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Nexus: Upgrading Cisco Nexus 5000

So here is how to upgrade Nexus 5000 series switch. In this instance I have 2 Nexus 5010 switches in vPC configuration as they are part of the Vblock. I will be upgrading them from 5.1(3)N1(1a) to 5.2(1)N1(1)
First of all, although upgrade procedure is pretty much the same, please always check with Cisco for latest upgrade guides:

For the upgrade to be done as quick as possible it is important to do some work before it, like downloading the files from Cisco, uploading them to switches and running checks.

  1. Download Kickstart and System files from
  2. Verify that you have enough space on the switch
    dir bootflash:
  3. Upload both files to the switch. In this case I used TFTP server:
    copy tftp://x.x.x.x/kickstart_or_system.bin bootflash:            <=== replace x.x.x.x with TFTP server IP, kickstart_or_system.bin with your Kickstart or System file name.
    type management when asked to Enter vrf
    Note: In Vblock upload files to both switches. Copy operation might take some time.
  4. Once both Kickstart and System files are uploaded verify that the file size of both files is correct.
    dir bootflash:
  5. Now we need to run some pre upgrade checks which will show if there any problem that should be fixed before the upgrade can be started
    show compatibility system bootflash:system.bin            <=== replace system.bin with your System file name.
    You should get No incompatible configurations message
  6. Next we to see the impact of the upgrade:
    show install all impact kickstart kickstart.bin system system.bin        <=== replace kickstart.bin and system.bin with your Kickstart and System file names.
    This procedure might look like a real upgrade but it only does all the checking
    It will take some time to complete. It must succeed at all steps and should show that upgrade is non-disruptive
  7. Now check spanning-tree impact. Everything should pass
    show spanning-tree issu-impact
  8. Check lacp impact
    show lacp issue-impact
  9. There is also show fex to verify that all fabric extenders are reachable but in the Vblock there are no extenders connected to the switches so this can be skipped.
  10. Once steps 1 – 9 are completed and all are OK you can proceed to upgrade.
  11. Because this is Vblock and 2 switches are in vPC config you need to identify the primary one as the upgrade should be started from primary
    show vpc role
  12. Start upgrade
    install all kickstart kickstart.bin system system.bin        <=== replace kickstart.bin and system.bin with your Kickstart and System file names.
  13. Once prompted verify to continue by pressing y
  14. The upgrade will begin.
    If you connected to switch remotely over SSH, you will lose connectivity after seeing Saving supervisor runtime state
    message as the switch is rebooting. This should take about 5 minutes. Ping it to find out when it is back online.
  15. Login to the switch and check upgrade status. If upgrade went ok you should see that it was successful.
    show install all status
  16. Verify version
    show version
  17. Verify that everything is working as expected.
    Upgrade is complete
  18. In Vblock once you’ve verified that primary switch is working fine, upgrade the secondary switch.

UCS: Blade is stuck on discovery after UCS firmware upgrade (unidentified FRU)

Here is pretty common problem in UCS 2.0 release.
At any stage of UCS upgrade  one or more blades go into discovery mode and never finishes it. Depending on the version they can get stuck at any percentage but usually between 4% and 40%.
Most of the time a corruption occurs in SEEPROM of  M81kr CNA card because of this corruption checksum fails and UCS cannot recognize the mezzanine card any longer and this prevent Discovery from finishing.
You can see the following errors when this happens:
Configuration Error: adaptor-inoperable. Discovery State: Insufficiently Equipped.
Adapter 1 in server 1/1 has unidentified FRU 

There are multiple Cisco bugs for this issue CSCub16754, CSCty34034, CSCub48862, CSCub99354 and I’ve seen it happening on 2.0(1q), 2.0(2r), 2.0(3a) releases.
Unfortunately the issue is not fixed and there is no workaround. The good thing is that if this occurs the fix is pretty simple and quick and no hardware replacement is needed but only Cisco TAC can fix this or whoever has access to their internal resources.

