It is possible to tell mgetty to answer the phone even if it is not
ringing (I call this “virtual rings”). Just send mgetty a signal
SIGUSR1, this is usually done with ‘kill -USR1
<mgetty-pid>’. Mgetty will then pick up the phone and try to make a
If you have a normal fax machine connected to the fax modem, it should be possible to have that fax machine dial any digit (to turn off the dial tone), and then have mgetty answer the phone to receive the “incoming” fax, thus using the fax machine as scanner without paying for a call. For a description of an sample setup (thanks, caz!), please see doc/scanner.txt.
Whether it works may depend on your phone company’s setup, but it should.
If you have a modem that has a ‘data/voice’ button, it should also be possible to hit that button to make the modem pick up the phone. Mgetty will automatically notice that and handle it properly. (I’ve tested this only with ZyXELs - could somebody else please test this with other modem types and send me a logfile? Thanks)