Managing switches

Lenovo XClarity Administrator can manage network switches.

Before you begin

Attention: Review the switch management considerations before managing a switch. For information, see Switch management considerations.
Note: Flex switches are discovered and managed automatically when you manage the chassis that contains them. You cannot discover and managed Flex switches independent of a chassis.

Certain ports must be available to communicate with the switches. Ensure that all required ports are available before you attempt to manage a switch. For information about ports, see Port availability.

Ensure that the minimum required firmware is installed on each switch that you want to manage using XClarity Administrator. For information about firmware requirements, see Supported firmware.

Ensure that you create stored credentials in XClarity Administrator before you manage rack switches. XClarity Administrator uses only stored credentials to authenticate to the rack switches. The stored credential must match an active user account on the device. You can create stored credentials from the management dialogs or from the Stored Credentials page. For more information, see Managing stored credentials.

Management using loopback interfaces is supported for all RackSwitch devices. Ensure that XClarity Administrator has connectivity to the loopback interface, either by adding a static route or advertising the address via a routing protocol. Note that routing cannot be performed between the management port and any data ports (including loopback).

About this task

XClarity Administrator can automatically discover RackSwitch switches in your environment by probing for manageable devices that are on the same IP subnet as XClarity Administrator. To discover switches that are in other subnets, specify an IP address or range of IP addresses, or import information from a spreadsheet.

Note: If you upgraded from XClarity Administrator v2.0 to v2.1, the upgrade process converted the manual credential to individual stored credentials for all managed rack switches. Manual credential are not supported for rack switches in XClarity Administrator v2.1 and later.

After the switches are managed by XClarity Administrator, XClarity Administrator polls each managed switch periodically to collect information, such as inventory, vital product data, and status. You can view and monitor each managed switch and perform management tasks such as launching the management console, and powering on and off.

If the XClarity Administrator looses communication with the switch (for example, due to power loss or network failure or if the switch is offline) while collecting inventory during the management process, the management completes successfully; however, some inventory information might be incomplete. Either wait for the switch to come online and for XClarity Administrator to poll the switch for inventory or manually collect inventory on the switch from the Switches page by selecting the switch and clicking All Actions > Inventory > Refresh inventory.

Note: Switches can be stacked. A stacked switch is a group of switches that operate as a single network switch. The stack includes a master switch and one or more member switches. For Flex switches, you can view and monitor each switch in the stack and collect diagnostic data; however, you cannot perform management tasks (such as firmware updates and server configuration) on any stacked switch. These XClarity Administrator management tasks are disabled for all stacked switches, including the master switch. You can update firmware on the stacked switch directly from master switch CLI. For RackSwitch switches you can view and monitor only the master switch information. The member switches are not discovered by XClarity Administrator.

Management tasks are also disabled for Flex switches that are in protected mode.

A device can be managed by only one XClarity Administrator instance at a time. Management by multiple XClarity Administrator instances is not supported. If a device is managed by one XClarity Administrator, and you want to manage it with another XClarity Administrator, you must first unmanage the device on the initial XClarity Administrator, and then manage it with the new XClarity Administrator. If an error occurs during the unmanagement process, you can select the Force management option during management on the new XClarity Administrator.

Note: When scanning the network for manageable devices, XClarity Administrator does not know whether a device is already managed by another manager until after it attempts to manage the device.

When a switch is managed either directly using SSH or indirectly through a CMM, the switch is identified as managed by XClarity Administrator, necessary configuration is performed for interaction, and inventory is collected.


Complete one of the following procedures to manage your RackSwitch switches using XClarity Administrator.

What to do next