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Console output

 
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John A. Beard
Regular Advisor

Console output

We are interested in being able to review console output on our ES47 servers. We currently connect to the console port via SMC NAT boxes to 4 2P partitions, but find that we only receive minimal buffered console messages when we establish a link to the VMS box. We have been experiencing some on-going problems where we would have benefited from having more console messages available to view.

I know that there are products out there like Console Management from CA or CockpitMgr, but for the purpose of this exercise we are ONLY interested in having the ability to viw console mesages logged over diferent periods of time.

Any and all recomendations gratefully recieved... John
Glacann fear críonna comhairle.
7 REPLIES 7
Andy Bustamante
Honored Contributor

Re: Console output

I've used a laptop with a terminal emulator logging output to trap the occasional stealth error. Add a terminal server to mix and you can trap multiple console sessions from one host.
If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over? Reach me at first_name + "." + last_name at sysmanager net
John A. Beard
Regular Advisor

Re: Console output

Thanks Andy....we were leaning towards this kind of option (if nothing else from a cost perspective)

We do have a terminal server already in place that we use for console access to some older Alphas.

If we bypass the NAT box, would it be a case of taking those CAT5 cables and hooking them directly into the terminal server, and from there using the existing connection directly into the MBM module?


Glacann fear críonna comhairle.
Bill Hall
Honored Contributor
Solution

Re: Console output

John,

Search the ES47/ES80/GS1280 User Guide for "MBM Serial Connector". The User Guide contains clearly labeled drawings and pictures. You will find it located on the "2P Cable Interconnect Module" along with the "MBM LAN Connector". The MBM LAN Connector is of course a RJ45. The MBM Serial Connector is a DB9 male.

You will need the appropriate cable(s) and/or adapters to go from a female DB9 connector on the MBM end to an RJ45 or MMJ plug on the terminal server end of the cable.

Bill
Bill Hall
Bob Blunt
Respected Contributor

Re: Console output

John, both the CA solution and ConsoleWorks have options to connect using a port on the host, LAT or TELNET to terminal server ports directly connected to serial consoles. The HP solution, which I believe is called "AMS," uses other protocols and methods to connect. You could also cobble something simple together using a PC with a terminal emulation package logging from COM ports to a file but you'd lose the intelligence that CA and TDI have built into their products. You could also put together some simple software on VMS to just capture the console data either through a direct-connected port or, again, a LAT- or TELNET-connected terminal server port.

ConsoleWorks has (or had) product availability on multiple platforms including, at one time, OpenVMS. Console Manager, I think, is mainly a solution that runs on OpenVMS. You might also find similar solutions from Heroix and Ki Networks. Many console management solutions these days are leaning toward standalone boxes that seem more intended toward PC Server farms and systems that have some form of "remote, lights-out" console connection.

If you can get by with a simple solution versus one of the alarming, monitoring, full-blown bells and whistles products, go for it. You really can't go wrong with a tool that not only watches your consoles but knows when something goes wrong (or can be "taught") and knows what to do.

bob
Kees L.
Advisor

Re: Console output

I did a proof-of-concept once with connecting the console of one ES45 to the secondary serial of another ES45. Gave some hassle for a right cable but it worked. This makes it possible to get all the console output directly on another OpenVMS server and you can do with it all you want.
Probably this can also be done connecting the console to a DECserver and connecting to that from another OpenVMS server.
Rob Leadbeater
Honored Contributor

Re: Console output

Hi John,

As you're using ES47s you probably should be looking to use the HP tool AMS, AlphaServer Management Station.

http://www.compaq.com/alphaserver/firmware/ams/ams.html

This will do console logging and console output monitoring amongst other things:

http://www.compaq.com/cpq-alphaserver/firmware/ams/html/ams_faq.html

Hooking up directly to the MBM LAN and serial consoles can get messy, particularly if you ever get into the realms of expanding your ES47s...

Cheers,

Rob
Hoff
Honored Contributor

Re: Console output

AMS requires Tru64 UNIX or RHEL/Linux.

There's no client for Mac, OpenVMS or Windows.

There is a subset client (AMU) for various platforms, but that lacks various features including the platform console manager.

Compaq was migrating folks to TDi console manager package, and that package (and it's a good package) or another available console management package would be an option here.