[Gllug] Caller ID on a POTS line

Benjamin Donnachie benjamin at py-soft.co.uk
Sat Jan 22 12:19:38 UTC 2011

On 20 January 2011 15:24, general_email at technicalbloke.com
<general_email at technicalbloke.com> wrote:
>> I think you might be about twenty years too late!  There's a chance
>> that I may have a full copy of minibox with diagrams saved somewhere -
> Thanks Ben :)

Whoa!  What a blast from the past...  Found the source code for my old
GE_Bad, GE_Bad2 and NetRAP Fidonet utilities!  Along with a host of
documents I wrote under OS/2 - I love this line from my overly
complicated key file system from 1995: "As this key file system is
easily expandable, a new generation is not foreseen for a very long
time"; more to the point, I'd discover open source and give up on
licence keys! :)

Good news is I also found the caller ID documents and have uploaded
them to http://rapidshare.com/files/443922146/CID.tar.gz  I've copied
the construction document below; Maplin no longer stock the RC2211N
FSK DECODER but if you're really determined you should be able to get
hold of one or something similar.

Good luck! :)


                +                                                 +
                +      Mini Box v1.3 Construction Plans           +
                +      Revision date: 1/12/94                     +
                +                                                 +

Created by...

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                        Version 1.3


        For ideas of new projects, bugreports, slagg offs and developments
I can be contacted on the following BBS`s:

Urban XTC (Online 10pm - 8am):              +44-1225-314269
Orbital   (24hrs)                           +44-181-372 2511

Feel free to contact me if ya need help or just wanna chat a bit!!!

                        General Info

        The Mini-Box is a hardware project realised by me (Mini Master).
This is the first version of the hardware and software so expect some bugs!

    The Mini-Box is intended to plug in to a BT fone line and in to your
computers serial port. Its function is to decode the caller ID information
that is sent by BT before the fone rings. YOU MUST SUBSCRIBE TO THE BT

        The software included is for the PC and was written in Tpascal 7,
but the hardware will work with ANY computer that has an RS232 serial port.
The AMIGA version of the software will be released just as soon as I get
round to writing it (unless any one wants to do it b4 me).

        It is ILLEGAL to connect this device up to you fone line but I cant
stop you! If BT do start complaining go ahead say Mini Master told you to
do it ;)

        The hardware consists of a small singlesided PCB and requires an
external supply of 5V. This can be obtained from a small DC power pack or
(what I did) took it directly from my computers internal 5V rail, I
connected it to a spare drive connector.

        Building the box is a very simple task if you can get access to a
UV exposure box and an etching tank. If you don`t know what the fuck these
are or don`t feel confident get some 1 who has experience to do it for you.
it should take around an hour or less to construct.


                        Part List for MiniBox v1.00:

No:        Description:                     Maplin Order code:
==         ============                     ==================
1          LM386 OP-AMP                         UJ37S
1          RC2211N FSK DECODER                  QY43W
1          MAX232CPE TTL-RS232 CONVERTER        FD92A

1          600OHM 600OHM 1:1 LINE XFORMER       *****
1          BT LINE CORD AND PLUG                FG29G
1          9PIN-D FEMALE (FOR SERIAL PORT)      RK61R

5          22uF 35V CAPACITORS                  YY36P
1          1uF CAPACITOR (NON POLOR)            WW53H
3          0.1uF CAP (NON POLOR)                BX76H
1          0.027uF CAP                          WW34M
1          100uF 25V CAPACITOR                  RA55K
1          470uF 16V CAPACITOR                  FB72P
1          6.8nF        CAP                     WW27E
1          2.2nF        CAP                     WX36P
1          470pF        CAP                     WX64U

1          4K7 PRESET                           UH02C
1          10K PRESET                           UH03D
1          47K PRESET                           UH05F

1          510K .6W RESISTOR                    M510K
1          100K .6W RESISTOR                    M100K
1          5K1  .6W RESISTOR                    M5K1
1          18K  .6W RESISTOR                    M18K
1          43K  .6W RESISTOR                    M43K
1          510K .6W RESISTOR                    M510K

2          12V ZENNER DIODES                    QF55K

           PHOTORESIST PCB                      BW19V

        Maplins do not sell .25W resistors in singles so I have had to put
the .6W metal resistors, which are a little more expensive.

        The transformer is harder to get, the one Maplins do is quite big
and expensive. The one I used is from RS, it is a PCB mount one and is
about 3 quid. The Maplins one should work OK but you will need to take the
connections off the mother board.

        The RS order code for the transformer I used is 208-822. This can
either be bought from RS (you need an account) or from ElectroMail on 0536

        I don`t vouch for the above stock codes. I just typed this, I dont
know the price it will come to, I used bits I had lying around.

                        BUILDING THE MOTHER BOARD

        Before you do this call BT on 150 and ask them to put Caller
Display on your line, if they ask you what box u want say you going to
choose one at your local BT shop. This service costs a few quid a month.

