Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express System Administrator Guide
Configuring Headset Auto-Answer
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Table of Contents

Configuring Headset Auto-Answer


Information About Headset Auto-Answer

Auto-Answering Calls Using a Headset

Difference Between a Line and a Button

How to Configure Headset Auto-Answer

Headset Auto-Answer

Verifying Headset Auto-Answer

Configuration Examples for Headset Auto-answer

Additional References

Related Documents

Technical Assistance

Feature Information for Headset Auto-Answer

Configuring Headset Auto-Answer

This chapter describes the headset auto-answer feature in Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express (Cisco Unified CME).

Finding Feature Information in This Module

Your Cisco Unified CME version may not support all of the features documented in this module. For a list of the versions in which each feature is supported, see the “Feature Information for Headset Auto-Answer” section.

Information About Headset Auto-Answer

To enable the Headset Auto-Answer feature, you should understand the following concepts:

Auto-Answering Calls Using a Headset

In Cisco Unified CME 4.0 and later versions you can configure lines on specific phones to automatically connect to incoming calls when the headset key is activated. The phone cannot be busy with an active call and the headset key must be engaged to automatically answer calls. Incoming calls are automatically answered one by one on the phone as long as the headset light remains lit. For each ephone, you can specify one or more lines for headset auto-answer.

After a phone is configured for headset auto-answer, the phone user must press the headset key to start auto-answer. The headset light is lit to indicate that auto-answer is active for the lines that are designated in the configuration. When the phone auto-answers a call, a zip tone is played to alert the phone user that a call is present. To stop auto-answer, the phone user presses the headset key again and the headset light goes out. At this time, the phone user can answer calls in a normal manner using the handset.

Difference Between a Line and a Button

Note that a line is similar to, but not exactly the same as, a button on the phone. A line represents a phone’s capability to make a call connection, so each button that can make a call connection becomes a line. (For example, unoccupied buttons or speed-dial buttons are not lines.) Note also that a line is not the same as an ephone-dn. A button with overlaid ephone-dns is only one line, regardless of whether it has several ephone-dns (extension numbers) associated with it. In most cases an ephone’s line numbers do match its button numbers, but in a few cases they do not.

Figure 25-1 illustrates a comparison of line numbers and button numbers for different types of ephone configurations.

Figure 25-1 When is a Line the Same as a Button?


How to Configure Headset Auto-Answer

This section contains the following tasks:

Headset Auto-Answer

To enable headset auto-answer, perform the following steps.


1. enable

2. configure terminal

3. ephone phone-tag

4. headset auto-answer line line-number

5. end


Command or Action

Step 1



Router> enable

Enables privileged EXEC mode.

  • Enter your password if prompted.

Step 2

configure terminal


Router# configure terminal

Enters global configuration mode.

Step 3

ephone phone-tag


Router(config)# ephone 25

Enters ephone configuration mode.

  • phone-tag —Unique sequence number that identifies this ephone during configuration tasks. The maximum number of ephones for a particular Cisco Unified CME system is version- and platform-specific. For the range of values, see the CLI help.

Step 4

headset auto-answer line line-number


Router(config-ephone)# headset auto-answer line 1

Specifies a line on an ephone that will be answered automatically when the headset button is depressed.

  • line-number —Number of the phone line that should be automatically answered.

Note Repeat this command to add additional lines.

Step 5



Router(config-ephone)# end

Returns to privileged EXEC mode.

Verifying Headset Auto-Answer

Step 1 Use the show running-config command to verify your configuration. Headset auto-answer is listed in the ephone portion of the output.

Router# show running-config

ephone 1

headset auto-answer line 1

headset auto-answer line 2

headset auto-answer line 3

headset auto-answer line 4

username "Front Desk"

mac-address 011F.92B0.BE03

speed-dial 1 330 label “Billing”

type 7960 addon 1 7914

no dnd feature-ring


button 1f40 2f41 3f42 4:30

button 5:405 7m20 8m21 9m22

button 10m23 11m24 12m25 13m26

button 14m499 15:1 16m31 17f498

button 18s500

night-service bell

Step 2 Use the show telephony-service ephone command to display only the ephone configuration portion of the running configuration.


Configuration Examples for Headset Auto-answer

The following example enables headset auto-answer on ephone 3 for line 1 (button 1) and line 4 (button 4).

ephone 3

button 1:2 2:4 3:6 4o21,22,23,24,25

headset auto-answer line 1

headset auto-answer line 4

The following example enables headset auto-answer on ephone 17 for line 2 (button 2), which has overlaid ephone-dns, and line 3 (button 3), which is an overlay rollover line.

ephone 17

button 1:2 2o21,22,23,24,25 3x2

headset auto-answer line 2

headset auto-answer line 3

The following example enables headset auto-answer on ephone 25 for line 2 (button 3) and line 3 (button 5). In this case, the button numbers do not match the line numbers because buttons 2 and 4 are not used.

ephone 25

button 1:2 3:4 5:6

headset auto-answer line 2

headset auto-answer line 3

Additional References

The following sections provide references related to Cisco Unified CME features.

Technical Assistance


The Cisco Support website provides extensive online resources, including documentation and tools for troubleshooting and resolving technical issues with Cisco products and technologies.

To receive security and technical information about your products, you can subscribe to various services, such as the Product Alert Tool (accessed from Field Notices), the Cisco Technical Services Newsletter, and Really Simple Syndication (RSS) Feeds.

Access to most tools on the Cisco Support website requires a user ID and password.

Feature Information for Headset Auto-Answer

Table 25-1 lists the features in this module and enhancements to the features by version.

To determine the correct Cisco IOS release to support a specific Cisco Unified CME version, see the Cisco Unified CME and Cisco IOS Software Version Compatibility Matrix at

Use Cisco Feature Navigator to find information about platform support and software image support. Cisco Feature Navigator enables you to determine which Cisco IOS software images support a specific software release, feature set, or platform. To access Cisco Feature Navigator, go to An account on is not required.

Note Table 25-1 lists the Cisco Unified CME version that introduced support for a given feature. Unless noted otherwise, subsequent versions of Cisco Unified CME software also support that feature.


Table 25-1 Feature Information for Headset Auto-Answer

Feature Name
Cisco Unified CME
Feature Information

Headset Auto-Answer


Headset auto-answer was introduced.