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Configuring the security settings for a managed server

You can configure SSL/TLS version and cipher setting for managed servers.

About this task

Consider the following implications of changing the cryptographic mode.
  • Changing from Compatibility Security mode or Standard Security mode to Enterprise Strict Security mode is not supported.

  • If you upgrade from Compatibility Security mode to Standard Security mode, you are warned if imported certificates or SSH public keys are not compliant, but you are still able to upgrade to Standard Security mode.

  • If you downgrade from Enterprise Strict Security mode to Compatibility Security mode or Standard Security mode:

    • The server is automatically restarted for the security mode to take effect.

    • If the strict mode FoD key is missing or expired on the XCC2, and if XCC2 uses a self-signed TLS certificate, XCC2 regenerates the self-signed TLS certificate based on the Standard Strict compliant algorithm. XClarity Administrator shows a connection failure due to a certificate error. To resolve the untrusted certificate error, see Resolving an untrusted server certificate. If XCC2 uses a custom TLS certificate, XCC2 allows the downgrade, and warns you that you need to import a server certificate that is based on Standard Security mode cryptography

  • NIST SP 800-131A mode is not supported for servers with XCC2.
  • You cannot use managed authentication to manage a ThinkSystem or ThinkAgile server when the XCC’s security mode set to TLS v1.3.
  • For a ThinkSystem or ThinkAgile server that is managed using managed authentication, changing the XCC’s security mode to TLS v1.3 using either XClarity Administrator or XCC will cause the server to go offline.
You can change the security settings for the following devices.
  • Lenovo ThinkSystem servers with Intel or AMD processors (except SR635 / SR655)
  • Lenovo ThinkSystem V2 servers
  • Lenovo ThinkSystem V3 servers with Intel or AMD processors
  • Lenovo ThinkEdge SE350 / SE450 servers
  • Lenovo System x servers


To change the security settings for specific managed servers, complete the following steps.

  1. From the XClarity Administrator menu, click Hardware > Servers. The Servers page is displayed with a tabular view of all managed servers.
  2. Select one or more servers.
  3. Configure the security mode.
    1. Click All actions > Security > Set system security mode to display the Set System Security Mode dialog.

      The dialog lists the number of servers that can be set to each mode. Hover the cursor over each number to display a popup with a list of applicable server names.

    2. Select the security mode. This can be one of the following values.

      • Compatibility Security. Select this mode when services and clients require cryptography that is not CNSA/FIPS compliant. This mode supports a wide range of cryptography algorithms and allows all services to be enabled.

      • NIST SP 800-131A. Select this mode to ensure compliance with the NIST SP 800-131A standard. This includes restricting RSA keys to 2048 bits or greater, restricting hashes used for digital signatures to SHA-256 or longer, and ensuring only NIST-approved symmetric encryptions algorithms are used. This mode requires setting SSL/TLS mode to TLS 1.2 Server Client.

        This mode is not supported for servers with XCC2.

      • Standard Security. (Servers with XCC2 only) This is the default security mode for servers with XCC2. Select this mode to ensure compliance with the FIPS 140-3 standard. For XCC to operate in FIPS 140-3 validated mode, only services that support FIPS 140-3 level cryptography can be enabled. Services that do not support FIPS 140-2/140-3 level cryptography are disabled by default but can be enabled if required. If any service that uses non FIPS 140-3 level cryptography is enabled, the XCC cannot operate in FIPS 140-3 validated mode. This mode requires FIPs-level certificates.

      • Enterprise Strict Security. (servers with XCC2 only) This is the most secure mode. Select this mode to ensure compliance with the CNSA standard. Only services that support CNSA level cryptography are allowed. Nonsecure services are disabled by default and cannot be enabled. This mode requires CNSA-level certificates.

        XClarity Administrator uses RSA-3072/SHA-384 certificate signatures for servers in Enterprise Strict Security mode.

        • The XCC2 Feature On Demand key must be installed on each selected servers with XCC2 to use this mode.

        • In this mode, if XClarity Administrator uses self-signed certificate, XClarity Administrator must use RSA3072/SHA384 based root certificate and server certificate. If XClarity Administrator uses an external signed certificate, XClarity Administrator must generate an RSA3072/SHA384 based CSR and contact the external CA to sign a new server certificate based on RSA3072/SHA384.

        • When XClarity Administrator uses an RSA3072/SHA384 based certificate, XClarity Administrator might disconnect devices other than Flex System chassis (CMMS) and servers, ThinkSystem servers, ThinkServer servers, System x M4 and M5 servers, Lenovo ThinkSystem DB series switches, Lenovo RackSwitch, Flex System switches, Mellanox switches, ThinkSystem DE/DM storage devices, IBM tape library storage, and ThinkSystem SR635/SR655 servers flashed with firmware earlier than 22C. To continue managing the disconnected devices, set up another XClarity Administrator instance with an RSA2048/SHA384 based certificate.

    3. Click Apply.

  4. Configure the minimum TLS version.
    1. Click All actions > Security > Set System TLS version to display the Set System TLS Version dialog.

    2. Select the minimum TLS protocol version to use for client connections to other servers (such as the LDAP client connections to an LDAP server). The value is configured on selected devices that support this setting. You can choose the following option.

      • TLS1.2. Enforces TLS v1.2 cryptography protocols.
      • TLS1.3. Enforces TLS v1.3 cryptography protocols.
      System x and CMM devices support only TLS v1.2.
    3. Click Apply.