Does someone know a way of showing custom text there?

Using the omconfig script from Dell does not work for me for some reason, but I don't want to install 80MB of Java and webserver and whatever anyway. Ideally some small tool should be able to do this.

Did anybody reverse engineer anything yet?

I'm currently trying to solve this on a R410 server

5 Answers 5


I've gotten this working before on various dells using IPMI. Here is a post on the matter, http://www.mail-archive.com/[email protected]/msg00352.html

You didn't say which machine it was so your mileage may vary, but IPMI does work and its nice in that you can keep the stack entirely open source and with standard linux software without relying on omconfig or any dell supplied utilities. Also check out ipmitool, which should be sufficient to do what you need if IPMI is compiled in the kernel or supplied as a module in whatever distro you are using.

  • Thanks a lot! I use R410. The commands from that posting don't work. This link is a good start: en.community.dell.com/blogs/direct2dell/archive/2008/03/03/… Too bad it was not merged upstream yet, I'm currently trying to build it. I wonder were Dell did store recent updated source code files
    – Christian
    Nov 3, 2009 at 17:05
  • The only thing you really need to know is what resource to access via ipmi, Dell published a list of their ipmi accessible resources although I don't have a link Dell support can set you straight probably. Once you have that it should be relatively easy to manipulate the lcd via ipmi locally or remotely.
    – MattyB
    Nov 3, 2009 at 18:01

I use something like this on a variety of PowerEdge R<something> systems:

#!/usr/bin/perl -w
# Jesper Nyerup <[email protected]>

my $ipmitool = '/usr/bin/ipmitool';

my @chararray = split(//, join(' ', @ARGV));
usage() if (@chararray == 0 or @chararray > 14);

system("$ipmitool raw 0x6 0x58 193 0x0 0x0 ".
    sprintf('0x%x ', scalar(@chararray)).
    join(' ', map { sprintf('0x%x', ord($_)) } @chararray));
system("$ipmitool raw 0x6 0x58 0xc2 0x0 0x0 ".
    "0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0 0x0");

sub usage {
    print <<EOF;

  Usage: $0 <string>
         Max. 14 characters

    exit 1

I haven't found a complete reference of Dell's proprietary IPMI commands, but according to the documentation I found here, the first invocation of ipmitool puts the supplied string into one of the display's registers, and the second one flips the display buffer to actually show this.

EDIT: I put this snippet on Github, for future reference.

  • I wonder: ipmitool 1.8 knows delloem lcd set mode userdefined; would that simplify the solution? I did not succeed setting a text, however; mostly due to lack of proper documentation
    – U. Windl
    Feb 24, 2021 at 12:45
  • When I tried it on a Dell R7415 with IDRAC9, I got: Unable to send RAW command (channel=0x0 netfn=0x06 lun=0x0 cmd=0x58 rsp=0xff): Unspecified error Of course the server has an LCD display, and other commands do work.
    – U. Windl
    Feb 24, 2021 at 14:03
  • Found the problem: You can only set the display text if the LCD mode was set to "user defined" (was "hostname").
    – U. Windl
    Feb 24, 2021 at 14:15
  • I also wonder: I've seen the LCD display scroll a longer text (character by character), so I wonder: Can the LCD subsystem handle that, or must I send the scrolled text repeatedly? The code shown does not allow to send more than 14 characters to the LCD.
    – U. Windl
    Mar 8, 2021 at 21:00

Our 1900 lets you enter static text- like the server name or ip address- into a field under the BIOS setup

  • Mine not. But I really don't want to ENTER some custom text, I need to display important messages from my system! That means scripted!
    – Christian
    Nov 3, 2009 at 23:52

Dell support can provide you with small text mode programs to set the server name and other information that will be shown on the LCD. There are different utilities for the different PowerEdge generations.

  • Do you know the name of the tool so that I can google it or refer to something? I have a Poweredge R410
    – Christian
    Nov 3, 2009 at 16:44

On a recent iDRAC you can use racadm set System.LCD.UserDefinedString "Test 123!" to set a user-defined text on the LCD panel.

To connect to racadm, SSH to the iDRAC address. The prompt is racadm>>.

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