Forked Recording

Forked Recording (SPANless Recording) is an active recording technology, available only on Cisco CallManager platforms newer than 5.0 and selected Cisco phone models.

Benefits of Forked Recording

Ease of use and management

  • Establish complex network architectures not depending on SPAN ports
  • Move or reconfigure complete departments with ease
  • Improve control over branch locations


  • Reduce OPEX with easier administration as no configuration of SPAN ports is necessary
  • Reduced CAPEX – need for fewer elements at the branches

Reliable and secure

  • Free-up resources for network monitoring
  • Increase reliability utilizing system resources better and more manageable
  • Security: Both authenticated and encrypted mode can never be recorded.
  • Geo redundancy available with high bandwidth utilization


  • Internal calls recording = RSPAN, VLAN split to meet SPAN capacity
  • Cisco plans support for CUCM 8.x
  • Built-in support of recording notification tones

How does it work?

The Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) interface provides two recording modes:

  • Automatic recording recording all calls on line appearance. This method is invoked by CUCM.
  • Selective recording allowing users to record ad-hoc or also allows recording server to record based on business rules and events.

After calling-in and routing the call to an agent CUCM automatically sends two call setup messages to the Agent device. The 1st call is the agent stream and the 2nd call is customer stream. The Communications Manager invites the recorder to both calls via SIP Trunk and the recorder accepts both calls and receives RTP streams from Agent device.

Forked recording requires:

Usage notes

Usage of a SPANless configuration will bring major benefits as long as the following requirements and notes are taken into account:

  • The expected increase of network traffic
  • For PSTN recording only GW span works as simple trunk recording
  • TAP switches are able to handle high traffic in large architectures with centralized GW
  • Only 3rd generation phones are supported
  • There is no support for active-active redundancy
  • Interruptions in recording may occur if a failure occurs during the call
  • If the WAN capacity is limited, redundant recording may be refused (due to automated network intelligence)

Further reading:

Configuration Steps

In the Capture / PBXs page, the Forked Recording wizard button appears only when the PBX type is Cisco CallManager, version is greater or equal than 5.0 and the Forked Recording Protocol is selected in the PBX options. In this case other recording protocols should be disabled.
Click the button labeled Forked Recording to start the configuration wizard.



1. The following configuration wizard utility will be shown. Fill in the CUCM user name with AXL rights, and password. Press Connect button.



2. In the next page leave all the fields unchanged unless instructed by technical support. The Phone Service IP address must be routable from the phones' VLAN.  Press Next button.



 3. Here you must select the correct CallManager Group, Recorder Extension for CallReplay, the IP address of the CallReply recorder ( also needs to be routable from a phone's IP address ), CSS and Device Pool for recorded phones, Security Profile, SIP port of Callreplay ( Syn-Apps' SA-Announce also uses a SIP trunk so make sure in that case to select another port, such as 5061 ) and the RTP port range used by CallReplay for receiving audio streams. The recorder extension must have the same number of digits as recorded extensions. Press Next button.



 4. Here you have a list of a phones to manage. Check all phones to record under Record column. Similarly for Service check box. When that check-box is selected, the phone will be subscribed to CallReplay Phone Service (see step 2), which will become available on the Service button (on the phone). Thus we can control recording and monitoring independently for each phone. You can filter phones by Selected / Unselected (record or service) or by typing some text to search in all columns. Checking Force Full reconfiguration will update all phones with current shown configuration, otherwise only changed ones will be updated.


Press Next button and the selection will be processed. The status of processing will be shown.


Press Finish button to close the wizard configuration utility.

Cisco CallManager - alternative configuration for Forked Recording

We recommend the usage of CallReplay Forked wizard for configuring your Cisco CallManager. But if you do not want to use this feature follow these steps to prepare your Cisco CallManager for recording.

1. Recording phones using forked

You need to create by hand an application user - CallReplay, a new SIP profile - CallReplay SIP profile, a recording profile - CallReplay recording profile and a new trunk - CallReplay_SIP_trunk.

CallReplay Application User

In CallManager site administration go to User Management > Application User. Press Add New button and fill in the text fields as follow:
    Application User Information
        User ID*CallReplay
        Confirm Passwordpassword
        Presence Group*: select Standard Presence group
    Device Information
        Add from the list of Available Devices to the list of Controlled Devices the phones who will be recorded.
        If you use EM profiles then add from "Available Profiles" list to the "CTI Controlled Device Profiles" list the EM profiles who will be recorded.
    Permissions Information
        Groups: press Add to User Group button and in list shown subscribe to the following groups: Standard CTI EnabledStandard CTI Allow CallRecordingStandard CTI Allow Control of Phones supporting Connected Xfer and conf and Standard CTI Allow Control of Phones supporting Rollover Mode

Press Save button to create the application user.

CallReplay SIP profile

In CallManager site administration go to Device > Device Settings > SIP Profile. Press Add New button and fill in the Name* with value CallReplay SIP profile. Save the changes

CallReplay recording profile    

In CallManager site administration go to Device > Device Settings > Recording Profile. Press Add New button and fill in the text fields as follow:
    Name*CallReplay recording profile
    Recording Calling Search Space: select a CSS
    Recording Destination Address*: xxx - the extension used by CallRecorder. The value must be an unasigned EXT and having the same number of digits as recorded extensions. If extensions in your network have 3 digits then this value must have 3 digits too.

Save the changes.

CallReplay SIP trunk

In CallManager site administration go to Device > Trunk and press Add New button to define a new trunk. Fill in the text fields:
    Device Information
        Device Name*CallReplay_SIP_trunk_xx.xx.xx.xx where xx.xx.xx.xx is the IP of CallRecorder server.
        Device Pool*: select the device pool where the recorded phones are registered
    SIP information
        Destination Address: the IP of the CallRecorder server
        Destination Port: the port where CallRecorder is listening ( default value 5061 )
        SIP Trunk Security Profile*: select security profile accordingly
        SIP Profile*: select CallReplay SIP profile ( created  before )

Save the changes.

2. Subscribe phones to the CallReplay Call Recorder Phone Service

Create CallReplay Call Recorder phone service

In CallManager site administration go to Device > Device Settings > Phone Services and press Add New button to define a new phone service. Fill in the text fields as follow:
    Service Name*CallReplay Call Recorder
    ASCII Service Name*CallReplay Call Recorder
    Service DescriptionCallReplay Call Recorder
    Service URLhttp://IP:PORT/CallRecorder/phoneService ( you can get these values from CallReplay Site Configuration );
    Service Category*: select XML Service
    Service Type*: select Standard IP Phone Service        

Save the changes.

Subscribe devices

In CallManager site administration go to Device > Phone and perform the following operations: 
    -select a device;
    -select from Related Links dropdown list option Subscribe/Unsubscribe Service and press Go button;
    -in the new windows select CallReplay Call Recorder service
    -press Next and after that Subscribe button;
    -close the window;
After the phone reset the CallReplay Phone Service becomes available for use.