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Re: Proper Break entry for Ctrl-Alt-Del (Rackable Systems)

Trevor Fiatal trevor@fiatal.net
Tue, 22 Mar 2005 12:36:27 -0800 (PST)

As long as we're on the topic...

I have been favorably impressed by Sun's V20z and V40z servers, which incorporate a Linux/PowerPC management subsystem capable of doing console redirection and power-cycling. The mgmt unit has an internal 3-port etherswitch-on-a-chip, with 2 of the ports exposed as RJ45's on the back panel. This enables you to daisy-chain a whole stack of these guys to just two ethernet drops -- the servers at each end of the daisy-chain get connected to the patch panel.

Oh, and the serial-port redirection software used by the mgmt unit? It's a modified variant of Conserver. :)


Zonker Harris wrote:
  Lest I forget, I also wanted to point out the Remote
Management options offered by Rackable Systems...

http://www.rackable.com/products/remotemngmt.htm (Check out the Flash-driven demo...)

  They have an interface that piggy-backs on one of
the COM ports, provides the ability to power the unit
*on*, *off*, or cycle the power off-on, and also reset
the unit. (It gets power from the PS when the server
is off...) There is also some environmental monitoring
built into the unit, but it can also support external
probes as well. The unit has an LED that can be commanded,
as well as an LCD panel that you can send a message to
(for on-site staff to read) using the console interface.
When the system boots, if the OS console is redirected
to that COM port, it is passed through as well.

It's a very cool tool, built into the servers, so you
don't need to use one of the rare card slots on a 1-RU
server. If you're looking for new hardware, consider
these as an option to buying a cheaper server plus the PC Weasel card.

The PC Weasel can work in most servers, and it uses short cables from the Weasel card to the KBD and Mouse
ports for commanding BIOS and etc., while Rackable's Lights Out features are only available on some of their


Trevor Fiatal -- trevor@fiatal.net
650.862.3715 (mobile)