Server Troubleshooting

The drop-down boot menu can be accessed by clicking Change boot template in the server’s card in the Operating system tab.

The menu includes the following options:

  • boot from first HDD;
  • boot from second HDD (if available);
  • boot from third HDD (if available);
  • boot from fourth HDD (if available);
  • boot to Selectel Boot Menu;
  • boot to Rescue;
  • boot to Windows PE.

Choose your boot option and restart your server. It is standard to boot from the first or subsequent HDDs. By booting to the Boot Menu or Rescue, you can use different installers or tools for troubleshooting and restoring your system.

Boot to Selectel Boot Menu

The Selectel Boot Menu provides access to installers for the most popular operating systems, as well as software for troubleshooting and restoring your system. The boot menu is accessible from the KVM console:

All of the distributions in the menu are net-install versions, so only the kernel and initrd are downloaded during installation. All other files can be downloaded from local or public repositories. You will be asked to enter a repository to download from when installation begins. You can use our repository to simplify the installation.

This kind of installation is the same as a disk installation. Several operating systems (marked SemiAUTO in the menu) offer semi-automated installations. The installer will request key parameters for these options (such as network settings, RAID/LVM settings, etc.).

The Tools and Utilities section is home to an array of utilities for troubleshooting and restoring your system.

Boot to Rescue

When choosing Boot to Rescue, a system is loaded from RAM that does not use the server’s local disks. Boot to Rescue is recommended when general server access is lost or troubleshooting is not possible using the OS’s own tools. The rescue system contains a suite of tools for troubleshooting and restoring a malfunctioning system.

Once you select Boot to Rescue, a username and password for the SSH connection to the server will appear in the control panel.

When the server restarts, it will be accessible via network connection and can be managed over SSH – which is much more convenient than the KVM console.

The rescue system will immediately try to find and connect RAID/LVM partitions. This allows you to check and restore file systems, as well as restore data from backups. This can be done using Supload, a utility designed for working with Selectel Cloud Storage.

The rescue system includes infiltrate-root, which makes it easier to change the root catalog (chroot) to gain direct access to the server’s data, reset the root password, edit configuration files, and more.

List of tools:

  • fdisk/gdisk, parted, testdisk — for working with disks and their partitions;
  • ext4, brfs, xfs — for working with disks’ file systems;
  • partimage, clonezilla, bacula — for working with backups;
  • arcconf — for working with adaptec raid and hba controllers;
  • megacli/megactl — for working with LSI MegaRAID controllers;
  • cyberduck cli — for working with files over sftp, webdav, Amazon S3, and OpenStack Swift protocols.

Boot to Windows PE

Windows PE is a minimal Windows OS with limited services that launches from the server’s memory. It is primarily used for troubleshooting, restoring, and deploying Windows. The operating system lets you:

  • create partitions and format disks;
  • edit the system registry;
  • launch utilities for troubleshooting and restoring Windows.

Our Windows PE build includes the following utilities:

  • BlueScreenView — tool for identifying the cause of a “blue screen of death” (Blue Screen of Death, BSOD);
  • Regedit — registry editor;
  • 7-zip — file archiver;
  • CPU-Z — tool for gathering information on main system devices (processor, RAM, cache, motherboard);
  • FAR Manager — console-based file manager;
  • CrystalDiskInfo — tool for analyzing hard disks;
  • IOMeter — tool for measuring the performance of I/O operations;
  • SMCIPMITool — tool for troubleshooting and configuring IPMI on SuperMicro servers;
  • Putty — popular SSH client for Windows;
  • Wireshark — network traffic analyzer;
  • WinMTR — program for troubleshooting network connections;
  • Arcconf — program for managing Adaptec controllers.

Launching Windows PE

You can download and launch Windows PE from the server control panel:

  1. Go to the Management tab.
  2. From the template list, choose Boot to WinPE.
  3. Click Reboot.
  4. Click the console icon in the control panel. The server console will open in the next browser window:
  5. Open the terminal (the first icon to the left).

For more information, see Windows PE official documentation.

To connect remotely via VNC, use the standard port 5900 and the password from the control panel.