UCS Server Configuration Utility (SCU) is a bootable image based on 32-bit Linux kernel. You can boot a UCS C-series rack server with SCU boot image, from vmedia or physical CD drive. During boot SCU displays a splash screen with progress bar. At boot completion SCU launches the GUI. In the SCU GUI you can see following server information: a) Platform type b) BIOS/BMC/LSI controller firmware versions c) Number and type of processors d) Hyper-threading e) Number of network adapters f) Server manufacturer details
The SCU is very useful in certain tasks like OS installation, RAID configuration and Firmware updates.
Assisted OS installation
SCU assists in single OS installation on local disks of UCS C-Series servers, along with correct versions of drivers for Cisco supported devices. User interacts with SCU and makes selections for OS installation. SCU sets up the server for unattended OS installation, however it does not support OS installation on SAN disks. To perform OS installation first boot the server on SCU. Then make selections for OS installation (like OS type and version, target disk partition, network configuration, list of drivers to be installed, and additional packages to be installed in case of Linux OS). For driver selection remeber that driver for the boot controller needs to be always selected otherwise installation can fail with OS not able to find the boot disk. SCU image includes drivers for all Cisco supported boot controller devices. SCU will detect the boot controller on the server and list only that driver for installation, however other device drivers (Ethernet, FC HBA, C.N.A) are not filtered. After this restart the server. For Windows server is booted on OS installation media, for other OS server is booted on the target disk chosen for installation – SCU sets up the target disk with the OS installer. On restart, OS installer (Windows setup, RHEL Anaconda installer etc) will complete the installation using the input from SCU. Server will reboot during the installation, complete the installation, and get booted on the newly installed OS.
RAID Virtual Disk Configuration
SCU detects and displays RAID controllers in server. The available options for RAID virtual disk configuration are:
a) Automatic setup with redundancy – create virtual disk with all physical disks on the controller, using RAID level 1 and default stripe size. b) Automatic setup without redundancy – create virtual disk with all physical disks on the controller, using RAID level 0 and default stripe size. c) Custom configuration – user can select from available unconfigured physical disks, choose RAID level / stripe size, and create multiple virtual disks.
Note that RAID configuration does not support creating virtual disks with nested / hybrid RAID levels like RAID 10 / 50 etc.
SCU detects and displays current running versions of BIOS and CIMC firmware. SCU can update BIOS image and CIMC firmware image on the server. SCU uses iflash32 utility to update BIOS, and fwup utility to update CIMC. The update will take a while and the server should not be interrupted during the update. The firmware update package is a separate zip file. This can be supplied to SCU from a USB disk or network share in the LAN or downloaded from cisco.com. After update of BIOS and CIMC, SCU will prompt for restarting the server. This will restart both the server and CIMC, to activate the newly updated BIOS/CIMC versions.