It doesn’t come up often but occasionally you’ll find your phones aren’t getting the right information from your network’s time server. Some partners will set up the ShoreTel server as the SNTP server for your phones. I’ve been told this isn’t great practice anymore.
Your network may not be set up in a way that makes using DHCP to pass your phones settings to them possible. This means you have to manually place all your settings in each phone right? Actually no. Some settings that are the same across all phones can be assigned with those text files on your ShoreTel FTP server.
One of those settings is which SNTP Server to use. You have to do this for each specific model of phone you use. I’ll show how to do this for a 230 phone and then share how to figure out which file goes to which kind of phone. I believe this can be done for a specific phone as well, but newer versions of ShoreTel may have changed this.
Fair warning. You can mess some settings up if you get this wrong. It’s not a bad idea to back up your C:\inetpub\ftp\root directory.
Step 1 – Log Into your ShoreTel server.
Step 2 – Open the folder C:\inetpub\ftproot – Back this folder up.
Step 3 – Look for a text file called “sevcustom.txt”
Step 4 – Add the line:” SntpServer [IP Address of NTP Server]” without the quotes. The IP address of the NTP server can be the IP address of your primary domain controller, or theoretically an online NTP server, but this is not ideal.
Step 5 – Save the file.
Step 6 – Reset a 230 phone and see if it doesn’t pick up the correct time server now.
Step 7 – If it does, it’s a simple matter of resetting all the 230 phones on the network.
The first two or three numbers or letters of the custom.txt file is the model number of a phone. Flip a ShoreTel phone over and look at the barcode on the back. Above the barcode should read “IP TELEPHONE MODEL xxx”. The xxx part is the model of the phone. The 230’s say SEV, 560’s will say S6 and so forth and so on.
You could always just add the line to each custom file.
Another thing to look out for is in the shore_xxx.txt text files. There should be a line that says ‘Include “xxxcustom.txt”‘. If it isn’t there, add it. You can also change this to another global custom text file with your edits.
Update 12/17/2014 – You can also name the files with the MAC address of a phone to put specific settings on individual phones. The text file needs to be named shore_xxxxxxxxxxxx.txt where the xx’s are the MAC address of the phone. The MAC address is the long “serial number” on the back of the phone under the bar code.