Common Pitfalls when installing HP Server Automation 9.0

In this blog I am going to cover some of the pitfalls one usually encounters when deploying a fresh new install of HPSA (Opsware) version 9. Although this is no replacement for the Installation guide, it should help those venturing down this path from encountering some bumps on the way. Eventually, I will post a quick-rundown on the installation process.

In this new release of HPSA, HP has made a valiant effort in simplifying the deployment of SA. Is it perfect? no. Its a start.  They have an interview process, which allows you to minimize the tasks and prompts based on your type of deployment. Additionally, your answers can be carried forward as answer files so that you do not have to repeat/consistently remember what you entered in each phase.

There are 3 phases:

  • Oracle installation (if you so choose to use the HP-provided oracle install, which is Oracle 11g Standard Edition).
  • SA Installation
  • Upload SA Content

If your first installation is a single core simple install (which is highly recommended), the following should help map out your deployment. Make sure you have handy the HP Single-Host Installation Guide as reference.

Pre-requisite checker

One of the nice introductions in HPSA 9.0 is a separate Pre-requisite Checker which allows you to validate many of these requirements pre-deployment. You can find it in the Primary ISO DVD, under <ISO mount point>/opsware_installer/ You will need to move it to a location (such as /tmp) and unzip it.

You can execute it with the following options, based on what you would like to check:

./ <type> [ –upgrade] [–verbose | –silent]

<type> ::= oracle | core_inst | satellite

The installation type for which you want to verify prerequisites.
One of:
oracle – An SA Oracle installation.
core_inst – An infrastructure or slice installation.
satellite – A satellite installation.

Common Pre-requisite gotchas

Below are some of the common pre-requisites if you are deploying on Red Hat Linux:

  • RPMs – make sure to read the pre-requisite RPM packages needed from the Install Guide.
  • Server Resources – HPSA is very picky in the amount of CPUs and Memory allocated to the O/S.  Minimum of 4 CPUs and Swap is equal to physical memory allocated.
  • Timezone set to UTC
  • SELinux is disabled (and make sure to reboot the system!)
  • Enable the following services via chkconfig and start them:


  • NFS version 4 is disabled. For this one, make sure to edit /etc/sysconfig/nfs and enter the following (restart nfs service after change):

RPCNFSDARGS=’–no-nfs-version 4′

  • MTU is set to 16036 or less. You can do this by editing the /etc/sysconfig/network startup script for loopback interface or via ifconfig lo mtu <value> command.
  • Make sure that /var in your /etc/fstab does not contain the udev option. Otherwise you will get the following error:Starting opswsshd:Build ingOpswsshd Jail,Starting Opswsshd,Could n’topen /dev/null: Permission denied [ Failed ]

Then there are other “features” which I’ve come across so far in my recent HPSA Core deployments.  I’ll be updating this list as I come across them:

  • If Core installation fails because of error:couldn’t determine TWIST_LOG_HOME because /var/log/opsware/twistis unreadable

    Make sure that /var, /var/log, and /var/log/opsware all have chmod of 755 and user twist is part of the group assigned to those directories above.

Hopefully these tips are useful. Please chime in if you have other suggestions or questions.

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April 12, 2011
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