How to reset the internal Dell Remote Access Controller (iDRAC) on a PowerEdge server?

How to reset the internal Dell Remote Access Controller (iDRAC) on a PowerEdge server?

The integrated Remote Access Controller (iDRAC) with Lifecycle Controller is responsible for system profile settings and out-of-band management. If issues occur regarding these topics, one of the first troubleshooting steps is to reset the IDRAC module. This procedure also works if the iDRAC's password is lost, it will restore default credentials.

Note: For the following options a system host restart is not required.

Table of Contents

  1. Soft Reset via the i-button

  2. Soft or Hard Reset via RACADM

  3. Reset via iDRAC GUI

  4. Hard Reset via iDRAC Service Module

1. Option: Soft Reset via the i-button

Since the 12th generation of PowerEdge servers, a small button marked with an "i", as shown in Figures 1 & 2, is located on the front panel of many tower and rack systems. In order to reboot the iDRAC press the button for at least 30 seconds. Stop pressing the button when the cooling fans start spinning at full speed and the front LCD (if given) is turning off. Now the iDRAC restarts without changing any saved settings. It takes a few minutes until the remote controller works as before, but the system keeps working during the whole process.

Figure 1: I-button on PowerEdge R640 server

Figure 2: I-button on PowerEdge T620 server

2. Option: Reset via RACADM

The Dell RACADM (Remote Access Controller Admin) utility is a command-line tool that allows for remote or local management of Dell Servers via the iDRAC. RACADM commands can be run remotely from a management station and/or locally on the managed system.

For detailed information about the tool and its usage, please check the RACADM Command Line Interface Reference Guide (version or later, only in English)

The command for resetting the iDRAC is

racadm racreset for a soft reset (no saved settings will be changed) or
racadm racresetcfg for a hard reset (IP/Account settings will be set back to factory default)

3. Option: Reset via iDRAC GUI

The Graphical User Interface (GUI) of the iDRAC provides an option to perform a soft reset:

  1. Connect to the iDRAC
  2. Log into the interface by entering the username and password
  3. Follow the action depending on your iDRAC version:

iDRAC 8 and previous

  1. In the lower right corner of the overview screen, the Quick Launch Tasks are shown
  2. Click on Reset iDRAC (Figure 2)
  3. Confirm the action
  4. The iDRAC won't be reachable for few minutes, while the system performance is not affected
Idrac reset option in GUI
Figure 2: Reset iDRAC option


1. Click on the Maintenance tab
2. Select Diagnostics
3. Click on Reset iDRAC

Note: For a complete reset, click on "Reset iDRAC to Default Settings" , all settings, included the username, password and IP will be restored to the default one.

It is also possible to input iDRAC command lines directly from this screen.

4. Option: Hard Reset via iDRAC Service Module

The iDRAC Service Module (iSM) is a lightweight software application that can be installed on PowerEdge servers (12g and newer). iSM 2.3 (and newer) allows the administrator to hard reset the iDRAC remotely when iDRAC is unresponsive. Symptoms of a frozen iDRAC:

  • racadm command returns "ERROR: Unable to perform requested operation"
  • No ssh/telnet access to the iDRAC (the attempted connection times out)
  • No iDRAC browser access
  • Pinging the iDRAC IP Address fails

iDRAC Service Module provides the following interfaces through which iDRAC can be reset:

To reset the iDRAC using WMI commands, the procedure is as follows:
  • Install iDRAC Service Module on the Host OS
  • Open a command prompt with administrator rights
  • Execute the local WinRM command: winrm i iDRACHardReset wmi/root/cimv2/dcim/DCIM_iSMService?InstanceID="iSMExportedFunctions"
  • OR
  • Execute the remote WinRM command: winrm i iDRACHardReset wmi/root/cimv2/dcim/dcim_ismservice -u:"admin-username" -p:"password" -r:http://"remote-hostname or IP"/wsman -a:Basic -encoding:utf-8 -skipCACheck -skipCNCheck
Note: WinRM server or listener configuration is mandatory for using the above WinRM remote command. For configuration of WinRM as a listener; refer to Installation and Configuration for Windows Remote Management
To reset the iDRAC using local PowerShell commands, the procedure is as follows:


