Tag Archives: voip

SSH and power settings on a ShoreTel 480g

Ever since deploying our new ShoreTel 480g phones I have been noticing that the 480g screens both dim after some time and go blank during certain times of day.

Our company has certain departments that are open from 08:00 to 21:00 which was interfering with this “sleep schedule” so I turned to the ShoreTel 14.2 Maintenance Guide because I had previously read somewhere that you could change the screen dimming on the phones. It turns out that there are default hours where the phone does go to sleep (outside the hours of 06:00 to 19:00 as long as the phone has been idle).

I wanted to check the current settings on the phones so I attempted to SSH into my phone. Connecting successfully was somewhat challenging but I was able to log in after a few minutes of searching the Internet and some help from our ShoreTel partner.

Whenever I typed in anonymous (the default ShoreTel user name for most things) to log in to the phone’s IP address I would get an error:

The fatal error from PuTTY
The fatal error from PuTTY

So I found that I should use the private key from my ShoreTel Director server in order to authenticate with the phone.

This private key is located in Shoreline Data\keystore\ssh and the file name is hq_rsa – you will also see the public key there hq_rsa.pub. I tried this key but it did not work.

I made a copy of the private key and used PuTTYgen to convert the key to something PuTTY could use, then browsed to that key in PuTTY Configuration | Connection | SSH | Auth | Authentication parameters. After connecting again, I could log in but this time as “admin” instead of anonymous.

Once logged in I ran the command getcfg power:

Default power values for the ShoreTel 480g
Default power values for the ShoreTel 480g

This gave me the current (default) power values on the 480g. My phones go idle after 5 minutes and sleep after 60 (as long as it is not 06:00-19:00 Mon-Fri).

I ended up creating a custom phone config file which only my phone would download in order to test some new settings. The template for the custom phone config file is C:\inetpub\ftproot\phoneconfig\custom_MAC.txt

My file name was custom_00104936d06c.txt

The text file was initially blank but I added the following parameters which I pulled from the Maintenance Guide:

idleBrightness (the intensity of the phone backlight when the phone is idle)
idleTimeout (the number of minutes without key presses or calls before the backlight dims)
sleepTimeout (the number of minutes without key presses or calls before the phone goes to sleep – screen turns off)
sleepInhibitStartTime (the beginning time of day when sleep is prevented)
sleepInhibitStopTime (the end time of day when sleep is prevented)

The contents of custom_00104936d06c.txt after editing (for testing purposes):

# Please consult Shoreline support before editing or deleting this file
[power]
idleTimeout=1
idleBrightness=50
sleepTimeout=5
sleepInhibitStartTime=18:00
sleepInhibitStopTime=21:15

So outside the hours of 18:00 to 21:15 this would cause the backlight to dim 50% after 1 minute and cause the screen to turn off after 5 minutes.

In order to apply this, I saved the file and rebooted the phone. Then I connected with a new PuTTY session and ran getcfg power again to see the new values:

My test power settings
My test power settings

Now my phone’s screen will dim after 1 minute of being idle, and it will sleep after 5 minutes of being idle.

After doing this testing I changed the parameters to match what the organization would need to use. After verifying that the settings applied successfully, I then changed the custom_IP480g.txt file to match. The only thing left was to reboot all phones for the settings to take effect.

The final config:

# Please consult Shoreline support before editing or deleting this file
[power]
idleTimeout=15
idleBrightness=10
sleepTimeout=30
sleepInhibitStartTime=07:45
sleepInhibitStopTime=21:15

Final custom power settings for 480g
Final custom power settings for 480g