Jan 18 2010

Access Windows Server from HP iLO Console

Published by at 3:23 pm under Windows




iLO is a management interface supporting SSH, available on HP Proliant servers. It provides interesting features such as remotely powering the server on and off.
HP released access to Windows in graphics mode through a license, surprisingly. However, Microsoft has developed – for Windows 2003 and 2008 server – Emergency Management Services (EMS) that lets you open a command line and run basic tasks such as configuring an IP address or rebooting Windows. This isn’t the best but can be useful in some situations.
 

BIOS

While booting up, press F9 to go in the BIOS Setup
Go in ‘BIOS Serial Console & EMS’ menu
Set ‘BIOS Serial Console Port’ to COM2
Set ‘BIOS Serial Console Baud Rate’ to 115200
Press ESC then F10 to save
Selecting COM1 only redirects the output on to the screen in the slow serial mode fashion.
 

iLO

Press F8 to configure iLO
Set the iLO parameters that suit your network and define users
 

EMS

Edit the boot.ini file to enable EMS: Right click on ‘My Computer’, ‘Properties’, select ‘Advanced’ tab.
Under ‘Startup and Recovery’, click on ‘Settings’, and ‘Edit’ in ‘System Startup’.
Add these 2 lines in the [boot loader] section

redirect=COM2
redirectbaudrate=115200

and /redirect to the end of the partition line.
On my Windows 2003 Server SP2, my boot.ini file looks like this:

[boot loader]
timeout=2
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
redirect=COM2
redirectbaudrate=115200
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Windows Server 2003 Standard x64 Edition" \
/noexecute=optout /fastdetect /redirect

Check on Microsoft website to get your EMS config right. It may vary slightly based on the Windows Server you’re running.
 

Notes

F9 or F8 keys have to be switched with ESC+9 and ESC+8. They will lead you to the CLI mode, a command-prompted interface that provides equivalent functionality to the menu-based mode. Check HP for the RBSU user guide.
 
Now, SSH to your iLO IP address, log in and type ‘power on’ to boot the server.
Type in ‘vsp’ to open the virtual console and you’ll get BIOS messages, Windows progress bar, and EMS prompt (SAC>) on the display! Type ‘?’ to list available options.


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