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Create Partition using Partition Template in HMC

By Gopinath Patro posted Mon June 15, 2020 06:34 AM


With the HMC Enhanced UI, there are new ways of creating & deploying a partition. You could create a partition with minimal configuration and later manage the partition to attach storage, network and boot up the partition. Or you could use the partition templates to create, configure cpu, mem, storage, network and deploy the partition. This blog will delve into the details of working with partition templates and creating/deploying a partition using partition templates.

1. About Templates

Template is a blue print of system and partition configuration.  You can create or use the provided template to configure the managed system or partition in an easy way.

There are two types of template:

  1. System Template: Contains configuration specific to managed system and Virtual IO Server (VIOS) partition.
  2. Partition Template: Contains configuration specific to client partitions [i.e Aix/Linux or IBM i].

2. How to create a Template ?

The information in this section will describe different ways of launching the create partition from template wizard and possible configuration that can be done during overall create partition process.

To start with, HMC provides canned system and partition templates with some best practice configuration. These templates are referred as starter templates and can neither be edited nor deleted. However, user can view, copy, export or deploy these templates.

You can also capture a system configuration and a partition configuration as user defined system and partition templates. You could use the captured templates to deploy another system or partition or edit & modify the configuration to be used for another deploy.

You can also import System & Partition Templates using the import function.

3. Launch the Create Partition Wizard

You could create a partition from canned template or captured template. There are two ways to launch create partition wizard on HMC.

  1. From Managed System Partitions view
  2. From Template library view

3.1 Launch From Managed System Partitions View :

You can follow the below selection path to reach the create partition view.

  • Open a managed System
  • Click on partitions list view.
    1. Click on create partition button. Then Click on the link “Create using Template” on the right top corner of the “Create New Partition” Wizard.
    2. Click on System Actions (from left Menu) > Templates > Create Partition from Template

Click on Create Partition button and below screen can be seen from which select the Create Using Templates option


Note: With HMC V8 R8.6.0, You can also opt to create a partition with a minimum configuration [Like, partition name, partition id, partition type] by providing the required information in “Create New Partition” panel as shown in above picture. This would create a partition with the specified user inputs and

  1. Shared processor with
    1. Minimum, Desired and Maximum Virtual Processors as 1.
    2. Minimum, Desired and Maximum Processing Units as 0.1.
    3. Uncapped sharing mode with weight as 128.
  2. Memory with
    1. Minimum memory as 1GB
    2. Desired memory as 1GB
    3. Maximum memory as 4GB
  3. Maximum Virtual Adapters as 10

3.2 Launch From Template Library View:

You can follow the below selection path to reach the create partition view using template library.

  1. Open Template Library View. (HMC Management > Templates and OS Images)
  2. Select Partition Template Tab.
  3. Right Click on a template to select the deploy option. Or select the template and click on the action button to select the deploy option.

In this case since the partition template is selected first, during the create partition process you must select the managed system for the deployment.

With partition templates, you can

  • View the Templates details
  • Edit the partition templates to customize the resources allocated to a partition. For example, you can customize the partition template to be used for a particular workload or operating system type. You can change configurations like general settings, processor & memory, Virtual Network, Virtual Storage, Physical IO, Hardware Virtualized IO, Tagged IO.
  • Copy a template and create a new one. For example, you can copy a starter template and create a new one to customize for the partition requirements
  • Export the template which can later be imported on to another HMC.
  • Deploy the template to create, configure and activate the partition.
  • Delete the template

4. Create Partition Using Template

In this section, we will discuss about the overall create partition process using template wizard. During the create partition process, after the partition template and managed system is selected, a successful validation of selected template configuration against the managed system allows you to proceed to next steps.

4.1 Logical Partition Configuration Summary tab

   Allows you to select partition id, name and processor pool (In case the processor configuration is shared processor.)

Note: The partition id is auto generated to the next available Id. But you must ensure a valid partition name (and one which is not already in use) is provided.

4.2 Physical IO :

In this view, you can configure

  1. Physical IO
    1. In this section, you either will have pre-selected physical IO’s or has the option to select the physical IO from managed system. Pre-selected physical IO’s will only be visible if the selected template has enabled with “use captured IO”. In case “use captured IO” is disabled, the view will be populated with the available physical IO from the selected managed system.
  2. HEA
  3. SRIOV
    1. In this section, you can associate SRIOV logical ports with the physical SRIOV adapter.

