What Is HMC in AIX?

by David Dunning

HMC is an abbreviation for Hardware Management Console. HMC in AIX refers to a workstation running the AIX operating system, which is dedicated to a number of IBM servers. AIX stands for Advanced Interactive eXecutive and is IBM’s version of the Unix operating system. AIX forms the basis of a standard for open computing, developed by the Open Software Foundation.


The HMC provides a connection to one or more managed computer systems, and allows system administrators to perform various functions. One such function includes partitioning, which allows a single computer to be divided into multiple independent systems. Other functions include identifying changes in the condition of the computers to which the HMC is connected, and powering computers on and off.


HMC in AIX allows system administrators to create two types of partition: the full system partition and the logical partition. If a system administrator runs a managed system as a single server, he can create the full system partition, in which all system resources are grouped together. If he runs applications in independent environments, he can create one or more logical partitions, in which he has control over the processors, memory and input/output interfaces that each partition uses.

User Interface

HMC in AIX provides the choice of a Web browser-based user interface, along with a traditional command line user interface. The Web browser interface provides a tree-like, hierarchical view of system resources. The HMC management window is divided into two panels: the navigation area and the contents area. The navigation area contains a series of folders, each of which contains icons representing a set of related applications.

Remote Management

The HMC user interface is based on the AIX System Manager interface, which means that you can access it remotely from a computer that has the System Manager client installed. Once the System Manager client is installed on a remote computer, a system administrator simply needs to enter the HMC host name, or Internet Protocol address and provide an appropriate username and password. Once this information is supplied, the HMC interface will be displayed on the remote computer, in the same way that it is displayed on the HMC itself.

About the Author

A full-time writer since 2006, David Dunning is a professional freelancer specializing in creative non-fiction. His work has appeared in "Golf Monthly," "Celtic Heritage," "Best of British" and numerous other magazines, as well as in the book "Defining Moments in History." Dunning has a Master of Science in computer science from the University of Kent.