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21Jul/110

Dell EqualLogic PS Series Array Firmware Update Using Group Manager GUI

Now that our new Dell EqualLogic PS6000 is racked, networked, initialized and configured it’s time to bring the firmware version up-to-date. Currently the newest firmware version is V5.0.7 and can be downloaded from EqualLogic Support.
Updating the firmware is a fairly simple task, a PS Series Array has dual controllers each with a micro SD card inserted on the underside of the controller (the opposite side to the fan) this is where the firmware runs from.

Most of the time you can update directly to the latest firmware version, it maybe that you need to update to an interim version before updating to the latest version, it really depends on how far behind you are. Always read the firmware release notes.


It is recommended that all PS Series in your group run the same firmware version, I would always update an Array member firmware before adding it to an existing group, this ensures that all members are running the same firmware and that all features are available at the time of the new Array entering the group.

In a group with multiple members you should perform the update on one member at a time, if the version of firmware that you are currently running on dictates that you must first upgrade to an interim version before upgrading to the latest firmware version then all members in the group should be upgraded to this interim version then to the latest version.  Before carrying on with any further updates ensure that all volumes are online and that any iSCSI connections have re-established.

Ensure that you have current backups before updating PS Series Array firmware.  I have yet to incur any downtime while performing an EqualLogic Array firmware update, on groups that host volumes that are used for File Shares and volumes used as Cluster Shared Volumes for Hyper-V.  One controller firmware is updated the EqualLogic fails over to the secondary controller and updates the firmware on that controller.  With this in mind I always plan my firmware updates at off peak hours after checking my backups are all present and correct.

After you have downloaded the Firmware update you are going to apply to the Array, you are ready to launch the group manager Gui from SAN Head Quarters.

Right Click the EqualLogic Group and Launch Group Manager;

1 launch-grpman

1 launch-grpman

Once Group Manager has loaded,, select Group Configuration , then in the main window select the advanced tab and under Firmware options click the firmware update button.

2 Advanced

2 Advanced

You will now be prompted to enter the grpmanager password or of you have created another administrator account with grpmanager permissions enter this password.

3 Password

3 Password

Once you have entered the password, you will need to select the firmware update file, browse to where you have donwloaded the file to, if you selected the download in .zip format it will need to be unzipped first.

4 Select File

4 Select File

Now you have selected the file for update, you will see a window displaying which member you have selected for update, the current active firmware version, the member status in regards to the firmware, a progress and action field.  click upgrade link under the action field to start the firmware upgrade.

5 upgrade

5 upgrade

 

Once the upgrade process has started, there are 3 steps, FTP Transfer of the firmware update file, the processing of the firmware update and a restart to complete the update.

6 FTP-transfer

6 FTP-transfer

 

7 Processing-Update

7 Processing-Update

 

8 Restart

8 Restart

 

Click Yes to confirm the restart of the updated Array.  The Array status will then change to 'Preparing to restart....', then status will retun offline.

9 Restart Yes

9 Restart Yes

 

10 preparing-restart

10 preparing-restart

 

11-off-line

11 off-line

 

You can now close the firmware update window, and in the Alarms section at the bottom of the Group Manager window, you will see an active warning, stating that a restart is pending.

12 warning-pending-restart

12 warning-pending-restart

 

As the Array restarts and updates the secondary controller, the group manager will display errors which to me look like the firmware update has gone wrong, don't worry the Gui needs to refesh give it time and or manually refresh the Gui to update the controller status.  The Group Manager Gui is not quite realtime.

13 update second controller

13 update second controller

 

Once the Group Manager Gui has refreshed you should have no warnings or errors, relating to controller communication and you should have one active controller and one secondary controller.

14 business-as-usual

14 business-as-usual

 

As a final note if you have E-Mail alerts configured you will recieve E-Mail notifications from the EqualLogic group.

*****************************

Informational conditions:

  • 21/07/2011 08:39:40 to 21/07/2011 12:37:34
    • Informational: Member CCD*** secondary controller restarted
      • Condition already generated an e-mail message. If the condition persists,
        additional messages will be sent approximately every 6
        hours.
      • Informational: Member CCD*** active controller restarted

********************************

Caution conditions:

  • 21/07/2011 16:01:25 to 21/07/2011 16:03:37
    • Caution: Controller failed over in member CCD***
    • Caution: Firmware upgrade on member CCD*** Primary controller.
      • Controller Primary in member CCD*** was upgraded from firmware version
        Storage Array Firmware V5.0.5 (R166528) to version V5.0.7
        (R172507)

**********************************

Dell EqualLogic PS Series Firmware update done!

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