[Beowulf] non-proprietary IPMI card?

Bogdan Costescu Bogdan.Costescu at iwr.uni-heidelberg.de
Wed Nov 29 06:29:27 PST 2006

On Tue, 28 Nov 2006, Michael Huntingdon wrote:

> When comparing cluster offerings, seems reasonable, that the 
> additional $85-$100 would be factored in to any system/cluster 
> purchase, for at least power up/down and reset?

A real IPMI card (not the fictious PCI/PCI-E one that sparked this 
thread) has a lot of functionality apart from controlling power: you 
can also do a soft shutdown (which PDUs can't - relative to another 
message), measure temperatures and fan speeds, get notifications when 
something is below or above a limit, access the machine logs to know 
if there was an error that you might have missed, etc. All of these 
without needing any kind of assistance from the OS (which can be 
shutdown or crashed...) and remotely via an IPMI client software which 
uses UDP for communication; in some cases you can even ssh into the 

> There is a very nice technology built into HP DLxxx systems that 
> provides pre-failure analysis to system managers.

I don't quite get your point here... a similar technology is the base 
of IPMI. The fact that it has a different name and maybe different 
tools to access it doesn't make it really different in concept...

> you might somehow have the desire to become a custom cable 
> specialist?

Maybe I missed something in this thread, but the custom cabling was 
only mentioned for a Tyan IPMI card being made to work on a different 
mainboard that it was designed for - which makes the "custom" part 
really understandable. A real IPMI card communicates over a standard 
serial port or over a LAN port, both using standard cables.

Bogdan Costescu

IWR - Interdisziplinaeres Zentrum fuer Wissenschaftliches Rechnen
Universitaet Heidelberg, INF 368, D-69120 Heidelberg, GERMANY
Telephone: +49 6221 54 8869, Telefax: +49 6221 54 8868
E-mail: Bogdan.Costescu at IWR.Uni-Heidelberg.De

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