Windows Server

Get Dell Service Tag & Express Service Code From Linux & Windows

First off I wanted to mention that I stole this article from this guy as it is totally worth getting this information out there to the masses who support Dell hardware and have to reach out to Dell Support every now and then. This is an awesome trick for those times when you need to get in touch with Dell's technical support or to get drivers and other documentation from Dell Support. I mainly use the Windows piece but will add the Linux after the jump.

1. Get DELL Service Tag on remote Windows System via RDP/VNC etc.

C:\wmic bios get serialnumber SerialNumber ABCDEF1  

The following command can give you more information such as the make, model, and service tag. C:\wmic csproduct get vendor,name,identifyingnumber IdentifyingNumber Name Vendor ABCDEF1 PowerEdge 2950 Dell Inc.

2. Get DELL Service Tag on remote Windows System

If VNC or Remote Desktop isn't available, you can execute the following command from your local machine to get the service tag of the remote machine.

C:\wmic /user:administrator /note:remote-host bios get serialnumber  
SerialNumber ABCDEF1  

[Note: replace remote-host with the machine name of your remote host.]

3. Get DELL Service Tag on remote Linux System

Login to your Linux system using SSH. Use dmidecode on Linux to get service tag as shown.

[remote-host]# dmidecode -s system-serial-number

4. Get DELL Express Service Code from your Service Tag

Service Tag is a base-36 integer. Once you have your service tag, you can calculate your Express Service Code yourself. Express Service Code is a base-10 integer. Dell mainly uses the Service Code for support based in-call routing. When you call Dell support, it may ask you for your express service code which you can easily enter in your telephone in the dial pad, as it is a bunch of numbers. Use the following tools to find express service code from service tag and vice-versa.

  1. Creativyst Dell-Number Widget
  2. Dell PC service tag/code converter from PowerDog industries

I have also tried this method on some of my other vendor equipment so far I have seen it work on the following: 1. IBM
2. HP Blades
3. HP Servers
4. Supermicro Servers

ESXi VM need to manually change MAC Address

Today, I had to deal with a FlexLM Licensing server issue which resulted from a VM which had it's NIC configured for the SAN's VLAN rather than for the production VLAN which caused the server to have some considerable amounts of downtime. I will talk about the setting up my SAN on a different VLAN from the rest of my production network in another post. In VMWare ESXi vSphere console for the VM host server which my guest VM was hosted on I attempted to change the MAC address of a specific NIC so the license server would work correctly. Well I was able to force this in ESXi in a previous version of ESXi 3.5 which allowed me to use any MAC address that I wanted to use. Well in ESXi 4.1 you can't do that anymore as it forces you to only modify the last 6 digits of the MAC address rather than the whole set. My work around evolved below:

As you notice in the above figure, the MAC Address is a random address given by my ESXi server. I need to bypass this and force a MAC Address from a NIC that I am not using anymore on an old server that I needed to move my FlexLM Licensing from. To accomplish this I went into the NIC's Advanced configuration in the driver settings:

This allowed me to set the MAC Address for the NIC and forces this address over the one set by ESXi.

NOTE: I have confirmed that this setup works with FlexLM on both Windows Server 2003 and Server 2008. I have not yet tested on Windows Server 2012.

Also make note that: You can never fire up that NIC ever again on your old server. Even if you plan to re-purpose it unless you are able to change it's MAC Address manually or install a new NIC as firing up that NIC will cause the above setup to fail miserably as you will have tons of trouble connecting to the new server from the old one.