Manually Define Nodes

Manually Define Node means the admin knows the detailed information of the physical server and manually defines it into xCAT database with mkdef commands.

In this document, the following configuration is used in the example

Management Node info:

MN Hostname: xcat1
MN NIC info for Management Network(Host network): eth1,
MN NIC info for Service Network(FSP/BMC network): eth2,
Dynamic IP range for Hosts:
Dynamic IP range for FSP/BMC:

Compute Node info:

CN Hostname: cn1
Machine type/model: 8247-22L
Serial: 10112CA
IP Address:
Root Password: cluster
Desired FSP/BMC IP Address:
DHCP assigned FSP/BMC IP Address:
FSP/BMC username: ADMIN
FSP/BMC Password: admin

Manually Define Node

Execute mkdef command to define the node:

mkdef -t node cn1 groups=powerLE,all mgt=ipmi cons=ipmi ip= netboot=petitboot bmc= bmcusername=ADMIN bmcpassword=admin installnic=mac primarynic=mac mac=6c:ae:8b:6a:d4:e4

The manually defined node will be like this:

Object name: cn1

mkdef --template can be used to create node definitions easily from the typical node definition templates or existing node definitions, some examples:

  • creating node definition “cn2” from an existing node definition “cn1”

    mkdef -t node -o cn2 --template cn1 mac=66:55:44:33:22:11 ip= bmc=

    except for the attributes specified (mac, ip and bmc), other attributes of the newly created node “cn2” inherit the values of template node “cn1”

  • creating a node definition “cn2” with the template “ppc64le-openbmc-template” (openbmc controlled ppc64le node) shipped by xCAT

    mkdef -t node -o cn2 --template ppc64le-openbmc-template mac=66:55:44:33:22:11 ip= bmc= bmcusername=root bmcpassword=0penBmc

    the unspecified attributes of newly created node “cn2” will be assigned with the default values in the template

    to list all the node definition templates available in xCAT, run

    lsdef -t node --template

    to display the full definition of template “ppc64le-openbmc-template”, run

    lsdef -t node --template ppc64le-openbmc-template

    the mandatory attributes, which must be specified while creating definitions with templates, are denoted with the value MANDATORY:<attribute description> in template definition.

    the optional attributes, which can be specified optionally, are denoted with the value OPTIONAL:<attribute description> in template definition