Support Entry Mode for ShoreTel

I’ve heard Support Entry Mode referred to as several different terms. Technician Mode, Maintenance Mode, Special Mode, and a few others, sometimes by TAC themselves. It’s really a special way of logging into ShoreTel Director so that you can change several hidden fields and it’s not obvious how to use it.


How To Access Support Entry Mode In ShoreWare Director

Step 1 – Open ShoreWare Director in your web browser. If you’ve integrated your ShoreTel system with Active Directory, you’ll need to click the log off link up in the top left hand corner of the page.

Step 2 – Once you are at the log in screen, hold down your SHIFT and CTRL keys on your keyboard and click right on the word “User”. Check the graphic below. The highlighted area is where you need to click. Note that your cursor won’t change shape or anything.

Support Entry Mode Capture


Step 3 – When you see “*** Support Entry ***” show up in red you can log back in. There are two ways to log back in. If you are active directory integrated, just click Active Directory login button on the right and it will put you back in under your own username. The other way is to log in as you would normally with a ShoreTel username and password.

Some Things You Can Do With Support Entry Mode

This part is a work in progress, but I’ll just post what I know.

Change Dialing Rules – One of the hidden fields that comes up is the dialing rules under Trunk Groups. Go click on a trunk group and scroll to the bottom of the page. You’ll see this:

 Dialing Rules Capture

You will see much the same thing under “Sites”. It will change your entire sites Dialing Plan if you change it here.

You can change your dial string with the edit button. I’ll add documentation to this as I come across it. I’ve used it a few times to change how caller ID sends out or to add pauses, custom digits and so forth. Unfortunately, at the moment I don’t have any notes on what I did, as I was in a hurry with TAC the few times I’ve done it. I believe if you’ve gone through Advanced Engineer training they tell you how to do this. I do know you can really mess stuff up if you change this, so copy and paste the string into a backup text file or something before you alter it.

That’s all I know how to do at the moment. If you know something else Support Entry Mode allows, let me know in the contact form or comment below.

More Fixes for Random Dropped Calls on the ShoreTel System

This is just a quick post about calls getting dropped and other phone related issues with the ShoreTel phone system. A lot of times it isn’t the ShoreTel hardware that’s the root problem, it is the networking equipment it is attached to. Here are some I’ve run into, and things to look for if your partner happened to also have installed your POE switches.

  1. Port Settings – If you use Cisco switches and have older ShoreTel switches (like a 40 switch, 60 switch, some old 50 switches, etc). Check the port settings on the ShoreTel switch. Set the speed to 10/100 Full Duplex. Do the same on the switch. For some reason Cisco switches and ShoreTel voice switches don’t play nice with each other. This can cause huge issues. If you are using VLANs you definitely want to make sure all your settings are manual.
    If you aren’t sure how to check this, go into ShoreWare Director and click on Quick Look, look under the site with the problem, click on one of the switches and look at the bottom of that page. On the second line from the bottom in the “Details Section” it should say “100M Full Duplex(Manual)” if it says Auto, consider changing it. Note that you should do this on the network switch port it is connected to as well.
  2. POE Issues With Cisco – This might be better now but a lot of Cisco POE switches can’t handle a full load. If you have over half your ports on a Cisco switch with a phone on them, you might consider getting another switch to put in. Netgear switches don’t seem to have this problem.
  3. POE Issues with 3COM – Reboot your switches often, sometimes 3COM switches will just deactivate POE on some ports for no reason. Just unplug and plug them back in. This might have been fixed with firmware.
  4. Dropped Calls on Netgear Switches – While I’ve not seen Netgear switches die from using every single PoE port, I have seen them do weird things on old firmware. If you’re experiencing dropped calls and the other stuff above is working right, make sure you’re running the most current firmware if you have Netgear PoE smart switches. A lot of times just upgrading the firmware will eliminate this problem, even if the dropped calls just happened recently and they have been running perfectly for several years.
  5. Factory Reset Your Phones – This is one that TAC will have you do if you call them for specific people having issues. Just refer to my article on factory resetting and you’ll be good. 

Hopefully this post has given you a few places to look and test out. If you found this information helpful please let us know!


How to Factory Reset a ShoreTel Phone

This is again a hard piece of information to find as most of the time you only get walked through this when talking to TAC. I found this written down in my IT journal. No idea why I haven’t posted it.

Resetting a phone to factory defaults is a good way to troubleshoot a phone that isn’t connecting or is messing up in various unexplained ways. Corrupt files being transferred from the FTP servers, network hiccups during start-up, power outages, caches not clearing and other issues can be resolved this way. TAC will usually make you do this when you have a screwed up phone before they recommend you warranty the phone.

Reset a ShoreTel Phone To Factory Defaults

Step 1 –  Make sure the phone is not off hook, then press the mute button and release it. Nothing will happen.

Step 2 – Immediately dial the numbers “772667” and hit the pound key.
Note: If the keys make a noise and/or the numbers show up on the screen you’ve done it wrong and you’ll need to start over. Sometimes the phones don’t register the mute key press or if it’s really screwed up it might think it is off hook somehow.

Step 3 – Enter the phone password. This is usually 1234.
Some partners will change this in Director to keep their customers from messing up the phones. You can go change it back to whatever you want in Director and restart the phone. Unfortunately if the phone is screwed up  it may not get this setting when rebooted. So it’s a good idea to know what this password is ahead of time.

Step 4 – The phone will reset into “KPD Mode”. Hit the mute button and dial “25327” and hit pound. You may or may not get a message here, but it should say “Clearing”.

Step 5 – Power cycle the phone.

The phone has now been cleared out and should re-download its settings from scratch so it may take a while to come back up. Please note that if you use the static IP method of phone configuration you’ll need to put all that stuff back in the phone.