To verify if corruption occurred you can do the following:

  1. SSH to UCSM IP
  2. Enter connect cimc x/y (Chassis/Blade)
  3. Enter mezz1fru on the versions starting from 2.0(3a) you need to enter fru
    If corruption has occurred the last line of the output will show something like
    ‘Checksum Failed For: Board Area!’

The other method to check is to look at the logs. Continue reading

UCS: How to update Capability Catalog in UCS Manager

Here is a guide how to update the Capability Catalog in UCS Manager. Capability Catalog is updated every time you upgrade UCS firmware but you might need to update it separately when a new hardware is added to UCS infrastructure and upgrading the whole UCS is not possible.

1. Login into UCS manager
2. Select Admin tab and change the Filter to Capability Catalog

3. Verify the version of Capability Catalog that is currently installed

Continue reading

UCS: waiting for flogi

Here is one very common error that you can see in  UCS Manager. I’ve observed it in multiple UCS firmware versions and all times it was cosmetic and had no impact.

On the blade you’ll see a major error similar to this:
Description: fc VIF 6 /R A-1095 down, reason: waiting for flogi
Cause: link-down
Code: F0283 

If you go to VIF paths on the blade you’ll see  error ‘waiting for flogi’ on vHBA that has the problem.

Now as I mentioned already this is most likely cosmetic issue. So first you need to verify that this is really the case. Continue reading

UCS: Warning: there are pending SEEPROM errors on one or more devices, failover may not complete

In UCS CLI after issuing command ‘show cluster state‘ a warning is received on one of the chassis.

UCS-B # show cluster state
Cluster Id: 0xf122a7f83dba11e0-0x9a4c123573c4f1c4


Detailed state of the device selected for HA storage:
Chassis 1, serial: FOX1234567A, state: active
Chassis 2, serial: FOX1234567B, state: active
Chassis 5, serial: FOX1234567C, state: active with errors

Fabric B, chassis-seeprom local IO failure:
FOX1234567C READ_FAILED, error: TIMEOUT, error code: 10, error count: 7
Warning: there are pending SEEPROM errors on one or more devices, failover may not complete

In sam_techsupportinfo  log you’ll see the following message
Creation Time: 2012-10-12T01:12:21.217
ID: 2712562
Description: device FOX1234567C, error accessing shared-storage
Affected Object: sys/mgmt-entity-B
Trigger: Oper
User: internal
Cause: Device Shared Storage Io Error
Code: E4196537

This is known Cisco Bug CSCtu17144 and here is what needs to be done

If the fault condition stays on or keeps being cleared and re-raised, try the following workarounds:
1. Reboot the IO module.
2. Remove and re-seat the IO module. Make sure the module is in contact with the backplane firmly.

I’ve had this problem couple times and resetting IO module was enough in both cases

UCS: configuration-failed; Code: F0170; connection-placement; There are not enough resources overall

Here is an interesting issue that I ran into with Cisco UCS blade.
I needed to move service profile from one blade to another. This is a process that should not give any problems but it did. Dissociation worked fine, but when I tried to associate the same profile with diferent blade I ran into problems.

The first thing I noticed is Config Failure error in Status:

The Configuration error was:
There are not enough resources overall

Not enough vHBAs available
Not enough cNICs available Continue reading

UCS: After installing or replacing DIMMs shown as disabled in UCS Manager(invalid FRU)

Here is a problem that you can see when replacing or installing new DIMMs in UCS Blades.
Although the blade will boot but the newly installed DIMMs might show as disabled with invalid FRU error:
Error codes F0844 and F0502 are logged:

When you check inventory of the blade and go into Memoery you’ll see that Capacity and Clock are Unspecified.

scope server x/y  (where x is your chassis id and y is server id of the server that is having problems.)
show memory  (this list memory information of the blade)
Server 1/1:
Array 1:
DIMM Location Presence Overall Status Type Capacity (MB) Clock

—- ———- —————- ———————— ———— ————- —– Continue reading