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How to build your own CallGenie Appliance

CallGenie Software

We are getting a lot of interest from customers outside the UK, particularly from the US, wanting to buy a CallGenie appliance. Unfortunately, Smart Life Solutions doesn’t currently ship fully configured CallGenie appliances to customers outside the UK. However, this post details how to build your own CallGenie appliance using parts readily available on e-commerce sites such as Amazon.

Even though we need you to purchase the hardware yourself and set up the mini PC, Smart Life Solutions will support you through every step in the process to get your CallGenie Appliance running for the end user. We do, however, ask that you are reasonably computer literate and you know what a USB port and an HDMI cable are.

Shopping List

Building your own CallGenie appliance isn’t that hard if you have some basic understanding of PCs and are happy to shop online for the hardware required. The following is a list of components we recommend for customers in the US and it will show everyone else what’s required so you can source the hardware in your own country.

It includes the following items:

  • Mini PC with Auto Power On capability
  • Webcam(connects via USB)
  • HDMI-CEC adapter(connects via USB)
  • Infrared receiver/transmitter (connects via USB)
  • CallGenie Software

CallGenie Parts List for the US

Smart Life Solutions will provide you with a Hardware Installation Guide to help you attach all the peripherals. Any driver software required will be installed by Smart Life Solutions at the same time as the CallGenie Software is installed.

Setting Up the Mini PC

Once you have all the hardware in place we just need you to connect the mini PC to a monitor or television and attach a keyboard or mouse. If you don’t have a keyboard and mouse handy you might consider buying a Logitech K400+ Touchpad Keyboard.

Ideally, you should connect the mini PC to the internet using an ethernet cable. If that’s not possible you will be prompted during the Windows setup process to connect to WiFi.

The mini PCs we specify run Windows 10 Pro, so you will need to set up the mini PC for personal use. Early on in the setup process you will be prompted to create a Microsoft account which doubles up as the Skype account for the end user.

Install latest Windows Updates

Once the mini PC has completed the setup process, you should login as the end user and you will need to load the latest Windows 10 Updates. The easiest way to do this is to follow the link below (replace the “en-gb” in link with the correct language for your country, e.g. “en-us”, “de”, “es”, “fr”, “it”, “pt” etc):

Install Windows 10 Update

This may take a couple of hours.

Finally, we will ask you to install the remote access software we use. We will provide you a link to this after you purchase the CallGenie Software.

Installation Service

The remainder of the installation and configuration can be performed by Smart Life Solutions via the remote access software.

If you prefer to do the installation yourself, please use the following instructions.

Self-Installation Instructions

Pre-requisite Software

The following software needs to be installed on the mini PC for CallGenie to work:

Requesting a Software License

Once you have placed an order for CallGenie Software, you may request your software licence which will be sent to you in an email. We will need the MAC address of your mini PC’s ethernet adapter before we can generate the license key.

Configuring CallGenie with the End User’s Television

As with the CallGenie appliances supplied in the UK, Smart Life Solutions will support you remotely to install and configure the appliance to work with the end-user’s television.