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Best Practices to Upgrade an EXOS Switch

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TitleBest Practices to Upgrade an EXOS Switch
This article explains some of the best practices that could be followed during the upgrade of an EXOS switch.
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Step 1: Verify Hardware Support

Before upgrading to a new version, you should ensure that the switch supports the new firmware.
To verify if your hardware is supported by a corresponding EXOS version, refer the link below: 
Which version of EXOS is supported on my hardware?

Step 2: Back Up the Existing Configuration

You should back up the existing working configuration before making any upgrades. The configuration file can be saved locally or remotely via TFTP.

To backup the switch configuration locally, run the following command while selecting a filename of your choice:
save configuration <filename>
Answer 'Yes' to save the configuration to the new file <filename>.cfg.
Answer 'No' to NOT make this new file the default database (the file that is overwritten with just a 'save' command).
This will ensure that the switch does not depend on or overwrite this file, effectively creating a configuration snapshot.
X670V-48x.4 # save configuration backup_config
Do you want to save configuration to backup_config.cfg? (y/N) Yes
Saving configuration on master ........ done!
Configuration saved to backup_config.cfg successfully.

The current selected default configuration database to boot up the system
(primary.cfg) is different than the one just saved (backup_config.cfg).
Do you want to make backup_config.cfg the default database? (y/N) No
Default configuration database selection cancelled.

On most platforms/versions, you can also offload this file to a FAT/FAT32 formatted USB with the following command:
cp <filename.cfg> /usr/local/ext/

To backup the configuration using a TFTP server, refer the link below:
How to upload Backup Configuration to TFTP server on EXOS switch

Step 3: Upgrade

How to Obtain and Upgrade EXOS

Step 4: Roll Back If Needed

After the upgrade is performed, we tend to make some changes and save the configuration in the new version. For some reason, if the network is not performing as expected after the upgrade, it is important to have the downgrade as a roll back option. However, while downgrading, we need to make sure to load the configuration file which we backed up earlier rather than using the configuration file which is saved in the new version. 

This is because, with the addition of new features in the newer version, the configuration file created in this version may not be understood by the earlier versions and hence there is a remote possibility of a configuration loss during downgrade. 

This can be avoided by using the configuration file created by the older version. 

If you have the backup configuration file in the TFTP server, use the following command to download it to the switch.
tftp get <tftp server ip address> <backup file name> vr <vr-name>

Once the file is in the switch, use the following commands to use that configuration file and then downgrade the switch. 
use configuration <backup filename>
use image <partition in which the old image is present>

* X670V-48x.3 # reboot
Do you want to save configuration changes to currently selected configuration
file (backup_config.cfg) and reboot?
(y - save and reboot, n - reboot without save, <cr> - cancel command) No

While rebooting, please select No so that the configuration is not saved to the backup up configuration file. 
Additional notes
Check the show switch command to know which software version has created the used config file. 
#show switch
Config Selected:  backup_config.cfg
Config Booted:    backup_config.cfg

backup_config.cfg Created by ExtremeXOS version
                  211157 bytes saved on Thu Aug 20 14:01:44 2015




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