Resetting the IPMI Password on the ASRock E3C224D2I
Note: This will likely work for other similar ASRock boards too (e.g. E3C226D2I), however as I’ve only got the E3C224D2I I cannot verify if it does or not. Due to the method, it may even work on other boards too. Proceed at your own risk!
I recently bought the ASRock E3C224D2I motherboard for a new Home NAS build. It has an integrated IPMI controller, so regardless of the state of the system it is possible to connect over the network to view the video output and use the keyboard and mouse. You can even mount images and directories from your computer making it possible to carry out an installation fully remotely. Perfect for troubleshooting when things go really wrong!
Unfortunately, after experimenting with the firmware upgrade option on the IPMI controller I locked myself out. No passwords would work, not the default admin/admin login nor admin and the password I had set before. I couldn’t find any way to reset the password either – the IPMI’s password reset interface required a working SMTP server to be configured, which I hadn’t done. Additionally, there seemed to be no option in the BIOS to reset the password. I really didn’t want to lose access to the IPMI as it’s one of the main reasons I chose this board.
After much Googling, I came across a forum post where someone had the same problem. A reply from an ASRock Rack representative said to contact them for a tool that would reset the password. I did so, but while waiting I thought it was worth trying another mechanism.
Supermicro, another motherboard vendor that often features IPMI on their motherboards, provides a download for ipmicfg. This DOS tool is intended for performing operations on the built-in IPMI chip without having to go through the IPMI interface – perfect for password resets. Despite being from another vendor, I thought I’d give it a go, and what do you know, it works!
So, to reset your password using ipmicfg;
- Prepare a bootable DOS USB stick via your preferred means. I used rmprepusb to create a bootable FreeDOS USB stick.
- Download and place the ipmicfg files on to your newly created USB stick.
- Boot from your USB stick on the machine whose IPMI password you are trying to reset.
- Run ipmicfg -m to verify communication with the IPMI chip is working. If the command succeeds, you should see the IP address and MAC address of the IPMI displayed.
- Run ipmicfg -user list . This will display a list of users that can log in to the IPMI. Note down the User ID for the account whose password you wish to reset.
- Run ipmicfg -user setpwd userid password , replacing userid with the User ID you found with the previous command and password with the new password you wish to set.
- Done! Try logging in to the IPMI again with your new passwords. If things still don’t work, try running ipmicfg -fd to reset the IPMI to its factory defaults.
As to why this worked with a non-Supermicro board, I theorise that it’s because the IPMI chip on the ASRock board complies the IPMI standards. Therefore, any tool which is compliant to the standards, such as the Supermicro ipmicfg tool, should be able to interact with the chip.
It’s also worth noting that ASRock Rack did get back to me about a day later with a tool to reset the password, but I didn’t use it having found a way to do it with ipmicfg. If you don’t feel like trying out a method using another vendor’s tool, contact them and wait for their reply.