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Handy Tools For Gathering Hardware and Operating System Information

Here is sampling of the data gathering tools we use in HP support to gather information from Industry Standard Servers.


For Red Hat Enterprise Linux: sosreport

The sosreport command is a tool that collects information about a Red Hat Enterprise Linux system, such as what kernel it is running, what drivers are loaded, and various configuration files for common services. It also does some simple diagnostics against known problematic patterns.


For VMware ESX/ESXi: vm-support -  vm-support(1) Manual Page

vm-support is a script that creates a tar archive containing debugging information about the server.  vm-support has three main uses: gathering general debugging information, gathering performance information, and gathering information about a specific virtual machine.  A gzipped tar archive containing the gathered data is created in the current directory.  The resulting tar archive will be named esx-{date}.{PID}.tgz.


For Windows:  HPSReport

The HPS Reporting Tool is used to gather detailed information about the Microsoft Windows environment installed.  This includes hardware, software and storage specific information.  This data collection tool is not limited to HP based hardware or software and is hardware independent.  HPSReport has a similar look and feel to the Microsoft MPS reports as this is understood and accepted by Windows customers.  It has been widely adopted by the Microsoft Support community in HP and gives immediate familiarity.

The data collected by HPSReport will help Hewlett Packard Services Engineers better understand the configuration of a Windows Server environment and assist in diagnosing any faults.


For Suse Linux Enterprise Server: supportconfig -

The supportconfig tool is part of the Supportutils package. It gathers system troubleshooting information, organizes system information to reduce problem resolution time and serves as a training tool by showing all commands and files used to gather system information. Supportconfig creates a tarball that can be attached to a service request and/or sent to a Technical Services engineer.  Basic info is collected for SLES8. More comprehensive information is collected for SLES9, SLE10, SLE11, OES1 Linux and OES2 Linux.



Each of the above data gathering tools is basically a script for gathering information from a system. Besides just creating tar balls of data many of these tools have various options that can come in handy. For example the ESX/ESXi vm-support tool can gather performance statistics, force a VM to core dump and gather debugging information on specific VMs.

Over the next few weeks I’ll devote more time to writing about these tools and how you can use them yourself for gathering information from systems. For example, what options are available with each tool and how do you unpack and examine the contents of the files they produce.



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joe olsen | ‎05-03-2012 04:20 AM

Does HP maintain a listing of the General Availability dates, and various Support Expiration milestones for its current and legacy products?

pat-lampert | ‎05-04-2012 04:50 PM



The tools I wrote about in this post, with the exception of the hpsreports tool,are Open Source and not part of HPs product suite.


The vast set of software hardware and services that HP offers make documenting the lifecycle of all products in a single place a touch beast to conquer.  For specific information on an HP hardware or software product I suggest starting at Search for the product name, or follow the category tree down to your specific product of interest. This should lead you to most of the publicly available information about the product.


I think your suggestion is a good one, but I wouldn't want to be the person assigned to figure out how to create and maintain such a comprehensive list.  For specific products HP does have this information if you search for it. For example here is a page on many HP software products:


I hope this helps.



GregTinker | ‎05-09-2012 02:30 PM



Dont forget to mention the "easy" way to grab data collection... Most large enterprise shops have more than one ESX, Cisco MDS switch, C7000 Blade enclosure, etc...  Within Vsphere, you can press a button and grab vmsupport from all servers in a FARM or all FARMS.  Same true for Cisco SAN switches, and most other hardware platforms.  So yes, its great to know how to use these tools manually -- but even better to have a "easy button" Smiley Happy



pat-lampert | ‎05-11-2012 05:43 PM

@GT - Yes. I should have mentioned that if you select Export Logs from the vi-Client or Administration-> Export Diagnostics from vCenter, you can select multiple ESX hosts and vm-support will be run on all the hosts you select, then the resultant .tgz files will be combined into a nice zip file with vCenter diagnostics.


My next few posts will be a break down of how to unpack and look at these diagnostics.



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I've been working in Customer Service for over 20 years. During my career I've provided support services for Languages, Programming Librarie...

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