Install Dell Open Manage on XenServer 5.6 and higher

Installing Dell Open Manage System Administrator (OMSA) on your XenServer provided visibility to the hardware through a web interface. It also permits you to perform SNMP monitoring against the hardware.

First, download the OMSA package from the Dell Support Website (http://support.dell.com) and select your server hardware and XenServer for the operating system.

If you are installing XenServer from scratch, you can simply insert the OMSA CD when prompted for any Supplemental Packs during a normal install. No additional work is necessary, you’re all set!

If you already have XenServer installed, and you are running version 5.6 or higher, simply perform the following:
1) Connect to the console of the XenServer Host (ssh or via XenCenter Console tab)
2a) Insert the CD and type: mount /dev/cdrom /mnt
2b) Or you can copy it to the server using SCP and then mount it using: mount -o loop {omsa file name}.iso /mnt
3) Install it using
# cd /mnt
# ./install.sh
# /opt/dell/srvadmin/sbin/srvadmin-services.sh start
# cd..
# umount /mnt

4) Now you can use your web browser and point it to https://serverip:1311/

You will login using the same root username and password you use to access your XenServer Host.

Equallogic iSCSI Connectivity with Dell Switches

Whe using a Dell Power Connect switch to access an Equallogic SAN with iSCSI, here are some quick tips:

  1. You must use the most recent version of the firmware. The older firmware had a flow control problem which could create major performance issues. If you have a Dell Switch and an iSCSI SAN please insure the firmware is on the most recent version.
  2. As with all iSCSI you’ll get the best performance by using Flow Control and Jumbo Frames, flow control being by far the most important (Flow control is required while jumbo frames are recommended).
  3. On the Dell switches with an EqualLogic SAN they recommend turning off the iSCSI optimization.

 

 

Paper jamming – Dell 3100CN

3100cnA customer recently called in regarding paper jam issues on their Dell 3100cn color printer. After remote troubleshooting, a technician decided it was likely the roller set. Contacted Dell for replacement parts and ordered them. However upon reviewing the issue closer while onsite, I noticed that the 2nd paper tray had two loose tabs above the paper tray. A quick check confirmed that these were the locking mechanisms to connect the 2nd paper tray. While the tray appeared to work fine, over time, there was enough movement occurring to cause the trays to separate or move just enough for a paper jam to occur. Locking these in place resolved the problem without the need to replace the rollers.

A couple of take aways:

  1. Read the manual if you’re not familiar with this printer series – yes, most HP printers do not use a lock for the tray, but many (but not all) Dell printers do. Always be familiar with the directions on new equipment.
  2. If the printer is new and has a low page count, then it isn’t likely the rollers. New being ❤ years, and low page count being either half of a maintenance kit page count or very generally 10x the model number (so 30,000 pages in this case).
  3. Dell printers do not appear to be designed to be maintained. Over 45 screws to replace one roller and  a paper sensor.

Enjoy!

Dell DAT72 Powervault Storage Cleaning – known issue

backup storage tapeI have been noticing a significant increase in the number cleaning related errors onDell DAT72 internal Powervault100 Tape drives. During my most recent call to our Gold Technical Support, it was confirmed that there is a known issue with Dell’s PowerVault 100 DAT72 drives.

I wouldn’t recommend directly confronting Dell on this issue. Rather realize that this is a common problem, and if your drive never seems to clean properly, doing delay and call Dell for technical support. Typically the drive requires to be replace.

However, be sure you still perform regular troubleshooting steps including:

  • Upgrading the Tape Drive Firmware/Drivers
  • Upgrading the server BIOS
  • Upgrading the SCSI controller Firmware/Drivers

nVidia issue on Dell Latitude D600 series

3d human with a red exclamation markI just learned from Dell (although the issue is over a year in the making) that there is a Critical BIOS update for the Latitude D6xx series including 610 620 630 laptops. It relates to the temperature management of the system. Apparently there is a serious (but intermittent) problem with the nVidia video adapters overheating, which eventually will damage the motherboard. The most recent BIOS update addresses this issue by keeping the system fan running at a higher speed, and a new algorithm to manage the heat within the system. Apparently, left untreated, they have seen a number of laptops need new motherboards, and client who are outside of warranty support may be stuck.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13554_3-10020782-33.html

Dell Broadcom Drivers

usb cableWe experienced a strange problem lately with a client where we enabled the second Broadcom integrated NIC on a Windows 2003 Enterprise Server. What we discovered was that when we set the static IP address on the server’s second network adapter, the first network adapter dropped into this semi-DHCP state. When we corrected the first adapter, the second one would go into the semi-DHCP state. I say semi because it actually showed the adapter in DHCP mode, but unable to find a DHCP server so it used the automatic IP address – which is typically 169.x.x.x, but instead of that, it actually retained the static IP address. But when the server rebooted, it would loose the static IP address (since it was set to DHCP mode) and would pickup a new, dynamic IP address.’

So I performed the normal troubleshooting steps from uninstalling the network drivers, reinstalling the existing driver, and then finally installing the latest drivers – which would always fail. So after a bit of messing around I called Dell Enterprise Support and to my surprise the provided a shocking list of prerequisites before we could upgrade the drivers…

Continue reading “Dell Broadcom Drivers”

Dell BSOD Stop Error 0x000000d1 IAStor.sys

notebook, and two persons on white backgroundI recently assisted a client who was having a problem with his Dell computer blue screening every time he ran a disk degfrag.  I asked him to document the error code and then let me know what it was reporting.  A quick check for the error code on the web revealed that this is apparently a well documented error which affect Dell systems (and perhaps others) and is the result of a bad driver from Intel via Dell. Below is the link to probably the most comprehensive review of this issue.

http://www.ydeologi.com/2006/04/26/dell-dimension-e510-iastorsys-windows-xp-blue-screen-error-stop-code-0x000000d1

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