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Core issue

Insufficient space on the Flash device causes this error message to be displayed when a Cisco IOS  Software image is copied to the Flash. This is because the new Cisco IOS Software file size is larger than the available space on the Flash.


To resolve this issue, perform this procedure:

  1. If this error message is displayed when the Cisco IOS Software is upgraded on the Cisco Catalyst Fixed Configuration Switches 2900XL, 2940, 2950, 2955, 2970, 3500XL, 3550 and 3750, check the contents of the Flash to verify that enough free space is available for the new Cisco IOS Software image. Issue the dir flash: command to do this, as shown in this sample output: 

    c3548XL#dir flash:
    Directory of flash:/

      2  -rwx  109  Mar 05 1993 21:08:41  info
      3  -rwx  1799001  Mar 05 1993 21:10:02  c3500xl-c3h2s-mz.120-5.WC5a.bin
      4  drwx  640  Mar 05 1993 21:11:07  html
    15  -rwx  109  Mar 05 1993 21:11:07  info.ver
    17  -rwx  856  Mar 02 1993 03:07:04  vlan.dat
    18  -rwx  2323  Mar 16 1993 23:17:22  config.text
    19  -rwx  75  Jan 01 1970 00:00:35  env_vars

    3612672 bytes total (387584 bytes free)
    !-- The new image size should be less than the free space.


    In this example, only 387,584 bytes are available. Therefore, if any image that is larger than 387,584 bytes is copied to the Flash, the error message results.

  2. To free up enough space to copy the new image, the existing Cisco IOS Software file must be deleted. To delete the file in this example, issue the delete flash:c3500xl-c3h2s-mz.120-5.WC5a.bin command. This frees another 1,799,001 bytes and leaves a total of 2,186,585 bytes available. As long as the new image is smaller than 2,186,585 bytes, the copy works.   

    The /recursive command option can be used to delete all files in the specified directory, as well as the directory itself.


    Note: After the old Cisco IOS Software file is deleted, do not reload the switch until the new file is copied successfully to the Flash and the boot statement is updated. The switch fails to load an image if the upgrade procedure is not followed properly.


    For information on how to recover from a corrupt or missing system image or an incorrectly set boot variable, refer to Recovering Catalyst Fixed Configuration Switches from a Corrupted or Missing Image and Recovery From Corrupt or Missing Software Image on Cisco Catalyst 2900XL and 3500XL Series Switches.

  3. Another workaround for this issue is to rename the Cisco IOS Software file in the Flash to the new Cisco IOS Software file being copied to the Flash. The file is then overwritten when the new image is copied to the Flash. To rename the file, issue the rename flash:filename flash:newfilename command.   

    If the file is being extracted to the Flash by the tar command, be sure to rename the file with a .bin extension, not with the .tar extension. Also, be sure that the file name is exactly correct, as the file names are case sensitive.

  4. If installing the same version of software that is currently on the switch, overwrite the current image. To do this, issue the archive download-sw /overwrite /reload tftp:[[//location]/directory]/image-name.tar privileged EXEC command.   

    The /overwrite command option overwrites the software image in Flash memory with the downloaded one.


For more information, refer to these documents:

Error message

No space left on device

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