In this part of our step-by-step series about Lights-Out we will take a first look at the management tools. Lights-Out supports two user interfaces for managing Lights-Out: The Lights-Out Management Console and the Dashboard. A Dashboard exists only on Windows Server Essentials and on Windows Home Server. The Lights-Out Management Console on the other hand is availbale for any system. Both are functionally equivalent and you can use either one for managing Lights-Out.
If you do not use Windows Server Essentials or Windows Home Server, you can skip the next section.
On a Windows Server Essentials or Windows Home Server, Lights-Out fully integrates into the Dashboard. There is no additional login necessary, because the Dashboard is running under administrative credentials and always connects to the local server.
Pros: Dashboard does not require any additional user login. Dashboard shows a detail pane in each of the device views.
Cons: Only available on server or via RDP from Launchpad.
Lights-Out Management Console
After installation you will find the management console on the desktop or in your start menu on the server. You can install additional instances of the Lights-Out Management Console on your pc. You can connect to different Lights-Out servers and manage these from the same client machine. We will look at this feature in a later blog post.
The login window
When you start the Lights-Out Management Console on your server, you will first see a login window. The first question which may arise is, what should I enter for server and user name?
The server name should already be preset to the local machine name. Otherwise enter the server name first. For the user part select “Use Windows session credentials”, then click Login.
Click on the “settings link” in the monitoring panel to open the server settings. Then select the users tab:
Users with administrative rights are automatically added as administrator and as power users. In the screenshot above this are admin and marti. You can assign a standard user to power users. This allows this user to run the Management Console and manage Lights-Out with one exception: A power user cannot change any user rights.
The user interface shows 6 tabs, which can be selected by clicking. Most tabs in Lights-Out show these user interface elements
- (1) A device list or a calendar view
- (2) A task pane to work with the selected element
- (3) A general task pane
- (4) An optional details view (only in Dashboard)
Today we had our first look at the tools for managing Lights-Out.
In the next days, we will look at each tab and explain its purpose. And finally we will start to configure the server.
Here you will find the complete list of all days of our step-by-step series.