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PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

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bbiandov_apc
Lieutenant JG
Lieutenant JG
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PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This was originally posted on APC forums on 10/3/2016


Hi everyone,

I'm looking for some official word on running PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis -- those are VM Ware bare metal boxes that Cisco sells as part of their unified telephony ecosystem. Each VM runs various pieces such as call manager, unity connection etc.

The strangest thing is that Cisco themselves do NOT provide any integration to a UPS and an automated shutdown process? I was very stumped to find that out yet they lack such integration. Their UCS servers are running stock VM Ware 5.5 (some modifications for the bare metal sensors of course just like HP or DELL images) yet there isn't any recommended integration with any UPS manufacturer.

Obviously one would think ok I just run the OVA for the PCNS and volia -- good integration with VM Ware and proper shutdown mechanism. Mechanically that's no brainer.

The problem is "compatibility" -- Cisco is very finicky of the end user running any non-Cisco VMs on their chassis. Do you have any experience with the PCNS appliance on those chassis? Do you have any TAC cases that reference approved compatibility with UCS C220 M4S? What is APC's stand on integrating network shutdown OVA with Cisco's UCS C220 M4S

Thank you

~B


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voidstar_apc
Janeway
Janeway
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Re: PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This was originally posted on APC forums on 10/14/2016


I think Bill was offering scripting as a possible alternative to the out-of-the-box functionality that APC hasn't tested on Cisco switches and that you were concerned Cisco might not approve. If PCNS is running outside of the Cisco box and is scripted to remotely initiate a shutdown of the Cisco box, that sidesteps your issue.

See Answer In Context

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BillP
Administrator Administrator
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Re: PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This reply was originally posted by Bill on APC forums on 10/4/2016


Boyan,

That configuration has not been tested so I am not sure if it will work. Can you install VMware vMA 5.X or 6.X on the system? If so then PCNS will run on the vMA and unless there have been changes to the host OS PCNS should be able to power it down.

Another option is to run PCNS on a standalone Windows system and write a command file to shutdown the remote Cisco system when the UPS goes to battery. 

bbiandov_apc
Lieutenant JG
Lieutenant JG
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Re: PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This was originally posted on APC forums on 10/4/2016


Thanks for the reply Bill. I'm uncertain as to which configuration you're referring to: "That configuration has not been tested" -- running the PCNS OVA appliance on the ESXi host to be shutdown? That's precisely what the OVA it is meant for? Or did you mean running in on Cisco's ESXi?

I see the suggestion about installing vMA but that's thousand times worse -- that's tapping into someone else's Red Hat VM and running the install script as root. The OVA is isolated -- just another VM running on a host.

Maybe I worded the question badly. Let me try from a different angle: how do you interface your Cisco telephony UCS C220 M4S series of chassis to an APC UPS?

BillP
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Re: PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This reply was originally posted by Bill on APC forums on 10/4/2016


Hi,

The system I am referring to is the Cisco. PCNS has not been test running on a Cisco system. 

On 10/4/2016 11:23 AM, Boyan said:

I see the suggestion about installing vMA but that's thousand times worse -- that's tapping into someone else's Red Hat VM and running the install script as root. The OVA is isolated -- just another VM running on a host.

The VMware vMA is a virtual machine that VMware makes available to manage the host. If a vMA can interface with the Cisco implementation than it is an option and my reasoning for the suggestion. I agree that the OVA is a better options since it is a self contained OS with PCNS pre installed. However since we have not tested the OVA with the Cisco system I cannot recommend it. 

On 10/4/2016 11:23 AM, Boyan said:

Maybe I worded the question badly. Let me try from a different angle: how do you interface your Cisco telephony UCS C220 M4S series of chassis to an APC UPS?

As I mentioned earlier if you can remotely shutdown the Cisco system you can write a script that PCNS could run to shut the host down. I recommend running PCNS on a standalone OS not a VM. By doing so PCNS can run the script and then shutdown the system it in on. This give the host the ability to enter maintenance mode and power do the VMs prior to it shutting it self down. 

NOTE: We do offer option for Cisco switches. see this web page http://www.apc.com/resource/docs/spectra/CiscoCatalystSwitchCheatSheet.pdf

bbiandov_apc
Lieutenant JG
Lieutenant JG
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Re: PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This was originally posted on APC forums on 10/13/2016


Thanks Bill,

I've seen the trend from TAC to over complicate everything as if there's some kind of pride in all this while it is fairly elementary in reality. Why would I need any scripting when the PCNS OVA will naively initiate ESXi shutdown (that's its purpose in the first place) and since each guest OS VM is setup with the VM Ware tools; the host going down will naively and gracefully signal and shutdown each guest OS VM.

That's the whole point of running VM tools on each of the VMs no?

So where does all that script business come to play and why when PCNS will do the work out of the box?

Thanks

~B

voidstar_apc
Janeway
Janeway
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162

Re: PCNS CentOS appliance for Cisco's UCS C220 M4S series of chassis

This was originally posted on APC forums on 10/14/2016


I think Bill was offering scripting as a possible alternative to the out-of-the-box functionality that APC hasn't tested on Cisco switches and that you were concerned Cisco might not approve. If PCNS is running outside of the Cisco box and is scripted to remotely initiate a shutdown of the Cisco box, that sidesteps your issue.