        This is the hardest part, if you fuck up on this then the whole lot
won`t work! Take the file from the PCB directory that suits your printer
then copy it to your printer port (for me I`d type TYPE 9PDMP.LPT>lpt1)

The printer files are in the PCB directory they are:


        Having got that PCB printout
make the mask and expose your PCB with it and drill all the holes.
        You may want to make the TP`s, the presets and BT line side
slightly larger (1MM) to take PCB pins or pots.
 Now comes the fun part ;)


        Right, seeing as there are soo many different sizes of capacitors
you may need to fart about getting them to fit in the assigned spaces, your
hassles. Solder in all the components from the layout picture and now your
ready to test it!  Dont forget 'LK' which is a straight link...


        OK, connect the power pins to your 5V supply, it should draw a few
mA`s and nothing should start smoking. Connect a speaker/headphones between
TP1 (ground) and TP2 (the output of the 386). Connect your BT line, pins 2

and 5 to the box's line side. Pickup your telephone with

the MiniBox pluged in as well and you should hear the dialtone from both
the fone and the box`s speaker. If you don`t adjust the 47K pot and the 10K
pot (the 47K being BT line control and the 10K being the amp`s gain
control), if you still get nothing check all soldering/board etc.

        With all being well check with a meter or scope between TP1 and TP3
(the 211`s output) blow down you fone and you should see the output jumping
about quite fast between 5V and 0V. If not turn up the 10K pot until you
can see things happening. If you get nothing recheck the components etc.
around the 211 IC.

        Now the final stage, check the output if the MAX232CPE by putting
your meter between TP1 and the o/p pin, it should read either +10V or -10V
and should jump around if you blow down the fone.

        If that works OK then, Congratulations you should have a working
MiniBox, that wasn`t too hard was it?

        Right connect the MAX232`s output (pin o/p this is marked on the

overlay picture ) to pin 2 of a 9pin D.  Finally connect Pin 5 of the Dplug

to the box`s ground (0V or TP1).

        Plug it all in and load up you favourite comms package. You will
need to set the serial settings to 1200, no flow control. Get some 1 to
dial you and before the fone rings you should have a short string on your
display, with the time/date and the fone number jumbled up. It is quite
normal too have random characters appearing when you are talking etc. If
things dont seem to be right then recheck everything especially around the
211, if all else fails try to get in touch with me and I`ll see what I can do.
        OK as requested by Oracle a list of the TP's.. These are just test

points and you dont need to worry about them too much....

        TP1 :   GROUND




                        The software

        At the moment its really quite basic, the command format is as

                MINI.EXE {LOG_FILE_NAME} {ONCE}

        If no parameters are given the software will open a screen and
displays just the time, date, fone number or the reason it was absent.

        If a logfile is given then the output will be appended to the file,
if it exists. If the file cannot be found it will create it. This could be
quite useful if you run a BBS, the logfile could be your BBS`s log file so
the number of the caller is put before he/she starts to login.

        If a log file is given and the command ONCE is put after the
logfile name the program will run once and quit, this is designed with
SYSTEM X (PC bbs s/ware) in mind. The Mini.exe is added to the script that
launches the BBS and will allow the BBS to be loaded after the program has

        I came across a few problems, the first is the MiniBox software
doesnt like being run while you are USING a modem on the same line, it gets
stacked with crap data. I dont see this to be too much of a problem as
you'll need to be using 2 computers.

        Occasionally, VERY occasionally the data will get corrupted while
being tx`d by BT and the message will not be complete. The s/ware has a
little integral watch dog that time-out after a while of no data coming
through. I had to use a counter for this so the time it takes to time-out
will vary with the CPU you have and your clockrate. On my 486sx33 it is
around 9 seconds. This could easily be extended to a minute on a slow
machine like a 286.

        The s/ware only recognises the VOICE call type, this is OK as ALL
calls are classified as voice calls at the moment. If any other call types
are introduced then the s/ware will need to be updated.

        If you come across some weird call type the current s/ware
doesn't recognise then use the following command.

        Mini.exe {a logfile name} DEBUG

        Copy down the data that this through up and try to send it to me
so I can update the program.


        I`m always looking for things to design so if you have any ideas on
what I should design next mail me on the following BBS. Also I`m no
programmer and if any one wants to write a better version then get in touch
I`ll send you my source code and loads of other data is ya need it.

        OK, now a few greets in no order at all:

Meeko : What can I say??!!??! Without the plans for your box this project
would never work. Kewl BBS, and cheers for the PSU!

Horror Kid : Another great BBS - cheers, for the PC stuff.

Pascal : Says he`s going to write a DECENT version of the MINIBOX s/ware.

Bob da God : Kewl guy - have fun with the plastic ;)

Blackthorn : Hey, what about an IRC chat?

Photon : R u still calling out?

Pink Floyd : CAll us some time

Fagg Butt : Get your BBS back up :)




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