ShoreTel – Telnet into phones

At my current job, I got the pleasure to get acquainted with a VOIP system. I’ve had VOIP phones before at previous companies, but they were usually managed by the “experts’. So managing, and learning to manage this system i have to say has been a learning curve. One issue i have been trying to work out lately has been with our remote offices, i belive it is due to the VPN idle Timeout, but every once in a while the phones will go into a state of “Out of Service” but operational. Upon searching for this issue, i found a quick fix. What i noramlly have found to help get the phone back up is to 1st if you have mutiple ShoreTel switch’s to move the phone to another switch, if that fails to work. I’ll telnet into the phone, reboot it with the “reboot” command, wait about 5 minutes for it to come back up, then move it back to the orginal “home” switch.

Telnet is not enabled by default on these phones, thier is a tool you have to run called phonectl.exe. This tool is located normally on youre Shoreware Communications server commonly called the voicemail server. Under. C:\Program Files\Shoreware Communications\Shoreware Server\

The command syntax is:

phonectl.exe -telneton IP_ADDRESS

Once ran you, and if successful you should receive a reply of “Telnet has been enabled”. You can then proceed to telnet into the phone and reboot it, or view other usefull info. One other command that i use is:


This command will print the configuration of the phone to the telnet window. It is useful if you want to make sure the FTP, MCG, SNTP settings are correct on the phone while trouble shooting an issue. The doucmentiation on Telnet commands for the phones are scarce, and i’m really hoping thier is a command to set config values, it is aggervating to walk a remote location thorugh the LCD setup to set the FTP server address, on the ShoreTel IP 110K phones.

If anyone knows a command or if it is even possible to set those values via telnet please let me know.


  • try typing the command ‘help’ for some leads

    Cory 2011-12-09
  • Did you manage to find out commands to configure phones remotely

    Please share with me…I’m in the same situation as you

    ShoreTelG 2012-05-14
  • What is the contect for authentication? I’m getting authentication failed, but don’t know where to specifiy the -pass for the phone….

    Ryan 2013-04-19
    • I know it’s a year late, but here’s the answer you’re looking for Ryan:

      Kevin Rak 2014-04-03
      • Also a year late, I’m the author of the Workend Tech blog, but you can copy the phonectl and other utilities to your local workstation and that way you don’t have to remote into the server every time you want to telnet into a phone/switch whatever.

        Aaron Evans 2014-10-23

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