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I've never seen a Linux server I admin. How can I find out if it has IPMI of some sort installed?

I tried answering my own question by installing ipmitool:

Setting up ipmitool (1.8.9-2) ...
Starting IPMI event daemon ipmievdipmievd: using pidfile /var/run/ipmievd.pid0
Could not open device at /dev/ipmi0 or /dev/ipmi/0 or /dev/ipmidev/0: No such  file or directory
Unable to open interface
invoke-rc.d: initscript ipmievd, action "start" failed.

was the answer. Can I find out what the ISP uses to remote-control the server or how the ISP probably hooked it into their remote-management HTML panel?

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If it's a VPC there's no way you're getting IPMI access (unless there's a hypervisor system out there that integrates). If it's a dedicated server they're still going to be very reluctant to give you that level of access. – Chris S Dec 13 '11 at 20:38
It's a dedicated Debian box. – isync Dec 13 '11 at 20:41

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

If it's Red Hat, just do rpm -qa|grep ipmi. OpenIPMI would be the most likely install, or one of the proprietary ones (like hpIPMI). There should be an equivalent command on .deb systems and Solaris boxes as well.

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It's Debian: dpkg -l | grep ipmi \n rc ipmitool 1.8.9-2 utility for IPMI control with kernel driver \n ii libopenipmi0 2.0.14-1 Intelligent Platform Management Interface - – isync Dec 13 '11 at 20:43
I wish i could help more, i'm a red hat guy. I see the OpenIPMI library is there, but not the explicit package. See if apt-get install openipmi works (the package name may not be correct). Its possible they're not using IPMI if the HTML management utility is just reporting stuff from MIB-II and the host mib in SNMP. If you're trying to figure out how they're monitoring your box SNMP may be a good place to look. – Matthew Dec 13 '11 at 20:49
Although "apt-get install openipmi" did work, I now have it on the system and it doesn't do much. I think the libopeipmi lib was just left-over from the ipmitool install done earlier... When my ISP uses SNMP, is it save for me to poke around in it? Is there a save snmp command I can shoot at the server's localhost while being SSH'd into it? – isync Dec 13 '11 at 21:12
You can install snmp-utils (again, check the package name), and then walk the available snmp information by using the snmpwalk command. – Matthew Dec 14 '11 at 18:05
This answer is just incorrect. Question is how to tell whether the server physically has an IPMI system, not whether your O/S has an IPMI package installed. – ThatGraemeGuy May 20 '14 at 12:43

From FreeIPMI's FAQ,

Does my system support IPMI?

Unfortunately, there are no universally defined mechanisms for determining
if a system supports IPMI. The following may provide hints.

1) FreeIPMI’s ipmi-locate can be used to determine if IPMI can be found
on your system. Users are cautioned though, the failure to discover IPMI
via ipmi-locate is not sufficient to disprove that IPMI exists on your
system. Your system may not publish such information or may expect
clients to communicate at default locations.

2) dmidecode may be similarly used to probe for devices that support
IPMI on your system. You may grep for IPMI or specifying the IPMI
DMI type on the command line.

# > dmidecode --type 38
# dmidecode 2.10 SMBIOS 2.5 present.

Handle 0x0049, DMI type 38, 18 bytes IPMI Device Information
        Interface Type: KCS (Keyboard Control Style)
        Specification Version: 2.0
        I2C Slave Address: 0x10
        NV Storage Device: Not Present
        Base Address: 0x0000000000000CA2 (I/O)
        Register Spacing: Successive Byte Boundaries

Again, the failure to find an IPMI supported device is not
sufficient to show lack of IPMI support.

Ultimately, some amount of information from product documents
or trial and error may be necessary to determine if IPMI is
supported on your system.
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