Understanding hewlett packard hpsa: a comprehensive guide

When it comes to managing server infrastructure, Hewlett Packard HPSA (HP Server Automation) is a powerful tool that brings together both physical and virtual servers under one management system. With its range of features and capabilities, HPSA provides full visibility and control over your servers and operations. In this article, we will explore the basics of HPSA and dive into its major features that can automate your datacenter management.

Content Index

SA Core Architecture

The architecture of HPSA consists of two main components - the SA Core and the Agent. The SA Core is the server-side of the Server-Agent Architecture and provides the functionality to automate servers and application management. The SA Core can be installed on a single server or distributed across multiple servers for increased performance.

The SA Agent, on the other hand, is responsible for managing the servers in your environment. Each server either has an SA build agent or an SA agent that communicates with the SA Core. The build agent is installed on bare metal servers, while the SA agent runs in an existing operating system. Communication between the SA Core and agents allows for the complete lifecycle management of servers.

Multiple SA Interfaces and Tools

HPSA offers a range of interfaces and tools that cater to the various needs of infrastructure management. Some of the key tools include:

  • SAS Web Client: A web-based interface that allows users to manage servers, create OS installation profiles, track configuration changes, manage users and groups, and more.
  • SA Client: A powerful Java client used by system administrators for provisioning, software management, policies, and more.
  • SA Command Line Interface (OCLI): A command line interface primarily used for file management in the software repository.
  • DCML Exchange Tool (DET): A tool used for packaging and transferring content from one SA Core to another.
  • ISM Development Kit (DK): A development kit for creating, building, and uploading ISMs (Installation and Service Management) that consist of application bits, installation scripts, and control scripts.
  • SA Web Services API (WS API): A web service interface that facilitates integration with other IT systems, such as monitoring, trouble ticketing, billing, and virtualization technology.

Inside the SA Client

The SA Client provides a comprehensive view of your managed environment. The Devices tab allows you to see all the devices, including servers and storage devices. Device groups act as containers for a collection of servers, enabling you to perform actions on multiple servers simultaneously. The Library tab displays the contents of the SA Core's software repository, allowing you to manage software resources, such as application configurations, software policies, patches, and packages.

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SA Users

SA users can be classified into different categories based on their roles:

  • Operation Staff: System administrators and security administrators responsible for managing and provisioning servers in an operational environment.
  • SA Administrators: Advanced System Administrators responsible for administering the SA Core.
  • Policy Setters: IT/application architects and datacenter managers responsible for defining policies and configurations within the managed environment.

Managing Software with Policies

HPSA allows you to model software using software policies. These policies define the packages, patches, configurations, files, scripts, and Unix users and groups to be installed or applied to the managed servers. Software policies also ensure compliance against defined policies and provide the ability to remediate non-compliant server configurations.

Patch Management in SA

The Patch Management feature in HPSA allows for the direct installation of patches on managed servers or device groups. Patch administrators can provide pre-install and post-install scripts, install and uninstall flags, and reboot instructions. SA uses a central repository to store patches and maintains a database with detailed information about installed and available patches, allowing you to determine the severity of threats and plan patch rollouts accordingly.

Audit and Remediation in SA

The Audit and Remediation feature in HPSA enables you to create rules that define server configuration compliance. These rules can be created ad-hoc, based on existing server configurations, or using predefined templates. SA allows you to schedule audits against servers to test compliance and remediate non-compliant configurations.

Script Management Execution in SA

HPSA automates the execution of scripts on multiple servers without the need to log in to each server individually. Scripts can be organized in folders, and security permissions can be defined. SA provides the ability to upload, run, monitor, and export scripts across multiple UNIX or Windows servers.

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SA Agent Overview

Each managed server in HPSA has an SA agent running on it. The SA agent is responsible for facilitating changes on the server, and it periodically registers itself with the SA Core to keep track of machine status. SA agents can be full agents, build agents, or OGFS agents, depending on their specific responsibilities. Manual and automatic agent installation methods are available, allowing for efficient deployment to multiple servers.

Device Group Overview

Device groups in HPSA provide a way to group physical or virtual servers into logical collections. Operations performed on a device group are applied to the servers within the group. This allows for simultaneous actions on multiple servers, streamlining management tasks.

Hewlett Packard HPSA is a comprehensive server automation tool that brings together physical and virtual server management under one platform. With its powerful features and capabilities, HPSA provides full visibility and control over your server infrastructure. From managing software with policies to automating script execution, HPSA simplifies datacenter management and improves operational efficiency.

By leveraging the various interfaces and tools provided by HPSA, system administrators and IT professionals can streamline their server management processes and ensure compliance with defined policies. Whether it's patch management, audit and remediation, or device group management, HPSA offers a robust solution for efficient datacenter management.

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