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Downgrading HP Proliant BL460c Firmwares

Now, it’s time to perform downgrading HP Proliant BL460c Firmwares on a Linux machine (of course, it runs Red Hat Enterprise Linux server). Yes, your heard it right – DOWNGRADING not upgrading. By the way, did you still remember my post on upgrading? As in previous post, I’m downgrading same firmwares; BIOS – System ROM, Lights-Out Management (aka iLO) and Storage Controller.

BIOS – System ROM

Previous version: I15 05/12/2009

[root@localhost ~]# hpasmcli -s "show server"

System        : ProLiant BL460c G1
Serial No.    : [deleted]
ROM version   : I15 05/12/2009
iLo present   : Yes
Embedded NICs : 2
        NIC1 MAC: 00:21:5a:48:7b:cc
        NIC2 MAC: 00:21:5a:48:7b:ca

Processor: 0
        Name         : Intel Xeon
        Stepping     : 11
        Speed        : 3000 MHz
        Bus          : 1333 MHz
        Core         : 4
        Thread       : 4
        Socket       : 1
        Level2 Cache : 8192 KBytes
        Status       : Ok

Processor total  : 1

Memory installed : 16384 MBytes
ECC supported    : Yes

Current Version: I15 11/02/2008

[root@localhost ~]# hpasmcli -s "show server"

System        : ProLiant BL460c G1
Serial No.    : [deleted]
ROM version   : I15 02/29/2008
iLo present   : Yes
Embedded NICs : 2
        NIC1 MAC: 00:21:5a:48:7b:cc
        NIC2 MAC: 00:21:5a:48:7b:ca

Processor: 0
        Name         : Intel Xeon
        Stepping     : 11
        Speed        : 3000 MHz
        Bus          : 1333 MHz
        Core         : 4
        Thread       : 4
        Socket       : 1
        Level2 Cache : 8192 KBytes
        Status       : Ok

Processor total  : 1

Memory installed : 16384 MBytes
ECC supported    : Yes

Modus Operand
Just download particular firmware file and execute it,

[root@kptordb02 bios]# sh CP008949.scexe
Online ROM Flash Engine Version: Linux-3.3.0-0
Name: HP ProLiant BL460c (I15)
Software Version: 02/29/2008

The software is installed, but the installed version is
newer than the version you are attempting to install.

Current Version: 05/12/2009


Do you want to downgrade the software to an older version (y/n) ?y

Flash in progress do not interrupt or your system may become unusable.
Working..........................................
The installation procedure completed successfully.

A reboot is required to finish the installation completely.
Do you want to reboot your system now?

Lights-Out Management

Previous version:1.78

login as: isd_unix
isd_unix@10.201.100.71's password:
User:isd_unix logged-in to ILOCN782101Z6(10.201.100.71)
iLO 2 Standard Blade Edition 1.78 at 15:43:13 Jun 10 2009
Server Name: localhost
Server Power: On

hpiLO->

Current version: 1.70

login as: isd_unix
isd_unix@10.201.100.71's password:
User:isd_unix logged-in to ILOCN782101Z6(10.201.100.71)
iLO Advanced 1.50 at 17:30:27 Mar 12 2008
Server Name: localhost
Server Power: On

hpiLO->

Modus Operand
Boot up the server with Firmware Maintenance CD and choose to downgrade Lights-Out Management firmware, this require me to select ‘allow downgrades’ (or force install) option.
Note: I thought I can just downgrade firmware by executing the firmware file but it wasn’t working,

[root@localhost ilo]# sh CP008777.scexe
FLASH_iLO2 v1.06a for Linux (Mar  5 2008)
Copyright 2007 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.
Firmware image: ilo2_150.bin
Current iLO 2 firmware version  1.78; Serial number ILOCN782101Z6

Component XML file: CP008777.xml
CP008777.xml reports firmware version 1.50

ERROR: Cannot write older firmware version. [downgrade  1.78=>1.50]

Storage Controller

Previous version: 1.82

[root@localhost ~]# hpacucli ctrl slot=0 show

Smart Array E200i in Slot 0
   Bus Interface: PCI
   Slot: 0
   Serial Number: [deleted]
   Cache Serial Number: [deleted]
   RAID 6 (ADG) Status: Disabled
   Controller Status: OK
   Chassis Slot:
   Hardware Revision: Rev A
   Firmware Version: 1.82
   Rebuild Priority: Medium
   Expand Priority: Medium
   Surface Scan Delay: 15 sec
   Cache Board Present: True
   Cache Status: OK
   Accelerator Ratio: 50% Read / 50% Write
   Drive Write Cache: Disabled
   Total Cache Size: 128 MB
   Battery Pack Count: 1
   Battery Status: OK
   SATA NCQ Supported: False

