Installing Dell iDRAC Tools (including racadm) on Ubuntu / Debian

What are Dell's iDRAC Tools?

Dell servers, such as their wide PowerEdge™ models, include a remote management system known as "Integrated Dell Remote Access Controller", or iDRAC for short.

For certain administrative tasks, you may need to use some of their official command-line tools such as racadm. Unfortunately, they only offer packages for Windows, Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.

While you can't install Redhat/SUSE .rpm packages on Ubuntu/Debian, thankfully the binaries (software / program files) within Dell's RPM packages work perfectly fine if you can figure out how to install them.

In this guide, you'll learn:

  • Where/how to download Dell's iDRAC Tools for Linux
  • How to convert their RPM (RedHat-based) packages into DEB (Debian-based) packages,
  • How to install the converted DEB files on Ubuntu, Debian, or other debian-based distros
  • How to setup a symlink for easy usage of the racadm utility

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Obtaining the iDRAC Tools Linux binaries

The latest version of Dell's iDRAC Tools for Linux, is v9.4.0.

Official Dell download page: Dell EMC iDRAC Tools for Linux, v9.4.0

You can check if there's a newer version by typing into Dell's search box "Dell iDRAC Tools for Linux", and looking for any larger version numbers, e.g. v9.5.0 or v10.1.0 etc.

Once on the download page, at the bottom of the page you'll find an attached file with a format labelled as "Gnu-ZIP", "Linux Tar Ball", or a similar format.

Right click on the "Download File" link, and copy the link.

At the time of writing, iDRAC Tools v9.4.0 had the following download URL, which we'll use in this guide:

https://dl.dell.com/FOLDER05920767M/1/DellEMC-iDRACTools-Web-LX-9.4.0-3732_A00.tar.gz

Download and extract the TAR file

To download the file, we'll use the common Linux tool wget - it's likely that it's already installed on your system, but to be sure, you can use apt to install it. It won't hurt if it's already installed:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install -y wget

Now we'll download the TAR file from Dell, using the link we copied earlier from their website:

wget https://dl.dell.com/FOLDER05920767M/1/DellEMC-iDRACTools-Web-LX-9.4.0-3732_A00.tar.gz

Once it's downloaded, we can extract the file using tar xvf - which will also show us the files that were extracted

tar xvf DellEMC-iDRACTools-Web-LX-9.4.0-3732_A00.tar.gz

At the time of writing, the tar file contains a folder called iDRACTools (case sensitive) which is extracted by tar xvf into your current folder.

Let's enter the folder and see what's inside:

cd iDRACTools
ls -l

Here's what we see after running ls -l

user@host ~/iDRACTools $ ls -l
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root 18013 Oct 23  2019 gpl.txt
drwxrwxrwx 5 root root  4096 Oct 23  2019 ipmitool
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root  1361 Oct 23  2019 license.txt
drwxrwxrwx 5 root root  4096 Oct 23  2019 racadm
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root  9119 Oct 23  2019 readme.txt

There are two folders: ipmitool and racadm - along with three text files: gpl.txt, license.txt, and readme.txt

For this guide, we're only going to install racadm.

Installing Dell's racadm package on Ubuntu/Debian

Enter the racadm folder and let's see what's inside:

cd racadm
ls -la

Here's what we can see:

user@host ~/iDRACTools/racadm » ls -l
drwxrwxrwx 5 root root 4096 Oct 23  2019 .
drwxrwxrwx 4 root root 4096 Oct 23  2019 ..
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root 4746 Oct 23  2019 install_racadm.sh
drwxrwxrwx 3 root root 4096 Oct 23  2019 RHEL7
drwxrwxrwx 3 root root 4096 Oct 23  2019 RHEL8
drwxrwxrwx 3 root root 4096 Oct 23  2019 SLES15
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root  316 Oct 23  2019 uninstall_racadm.sh

There are three folders: RHEL7 (RedHat Enterprise Linux 7), RHEL8 (RedHat Enterprise Linux 8), and SLES15 (SUSE Linux Enterprise Server)

And two files (not needed for ubuntu/debian): install_racadm.sh and uninstall_racadm.sh

Dell does not provide official packages for Ubuntu / Debian or other debian-based distros, but you can pick one which is closest to the release date of your distro version.

We can convert the .rpm package (for RedHat based distros) into a .deb package (for Debian based distros), and most things should still work fine.

In the case of this guide, we tested it on Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver. So we're going with the RHEL8 package.

