drac4's uses

Matthew Lenz matthew at nocturnal.org
Tue May 18 23:27:55 CDT 2010

> On 18 May 2010, at 23:17, Matthew Lenz wrote:
>> We're planning on sticking with our 1850/2850s as our production 
>> environment
>> for the time being.  We never did DRAC4s in any of these machines  when 
>> they
>> were new but you can get the cards used dirt cheap on ebay (as well  as 
>> spare
>> 1850 and 2850 systems).
> The prices I've seen have not been dirty cheap, but certainly very 
> reasonable.  ;)

The ones I'm interested in are the DRAC 4/I.  The 1850's and 2850's already 
have a slot available on the MB for connecting the DRAC.

Lots of them listed on ebay for as little as $40 each.

>> Are the DRAC4 worth looking at when using non-supported OSes like 
>> Debian?  I
>> use openipmi for basic system health stuff but is there other cooler 
>> stuff
>> that the DRAC4 is able to do that ipmi isn't (for non-supported oses)?
> IMO the significantly cool thing about the DRAC4 is the remote access 
> screen viewer / console. You can see whatever is on the screen and 
> operate the mouse from across the network, independently of the  operating 
> system. So you can do so even whilst the system is booting,  you can enter 
> the BIOS and you can even install the operating system  across the 
> network, using the virtual media facility. So if your  server needs 
> booting from a live CD, you can just put that in your  laptop and use the 
> laptop to control the server's screen.

The virtual CD and console support are very interesting.  Primary reason I'm 
looking into them.  Our servers are in a data center that is 25 miles one 
way.  I like to avoid it at costs.

> As far as operating system support is concerned, it doesn't matter  what 
> o/s is installed on the server for using the remote access. But  the 
> machine you use to do the controlling / viewing will *probably*  have to 
> be using Windows. Macs certainly don't work. When the DRAC4

Windows desktop isn't a problem.

> was released is was claimed you could view using RedHat & a certain 
> version of Firefox, but I never heard of anyone actually doing so (cue 
> respondents coming out of the woodwork). DRAC4 viewing remains  compatible 
> with Windows XP and Internet Explorer 8, however - you just  need to 
> adjust the browser's security settings to allow the viewer  applet to run.
> Stroller.

Does anyone know what the last DRAC 4's version's part number was?  Looks 
like there was at least 4 versions of them released over the years.  Does 
dell have a place on there site that lists all part numbers available for 

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