Testing Modem Caller ID Support with HyperTerminal

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You can use HyperTerminal to test (or verify) the modem's caller id functionality.


Note: HyperTerminal should be included with Windows XP, but it may not be installed.  HyperTerminal is not included with Windows Vista or Windows 7.  For those versions of Windows, you can either download a trial version of HyperTerminal or use another terminal emulation program, such as as Putty.


1) Start HyperTerminal (usually found in Programs | Accessories | Communications | HyperTerminal on the Start menu)

If you can't find it, it may not be installed.  Go to the "Add/Remove Programs" control panel, click on "Add/Remove Windows Components", locate the  HyperTerminal option (it may be under the "Communications" group), and install it.


2) In the "Connection Description" window, enter a name (perhaps "Direct to modem") and click OK


3) In the "Connect To" window, for the "Connect using" option, select the port your modem is connected to.  (For internal modems, this is often COM2.)  If you don't know which one, you can try each one until you get a response to the "AT" modem command.


4) Click the "OK" button to close the "Connect To" window


5) In the "Port Settings" window, you can probably leave the settings as they are, but "ideal" settings would be something like:

"Bits per second" - 57600

"Data bits" - 8

"Parity" - None

"Stop bits" - 1

"Flow control" - Hardware


6) Click OK to close the "Port Settings" window


7) Type "AT" (without the quotes) in the main window, and press RETURN

The modem should respond with "OK".  If you don't see "OK", either the port or the settings are probably wrong.  Start again from step 1.


8) Type the command to enable caller id on your modem.  This may be specified in the modem documentation, or on the manufacturers website.  My modem (and many others) use "AT#CID=1" (without the quotes).  Press RETURN after the command.  (If you don't know the command to enable caller id on your modem, you can try each of the following until the modem responds with "OK"):







If the modem responds with "OK", then the modem should be configured to handle caller information.  Proceed to step 9.

If the modem responds with "ERROR" or something similar, then the command is probably incorrect, or your modem doesn't support caller id.  You can try the other known commands to enable caller id (listed above).  Or, you can check the manufacturer website, or search the web and newsgroups using Google (http://www.google.com) for web searches, or Google Groups (http://groups.google.com) for newsgroup searches.


9) Receive a phone call, letting it ring at least twice.  The modem should respond with something like:


DATE = 0309

TIME = 1800


NMBR = 8005551212


In this case, the modem is reporting the caller information, and Ascendis Caller ID should work.  If it doesn't, you can view the Windows modem log to further narrow the problem.  One possible reason why Ascendis Caller ID doesn't get the caller information when the above test works as expected is that Windows isn't enabling caller id on the modem.  You can do this manually by entering the modem initialization command (used in step 8, minus the initial "AT") in the "Extra initialization commands" field of the Advanced tab of the modem properties window, reached through the modem control panel.  For detailed instructions, see Enabling Caller ID Support on your Modem.


If you get a line that starts with:


then Windows probably won't understand it.  This happens because some phone companies send the caller information in an unexpected format.  Ascendis Caller ID may not work in this case, since it depends entirely on Windows (and TAPI) to decode the caller information.  I have seen reports that a version of the Sportster modem can convert this type of caller information into the expected type, but I don't know the model number and I haven't seen this for myself.  Otherwise, you may have luck with a different caller id program, as some talk to the modem directly (which means you can't use the modem for anything else while the caller id program is running).


If you get something like:







then your modem is not reporting the caller information.  This could be because your modem does not support caller id, or because your modem's caller id support is not enabled.  You can try the other strings listed in step 8), or scour any available documentation on your modem, or the internet.  However, if, in step 8), the modem responded with "OK", then you probably have the correct string.  In this case, either your phone line does not have caller id enabled (this can be tested with a hardware caller id device), or the modem does not support caller id.  The latter is possible even if, in step 8), the modem responded with "OK", since many modems use the same firmware regardless of whether the modem contains the appropriate caller id hardware.  In other words, many modems don't know whether they have caller id support!