Note: If the template is enabled with virtualization capability i.e. suspend/resume or simplified remote restart, you will not be allowed to select any physical IO.

4.3 Network Configuration:

In this view, you either will have pre-selected virtual network configuration or the option to select the virtual network from managed system.  For details on Virtual Network, refer to PowerVM Networking Concepts

Pre-selected virtual network configurations will be visible if you have enabled “Specify virtual networks in this template” in the selected template.

In case, you enabled the option “Choose virtual networks during deployment”, the view will be populated with the available virtual networks from the selected managed system.

4.4 Virtual NIC Configuration:

Virtual NIC Configuration can be done while creating partition from template. To configure Virtual NIC, you must add virtual nic or select to “use captured IO information” while editing the partition template.

Editing the partition template to configure the vNIC configuration: You can either select to use captured IO Information or add virtual nic to the template. In both the cases, you must select to pick the hmc-assigned mac address or specify the mac address during the create/deploy partition process.

Note: Editing a partition template can be done offline and not all attributes/options are editable as part of the create/deploy partition template wizard. Below screenshot shows editing vNIC related properties as part of editing partition templates.

The screenshot below refers to the view of virtual nic configuration during create partition from template

You must associate the physical port with the added virtual NIC and select the hosting server partition [Virtual IO Server] to configure the virtual NIC configuration. The VNIC mac address can be HMC-Assigned or a valid user specified mac address.

4.5 Storage Configuration:

You can configure the Virtual SCSI, Virtual Fiber Channel, Virtual Optical Device during create partition using template. The screenshot provided below refers the view for configuring the virtual storage.

4.5.1 Virtual SCSI Storage Configuration:

  1. Can configure Physical Volumes and Logical Units.
  2. To configure Physical Volume, you can choose from the list of available Physical Volumes displayed in the table. You can select the Physical Volume and click on the edit connection button on the top right corner of the table to provide the server adapter id against each VIOS.
  3. To configure Logical Unit, you must specify the device name, cluster and tier information. You can also select the Logical Unit and click on the “Edit Connection” button to configure the server adapter id.

4.5.2 Virtual Fiber Channel Storage Configuration:

You can select the Fiber channel adapters per VIOS and click on the “Edit Connections” button to configure the server adapter id.

4.6 IBMi Tagged IO:

IBMi Tagged IO view gets displayed in the create partition wizard, if the partition type specified as IBMi. In this view, you can specify load source, alternate restart device, console, alternate console and operations console options.

4.7 Deploy Summary:

This view provides the highlights of the partition getting create such as name, id, type, io, network, virtual nics and virtual storage details.

In summary tab view, you can have the option to select the deployment mode of either Activate Partition or Apply Configuration. These selection will be considered after the partition is created. Selecting the Activate Partition option will Power On the partition along with creating and applying the configuration. 

5. Notes

1. Create partition from template is a halt on first failure operation. During the overall process of partition creation, the possible errors that user can experience is as below:

  1. After the partition template and managed system is selected, the wizard validates the configuration of partition template against the selected managed system. Validation might fail in case of,
    1. Unsupported capabilities.
    2. Non-availability of the requested configuration.
    3. If any requested configuration is greater than available configurations. [Such as, requested memory, processor configuration is greater than the processor or memory available.]
2. Create partition operation might fail while creating the partition, applying any of the configuration or activating the partition. In case of failure, it generates an error message and wizard waits for you to cancel the operation or navigate back to make the changes and re-attempt the operation.

5. Creating a Virtual IO Server (VIOS) Partition :

A Virtual I/O Server partition can be created using,

  1. System template
    • You can deploy a system template which can be used to configure the system, create VIOS partitions specified in the system template, configure  SRIOV, Physical I/O, Network Storage etc. and install the VIOS.

Note: When system template deploy is being used, it would initialize the system (i.e., delete all the partitions on the system) first and then performs above mentioned configuration.


  1. Create Virtual I/O Server wizard.
    • You can add/create new VIOS Partitions as needed by using this option outside of the System Template Deploy.
    • You  can opt to create the VIOS partition and apply the configuration or proceed with installation of OS after the creation
    • While creating the VIOS, you must specify the partition name and id, processor, memory, physical I/O etc.
    • To navigate to this option, you can select to view the Virtual IO Servers under a Managed System and Click on the Create Virtual IO Server option as shown below

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