writing such a client anyways as I can use it for other stuff.

The YaC program is an actual server itself. This will probably cause problems because i want to get messages on my work computer and my work blocks almost all ports. You are right that YaC has all the features i want but i would much rather the client side simply check for updates every X amount of minutes. If you put the numbes into file and had the client side check the file every so often then it would have the same effect.

If your not home to answer the call then its kind of pointless to get notified in real time. So if you check the site every 10minutes automatically then you would be able to return the call within 10minutes sometimes less if you get lucky and the call is right before you check the file.

This could all probably be done using php on the server side and VB(preferably NET) on the client side. I dont have any experience with phone systems yet so my imagination is limited. What type of modem would you use with something like this? would you need to run homeseer phone or something like that?

Maybe you could have the client side talk with the server side with php to do stuff like store calls and delete calls from remote locations.
Well, if you want a client/server config and don't need it in absolute real-time, then you can do what I do and just email the CID info to myself. I send email to my email client and to my pager. Both are received very quickly, but my pager doesn't work in some locations in my office. Email avoids any firewall issues also.
A simple event that is triggered by OnCallerIdAvailable will send an email as real time as you can get circumventing a firewall.
your right that i could simply e-mail it to myself but there are a few things i don't like about this. I would have to check the e-mail to see its contents. The pop up that i currently have only shows the sender and subject. Also if i had a separate program, my fiancé could install it on her PC at work. She does not have one of the pop up things for her e-mail. Plus if the information is stored in a file then i could easily display that info on my website.

I keep saying file in favor of electrons preferences but i would prefer it be stored in a MySQL database. There are so many options out there as far as what modem to use i don't even know where to begin. maybe a separate thread breaking down each ones features would help new guys like myself decide which one to choose.
If you don't already have a modem that does caller id, the cheapest, easiest way to get started is to get a NetCallerID box. They run around $10 and connect to a serial port. You don't need HomeSeerPhone to use it. You can write your own scripts or use the WAF-NetCallerId script (see that section of the HS boards). I'm using scripts that I wrote.

You can use this to get the information into HS. Note that this is only telling HS the name/number of the caller - no message taking is involved with this box. I'm still using the standalone answering machine that I got 9 years ago (with the same message).

Once it's in HS, you can use anything to send it anywhere. Unless you want to do something completely standalone (not involving HS), most of the solutions suggested here will work from a script.

Don't worry if the ideal solution you're looking for doesn't exist yet. I think you should go ahead and buy one of these and start playing. You're thinking about it too much. :)

By the way, regarding email information - my apartment has it's own email address, so if I see the sender I know it's from the apartment. It's either a phone call, a security alert, or something similar. And, you can put the call information in the subject (you don't get very much from caller id so it should be a short subject: "Call 14:05 SomeName 123 555-1212").
I think your going to be hard pressed to find a way to popup anything at a work location due to firewall restrictions. We have a very liberal firewall but I still can not access a single ipaddress that is inside the firewall.
I've recommended the NetCallerID several times. Now, I've got a question.

Does anyone know a place that still has these? The old sources I knew about seem to be defunct (the web site isn't even there for one of them).

For those who don't know, these come from a company that no longer exists. They were essentially sold as surplus and were a very good deal.

i think your right about me thinking about it to much. The reason i keep thinking is because i dont have a phone line next to my pc yet. So with out the phone line there is no point of having a modem. I guess i will be wiring up a phone line this weekend. I also need to run some more receptacle outlets because i have to many things on one circuit.

I realize that i will not be able to direct connect with an ip to make something pup-up I know already that i can connect to my home web server so i was thinking that the pop up program could parse a file on the web in order to get the info it needs. The file could be written in php so that the program can send request for things such as search for a call on a certain date or search for a name beginning with the letter "A" you could delete messages from the file and more. If you use a SQL database it would allow for easier quering of the list and you would never have to delete callers because the database can hold a ton of information.

I will just follow what smee says and get a unit and start playing. I'v never done any scripting... Maybe someone can post a How-To with a example script to get me started.
OK, here's where I got mine:


It looks like they still have them for $6 with another $5 for shipping.

It turns out I couldn't find their web site because I was looking for the wrong one.
Well I came home and installed YAC and added an event to alert all listeners and it's works like a charm. Thanks again for the heads up guys.
Rupp said:
I think your going to be hard pressed to find a way to popup anything at a work location due to firewall restrictions. We have a very liberal firewall but I still can not access a single ipaddress that is inside the firewall.
i do this all the time. i establish an ssh connection between my work machine & home machine. i tunnel whatever ports i need through that ssh connection.

there's no need to send to a particular ip address. you ssh in to your home machine from work. let's say you need to forward port 48000 on your work machine to 49000 on your home machine. you set that up in your port forward list. on your home machine, you configure your app to send its message to "localhost:49000". the message from home will go to its own port 49000, but the ssh forwarding will kick in & send across to port 48000 on your work machine. whatever is listening on port 48000 at work will get the message...