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Author Topic: VDX Code Upgrade  (Read 4384 times)

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Offline Telair

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VDX Code Upgrade
« on: June 20, 2014, 05:28:14 PM »
We upgraded a whole bunch of Brocade VDX switches in our data center last week and found out a few things about upgrading them.

1) If you try to upgrade VDX switches via USB, the USB stick with the code on it must be a Brocade branded USB stick.  Non-Brocade USB sticks don't work!

2) The easiest way to upgrade is by using the "firmware download interactive" command.  It asks you some questions about how your upgrading the code and then start on it's way.  But TFTP does not work to upgrade the software via a network download unlike every other switch we have.  You must have an FTP or SFTP server working to download the code from.  Probably due to the complex directory structure in the upgrade code which is not a single file, but a series of directories with different files in them.

3) I know everyone has been hit with this one, but make sure you commit the switch config and back it up before you do the code upgrade.  Had one switch where the previous person to configure it forgot to commit the running config to the startup config.  This caused much confusion and screaming on the behalf of the non-IT people when they couldn't browse Facebook for the time it took to figure out where we went wrong.

4) VDX switches can only upgrade ( or downgrade ) by one revision maximum at a time.  So in our case we had to go from 2.1.1 to 4.1.1.  This takes going 2.1.1 -> 3.01b -> 4.1.0 -> 4.1.1 .  A triple code upgrade.  Since each upgrade takes about 20 minutes ( seriously, these things take bloody forever to upgrade ), your looking at an hour easily per switch to upgrade.  This only gets more complex if the VDX is in a fabric group with other switches.  Then you have to upgrade each switch one code level at a time in specific sequence.

5) After rebooting from the code upgrade, leave the switch to boot for the next 10 minutes.  It may look like it's not doing anything and give you a login prompt, but don't fall for that trap.  Leave it alone and get a coffee or work on something else for a while.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2014, 05:38:46 PM by Telair »