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<html>
<head>
<link rel=stylesheet href="style.css" type="text/css">
<title>IPMI/Environmental Monitoring</title>
</head>

<body>
<center><h1>IPMI/Environmental Monitoring</h1></center>
<center><font size=6><i>experimental</i></font></center>
<p>
<h3>Overview</h3>
Most modern computer systems have the capability of reporting temperatures and fan
speeds (as well as other information) via ipmi.  However, the format of the device 
names is not standardized making it extremely difficult if not impossible to 
programmatically interpret and report it.  This feature has been declared to be
<i>experimental</i> in order to evaluate its success on a broader set of hardware,
which I expect will be determined by the number of bug reports.  As such it is
disabled in collectl.conf so if you want to enable it when running as a daemon
be sure to include an E in the -s string in the <i>DeamonCommands</i> line as
shown below:
<pre>
DaemonCommands = -f /var/log/collectl -r00:01,7 -m -F60 -s+CEYZ
</pre>
<h3>Prerequisites</h3>
Collectl depends on the open source tool <a href=http://ipmitool.sourceforge.net/>ipmitool</a>,
which must be installed first.  Installation is as simple as pulling down and unpacking the kit
with tar and executing the commands:

<pre>
./configure
make
make install
</pre>

That's all it takes.  However, collectl must be run as <i>root</i> and your system must
support ipmi.  The easiest way to tell is
if the command <i>dmidecode | grep IPMI</i> runs without error.  If you get the error 
<i>Could not open device at /dev/ipmi0...</i> you are not running as <i>root</i>.
If you get some other error your system probably
does not support ipmi and even if you were able to install impitool, you won't be able
to use it.
<p>
The next step is to start the ipmi driver, and this is generally done via the command
<i>service ipmi start</i> on a RedHat system or something line <i>/etc/init.d/impi start</i>
on others.  On some systems such as HP blades, you may need to install a
custom ipmi driver such as <i>hp-OpenIPMI</i> and start that instead of the standard
driver.
<p>
At this point you should be able to execute the command "<i>ipmitool sdr</i> and see a all
your sensor data or the commands <i>ipmitool sdr type fan</i> and <i>ipmitool sdr type 
temp</i> to just see fan and temperature data:
<div class=terminal>
<pre>
[root@bl460-63 ipmitool-1.8.9]# ipmitool sdr
UID Light        | 0 unspecified     | ok
Int. Health LED  | 0 unspecified     | ok
VRM 1            | 0 unspecified     | cr
VRM 2            | 0 unspecified     | cr
Temp 1           | 47 degrees C      | ok
Temp 2           | 34 degrees C      | ok
Temp 3           | 30 degrees C      | ok
Temp 4           | 30 degrees C      | ok
Temp 5           | 31 degrees C      | ok
Temp 6           | 30 degrees C      | ok
Temp 7           | 30 degrees C      | ok
Temp 8           | 66 degrees C      | ok
Temp 9           | 20 degrees C      | ok
Virtual Fan      | 37.24 unspecifi | nc
Enclosure Status | 0 unspecified     | nc
</pre></div>

<h3>The collectl interface</h3>
Collectl uses a 3rd monitoring interval to collect ipmi data, which by default is 2 minutes.
This is done for several reasons:
<ul>
<li>The <i>ipmitool</i> interface involves running another process and adds to the load,
using a less frequent interval helps minimize collectl's footprint</li>
<li>This type of data changes at a slow enough rate as to not require monitoring too frequently
although the <i>current</i> readings which have just been added to Version 3.1.2 do seem to
change in nead real-time and so the monitoring interval may need to be rethought</li>
</ul>

Although you can run collectl to report this data interatively to report a single sample,
its typical use is expected to be as a daemon.  When run as a daemon collectl and -sE 
is specified, which is currently the default, it will first check to see if
<i>ipmitool</i> is present and if a communications device of the form <i>/dev/ipmi*</i>
is present.  If so it will start collecting ipmi data for fans and temperature sensors.
If it can detect a current sensor is present, it will report on that too.
<p>
You can control the way ipmi data is displayed in playback mode using <i>--envopts</i>
and one of 3 switches that allow you to only report fan or temperature data and if you
are reporting both, which is the default, you can request the 2 types of data be displayed
on separate lines.  This latter option can be useful if you have a lot of devices on 
which to report.
<p>
The following is an example of time-stamped output on an HP BL460c Blade, first without any options