First we'll enter the RHEL8 folder:

cd RHEL8
ls -l

We can see only one folder x86_64 (64-bit version) - so let's enter that one

cd x86_64
ls -l

We can see there are several .rpm files in this folder.

user@host ~/iDRACTools/racadm/RHEL8/x86_64 $ ls -l
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root   65300 Oct 23  2019 srvadmin-argtable2-9.4.0-3732.15734.el8.x86_64.rpm
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root 1223520 Oct 23  2019 srvadmin-hapi-9.4.0-3732.15734.el8.x86_64.rpm
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root 1888644 Oct 23  2019 srvadmin-idracadm7-9.4.0-3732.15734.el8.x86_64.rpm

To be able to install these on Ubuntu/Debian, we're going to have to convert them into .deb files (the package format of Debian-based distros such as Ubuntu)

For converting the packages, we'll install the tool alien

sudo apt install -y alien

Now let's convert the packages. The command alien srvadmin-*.rpm will convert all .rpm files starting with srvadmin-:

alien srvadmin-*.rpm

If we run ls -l again, we'll see there are now 3 .deb files along with the original .rpm files.

user@host ~/iDRACTools/racadm/RHEL8/x86_64 $ ls -l
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root   65300 Oct 23  2019 srvadmin-argtable2-9.4.0-3732.15734.el8.x86_64.rpm
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root   56392 Jun 13 02:40 srvadmin-argtable2_9.4.0-3733.15734_amd64.deb
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root 1223520 Oct 23  2019 srvadmin-hapi-9.4.0-3732.15734.el8.x86_64.rpm
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 1001256 Jun 13 02:40 srvadmin-hapi_9.4.0-3733.15734_amd64.deb
-rwxrwSrwx 1 root root 1888644 Oct 23  2019 srvadmin-idracadm7-9.4.0-3732.15734.el8.x86_64.rpm
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 1714920 Jun 13 02:41 srvadmin-idracadm7_9.4.0-3733.15734_amd64.deb

We can install all of the .deb packages at once, to avoid dependency issues, by running:

sudo dpkg -i *.deb

You should see something like this:

Selecting previously unselected package srvadmin-argtable2.
(Reading database ... 215550 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack srvadmin-argtable2_9.4.0-3733.15734_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking srvadmin-argtable2 (9.4.0-3733.15734) ...
Setting up srvadmin-argtable2 (9.4.0-3733.15734) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.27-3ubuntu1) ...
Selecting previously unselected package srvadmin-hapi.
(Reading database ... 215573 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack srvadmin-hapi_9.4.0-3733.15734_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking srvadmin-hapi (9.4.0-3733.15734) ...
Setting up srvadmin-hapi (9.4.0-3733.15734) ...
Processing triggers for libc-bin (2.27-3ubuntu1) ...
Selecting previously unselected package srvadmin-idracadm7.
(Reading database ... 215648 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack srvadmin-idracadm7_9.4.0-3733.15734_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking srvadmin-idracadm7 (9.4.0-3733.15734) ...
Setting up srvadmin-idracadm7 (9.4.0-3733.15734) .

Once that's finished, you should now have the iDRAC tools successfully installed.

You can find them in the folder:

/opt/dell/srvadmin

Adding a symbolic link for racadm in /usr/local/bin

For convenience, we're going to create an alias for racadm in /usr/local/bin - allowing it to be easily called with just racadm from any user.

At the time of writing, Dell's racadm utility was installed at /opt/dell/srvadmin/bin/idracadm7

To make the symlink, run:

sudo ln -s /opt/dell/srvadmin/bin/idracadm7 /usr/local/bin/racadm

You should now be able to simply type racadm in your shell (linux command prompt), and be presented with the racadm help page:

racadm

Example output:

===============================================================================
RACADM version 9.4.0
Copyright (c) 2003-2019 Dell, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
===============================================================================

RACADM usage syntax:

    racadm <subcommand> <options>

Examples:

    racadm getsysinfo
    racadm getsysinfo -d
    racadm getniccfg
    racadm setniccfg -d
    racadm setniccfg -s 192.168.0.120 255.255.255.0 192.168.0.1
    racadm getconfig -g cfgLanNetworking

Display a list of available subcommands for the RAC:

    racadm help

Display more detailed help for a specific subcommand:

    racadm help <subcommand>

Thanks for reading

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Looking to buy a Virtual or Dedicated server? Do you like privacy and low prices? Try Privex!

We have virtual servers starting from just US$0.99/mo, and dedicated servers starting from as low as US$50/mo

Unlike other hosts, we don't ask for any personal details - only a name (can be an alias / username), and an e-mail address so we can send you your server details and renewal invoices.

We also accept several different cryptocurrencies with our own in-house payment processor - no third parties involved in processing your payments.

At the time of writing, we currently accept: Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), Monero (XMR), Dogecoin (DOGE), HIVE, and HBD

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