The voice extensions for the mgetty+sendfax package
Copyright (C) 1995, 1997 Marc Eberhard.
Beginners guide
Writen by F.Xavier SURBEZY
(please email me corrections, additional informations ...)


1. Compile and install mgetty. See the instructions for mgetty how to do that.

2. Compile vgetty. There should be nothing special to do. Just type "make" from within the voice directory. If you managed it to compile mgetty, you should be able to compile vgetty without any problems. If not, please mail me your problems.

3. Do "make install" as root from within the voice directory. Since you are always concerned about hackers, wanting to overtake your system, you will first do a "make -n install" to see all the evil things, the installation procedure will do.


1. Copy the file voice.conf-dist to the same directory as all the mgetty config files. Rename it from voice.conf-dist to voice.conf. This file contain the description of the vgetty config option ... so read it.

2. Replace the invocation of mgetty in your /etc/inittab with vgetty if there is one. If there is no mgetty invocation you just have to insert a line like that: "S1:345:respawn:/usr/local/sbin/vgetty ttyxx" in your /etc/inittab file. (like that vgetty is running at runlevels 3 4 and 5 see inittab(5) man page for more)

3. The vgetty logfiles are by default in /var/log/vgetty.ttyxx.log and the vm logfile is in /var/log/vm.log. Read these files if you have problems, they are quite readable and give you many hints, where the problem is. If you want to see more details in the logfile, increase the debug level in your voice.conf file to the highest possible value.

4. Be sure to make the voice_dir directories specified in your voice.conf file (e.g., /var/spool/voice, /var/spool/voice/incoming and /var/spool/voice/messages).

5. Record your gretting message. There are many ways to do that :

a. Using vm :
record your message with "vm record file_name". This can be done using internal microphone or local handset (type vm to see options)

b. Using an already recorded voice file :
you just have to convert your sound file in the modem expected format using the pvf tools.
Eg : convert a voc file to Rockwell (compression type 4) format voctopvf file.voc | pvftormd Rockwell 4 > file.rmd

(Replace Rockwell by what you need type pvftormd -h for detail)

6. Make vgetty use your message
You must add the name of your file in the gretting messages index file (/var/spool/voice/messages/Index by default). See message_list in voice.conf for more.

Using vgetty

Once you've rebooted vgetty is lauched at init and will answer incoming call. Incoming messages are stored in receive_dir (see voice.conf)

1. playing incoming messages

a. using vm :
play the message with "vm play file_name" (type vm to see options)

b. using audio card and sox :
rmdtopvf file.rmd | pvfspeed -s 8000 | pvftobasic > /dev/audio (see rmdtopvf -h and rmdtopvf -L for more)