View Only

HMC Virtual appliance is here!

By HARIGANESH MURALIDHARAN posted Fri June 05, 2020 01:30 AM



The HMC virtual appliance gives clients additional flexibility to manage IBM Power Systems servers by providing the option to supply your own x86 hardware and server virtualization to host the HMC.  This can be useful for instances where existing HMC hardware models you may have don't support newer HMC versions, concerns over qualification of manufacturing origin of the hardware appliance model, or general cost considerations of acquiring a new hardware appliance.

Unlike the hardware appliance, the virtual appliance has a software license which provides software maintenance, and the pricing is different.  See the virtual appliance announcement and virtual appliance on power announcement for more details.  

Installation and Server Support

Virtual HMC appliance is supported with the VMWare, Xen & KVM hypervisors for x86 platform and PowerVM hypervisor for Power platform.  See Knowledge Center for specific installation instructions.

The virtual appliance releases will be in tandem with those of the hardware appliance.  The same Service Packs and PTFs will be supported on both hardware and virtual appliances.

This virtual appliance offers the same function1 as the traditional hardware appliance, and can manage the same servers.  As long as you meet the minimum virtual machine requirements, you can:

  • Run the HMC virtual appliance in an existing virtualized environment.
  • Run the HMC virtual appliance on a dedicated virtualized host.
  • Manage serves alongside a redundant HMC virtual appliance or hardware appliance.

If speed of service, perhaps due to your x86 host virtualization environment and potential problems, is a concern, then it's recommended that you manage your systems with at least one hardware appliance to ensure management appliance.

Automated Deployment

The HMC virtual appliance also comes with a feature that allows automated, on-boot configuration of

  • license
  • locale
  • network & firewall
  • ssh
  • ntp

upon first boot / deploy.

While there are detailed instructions in Knowledge Instructions on using this facility, you can write a script to automate deployment of multiple HMC virtual appliance instances.  

1Call home over modem, call home of HMC host failures (introduced in V8R8.2.0; managed server call home remains fully supported), and DHCP server configuration via Activation Engine are not supported.  For DHCP server configuration you can use the existing GUI.

Contacting the PowerVM Team

Have questions for the PowerVM team or want to learn more?  Follow our discussion group on LinkedIn IBM PowerVM or IBM Community Discussions