ShoreTel CDR Format- How to find the International Calls!

Recently, while working with a third party Call Accounting vendor, we had an opportunity to revisit ShoreTel CDR records.  ShoreTel stores CDR records in two locations for two different purposes.  Historically, the first format is basically the “Legacy CDR Text Files” and they are stored in the Shoreline Data folder as log files.  The log files are written to \Shoreline Data\Call Records 2 and are written out at Midnight to a file named CDR-YYMMDD.HHMMSS.log.   This is the file that is generally accessed by third party Call Accounting software vendors.

The second format is written to a MySQL database which is used to generate call accounting reports directly from the ShoreTel server.  In version 7 ShoreTel began to migrate away from Microsoft Access to MySQL for both the CDR and the configuration database.   There is a procedure for converting the older files into the new MySQL format, but we are not going to cover that as most people have already made this transition.      The MySQL database also opens the opportunity to create custom reports using SQL queries.  Through the ShorewareDirector portal, under Reporting options, you can set the Retention Period for CDR Data as well as the Archive retention period.

CDR Options in ShorewareDirector Portal

If your third party Call Accounting software uses the 011 to detect an international CDR record, you will need to make some adjustments.  ShoreTel uses a Canonical format to collect digits.  This means that no matter what the user actually dials on the phones keypad, the system internally converts the numbers to +country-code area-code subscriber –number.   The fact that you dialed 9+011+52+3654587 will be stored in the ShoreTel CDR log file as 9+523654587 and the 011 reference will not be in the record.  The following silent film clip walks you through the format and content of the CDR.log files.

Fun with ShoreTel Voice Mail

Stuck on how to get a WAV file of a professionally recorded voice mail greeting into the right ShoreTel Voice Mail box? After all there is no import utility as there is during the creation of an Automated Attendant. I can’t speak for you, but I was curious to know if I could just copy the WAV file to the mailbox? Where was the mailbox anyway? Now that you mention it, where are the voice messages.

ShoreTel has always had a folder entitled “Shoreline data”, the name a residual of the company’s old name, look and feel. Historically, this folder contained all of the information you would need to have available to restore a crashed server from bare metal. The later releases of ShoreTel have moved configuration files to a MySQL database, but you still need to have this folder to do a system restore. The folder, among other items, contains the voice mail structure of your deployment and the actual voice mail files for each individual mailbox.

In the VMS folder, you will find two folders: “Message and ShoreTel”. The Message folder contains actual voice mail messages in ShoreTel WAV format; and the other folder contains a list of folders that match the number of each mailbox on the ShoreTel deployment. Each VM box folder contains a WAV file for the mailbox name and each greeting recorded in that users mailbox. The greetings have easy to recognize names like 115Greet01_01.wav which represents the Standard Call Handling mode Greeting. If you re-record your greeting you will create a new file named 115Greet01_X.wav, where X is the revision number of the recording.

There is a also a Mailbox.DAT file that contains system configuration information and the unique ID of every message received by that particular voice mail box. The actual voice message, however, is contained in a separate folder appropriately named messages! In this file you will find a unique message WAV file that is the actual voice mail recording. It will have the format 1K0VGJSGI.wav where 1K0VGJSGI being unique message identification. There will also me a matching 1K0VGJSGI.msg file that acts as an index pointed to by the unique message identification written to the DAT file in the individual voice mailbox folder.

ShoreTel has a number of debug and diagnostic tools that can be used to assist in administration and troubleshooting. The CFG.exe program is a useful tool for obtaining information about mailboxes, voice mail servers, phonebooks, automated attendant DNIS maps and other specific voice mail box configuration data. Using CFG you can turn on message waiting lamps, have the voice mail system dial specific extensions, list message details, purge and restore messages and generally manipulate the voice message structure. The three part video clip details all of this information for your education and enjoyment!