What is IPMI

IPMI (Intelligent Platform Management Interface) is a technology for the remote management of a server platform. It is an interface for controlling the server and monitoring its state. The interface is independent of the OS on the server and the server itself and can work even if the server is shut down. In the article, we will describe it in detail.

IPMI Concept


The intelligent interface management platform is designed to simplify tasks for sysadmins and engineers. The IPMI management port can connect to any server, regardless of the OS, processor, or BIOS. DOS support is available. Thanks to this technology, they can timely respond to critical malfunctions and remotely reboot the server if necessary. IPMI also has:

  • Proprietary network interface and network settings
  • Built-in IPKVM technology in Java (remote access to the server through a console window)
  • Server power control panel
  • A set of sensors

The technology is convenient because it enables monitoring of the equipment's actual state. If the CPU is faulty, and the OS or BIOS fails, IPMI can not only reboot the server but also restore critical control functions, update software, reboot the system, etc.

We should also note that manufacturers develop their versions of this solution. For example, the iDRAC port from Dell, IMM from Lenovo and IBM, and Supermicro created the popular IPMI port called SIM. The ports differ from one another in the way they display the output information and the set of functions, but the basic functionality is the same.

supermicro ipmi

What is IPMI Used for?

Let's look at examples of how IPMI technology can be useful:

Denied access to the server

The firewall was configured with incorrect commands, which resulted in a loss of access to the server. Even if access is denied, IPMI can fix the error and connect to the server.

Failure of network card configuration

When renting a server in the data center it is sometimes necessary to install the operating system and configure the network card. It is possible to do this if network settings are configured on the server. Without them, you can manage the system only through IPMI.

Failed installation of new software

It happens sometimes that installing new software leads to server "freezing". There is no access, physical rebooting is required. However, the IPMI management port can be used to reboot the server remotely.

IPMI is not accessible – is this possible?

Yes, it is possible. Although this technology allows you to recover the server after any failures and errors, occasionally the remote management interface becomes unavailable. There can be several reasons for the problem:

  • Network. If ports or hardware fail, remote management is impossible
  • Software. A BMC (Baseboard Management Controller) board maintains IPMI. Due to a system bug or BMC freezing, accessibility may be disrupted.
  • Power. If there is a problem with the power supply, you will not be able to connect at all.
  • Hardware. Overheated hardware, architecture defects, or other hardware problems can lead to IPMI errors.

IPMI is not working

There are several ways to solve IPMI performance issues. For example, an IPMI console display problem (black screen) can be solved as follows:

  • Press any key on the physical or virtual keyboard. When working on the Ubuntu server, press Ctrl + Alt + F1
  • If that does not work, reboot IPMI by connecting to the server through SSH root and executing the command: ipmicfg -r or ipmitool bmc reset cold
  • For a Windows Server - log on as administrator and at the command line enter: ipmicfg-win.exe -r
  • If that doesn't work, click on the three dots in the IPMI console (the upper right corner) and select Refresh IPMI window.
A popular error Connection failed. To fix Reset the IPMI. To do this, click the three dots in the IPMI console and select Reset IPMI Control.

It is more serious if the keyboard doesn't work. But there is a solution here as well. In the IPMI console, click three dots and select Restart IPMI Control. If that does not work, you can try the option next to it – Complete IPMI reboot. It takes about five minutes to reboot.

If even then the console doesn't respond to the keys, turn on the virtual keyboard by opening the Virtual Media menu item Virtual Keyboard. You can turn everything back through the menu Options, item Keyboard Mouse Hotplug.


IPMI is a real salvation for technicians. This independent server component is available even if the server is shut down. And it allows you to connect to the system in almost any situation.

This technology helps reduce the cost of server maintenance and reduces the workload of in-house IT specialists.

If you still have questions about the technology or you want to know more about the Cloud4Y cloud platform, contact us at: sales@cloud4y.ru or +7 (495) 268 04 12.

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author: John
published: 10/13/2022
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