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I have two Dell PowerEdge 2950 with DRAC5 cards, and I'm a mac user, running Snow Leopard.

Is there any trick to benefit from the remote console capability?

I am open to any suggestion, including fancy browser, custom made Java VM, any VM with virtual box at all. Anything except maybe for rebooting under windows...

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

It's a pain to use directly from the Mac, so I typically have a Windows XP VM available for management tasks or consoles that require browser plugins, etc. VMware Fusion, Parallels, Virtualbox are all up to the task, but another lightweight solution is CrossOver Mac which allows individual Windows apps to be installed and run.

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Yes, update the DRAC to the last firmware, than go to console / media -> configuration

There is a drop down menu Plug-in Type. change native to java. Encryption off

Install JAVA for Mac and thats it :)

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To clarify what marcel said, the latest iDRAC7 (Enterprise of course) firmware does in fact provide virtual console to OS X. I have found Safari seems to work best, but you either have to associate the JNLP to Webstart or you have click the files after they download to open the console. Yes you must turn off encryption (which might be a deal breaker in some industries) but I think with IPSec tunnels into the vlan, its as secure. –  user168523 Apr 8 '13 at 13:06

From a glance at the documentation, it seems that your best bet is to use an VirtualBox VM running WinXP + IE7.

If you have access to a Linux machine, or want to virtualize one, a 32-bit version of Firefox 2 is supported (However it gives no indication if 2.0+ or 3.x is supported). The docs also mention another caveat:

Console Redirection and Virtual Media only supports 32-bit Web browsers. Using 64-bit Web browsers may generate unexpected results or failure of operations.

The out-of-band management is generally worth the trouble to set up, especially with a slow response time at the colo (or no remote hands availability at all, in which case it is absolutely necessary.) In a pinch, it's also good for trying out custom kernels remotely.

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