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Rafael Jimenez

Upgrade from any release prior to IOS XE 3.6.0E to 3.6.0E or later is unsupported for IOS XE supervisor

I tried upgrading the ios xe 3.3.2 from a sup8-e to ios xe 3.6.7 without success.

Apparently issu is not supported in this case. As soon as the command issu loadversion ...... was issued I get an error message and the backup sup8E on slot 4 pass to be the active. After a long period of time, more than 15 minutes, the sup8E on slot 3 that was initially active, was rebooted and left in a loop trying to boot. After about 30 minutes I decided to suspend the process and press reset button on the sup8E (slot3) that was in a loop (which was the active at the beginning). After the reset, the sup8E tried to start again with the version ios xe 3.6.7 and continuous in a loop. Suddenly the sup8e (on slot 4) also rebooted, at that moment my whole network was down. Then the sup8e of slot 3 was looped and sup8e of slot 4 started, I do not remember in which version, and showed a “panic” message and it restarted again.

My solution was to remove the sup from slot 3. start the sup8e from slot 4 in rmon and boot with the previous version 3.3.2. then insert sup8e from slot 3 and boot into rmon, booting with version 3.3.2. some interfaces lost their configuration then I had to copy a backup of the startup-config to both running and startup config.

After all that experience, I need to know the step-by-step manual process of upgrading ios XE 03.03.02.XO to  IOS XE 03.06.07

Thank you.


Accepted Solutions
Leo L
VIP Community Legend

Leo L
VIP Community Legend

Read the Release Notes for 3.6.7E (HERE).  The reason why you need to read the Release Notes is because anyone who's read the Release Notes will know that one cannot just upgrade to 3.6.XE without ensuring (or upgrading) the ROMmon first to 15.1(1r)SG4.  

ROMmon Release Notes (HERE) includes instructions on how to upgrade.

Once the ROMmon is upgraded, follow this simple instruction on how to upgrade the supervisor card: 

1.  Copy the IOS to the supervisor card bootflash: 

2.  [OPTIONAL]  If dual supervisor, copy the IOS to the slave supervisor bootflash:

3.  Change the boot variable string:  boot flash bootflash:IOS.bin

4.  Make sure the config-registry value is correct:  0x2102

5.  Save the config and export the config to an external source. 

6.  Reboot.


Thanks Leo, 

the current version of RMON is : 15.1(1r)SG5.


the 4507e + r has two 8E supervisor configured with sso
mode sso
auto-sync startup-config
my fear is that at the moment of upgrade the standby supervisor and restarting it, the difference of versions in that moment generate some kind of "panic" like the one that happened before.

I found this in the Configuration Guide (not in the release notes):

A permanent "ISSU barrier" exists between pre-IOS XE 3.6.0E and IOS XE 3.6.0 releases: ISSU is supported between versions on the same side of the barrier but it is not supported between versions on opposite sides.

Hello Leo,

Please let me know if the following is fine:


Translating your instructions according the Software Configuration Guide—Release IOS XE 3.6.0E Section 10-13 and 10-14

Performing a Software Upgrade

  • Copy the new Cisco IOS software image to bootflash on the supervisor engine.
  • Copy the new image to device a slave (such as slavebootflash and slaveslot0).
  • Configures the supervisor engines to boot the new image
    • config-register 0x2102
    • boot system flash
  • Enters redundancy configuration mode and Synchronizes the configuration elements.
    • redundancy
    • main-cpu
    • auto-syn standard
  • Saves the configuration.
  • Reloads the redundant supervisor engine and brings it back online (using the new release of the Cisco IOS software).
    • redundancy reload peer
  • Conducts a manual switchover to the redundant supervisor engine.
    • redundancy force-switchover

The redundant supervisor engine becomes the new active supervisor engine using the new Cisco IOS software image

The old active supervisor engine reboots with the new image and becomes the redundant supervisor engine.


Leo L
VIP Community Legend


I don't follow the guide to do ISSU or FSU/eFSU because of past experience (I'm not going into that). 

I've had successful result upgrading the IOS of chassis-based system using an alternative method: 

1.  Before copying the files, ensure the MD5 hash value of the IOS file downloaded matches exactly with the MD5 hash value found in the Cisco website.  This will ensure the downloaded IOS file is not corrupt.  

2.  Copy the IOS to the primary supervisor card:  copy tftp://<TFTP IP address>/IOS_FILENAME.bin bootflash:

3.  [OPTIONAL:  REDUNDANT SUPERVISOR CARD]:  Copy the IOS to the secondary/redundant supervisor card:  copy tftp://<TFTP IP address>/IOS_FILENAME.bin slavebootflash:

NOTE:  Because we are using the "copy" command, instead of the automated script of "archive download-sw" (which the 4500E system won't support), check the MD5 hash value one more time. 

4.  Check the MD5 hash value of the IOS file found in the supervisor card:  verify /md5 bootflash:IOS_FILENAME.bin <MD5 hash value>verify /md5 slavebootflash:IOS_FILENAME.bin <MD5 hash value>

5.  Change the boot variable statement so that the system will boot the new IOS first and, for redundancy purposes, boot the previous IOS (in case the new IOS fails to boot). 


conf t
 no boot system flash bootflash:OLD_IOS_FILENAME.bin
 boot system flash bootflash:NEW_IOS_FILENAME.bin
 boot system flash bootflash:OLD_IOS_FILENAME.bin
boot system flash bootflash: end


6.  Save the config. 

7.  Export the config to an external source. 

8.  Make sure the config-registry value is correct:  0x2102

9.  Reboot the entire chassis.  Do NOT reboot either of the supervisor cards individually.

IMPORTANT:  For troubleshooting purposes, it would be wise if a console terminal is attached to the system during the reboot. 

Thanks Leo, 

that means that will be an interruption of the service for several minutes right?

Leo L
VIP Community Legend