  • Requires Microsoft .NET framework 64-bit version 2.x or newer.
  • The execution policy for running powershell scripts should be set to one of the following:
    • Set-ExecutionPolicy AllSigned
    • Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted

iDRAC Service Module provides a PowerShell cmdlet to locally reset the iDRAC. To use PowerShell for resetting iDRAC:

  • Open a Windows PowerShell session as an administrator
  • Type Invoke-iDRACHardReset
Note: If you want to reset the iDRAC through a script or without the confirmation message, the -force option can be utilized.

Using Invoke-iDRACHardReset command from a remote PowerShell session.

  • Launch a PowerShell session on the management station
  • Enable remote PowerShell using "Enable PS-Remoting" cmdlet
  • The pre-requisite for PS-Remoting is WinRM configuration as a listener
Note: For details on how to configure PS-Remoting; refer to Enable and Use Remote Commands in Windows PowerShell
iDRAC Service Module also provides a shortcut in the program menu of the Windows OS. Select this option to reset iDRAC.

On all iSM supported Linux OS-es; iSM provides a command which can be executed by logging into the OS using SSH or equivalent:

The command:

$ /opt/dell/srvadmin/iSM/bin/Invoke-iDRACHardReset (OR)
$ /opt/dell/srvadmin/iSM/bin/Invoke-iDRACHardReset -f

You have an option to specify the force (-f) option along with the command which does not wait for user confirmation and proceeds with the iDRAC reset action.


On RHEL-7 and SLES-11 SP2 versions; the IPMI driver may become unresponsive after the iDRAC reset. Administrators have to unload and reload the IPMI driver module. However, on RHEL-7.1 and higher versions; this IPMI issue has been addressed and a patch can be downloaded for the same from the RedHat site. The issue is observed on Linux kernel version prior to 3.15.

Steps to reload the IPMI driver in case kernel version is less than 3.15:

  1. modprobe -r ipmi_si If the removal fails, then all applications (such as iDRAC Service Module and OpenManage Server Administrator) using the ipmi_si need to be stopped and the operation should be retried.
  2. modprobe ipmi_si
Note: Alternatively, the administrator can also restart the Host OS to resolve the issue.

On all iDRAC Service Module supported ESXi OS-es; iSM 2.3 and newer supports a CMPI method provider which shall enable customers to perform the iDRAC reset remotely using WinRM remote commands. Unlike Windows (except WMI) and Linux OS-es; ESXi does not prompt the user for a confirmation before resetting the iDRAC.

The command:

winrm i iDRACHardReset portedFunctions -u:"root-username" -p:"password" -r:https://"Host-IP":443/wsman -a:basic -encoding:utf-8 -skipCNCheck -skipCACheck -skipRevocationcheck

The result of the operation is displayed as an integer value which indicates success or failure of the operation.


On ESXi 6.0 U1 and ESXi 6.0 U2 versions of ESXi; the IPMI driver may become unresponsive after the iDRAC reset. Users Hard Reset operation on certain VMware ESXi operating systems, the IPMI driver (ipmi_si_drv) may become unresponsive because of an existing issue in the IPMI driver. If the IPMI driver becomes unresponsive, reload the IPMI driver (ipmi_si_drv).

Steps to reload the ipmi_si_drv.

  1. /etc/init.d/sfcbd-watchdog stop
  2. esxcfg-module -u ipmi_si_drv => unload ipmi_si_drv
  3. esxcfg-module ipmi_si_drv => load ipmi_si_drv
  4. /etc/init.d/sfcbd-watchdog start
Note: Alternatively, the administrator can also restart the Host OS to resolve the issue.

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Article ID: SLN305793

Last Date Modified: 12/02/2019 01:38 PM

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