0

Im trying to figure out what exactly can be configured by the first three settings on Dell PowerEdge R720 Server BIOS's Serial Communications Screen.

Let me explain what (I think) I have understood:

Disregarding all Input operations, there are or may be multiple sources (in terms of output) of serial communication:

  • Startup process/POST/BIOS itself
  • Serial Console 1 of OS
  • Serial Console 2 of OS (As far as I have read, the OS usually has two (virtual) serial ports for historic reasons.)

On the other hand I have these serial communication sinks in mind:

  • A terminal emulator connected to the physical serial port on servers rear side
  • A NIC from where the signal ist transmited over network
  • virtual Console in iDRAC e.g. in Browser interface

What I do not understand is this:

  1. What is meant by console redirection as configured by the first option in the menu named above? Which console is meant here?
  2. What is the difference between Serial Port Address (COM1/COM2 here) and Serial Device as named in second setting?
  3. If the External Serial Connector is the physical serial port on the rear side, what is meant by remote access device? Else, what is the External Serial Connector?
2
  • I work at Dell but this is way before my time. I came in for 14G and the oldest I've seen in the field is 13G 😂. I'll ask around but if it helps, on 13G+ servers you can connect a USB->Ethernet cable to the front of the chassis and you can hit the iDRAC on the IPv4 169.254.0.0/16 range. That's kind of similar? What it really sounds like is on the VEP series you use a console cable to do everything. It will literally give you UI over the terminal. This looks a lot like that does. I'll ask one of the "older" guys and see if they know Sep 13 at 2:11
  • @GrantCurell I would be glad if you could help me with that. Just to make it clear: I am aware that there exist configuration options using iDARC/IPMI/LOM, Lifecycle Manager and others (physical interaction at least) but want to get a rough Idea what options for serial communication with the server itself and maybe also the OS I have. Therefore I consider understanding what the single options for these settings actualy stand for an requirement. But unfortunately I stumbled with this already... Sep 13 at 2:46

1 Answer 1

0

I think the below is correct. I obviously don't have an R720 to go test against. If anything doesn't line up let me know and I'll edit the response.

What is meant by console redirection as configured by the first option in the menu named above? Which console is meant here?

It's referring to redirecting a given console source (BIOS, host, etc) to some target port. See Additional Context

What is the difference between Serial Port Address (COM1/COM2 here) and Serial Device as named in second setting?

The serial device is the receiving target: BIOS, host, etc. See Additional Context

If the External Serial Connector is the physical serial port on the rear side, what is meant by remote access device? Else, what is the External Serial Connector?

It's referring to a device that takes serial in and does IP out (typically). Before SOL was a thing, you would have an external device like this one that would take the serial input and convert it to IP for you.

Additional Context

enter image description here

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.