Upgrade HP C7000 Blade Chassis Firmware

I run multiple HP C7000 blade chassis within my datacentres and keeping the ‘Onboard Administrator’ (OA) firmware up to date is an important task. Each blade chassis has a pair of OA’s to ensure redundancy in a failure event or during upgrades.

The OA firmware can be updated in a number of ways and today I’ll cover some of them. All methods are simple enough with the most important task being to check the notes for the firmware file to see what it is fixing and what potential known issues exist which might preclude you from deploying.

I’m going to make the assumption the blade chassis are configured with ‘Enclosure IP mode’. This means you use a single IP address to access the chassis regardless of which OA is currently active (they work in an active/standby mode).

 

Upgrade firmware using CLI

When we connect to the chassis OA via SSH the system presents us with some basic information including the current firmware version.

 

We can see that currently the OA is running version 4.40. The sharp eyed among you may have noticed the information only lists a single OA while I stated we have two. If we want to see the details for the second OA we can either request the system show us information for all OAs or we can specify using the commands below.

 

Specify an OA info command – show oa info [OA number i.e 1 or 2]

 

At this point we know what version we are running so now it’s time to upload and upgrade to the latest firmware. As we are using SSH we need to specify a location to pull the new firmware file. I have a server with Microsoft IIS running which is then used to host update files and ISO images which can be mounted to the blade chassis. This solution is actually a legacy thing and when I get a moment will be replaced with something else.

The command we need is ‘update image’.

Here we will run the full command using a HTTP target.

As you can see the system first upgrades and reboots the standby OA then it proceeds to flash the active OA. If we connect via SSH again and run a ‘show oa info all’ command we should see the new firmware version, in this case 4.50.

 

Upgrade firmware using GUI

The GUI upgrade process is very simple. First we will browse to the OA using whatever browser you prefer. The homepage for the OA will give us some information on the chassis including the current firmware version –

HP C7000 Homepage Info

Once we have logged onto the webpage we can browse to the ‘Firmware Update’ link under ‘Enclosure Information –> Active Onboard Administrator’.

Firmware Update Page

In this instance I will use a URL as I did with the CLI install. I could of course just select a file from my local machine to upload or perhaps a USB drive plugged into the chassis. As ever there are multiple ways of achieving the same thing so go with the best for your environment.

Firmware Update using URL

The system will present a warning – make sure other people aren’t using the system and that you have completed whatever change control process you have in place etc.

Firmware Update Warning Message

Now the system will begin the firmware upgrade process as before with the webpage providing progress bars to help us see where it is up to.

Firmware Update Progress

 

All being well the system will upgrade successfully and you can enjoy whatever new features come with the update or be happy in the knowledge old bugs have been squished.

5 thoughts on “Upgrade HP C7000 Blade Chassis Firmware”

    • Hi,

      As long as the firmware update you are conducting is for the Onboard Administrators (OA) then there will be no disconnection of blades or reboots. The c7000 chassis and OA setup also allows you to perform firmware updates to blades. Obviously if you are leveraging that functionality reboots etc are highly likely. Does that answer your question?

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