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Cisco ISR & ASR 1k Routers: IOS-XE/Firmware Upgrade (Install Mode)

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Notes

  • This procedure is aimed at Cisco ISR 1k, ISR 4k and ASR 1k router ONLY.
  • IOS-XE Bundle Mode is not covered. 
  • 3850, 9300 and 9500 (vanilla & high-performance) is not covered. 
  • Router(s) & switch(es) running “classic” IOS is not covered.

 

A Word from our Sponsors:

There is a very fine line between writing something short-and-sweet and writing something comprehensive while losing the target “market” in the process.  I have done all I can to make this document as “digestible” as possible without losing much of the important content but still maintaining some forward momentum. 

Introduction: 

Switch and/or router firmware had (past tense) a simple procedure, however, for IOS-XE each platform has different commands, process & procedures, and “gotchas”.  Because of this, I have broken up the process into different sections:   

  • Section  1:  General Procedure
  • Section 2:  ROMMON Upgrade
  • Section 3:  Cellular Modem Firmware Upgrade
  • Section 4:  GOTCHA

 

Section 1:  General Procedure

  1. Read the Release Notes very carefully.
  2. IOS-XE firmware have a filename extension of “bin”.   ROMMON files have an extension of “pkg”.
  3. Clean the bootflash:  request platform software package clean
  4. Copy the file into the router.

WARNING:  Cisco IOS-XE routers strictly enforce the file location of “bootflash:”.  If “bootflash:” is not used, the router will boot into ROMMON -- CSCvg37458.

  1. Make sure the boot-variable string is pointing to “packages.conf” file. 
MonicaLluis_0-1625107911230.png
  1. Initiate Install Mode (Non-Disruptive/Does NOT Reboot)
request platform software package expand file bootflash:filename.bin force verbose
MonicaLluis_1-1625107911246.png


IMPORTANT

  • If the file extraction is successful (or not), the last two lines will display the result. 
  • Go to the GOTCHA section if the following WARNING message (image below) appears:
MonicaLluis_2-1625107911259.png
  1. Inspect the contents “packages.conf” file.  Is this the intended version or not?  If NO, go to the GOTCHA section. 
more bootflash:packages.conf
MonicaLluis_3-1625107911271.png
  1. REBOOT the router.
  2. [RECOMMENDED][OPTIONAL] Clean the bootflash:
    request platform software package clean
MonicaLluis_4-1625107911292.png
  1. DONE.

Section 2:  ROMMON Upgrade

  1. Read the Release Notes very carefully.

IMPORTANT:  When in doubt, upgrade the ROMMON.

  1. Check current ROMMON firmware:  sh platform
MonicaLluis_5-1625107911301.png
  1. Copy the ROMMON file into the bootflash.
  2. Initiate the ROMMON upgrade:  upgrade rom filename bootflash:filename.pkg all

 WARNING:  Do not reboot or kill the power to the router while the packages are (still) being written.

MonicaLluis_6-1625107911318.png

  1. Reboot the router
  2. [OPTIONAL] Check the ROMMON firmware:  sh platform
  3. DONE

 

Section 3:  Cellular Modem Firmware Upgrade

NOTE

  • Downloads Home > Cisco Interfaces and Modules > LTE Wireless WAN Interfaces > Wireless WAN 7430 Cellular Interface for Australia Telstra
  • Cellular firmware files have a file extension of “cwe” and “nvu”.  Both files are required. 
  1. Read the Release Notes very carefully.
  2. Create a sub-directory in the router:  mk bootflash:MODEM
  3. Copy the files into the sub-directory.

NOTE:  Make sure this sub-directory only contains these two files.  (Delete previous files, if necessary.)

  1. Initiate the firmware upgrade: 
microcode reload cellular <PORT> <SLOT> modem-provision bootflash:/MODEM/

WARNING:  The cellular firmware upgrade will take, approximately, 20 minutes.

Router# microcode reload cellular 0 2 modem-provision bootflash:/MODEM/
Reload microcode? [confirm]
Log status of firmware download in router flash?[confirm]
Firmware download status will be logged in bootflash:fwlogfile
Microcode Reload Process launched for cwan slot/bay =0/2; hw type=0x102download option = 0

Router#Success !! send FW Upgrade command to card

*****************************************************
The interface will be Shut Down for Firmware Upgrade
This will terminate any active data connections.
*****************************************************
**************************
Modem will be upgraded!
Upgrade process will take up to 15 minutes. During
this time the modem will be unusable.
Please do not remove power or reload the router during
the upgrade process.
***************************
*Jun 25 2021 11:31:33.499 AEST: %LINK-5-CHANGED: Interface Cellular0/2/0, changed state to administratively down
*Jun 25 2021 11:31:33.499 AEST: %LINK-5-CHANGED: Interface Cellular0/2/1, changed state to administratively down
----------------------------
FIRMWARE INFO BEFORE UPGRADE:
Modem Device ID: EM7430 MODEM F/W Boot Version: SWI9X30C_02.30.03.00
Modem F/W App Version: SWI9X30C_02.30.03.00 Modem SKU ID: 1102682
Modem Package Identifier:
Modem PRI Ver: 000.010 Modem Carrier Name: TELSTRA
Modem Carrier Revision: 002.044_000
----------------------------
FW_UPGRADE: Modem needs CWE, PRI
*Jun 25 2021 11:31:50.546 AEST: %IOSXE-3-PLATFORM: R0/0: ngiolite: WWAN modem Action:[remove] State[0]
FW_UPGRADE: Upgrade begin at Fri Jun 25 11:31:53 2021
FW_UPGRADE: Upgrade end at Fri Jun 25 11:33:08 2021
FW_UPGRADE: Firmware upgrade success.....
FW_UPGRADE: Waiting for modem to become online
*Jun 25 2021 11:33:35.445 AEST: %IOSXE-3-PLATFORM: R0/0: ngiolite: WWAN modem Action:[add] State[1]
----------------------------
FIRMWARE INFO AFTER UPGRADE:
Modem Device ID: EM7430 MODEM F/W Boot Version: SWI9X30C_02.33.03.00
Modem F/W App Version: SWI9X30C_02.33.03.00 Modem SKU ID: 1102682
Modem Package Identifier:
Modem PRI Ver: 000.010 Modem Carrier Name: TELSTRA
Modem Carrier Revision: 002.067_000
----------------------------
F/W Upgrade: Firmware Upgrade has Completed Successfully
  1. Reboot the router for the firmware to be loaded by the modem.
  2. Verify:  sh cellular 0/2/0 firmware
MonicaLluis_7-1625107911325.png
  1. DONE.

 

Section 4:  GOTCHA

  1. If the WARNING message (image below) appears at the end of the package extraction process be aware THIS IS NOT A FALSE POSITIVE. 
MonicaLluis_8-1625107911338.png
  1. Check the contents of the bootflash and compare the date stamp of the extracted packages against the date stamp of the “packages.conf” file (see image below). 
MonicaLluis_9-1625107911360.png
  1. Look in the bootflash directory for two (2) files with an extension of “conf”.  (Image below)
MonicaLluis_10-1625107911364.png
  1. First, rename “packages.conf” to, say, “packages.conf.00-“.
  2. Next, rename the firmware.conf to “packages.conf” (see below).
MonicaLluis_11-1625107911371.png
  1. Check the contents of the new “packages.conf” file (see below). 
MonicaLluis_12-1625107911383.png
  1. Make sure the boot-variable string is pointing to the “packages.conf” file.
  2. Reboot the router.
  3. DONE.