<div class=terminal-wide13>
<pre>
collectl.pl -sE -i::1 -oT
# ENVIRONMENTAL STATISTICS
#             VFan   Temp1   Temp2   Temp3   Temp4   Temp5   Temp6   Temp7   Temp8   Temp9   Power
08:39:15    37.240      47      35      30      30      33      30      30      58      24     206
08:39:16    37.240      47      35      30      30      33      30      30      58      24     206
08:39:17    37.240      47      35      30      30      33      30      30      58      24     206
</pre>
</div>
Here we see the effect of <i>--envopts M</i> when examining an HP DL380-G5.
However it does also generate a lot more 
<i>noise</i> in the output.  It's main purpose is for dealing
with too much data to comfortably display on a single line.

<div class=terminal-wide13>
<pre>
collectl.pl -sE -i::1 -oT --envopts M
### RECORD    1 >>> opteron167 <<< (1218022891.002) (Wed Aug  6 07:41:31 2008) ###

# ENVIRONMENTAL STATISTICS
#   CFAN1   CFAN2   CFAN3   CFAN4   CFAN5   CFAN6   CFAN7   CFAN8   CFAN9  CFAN10   SFAN1   SFAN2
     6200    6000    6200    6200    6200    5800    6200    6000    6200    6000    6000    6200
#  CTEMP0  CTEMP1   STEMP
       51      48      29

### RECORD    2 >>> opteron167 <<< (1218022892.002) (Wed Aug  6 07:41:32 2008) ###

# ENVIRONMENTAL STATISTICS
#   CFAN1   CFAN2   CFAN3   CFAN4   CFAN5   CFAN6   CFAN7   CFAN8   CFAN9  CFAN10   SFAN1   SFAN2
     6200    6000    6200    6200    6200    5800    6200    6000    6200    6000    6000    6200
#  CTEMP0  CTEMP1   STEMP
       51      48      29
</pre>
</div>

If you choose to convert the data to plot format, a file with the extension <i>env</i>
will be created.

<p>
<h3>Device Names and the collectl challenge</h3>
As already mentioned, there is no standard on how one names an ipmi device and as a
result the names used even on the small sample of systems tested during development
have been quite different.  Here is are just a few ways fan names are reported:

<pre>
Fan 1
Fans
CPU FAN1
SYS FAN1
Fan1A (CPU)
FAN CPU0
FAN MOD 1A RPM
Fan Redundancy
</pre>

On the one hand, collectl could simply report the exact names as they are reported,
but the challenge of trying to format them in such a way as to provide a compact
display are impossible.  Given that the collectl standard reporting format is a 
single data header line, the notion of multiple-line headers is not an option.
While it is tempting to simply determine the widest device name and use that for
a header width, for systems that report over a dozen devices you couldn't fit them
on the same line and that's only for systems that have been tested.
<p>
After looking at all these different names and formats, one common theme did emerge.
All devices appear to have optional numbers (I didn't see any with just letters)
and those numbers if there have optional letters.  Furthermore, there seems to be some sort of
optional type associated with many as well.  This led to the idea of a 
standard naming for these devices as follows:
<p>
<i>[type]Fan|Temp[devicenumber[deviceletter]]</i>
<p>
in which the <i>type</i> field would be limited to a single character.  Applying this
scheme to the examples above leads to the following name mapping:

<pre>
Fan 1              Fan1
Fans               Fan
CPU FAN1           CFAN1
SYS FAN1           SFAN1
Fan1A (CPU)        CFan1A
FAN CPU0           CFAN0
FAN MOD 1A RPM     MFAN1A
Fan Redundancy     RFan
</pre>

This is admittedly not perfect but seems like a reasonable compromise and since collectl
will report the device names in the same order returned by ipmitool it is not all that 
difficult to figure out how collectl chose to map them.
<p>
<h3>Parsing Names and Customization</h3>
This is where the fun begins <i>or things get really ugly</i>, depending on your perspective.
<p>
After examing many different types of device name formats, it was determined that most
tended to follow the pattern of

