Article Number: 000130160
This article explains how to use the iDARC LifeCycle Controller to install a supported operating system on most Dell PowerEdge servers. Step-by-step instructions and OS installation videos for Windows Server, Ubuntu Sever LTS, SUSE Linux Enteprise Server, or Red Hat Enterprise Linux installation with LifeCycle Controller.
Ensure the your operating system is supported by your PowerEdge server. Compatible and supported operating systems for PowerEdge servers are available in the PowerEdge supported Operating Systems matrix.
Before installing a new operating system, a best practice is to update the OS Driver Pack for the latest operating system drivers. Download the latest OS Driver Pack from support site.
For installing the operating system, the OS source media has to be available to the server. The installation files can be provided through:
For installing the operating system on a virtual disk, ensure that a Software RAID or PowerEdge RAID controller is installed and at least two (or more, depending on the required RAID level) hard-disk drives are available. In specific scenarios, OS can be installed on SD cards.
Two methods are available for installing an operating system:
Log in to the server's iDRAC9, go to 1. Configuration > 2. Virtual Media > 3.Mount Drivers.
Figure 1: iDRAC9 Virtual Media
Boot directly from the OS Media:
This is the preferred method to install the OS. The LifeCycle Controller simplifies the installation of the Operating System with the "OS Deployment" feature. The drivers are preloaded before the installation process when using this feature. The OS is smoothly installed as all components are well recognized by the OS.
Steps to follow:
Figure 6: PowerEdge 12G Lifecycle Controller UI
It is possible to boot directly from the OS installation media to install the operating system. Some components of the server may be not recognized as the OS media may not include all the needed drivers. Drivers can be downloaded from the Dell Support site and installed later once the OS is installed.
Steps to follow:
Dell collaborates with Operating System vendors to ensure consistent and reliable performances. The Operating System Library page provides the list of supported OS per PowerEdge model. An unsupported operating system may cause failures during the installation process or not work properly with hardware components.
To enable all functions of an operating system. A license (Windows and ESXi) or subscriptions (Linux) might be required. Here you find links to the most common vendors of supported operating systems:Licensing resources:
Subscription resources for:
If drivers for hardware components are not in the operating system, download the missing software from the Dell home page:
Go to www.dell.com/drivers and then choose the required system type by entering the Service Tag or selecting the product type manually.
Select the installed operating system, enter a matching Keyword in the intended field, and press Enter.
The corresponding drivers are shown below. Click the download sign to receive the required file.
Figure 8: Software search on Dell support site
Since the 14th generation of Dell PowerEdge servers, a factory password is set for preinstalled VMware ESXi. The root password is the Service Tag of the machine followed by the character "!." This can be changed during deployment. Example: "AAAXXX1!. This can be changed during deployment.
Find more details in the dedicated Dell KB article Dell VSAN Ready Node: What is the Default VMWare ESXi Root password for 14G Servers?.
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