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What is Lifecycle Controller?

The Integrated Dell Remote Access Controller with Lifecycle Controller (iDRAC6 with Lifecycle Controller 1 or iDRAC7 with Lifecycle Controller 2) is an embedded device in all Dell PowerEdge™ servers that helps IT administrators manage, monitor, update, and deploy Dell servers.

This embedded management solution is designed to make server administrators more productive and improve the overall availability of Dell servers. iDRAC alerts administrators to server issues, helps them perform remote server management, and reduces the need for physical access to the server.  

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


LC 1 Release Summary
LC1 1.6.0**
  • Support for Fiber Channel (FC) cards

 03/26/2013

LC1 1.5.5**
  • Support for additional NIC / CNA cards

10/24/2012

LC1 1.5.2**
  • Additional hardware support

06/21/2012

LC1 1.5.1
  • Stacking of mulitple device configurations
  • Performance Enhancements

 10/19/2011

LC1 1.5.0
  • Export and Import of Server Profile
  • CNA inventory and configuration
  • Performance Enhancements

03/14/2011

LC1 1.4.0
  • Hardware inventory
  • OS deployment features enhanced
  • RAID inventory and configuration
  • BIOS inventory and configuration
  • NIC inventory and configuration

10/14/2010

LC1 1.3.0
  • Software Inventory
  • Software Update

12/14/2009

LC1 1.2.0
  • First release supporting Lifecycle Controller web services API
  • Added discovery and handshake
  • OS deployment features introduced

10/19/2009

** Please note that this release of the Lifecycle Controller firmware must be applied after updating the DRAC6 firmware to either 3.35 (modular) or 1.85 (monolithic). Do not apply this update to the Lifecycle Controller without the corresponding DRAC update.

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LC1 - iDRAC6 FW Matrix
LC 1 Version iDRAC6 Monolithic FW Version iDRAC6 Blade FW Version
1.6.0 1.95 (Download) 3.45 (Download)
1.5.5 1.9 (Download) 3.4 (Download)
1.5.2 1.8 (Download) 3.35 (Download)
1.5.0 1.6 (Download) 3.2 (Download)
1.4.0 1.5 (Download) 3.0 (Download)
1.3.0 1.3 (Download) 2.2 (Download)
1.2.0 1.2 (Download) 2.1 (Download)
1.0.0 1.0 (Download) 2.0 (Download)

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Web Services Integration Tools
Best Practice Guide (includes LC2) Best Practice scripts 2/7/2013
Lifecycle Controller 1.5 Web Services Interface Guide for Windows Scripts 9/8/2011
Lifecycle Controller 1.5 Web Services Interface Guide for Linux Scripts 9/8/2011

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Reference Specifications
Profiles Describes the behavior for each 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.

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Dell Event / Error Message Reference
Dell Message Registry - English (1.6) iDRAC and Lifecycle Controller event / error message data in XML with Dell XSL for viewing. iDRAC6, LC1 Version 1.6
English Dell Test Event Notification Message Reference iDRAC6, LC1 Version 1.5

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 LC1 White Papers

Lifecycle Controller Integration for Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr)

Updates using a USB key with Lifecycle Controller

Automating Server Firmware Updates Using Dell iDRAC with Lifecycle Controller —  Securely, Efficiently, and Standards-based

Configuring iDRAC6 for Directory Services

Public Key Infrastructure in iDRAC

Using Dell vFlash

Deployment solution and Lifecycle Controller overview

Principled Technologies report comparing USC 1 3 and HP SmartStart 8 30

Unified Server Configurator: IT and Systems Management Overview

Unified Server Configurator Security Overview

Creating a USB Storage Device for Updates

Lifecycle Controller Remote Services Overview


Repairing or Updating the Lifecycle Controller (LCC) and Unified Server Configurator (USC)

Dell Auto-Discovery Network Setup Specification

Scripting the Dell Lifecycle Controller
Unleashing the power of vFlash in the Dell PowerEdge iDRAC

Unified Server Configurator

The Dell Unified Server Configurator (USC) is a bootable management interface on Dell's 11th-generation PowerEdge servers that Dell customers can use to perform various management tasks such as firmware update, RAID configuration, network configuration, date / time, Operating Systems deployment, and BIOS configuration. It is a feature of the Dell Lifecycle Controller and the software lives on board the Dell iDRAC, eliminating the need to host the software on bootable media that is easy to lose.

USC was introduced on Dell 11G servers (which were released in 2009) as an onboard replacement for the Systems Build and Update Utility (SBUU). Both USC and SBUU are designed for 1-to-1 server management. The USC interface can be accessed by pressing F10 during post / system boot. This information page is not for 12th-generation and later servers. In that case, please refer to the Lifecycle Controller page

Unified Server Configurator Features


There are 2 levels of features for of USC:

  • Unified Server Configurator (USC) - Entry-level product that provides operating system (OS) Deployment, Diagnostics, and Settings capabilities. There is no Lifecycle Controller Enabled functionality.

  • Unified Server Configurator - Lifecycle Controller Enabled (USE - LCE) - Full-featured product that provides Platform Update, Hardware Configuration, OS Deployment, Diagnostics, Settings, Full Remote Management, Dedicated NIC port, Virtual KVM, and Virtual Media capabilities. 

Unified Server Configurator Videos

USB Updates Using Repository Manager with Lifecycle Controller
by Peter Tsai

The USC portion of the video starts at 2:10


To learn more about USB updates using Repository Manager and LifeCycle Controller, please visit:
http://www.delltechcenter.com/page/Updates+using+USB+with+Lifecycle+Controller