Current version: 1.72

[root@localhost ~]# hpacucli ctrl slot=0 show

Smart Array E200i in Slot 0
   Bus Interface: PCI
   Slot: 0
   Serial Number: [deleted]
   Cache Serial Number: [deleted]
   RAID 6 (ADG) Status: Disabled
   Controller Status: OK
   Chassis Slot:
   Hardware Revision: Rev A
   Firmware Version: 1.72
   Rebuild Priority: Medium
   Expand Priority: Medium
   Surface Scan Delay: 15 sec
   Cache Board Present: True
   Cache Status: OK
   Accelerator Ratio: 50% Read / 50% Write
   Drive Write Cache: Disabled
   Total Cache Size: 128 MB
   Battery Pack Count: 1
   Battery Status: OK
   SATA NCQ Supported: False

Modus operand
Boot up the server with Firmware Maintenance CD and choose to downgrade Storage Controller firmware, this require me to select ‘allow downgrades’ (or force install) option.
Note: I thought I can just downgrade firmware by executing the firmware file but it wasn’t working,

[root@localhost storage controller]# sh CP008594.scexe
Firmware CD Supplemental Update / Online ROM Flash Component for Linux - Smart Array E200 and E200i
* Version of rom to be flashed: 1.72
* Number of controllers: 1
* The version of existing Array ROM is 1.82
This ROM update is not needed

Conclusion

  1. Remember the URL for HP Proliant BL460c Firmware Maintenance CD: http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/SoftwareDescription.jsp?lang=en&cc=us&prodTypeId=3709945&prodSeriesId=1842750&prodNameId=3288156&swEnvOID=4004&swLang=8&mode=2&taskId=135&swItem=MTX-e3cc3c652e1046dc88f2ceecb8
  2. If it’s damn hard to find particular Firmware Maintenance CD in order to downgrade particular firmware, then we can just downgrade to any lower version than targeted version. Then, upgrade it to the targeted version.
  3. If in doubt, just create a case to HP and request for advice/instruction
  4. It’s not hard to perform firmware downgrade if we know the trick ;)

Comments

{ 6 } Comments

  1. piju | August 9, 2009 at 4:14 am | Permalink
    Using Google Chrome Google Chrome 3.0.195.6 on Windows Windows 7

    apa sebab dah upgrade nak downgrade balik ?

    Using Google Chrome Google Chrome 3.0.195.6 on Windows Windows 7
  2. Irwan | August 9, 2009 at 4:03 pm | Permalink
    Using Netfront Netfront 3.4 on SonyEricsson SonyEricsson W995

    Soalan yg bagus :)

    Somehow, ada komplen kata performance server ni kurang bagus lepas upgrade firmware. Utk memuaskan hati pihak berkenaan, aku pun downgrade balik. Tengok-tengok sama je, wtf!

    Using Netfront Netfront 3.4 on SonyEricsson SonyEricsson W995
  3. piju | August 9, 2009 at 11:46 pm | Permalink
    Using Google Chrome Google Chrome 3.0.195.6 on Windows Windows 7

    bodoh jgk pihak yang komplen tu.

    Using Google Chrome Google Chrome 3.0.195.6 on Windows Windows 7
  4. werner maes | October 12, 2009 at 6:09 pm | Permalink
    Using Mozilla SeaMonkey Mozilla SeaMonkey 1.1.18 on Windows Windows XP

    hello

    why did you do a downgrade of the firmware?
    have you experienced performances issues after the upgrade?

    kind regards

    werner

    Using Mozilla SeaMonkey Mozilla SeaMonkey 1.1.18 on Windows Windows XP
  5. Irwan | October 13, 2009 at 9:38 pm | Permalink
    Using Mozilla Firefox Mozilla Firefox 3.5.3 on Windows Windows XP

    Hi Werner,

    After I performed firmware upgrade, there’s a complaint on performance and I received instruction to rollback – that’s the reason I did the firmware downgrade. Nevertheless, it turned out that the performance issue was not because of the firmware upgrade. Hence, I upgrade the firmwares again.

    Using Mozilla Firefox Mozilla Firefox 3.5.3 on Windows Windows XP
  6. werner maes | October 14, 2009 at 9:38 pm | Permalink
    Using Mozilla SeaMonkey Mozilla SeaMonkey 1.1.18 on Windows Windows XP

    hello irwan

    well we also face perfomance issues, I also tried the firmware downgrade but with no luck.
    It seems you need the battery backend cache in order to have a performant raid controller. In our setup everythings works fine if the blade is equipped with a battery backend cache.

    cfr:

    hpacucli ctrl all show detail

    Smart Array E200i in Slot 0
    Hardware Revision: Rev A
    Firmware Version: 1.82
    Rebuild Priority: Medium
    Expand Priority: Medium
    Surface Scan Delay: 15 sec
    Cache Board Present: True
    Cache Status: OK
    Accelerator Ratio: 50% Read / 50% Write
    Total Cache Size: 128 MB
    Battery Pack Count: 1
    Battery Status: OK
    SATA NCQ Supported: False

    kind regards

    werner

    Using Mozilla SeaMonkey Mozilla SeaMonkey 1.1.18 on Windows Windows XP

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