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Dell Pro Support & Firmware Updates

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Dell Pro Support & Firmware Updates

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Hi,

I logged a case with Dell Pro support regarding a time of day battery error on our PS4100.

I sent the diag logs and they said try a firmware update before they look at a hardware fix.

The impression is that I have to do the firmware update, something I have never done before and cautious about doing without Dell being on hand.

Now I rely on Pro support for knowledge and expertise and also said make sure I check compatibility of the FW update before proceeding.

I'm a bit annoyed, we pay for the support and knowledge and its up to me to decide whether a piece of software they produce is fit for our system?

Am I unreasonable to ask for Dell to at least be on hand and shadow, I mean what are they going to do if it all goes wrong?

All Replies
  • Hello, 

     I'm sorry that your experience wasn't up to Dell/EMC standard.  

     Dell support will absolutely help you with the upgrade.  There is an upgrade tool you can download from the EQL support site.   This will help you do both the controller firmware upgrades, but also check for any hard drive firmware. 

     (Stole this from another Thread -- Thanks Jeorg) 

    Login to https://eqlsupport.dell.com/ and in the left menu "Dell Storage Update Manager" -> eqlsupport.dell.com/.../download.aspx

    The document for the upgrade path is eqlsupport.dell.com/.../download.aspx

    The process itself is very straightforward.   What firmware version are you running right now? 

     The TOD fix was fixed awhile ago so I suspect you are behind a few revisions.  Which means you'll need to do several updates to get current.   The firmware upgrade doc also has a table which will show you the steps.  The Dell Storage Update Manager tool also has this information integrated. 

     Re: Compatibility.  I suspect the engineer meant host software.  Dell tests will all the major OSs but can't test every revision against every possible OS or application. 

     There is also a document on the support site, located with the firmware downloads that covers how to configure Windows and Linux to ride out the controller restarts needed to do firmware upgrade.  That also prepares the servers for a failover because of a failure. 

     Are you running VMware?   There's another doc for that as well.   If you websearch "dell tr1091 equallogic" it will pop right up. 

     Since it seems like you have several jumps to make, you might want to do this during a maint window or very low IO period. 

     Regards,

    Don 

    Social Media and Community Professional
    #IWork4Dell
    Get Support on Twitter - @dellcarespro

  • Hi Don,

    We are running 6.04.

    I was going to power down the host anyway while upgrading the SAN, would that work?

    I've never done this before, that's all hence this post.

    Can a update be done remotely, I'm 200 miles away but have all the necessary access to DRAC for the host and someone on site to press power buttons if needs be.


    Tim.

  • ~40 EQL members for 10 years and 1-2(minimum) upgrade per year.. do the math. Its not rocket science... but...

    I can share your feeling if you say you havent do this before or better..  not on this member. If you never have recorded a controller failover/test/restart you cant be 100% if you will survice the FW upgrade. I see more than once that the switchport for the secondary CM was not configured right or "died" of the years or was  not in use. This is fun when having a group with multimembers within a pool ... and router/gatways as VMs which comes unavailable ;)

    So.... for me you should prepared your setup by hook up both serial cables to a running Server. If you our Dell support getting trouble this is the only way to get access to the CM or just see whats going on.

    A FW upgrade may took 12-15min in total.. but the period of not reaching the array is just around 10sec. (3 pings). It depends on the model of the member and in earlier FW version the CM failover was a  little bit slower.

    To be tell the true... in 99.9% percent it went fine and its a strait forward and easy.

    Problems what i have seen
    - FTP Upload problems (failed to upload)
    - Not enough space for the FW package (old core dumps or *.sgo lay round)
    - Problem with upgrading the SD card during the upgrade process
    - If the environment grows.... and you do things like asnc. replication the FW upgrade needs some manual steps! If you do it for long times you think that reading a manual is waste of time (but thats wrong :)

    The GUI hide a lot of things and there is only a progess bar. Serial console showing more information and sometimes the root cause.

    Regards,
    Joerg

  • Hello, 

     If you can shut it down that's fine,or just being idle is enough.  The host changes I mentioned extend the time the OS waits before declaring an error.  Making it more tolerant to the short time the controller will be unavailable during a failover. 

     The update can be done remotely, I would suggest something first.  Connect to the serial port of the array first. Then verify that you can access it remotely.  If something should go wrong the serial port could be the only access point.  The problem is typically with the flash card itself.  Which would typically only impact one controller.  

     This is the table showing you the steps to get from 6.0 to 9.1.x.  Again the Dell Storage Update Manager utilit will make this process easier.  You will have to download the kits yourself.  

     

    BTW, I personally use the serial port method to do upgrades.  In fact I use serial port muxes to connect to both controllers at same time.  This way I can completely monitor the upgrade process.   

     This is NOT required but I find it helpful. 

     Regards,

    Don

    Social Media and Community Professional
    #IWork4Dell
    Get Support on Twitter - @dellcarespro

  • Thanks can you send me instructions on what cable and how to connect to serial port please?

  • Hello, 

     Check out this thread it has info about the console cable. 

    http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/storage/f/3775/t/19389192

    Serial port setup is 9600,No parity, 8 data bits, 1 stop bit.   

    NO flowcontrol, neither hardware or software flowcontrol.  

    If you cable from the server to the array, or worst case laptop, you should be able to connect to it remotely. 

     Use your standard grpadmin account login credentials. 

     Regards,

    Don 

    Social Media and Community Professional
    #IWork4Dell
    Get Support on Twitter - @dellcarespro

  • The array comes with 2 cables ;) Otherwise the serial cable for the standard PowerConnect switches are the same.

    You can use Windows putty, terraterm, ... with settings 9600/8/1/n. On linux "screen" or what ever you have.

    Regards,
    Joerg

  • FYI: 

    The Dell Storage Update Manager (DSUM) update release supporting EQL Firmware releases v8.1.12, v9.0.9 and v9.1.3 is now available in the EQL Support Page.

     For details on product version compatibility, please check the Compatibility Table in EQL Support page.

     Regards,

    Don

    Social Media and Community Professional
    #IWork4Dell
    Get Support on Twitter - @dellcarespro