Upgrading firmware and bios on Cisco’s C220/C240 series servers

In order to upgrade the Bios and hardware firmware on Cisco C series series we need to have the following:

  • To know the c-series product model # you looking to upgrade the firmware on
  • Download the latest iso image with server firmware.

How do we achieve it:

  • download HUU ( Host Upgrade Utility) ISO image to your workstation
  • login to C-IMC ( Cisco Integrated Management Controller) via a browser
  • open up Java based virtual KVM
  • attach the iso image from your workstation
  • reboot server
  • Press F6 during the boot
  • boot from virtual DVD
  • run the pre-upgrade check
  • upgrade bios and firmware on raid controller, mlom, NIC cards, and etc reboot the system

Server Product model and version can easily be identified under “Server Summary” when you login to the server via CIMC.

You will need to have an account with Cisco to download the server upgrade iso image from their Download home https://software.cisco.com/download/navigator.html

On the Download Software page navigate to –> Products–> Servers – Unified Computing –> UCS C-Series Rack-Mount Standalone Server Software.

Find the appropriate UCS Server Software:

On the next screen choose the  Unified Computing System (UCS) Server Firmware

Download the HUU iso image to your workstation.

You can go ahead and login to the  CIMC panel on the server you looking to upgrade BIOS, hardware firmware and of course the CIMC software itself.

Once logged in, click on the Server tab, then Summary link. On the left under Server Summary, you will see number of Action items, one of them being “Launch KVM Console”.  Go ahead and start the java based KVM console, but be aware that you might need to add the server’s CIMC IP address into Java Security exception list.

You might get a viewer pop-up screen with .jnlp extension, you must associate it with Java Web Start Launcher for vKVM to start properly.

Connect to the vKVM (virtual KVM)

Next step is to make sure to map the Drive to appropriate HUU iso image.

Reboot the server and press F6 to get into boot menu.  Choose Cisco Virtual CD/DVD while in the boot menu.

It will take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes for the server to boot from the attached HUU iso image. You must agree when a license agreement page comes up, otherwise you will not be able to proceed.Select all the items, then press Update All, and Yes to upgrade firmware on all the components.

This step usually takes anywhere from 30 minutes to upto 1 hour, slower if you doing it over a slow link network. So be patient.

Press exit, once the firmware upgrade is done.

This is it.