<p><i>prefix type instanceNumber suffix</i><p>

Where things get a little crazy is that sometimes the actual instance number can be part
of the prefix OR sometimes the instance contains a letter.
<p>
All that said, collectl breaks a device name into these components, assuming a numeric
instance.  It then applies the minimal set of tests/modifications, note there are examples
of all these cases in the sample names shown earlier:
<ul>
<li>if the suffix contains the string in ()s, set the prefix to the string contained within</li>
<li>if an instance and suffix, append first word of suffix to the instance</li>
<li>if no prefix or instance and the suffix doesn't start with a digit, set the prefix to the suffix</li>
<li>if there is a prefix, prepend the first letter to the device name which is <i>fan</i> or <i>temp</i></li>
<li>if there is a prefix and it contains a digit, use that as the instance number</li>
<li>remove all whitespace</li>
</ul>

Since this can get verf confusing, a special switch names <i>--envdebug</i> has been included
which will show the actual parsing of the device names.  The following is an example of parsing
some of the names listed above:

<pre>
Fan CPU0 Tach,3480
  Prefix:   Name: Fan  Instance:   Suffix: CPU0 Tach
Fan1A (CPU),EAh,ok,29.3,Performance Met
  Prefix:   Name: Fan  Instance: 1  Suffix: A (CPU)
FAN MOD 1A RPM,5775,RPM,ok
  Prefix:   Name: FAN  Instance:   Suffix: MOD 1A RPM
</pre>

<ul>
<li>In the first example, the prefix is set to <i>CPU0</i>.  Then in instance set to 0 and the
<i>C</i> prepended to <i>Fan</i></li>
<li>In the second case the prefix is set to <i>CPU</i> and ultimately the name resolved to <i>CFan1A</i></li>
<li>In the third case the prefix is set to <i>MOD</i> and the device name set to <i>MFAN</i> and the
instance number is lost when what we really want is to have it set to <i>1A</i>!!!</li>
</ul>
<h3>Standard and User Defined Parsing Rules</h3>
Collectl provides a mechanism for dealing with device names that do not result in the 
generation of satisfactory names as described in the last section, by providing a file
of translation <i>rules</i> for the system(s) they apply to.
This file is currently populated with a number of HP systems this mechanism has
been tested on and the <i>rules</i> are actually one or more perl pattern matching/replacement
expressions. If the system name can be obtained via <i>dmidecode</i>, this file
is searched for a matching stanza and its translations applied to device names
before their initial parsing and/or immediately after a device name is generated.
<p>
If your system is not in this <i>standard</i> set, you can either add your own rules to 
<i>/usr/share/collectl/envrules.std</i> (assuming your system type can be obained 
through dmidecode) or put them in a standalone file and tell collectl to use it
instead of the standard one using <i>--envrules</i>.  If you do use your own file it 
should simply contains line of the following form (no stanza preface) noting that spaces
and comments (lines preceeded with a #) are permitted:

<pre>
[ignore]
/pattern/
...
[pre]
/pattern1/replace1/
/pattern2/replace2/
...
[post]
/pattern1/replace1/
/pattern2/replace2/
...
</pre>

If you know perl (and you really should if you want to do this), collectl builds a perl
pattern match command if you specify <i>[ignore]</i> and ignores any strings returned by 
ipmitool that match.  This is a good way to reduce the volume of sensors on systems that
may have dozens of them and you're only interested in a specific subset.
<p>
In the cases of <i>[pre]</i> and <i>[post]</i> a perl substistituion command is built out
of the <i>pattern</i> and <i>replace</i> strings and applied to the sensor names.  There
is one caveat about <i>[post]</i> and that is it only applies to the actual derived sensor
name and <i>not</i> the instance, so it you want to change a specific instance consider 
using a <i>pre</i> string to make a  unique sensor name and then change it to what you 
really want with <i>post</i>.  So looking  at the string <pre>FAN MOD 1A RPM</pre> 
and the processing rules described in the previous section, the <i>MOD</i>
suffix will be prepended to <i>FAN</i> and the first letter used to name the device
<i>MFAN</i>, losing the instance information with is <i>1A</i>.
<p>
There are at least 3 options here.  The first is to simply remove <i> MOD </i> from 
each name which we can do with the rule: <pre>/ MOD//</pre> which will result in
the instance names being picked up correctly because they will now immediately follow
<i>FAN</i>.  In fact, if you include <i>--envdebug</i> along with your rules you'll
see the results of the replacement:

