This next tip goes out to all the advanced IT guys out there…
So Dell rolled out some new servers last quarter. They completely restructured the style of the blade and tower servers, added new software, and ultimately left us hanging when things go wrong. Hopefully this next tip will help you if you have any installation issues.
Typically Dell packages Open Manage with its servers. The latest version is 6.2. The theory behind Open Manage is that you can completely configure the server, network, etc before the Windows installation. You spend 5-10 minutes entering all the pre-configured data, and then when the installation does begin, everything runs seemlessly.
So here’s the scenario I encountered:
1. Unbox my server and connect hardware
2. Run Open Manage DVD version 6.2
3. Configure OS in Open Manage setup (i.e. select OS, partitions, etc.)
4. Begin installation
5. Setup prompts for OS media
6. Setup copies media to server and ejects OS media
7. Setup reboots automatically
8. Setup loads Windows install and begins installing drivers
9. BLUESCREEN ERROR. Stop: 0x0A error: IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL
To troubleshot this error, I rebooted the server, did some research, changed the mulit-processing settings, did some more research, restarted the installation, and… did some more research.
At this point I was ready to toss my 100lb piece of metal and plastic threw a window, but before I strained my muscles, a co-worker gave me some insight that may help out the next person in this situation.
Apparently you need to run the LATEST Operating System Media when installing a new server. This is a common oversight because normally you can run a down-graded version, for example Windows Server 2003 R2, SP1, and then upgrade after the OS is in. This is not the case for the new ones. The older service pack does not have the appropriate drivers to install the hardware on the newer server.
So for newer servers be sure to have the latest media when performing an installation.
Until next time, continue surfing the internet safely.