Dell OpenManage Power Center and Intel Node Manager put server power in your hands

This post was authored by John Abrams, Systems Management Marketing

Customers with large numbers of servers or a full-blown data center share similar concerns with regards to power management: the importance of server density, improved power monitoring and management, emergency planning and the constant drive to increase efficiency. It is Dell’s goal to provide our customers with the best possible response to these challenges. One such solution, developed in partnership with Intel, is OpenManage Power Center.

A little background: Dell OpenManage Power Center is a part of the Dell OpenManage family. This free software tool connects to 11th and 12th generation Dell PowerEdge servers via the server’s integrated Dell Remote Access Controller (iDRAC).  Inside Dell’s latest 12th generation servers, the iDRAC module is connected to Intel’s Node Manager, which is firmware and hardware-based technology used to measure and manage power and temperature-related resources in the server. Together, these components work together to give you out-of-band access to monitor and control each server. It’s worth pointing out that the advanced power management features require an Enterprise license for iDRAC7. Power Center provides operators with detailed measurement of energy consumption, the ability to reduce that consumption by setting policies, management in the event of power or temperature changes, server power prioritization, and emergency power reduction management. These abilities put you in the driver’s seat in your data center.

Now let’s talk about putting these abilities to work for you. If you’re not measuring power consumption, you can’t manage it, so Power Center gives you graphs and reports showing power consumption by server, rack or logical groups. This information then lets you put in place policies and priorities that will maximize the uptime of the most important applications if your available power declines or the thermal load starts to climb. By tracking power consumption and intake and exhaust temperatures, it’s a snap to set up a policy that throttles back given systems during peak hours or when application demands are low — or even to increase system uptime if you’re running on backup power. Consider the case of a chiller failure or brownout: If such an event is detected, Power Center will lower power consumption by lower priority servers under your power capping policies to ensure high-priority jobs get their full power allocation when possible. Similarly, you can use OpenManage Power Center’s rack-level power capping policy to increase density where your equipment is not fully utilizing the available power in a given rack.

With OpenManage Power Center, you have real-time server energy usage monitoring, reporting and analysis to provide continuous monitoring of actual energy usage.  You will be better prepared for reductions or loss of power, heat management and can optimize available power to the highest priority applications or workloads. For non-CPU bound workloads, it is frequently possible to reduce server power consumption by approximately 20 percent without an appreciable impact on performance.  Whether you have a large number of servers to manage, or a full scale data center, we think you will appreciate how OpenManage Power Center can make a positive impact on your business.

For more resources, here is a video and some helpful links:

Download OpenManage Power Center

Dell Power & Cooling Solutions Page

Sarah Vela

About the Author: Sarah Vela

Sarah Vela is no longer with Dell Technologies.