Recently at the request of our vendor (HP), I went and had HP Systems Insight Manager updated to 5.3 about 3 weeks. Now this isn’t “bleeding edge” and so I didn’t feel it was a big deal to jump up to it already. Well over the past 3 weeks I’ve been getting this new alert coming from our SIM system and I just figured “Oh.. something new” and didn’t fret about it too much.
Event Name: (SNMP) Remote Insight/ Integrated LightsOut Interface Error (9006)
Event originator: HPSIM
Event Severity: Major
Event received: 12-Mar-2009, 17:31:02
Event description: Remote Insight/ Integrated Lights-Out Interface Error. The host OS has detected an error in the Remote Insight/ Integrated Lights-Out interface. The firmware is not responding.
As you can tell from my lazy comments, this became a pretty big deal as iLO was completely toasty on these boxes where SIM was generating this alert. I contacted HP and it was a pretty entertaining exchange.
HP Support: Are you running HP SIM 5.3?
HP Support: Do you have iLO version 1.60 or 1.61?
Me: Beats me. The iLOs are not responding so I have zero way to tell.
HP Support: I think I know your problem.
Me: <Silence for a minute.> Well don’t leave me hanging here.
HP Support: I’m reading an email alert that came through while we were talking. There’s a hotfix for HP SIM 5.3 and a recommendation to go up to firmware 1.70 for the iLO.
Me: Oh great. *sigh*
So now I get to physically pull power cords to fix iLOs everywhere. (Yes this means an OS reboot too.)
* Hey HP. Put a button onto the servers to “reboot the iLO”.
Cisco’s throwing their gloves into the ring for server hardware. Now they can offer Server Hardware, Datacenter Experts (strong in Server Virtualization with their investments into VMware) and Networking Hardware. All they need now is to offer some Storage Virtualization Appliance on their Server Hardware and they can start to offer the whole datacenter in a shipping container.
Next Up: Commodity Datacenters. Everything the Cloud wishes it could be.
HP finally came out with the official information on the heavy duty blade for use in VMware environments. This blade for the c-Chassis is the BL495c which has 16 slots for Memory DIMMs and two AMD Opteron processors. Its the official Virtualization Blade.
There’s just a couple of gotchas here coming from someone that would like to use them:
- It comes with 2 10Gb builtin ethernet connections. There’s no interconnect module right now that can use this other than the pass thru. Well if your going to use an interconnect pass thru the whole purpose of blades for being able to reduce cabling and simplify management. You might as well just use rack mounts as they give you more flexiblity and control and your just buying what you need.
- It has the option of coming with SSD drives. If your doing serious virtualization the last thing you need in a physical instance is anything that ties you to that physical instance. The SSD is a short term solution and I don’t care if its faster (that’s the big deal with SSD Drives – faster). The future for serious virtualization solutions is zero ties to the hardware all served out from a central system. Personally I think PXE is going to be the answer to this issue.
- There’s no support listed for VMware ESX in the support pages. I thought HP was a huge VMware Partner? Easily the single largest Server Virtualization Vendor in the business and you don’t support it though you have Marketing statements like “the world’s first virtualization blade”?
I think the HP BL495c has the potential to be a fantastic product to use since this is a half height blade so you can get 16 blades in 10U of rack space. There’s just a couple of gotchas right now.