How To FreeNAS Install And Configure APC UPS For Power Management

Posted on in Categories , , , last updated June 24, 2017

I have an APC SUA1500i smart ups, and want to configure power option from my FreeNAS using this ups. How can I install an appropriate APC UPS USB driver on my FreeNAS server, and use it to control power options?

FreeNAS is nothing but a FOSS network-attached storage (NAS) system based on FreeBSD Unix and the OpenZFS file system. It comes with a dedicated management web interface for managing and configuring your NAS box. In this tutorial you will learn how to configure the APC (or any other supported brand) UPS service then start it in FreeNAS to protect your server from power failures. This tutorial shows how to configure and use UPS on a FreeNAS based server.

UPS monitoring on FreeNAS

An uninterruptible power supply/uninterruptible power source (UPS) is an electrical apparatus that provides emergency power to a load when the input power source, typically mains power, fails. A UPS is useful start a standby power source such as generator or properly shut down the FreeNAS box.

FreeNAS and NUT

FreeNAS comes with NUT (Network UPS Tools) software to provide support for Power Devices such as UPS.

Configuration

First connect the APC ups to your FreeNAS based server using the serial or USB port the UPS is plugged into.

Finding out the APC USB port name

Login to your FreeNAS server using ssh and type the following command:
dmesg | grep -i --color 'american power conversion'
Or
dmesg | grep -i usbus | grep -i --color 'american power conversion'
Sample outputs:

Fig.01: FreeNAS/FreeBSD Find Out APC UPS USB Device Name
Fig.01: FreeNAS/FreeBSD Find Out APC UPS USB Device Name

How do I configure UPS monitoring service on FreeNAS server?

To configure the UPS service login to your FreeNAS web-gui. Navigate as follows:

Services > Control Services

Fig.02: FreeNAS UPS service
Fig.02: FreeNAS UPS service

You need to set the following options:
Fig.03 FreeNAS UPS service configuration options
Fig.03 FreeNAS UPS service configuration options

  1. Set UPS Mode to Master.
  2. Set Identifier to ups.
  3. Set Driver as per your USP model. In this example, I set it to “APC ups 2 Back-UPS USB USB (usbhid-ups)“.
  4. Set Port to /dev/ugen0.3 (again set this as per your setup).
  5. Set Shutdown mode to “UPS reaches low battery“.
  6. Set Monitor password “passwordHere” (again replace passwordHere with actual password).
  7. Set email to “[email protected]” (replace [email protected] with actual email id).
  8. Finally click on “Ok” button to save changes.

Next make sure you start UPS service on boot by clicking “Start on boot” and Start Now button from Services right panel:

Fig.04: Starting UPS service on FreeNAS
Fig.04: Starting UPS service on FreeNAS

How do I test UPS connectivity and configuration on FreeNAS?

Login using ssh and simply type the following command to poll the status of a UPS server on FreeNAS:

upsc ups@localhost

Sample outputs:

Gif.01: upsc demo on FreeNAS
Gif.01: upsc demo on FreeNAS

And, there you have it, the APC ups installed and working correctly on the latest version of FreeNAS.

References

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. He has worked with global clients and in various industries, including IT, education, defense and space research, and the nonprofit sector. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.

9 comment

  1. Yup. Agreed. Very useful article. Quick question on step 5 & 6 there. For monitor user, do you have to create a new user in FreeNAS or it is an existing user in FreeNAS group? For step 6, do we use the root password or we need to create a brand new password for it?
    Thanks,
    jack

    1. There is another shutdown mode called “UPS goes on battery”. I think it will be straightforward to test under that mode, set it up and then pull the power cable of the UPS off to simulate electricity outage.

  2. Is there any guide to how to select the correct driver?

    I have an APC 950VA (BX950U-MS) but I have no idea which would be the correct driver out of the many APC ones, so I selected the one that you used above.

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