Inspection of UCS C240 Rack Mount Server

Major Hardware Components:

  • UCS Chassis & bundled HW components
    Single or Dual CPU, DIMM Sockets, SAS Expander, Embedded & Internal pluggable (Optional) RAID card.
  • Hard Drivers (SFF: small form factor; LFF: Large form factor);
    24 SFF Drivers with SAS Expander.
    16 SFF Drivers without Expander.
    12 LFF Drivers with SAS Expander.
  • DIMM Card & PCIe Cards;

UCS C240 M3

Hardware & Software Restrictions;

  • CIMC NIC Mode:
    When setting NIC mode in CIMC Setup Utility (F8), “Cisco Card” mode is currently supported only with Cisco UCS Virtual Interface Card (VIC) installed in PCIe Slot #2. ”Cisco Card” NIC mode—The ports on an installed Cisco UCS virtual interface card (VIC) are used to access the CIMC.
  • Single-CPU Configuration:
    In Single-CUP configuration, the maximum number of DIMMs is twelve, the internal mezzanine card slot is unavailable, and PCIe riser 2, which contains PCIe slots 4 and 5, is unavailable.
  • Cisco UCS Virtual Interface Cards (VIC):
    PCIe Slots that support Virtual Interface Cards (VICs): PCIe 2 & PCIe 5.
    UCS Virtual Interface Card

Special Considerations for Cisco UCS Virtual Interface Cards (Installation & Service Guide)

  • Power Supply Configuration Rules;
    The C240 M3 server requires at least one power supply. A lightly loaded server may require one
    or two 650 W power supplies. A fully loaded server might need to be powered with two 1200 W
    power supplies. A server with one GPU requires at least one 1200 W power supply; a server with
    two GPUs requires two 1200 W power supplies. Use the power calculator at the following link to
    determine the needed power based on the options chosen (CPUs, drives, memory, and so on): (Power Calculator)

Cisco UCS C240 M3 High-Density Small Form Factor Rack Server

CPU and Power Supply Considerations (Installation & Service Guide)

  • RAID Controller Considerations and Rules:
    Do not use the embedded & Internal pluggable RAID controller (Mezzanine) con-currently, which is not supported. And the embedded RAID option is available only with the SFF 16-drive backplane. It does not operate through an SAS expander.
    In a single-CPU configuration, the mezzanine card slot is not supported.
    This server supports up to 2 PCIe-Style RAID controllers. Internal pluggable RAID controller (Mezzanine) and PCIe-style RAID controllers can not be used concurrently either.
    RAID controller can be divided into 2 categories: SW RAID (embedded) and HW RAID (internal pluggable Mezzanine or PCIe Card based).

RAID Controller Considerations (Installation & Service Guide)

  • NIC Redundancy Setting:
    The Active-active and Active-passive NIC redundancy settings require you to connect to two ports.
  • BIOS & CIMC Firmware.
    BIOS and CIMC Firmware must be upgraded to the same version, and do not power off the server until the BIOS and CIMC Firmware are matching, otherwise, the server will not boot. Cisco provides the Cisco Host Upgrade Utility to assist with simultaneously upgrading the BIOS, CIMC,
    and other firmware to compatible levels.

    • For systems running firmware level 1.2 or later: Cisco strongly recommends using the Cisco Host Upgrade Utility to simultaneously upgrade the CIMC, BIOS, LOM, LSI storage controller, and Cisco UCS P81E VIC firmware to compatible levels. Your system firmware must be at minimum level 1.2 to use the Cisco Host Upgrade Utility.
    • If your firmware is prior to level 1.2, you must use the methods below to update the BIOS and CIMC firmware individually.
    • You might also upgrade CIMC & BIOS firmware through CIMC GUI or CLI interface.

BIOS and CIMC Firmware (Installation & Service Guide)

  • Recovering corrupted BIOS using BIOS Recovery Header J2068.
    The server must have CIMC version 1.4(6) or later to use these procedures.

Recovering BIOS using J2068 (Installation & Service Guide)

  • Hard Drivers Configuration Rules.
    You can mix hard drives and solid state drives in the same server. However, You cannot configure
    a logical volume (virtual drive) that contains a mix of hard drives and SSDs.
  • DIMM Configuration Rules.
    Cisco does not support 3rd-party DIMMs. Using non-Cisco DIMMs in the server might result in system problems or damage to the motherboard.
    Different DIMM Size can only be mixed across Multiple Channels. Refer to DIMM Mixing Rules for more details.
    When installing new DIMM cards, strictly follow the DIMM Population Rules to ensure performance.
    Although 1600 MHz DIMMs can be run in Power Saving Mode (low-voltage 1.35 V operation),
    1600 MHz operation is supported only when the DDR mode is set to Performance Mode. A 1600 MHz DIMM with DDR mode set to Power Saving Mode operates at 1066 MHz.
  • Rules for Pre-Installed Cisco Flexible Flash Card.
    Dual cards are supported only with CIMC 1.5(1) or later. With releases earlier than CIMC 1.5(1), only a single card is supported and it must be in slot SD1.
  • Rules for Embedded MegaRAID Controller.
    VMware ESX/ESXi or any other virtualized environments are not supported for use with the embedded MegaRAID controller. Hypervisors such as Hyper-V, Xen, or KVM are also not supported for use with the embedded MegaRAID controller.
    You cannot downgrade from using a RAID controller card to using the embedded controller. Instructions for installing upgrade modules and enabling the embedded controller in the BIOS are included here for those upgrading a server with no RAID controller or drives.

UC on Virtualized Environment.

Overall Matrix Summary of Compatibility.

Overall Matrix Summary of compatibility among Cisco UC Applications(versions), Virtualization Software, Virtualization Hardware, Virtual Machine Co-residency Policy.

Cisco Collaboration – Virtualization Support at a Glance (Unified Communications in a Virtualized Environment).

Application Co-residency Policy for Virtual Machines.

Detailed Co-residency policies for Cisco UC app VMs, Cisco Non-UC app VMs and 3rd-party app VMs.

Application Co-residency Support Policy (Unified Communications Virtualization Sizing Guidelines)

Hardware Requirements of Platform for UC Virtualization

Detailed hardware parameter requirements for Virtualization Platform in terms of CPU, Memory, Storage, platform models etc.

UC Virtualization Supported Hardware.

Virtualization-Supported Cisco Applications & Hyperlinks to Sizing of Virtual Machine.

List of Cisco Applications which support deployment on virtualization platform, and hyperlinks to detailed sizing (vCPU, vRAM, vDisk, vNIC) of Virtual Machines where those applications will be running.

Unified Communications Virtualization Supported Applications.

VMware Requirements for UC Virtualization.

Unified Communications VMware Requirements.

to be continue.