<div class=terminal>
<pre>
FAN MOD 1A RPM,5775,RPM,ok
  Pre-Remapped 'FAN MOD 1A RPM' to 'FAN 1A RPM'
  Prefix:   Name: FAN  Instance: 1  Suffix: A RPM
</div>
</pre>

The second option would be to move
<i>MOD</i> to the front of the string so that the rule that uses the first letter
as part of the final name will take effect and that rule will look like:
<pre>/(.*) MOD (.*)/MOD $1$2/</pre> and results in the following parsing:

<pre>
<div class=terminal>
FAN MOD 1A RPM,5775,RPM,ok
  Pre-Remapped 'FAN MOD 1A RPM' to 'MOD FAN 1A RPM'
  Prefix: MOD   Name: FAN  Instance: 1  Suffix: A RPM
</pre>
</div>

<p>
Unfortunately in order to make perl iterpret the <i>$1$2</i> symbols an <i>eval</i>
is required which generates a little extra overhead and while not horrible an
even better solution is the third option which doesn't use any special $ symbols:
<pre>/FAN MOD/MOD FAN/</pre>
which produces exactly the same results as the previous example except without the
<i>eval</i> command.
<p>
There is in fact at least one other mechanism for those that are not all that familiar
with perl and is only being included for completeness, and that is to simply hardcode
the replacement of each device with the desired output.  In other words
<pre>
/FAN MOD 1A RPM/MOD FAN1 A/
/FAN MOD 2A RPM/MOD FAN2 A/
/FAN MOD 3A RPM/MOD FAN3 A/
etc
</pre> will produce strings that can also be properly parsed without involved $ variables
but this means you need to specify each unique device name to remap and it will also result
in <i>all</i> pattern matching statements to be executed for each device which will also
result in slightly more overhead.
<p>
<h3>Power Monitoring</h3>
Currently all the systems that power monitoring has been testing on report it as the field
<i>Power Meter</i> and without more examples, the parsing is currently set up to specifically
look for that field.
<p>
<h3>Performance and Alternate IMPI Devices</h3>
<p>
In some situations there may be multiple ipmi devices over which to communicate and if so, the
default one may not necessarily be the fastest one.  If you thing the ipmi commands are taking
too long to execute, try a simple experiment like this:

<pre>
ipmitool sdr dump /tmp/xxx
time for i in `seq 1 10`; do ipmitool -S /tmp/xxx sdr > /dev/null; done;
real    0m20.476s
user    0m0.004s
sys     0m0.015s
</pre>

As you can see, even though the command only used 0.02 seconds of CPU time, the elapsed time 
was over 20 seconds, a good indication something is not right.  If look in /proc/ipmi you make
see more than one directory as in the following case:

<pre>
[root@hpdc3dmgt1 ~]# ls /proc/ipmi
0  1
</pre>

This means there are 2 different IPMI devices and since the default is one, let's try repating
the command above on the other device.  Also notice that since we've already initialized
our cache file we do not need to reissue the <i>ipmitool sdr dump</i> command:

<pre>
time for i in `seq 1 10`; do ipmitool -S /tmp/xxx -d1 sdr > /dev/null; done;
real    0m0.487s
user    0m0.004s
sys     0m0.013s
</pre>

See how the elapsed time is only a fraction using device 1?  To tell collectl to use this
device instead of the default, simply specify the number in the <i>--envopts</i> switch,
for example <i> collectl -sE --envopts 1</i>

<p>
<h3>Restrictions</h3>
Some systems report what appears to be device codes in the data field and the data in the 4th
field and I don't know why.  For now, when this occurs report the 4th column as the data
instead.  If this breaks other things it will have to be removed and invalid data reported
for those who do not report it in column 2.

<table width=100%><tr><td align=right><i>updated June 25, 2010</i></td></tr></colgroup></table>

</body>
</html>