iDRAC7 with LifeCycle Controller Technology

Quick Links: 

Executive Summary White Papers
LC 2 - iDRAC7 Firmware Matrix Reference Specs
Web Services Integration Tools Other References
Attribute Registries and Event/Error Reference LC2 and iDRAC Video Demos
Lifecycle Controller Blogs iDRAC7 Home
Lifecycle Controller 1 (LC1) Home CMC for M1000e & VRTX Home

  


Executive Summary

With the launch of the Dell PowerEdge 12th generation servers on Feb 27th, 2012, Dell has enhanced our embedded management without the need to install a software based agent within the host operating system. At the heart of the 12th generation servers embedded management is the iDRAC7 with Lifecycle Controller technology, which allows users to perform useful tasks such as configure BIOS and hardware settings, deploy operating systems, update drivers, change RAID settings, and save hardware profiles. Together, they provide a robust set of management functions that can be leveraged throughout the entire server lifecycle.

 

Faster, More Efficient, More Secure Local and Remote Deployment, Configuration and Updates
Dell Lifecycle Controller simplifies server lifecycle management— from provisioning, deployment, patching and updating to servicing and user customization—for servers located both locally and remotely. It was delivered as part of the Dell Remote Access Controller or iDRAC (Express, Enterprise and vFlash) starting with Dell PowerEdge 11G servers. On 12G servers, the vFlash feature is included with the iDRAC7 Enterprise License, so you no longer have to separately license vFlash starting with Lifecycle Controller 2. Dell’s 12G servers only use Express or Enterprise licensing. Lifecycle Controller includes managed and persistant storage that embeds systems management features and Operating System device drivers directly on the server, thus eliminating the media-based system management tools and utilities traditionally needed for systems management.  

Lifecycle Controller reduces the time and number of steps taken to accomplish tasks, reduces potential for error, enhances server and application uptime and security, and results in more efficient IT management. Developed on the industry standard Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) platform and Web Services for Management (WSMan) interfaces, Lifecycle Controller provides an open environment for console integration that also allows for custom scripting for Lifecycle Controller. Leading systems management consoles (e.g., Microsoft® System Center Configuration Manager, BMC Software BladeLogic® Operations Manager, Symantec™ Deployment Solution, Dell™ Management Console) have integrated Dell Lifecycle Controller, thus offering its features and capabilities to existing infrastructures where those consoles are installed.  


Why did Dell develop Lifecycle Controller?
When Dell examined common management tasks and the inefficiencies associated with them, we discovered something interesting – it wasn’t the tools that were making management tasks take so long, it was how they were delivered. The most common activities like provisioning, deploying, and updating required multiple tools, multiple forms of media and scouring the Web for the latest enablement tools, including drivers and firmware. This traditional delivery model resulted in inefficient use of time, a potential for error and potential exposure to security risks.

 

Embedded Management
Lifecycle Controller - Local GUI Lifecycle Controller - Web Services API

Lifecycle controller supports local 1-to-1 system management tasks via a graphical user interface (GUI) on the servers KVM for operating system install, updates, configuration, and for performing diagnostics, on single, local servers. This eliminates the need for multiple option ROMs for hardware configuration

  

 

 

Remote Services are standards-based interfaces that enable consoles to integrate, for example, bare-metal provisioning and one-to-many OS deployments, for servers located remotely. Dell’s Lifecycle Controller takes advantage of the capabilities of both USC and Remote Services to deliver significant advancement and simplification of server deployment.

Lifecycle Controller Serviceability aims at simplifying server reprovision and/or replacing failed parts and thus reduces maintenance downtime

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LC 2 Release Summary

LC2 1.4.2

  • Support for R920
  • New OS support
  • Support for Emulex NICs
  • Support for Samsung SSD

13 May 2014

(Download)

LC2

1.4.0

  • Support for new servers
  • Support for Samsung SSD 
  • Support for Emulex NICs

11 Mar 2014

LC2 1.3.0

  • Performance Improvements
  • Feature Enhancements

 2 Dec 2013

LC2 1.1.5
  • Performance Improvements
  • Test Event simulation methods added
  • Feature Enhancements

