[K12OSN] Linux Bell system

Jim Kronebusch jim at winonacotter.org
Wed Nov 9 20:16:53 UTC 2005

I saw the post last week about using linux for a school bell system.  My main
school uses 14 different bell schedules which has always been a nightmare. 
The bell system in place only handles 4 so on the other schedules there have
been no bells and teachers/students just have to be mindful of the clock. 
Also the bell  system needs to be set every day manually (this sucks).

So this prompted some thought on my part.  I now have a bell system from a
linux box that I can program for months ahead of time and automatically
switches my schedules daily.  I can also do unlimited bell tones.  For example
the first tone of the day can announce the schedule for that day, or I can
swap tones for holidays and such.  This is awesome.  If anyone would like
examples of the scripts for this let me know.  Basically I did a minimal
install of FC4 on a desktop machine with a sound card.  I hooked the sound
card to the current receiver that played the old bell system.  The set up a
series of cron files for the root user, one for each bell schedule.  Then I
set up a series of scripts that will cycle out the current cron script for
root with one for the current bell schedule.  I program the cron cycle scripts
ahead of time with webmins task scheduler.  So under /var/spool/cron/ I have a
series of files named root.schedulename.  Each of these files have a listing
of the times for every bell chime.  Then under /root I have a series of files
named with "schedulename".  These files are executable scripts that simply
move /var/spool/cron/root.schedulename to /var/spool/cron/root.  Under /root I
have bell.wav.  I can swap bell.wav with any wav file for the bell sound.  I
call on bell.wav at the specific times with the command "play /root/bell.wav".

This is cool.  Thanks for the ideas everyone!

I now have the next 2 months of bells scheduled, and I can fully control them
from home if I need to with webmin!

Jim Kronebusch
Cotter Tech Department

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by the Cotter Technology 
Department, and is believed to be clean.

More information about the K12OSN mailing list