06/11/2013

LC2 1.1.1
  • Performance Improvements
  • Feature Enhancements

2/1/2013

LC2 1.1.0
  • Configuration XML feature added
  • Additional hardware support

12/5/2012

LC2 1.0.8
  • Feature Enhancements
  • Performance Enhancements

 9/2012

LC2 1.0.6
  • Feature Enhancements
  • Performance Enhancements

06/2012

LC2 1.0.0
  • First LC2 release

3/2012

 

 

LC2 - iDRAC7 FW Matrix
LC 2 Version iDRAC7 Monolithic FW Version iDRAC7 Blade FW Version
1.4.0 1.56.55 (Download)
1.3.0 1.56.55 (Download)
1.1.5 1.40.40 (Download)
1.1.1 1.37.35 (Download)
1.1.0 1.31.30 (Download)
1.0.8 1.23.23 (Download)
1.0.6 1.10.10 (Download)
1.0.0 1.00.00 (Download)

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 Highlighted White Papers

Quick Start Guide about Lifecycle Controller (LC) and using LC documentation

Consolidated LC and iDRAC white paper page

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 Web Services Integration Tools
Best Practice Guide Best Practice scripts 2/17/2014
Web Service Interface Guide for Windows WinRM scripts 2/17/2014
Web Service Interface Guide for Linux WSMAN scripts 2/17/2014

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Reference Specifications
Profiles Describes the behavior for each 12G feature and necessary classes, properties and methods as well as configurable management attributes that represent the feature.
MOFs Files that contain the normative description for DCIM classes, properties and method in the MOF format.
12G WSMAN API Changes Describes the configurable management attributes and methods that have been added, deleted or changed in behavior per platform component.
WSMAN Licenses and Privileges Lists all licensing and privilege requirements
LC XML Schema Guide Contains various schema descriptions including: LCL log, hardware inventory, message registry, attribute registry, and dependency XML
WSDLs

The Web Services Description Language is an XML-based language that is used for describing the functionality offered by a Web service. A WSDL description of a web service (also referred to as a WSDL file) provides a machine-readable description of how the service can
be called, what parameters it expects, and what data structures it returns.

MOF-HTML

The HTML version of the Lifecycle Controller 2 MOF files. It contains DMTF and DCIM classes in HTML format for easier search and browsing.

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Attribute Registries (what are these?)
RAID Lists all attributes and properties for the RAID component in XML format 04/07/2014
NIC Lists all attributes and properties for the NIC component in XML format 04/07/2014
iDRAC Lists all attributes and properties for the iDRAC component in XML format 04/07/2014
BIOS Lists all attributes and properties for the BIOS component in XML format 04/07/2014
PCIe SSD  Lists all attributes and properties for the PCIe SSD component in XML format 04/07/2014
FC HBA  Lists all attributes and properties for the FC HBA component in XML format 04/07/2014
 

(Previous Attribute Registries)

 

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Dell Event / Error Message Reference
Dell Event Message Reference (3.0)

Describes all event and error message content from all DCIM Profiles, iDRAC, Lifecycle Controller, and OpenManage products in one document. (link to all OpenManage 7.3 docs)

 OpenManage 7.3, iDRAC7,

LC2 Version 1.1

Dell Event Message Reference (2.0)

Describes all event and error message content from all DCIM Profiles, iDRAC, Lifecycle Controller, and OpenManage products in one document.

OpenManage 7.2, iDRAC7,

LC2 Version 1.1

Dell Event  Message Reference (1.0)

Describes all event and error message content from all DCIM Profiles in one document.

OpenManage 7.0, iDRAC7,

LC2 Version 1.0

Dell Test Event Notification Message Reference

Contains the notification message content generated by the Dell iDRAC7 with Lifecycle Controller using the Test Event Generation feature for the following event action notification types:

  1. Email
  2. SNMP
  3. Remote Syslog

iDRAC7,

LC2 Version 1.1

Dell Message Registry - English (2.1)

iDRAC and Lifecycle Controller event / error message data in XML with Dell XSL for viewing.

iDRAC7,

LC2 Version 1.1

Dell Message Registry - English (2.0)

iDRAC and Lifecycle Controller event / error message data in XML with Dell XSL for viewing.

iDRAC7,

LC2 Version 1.0

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Other References

Dell CIM Profiles and MOF Files

Additional Scripting Examples