HP Switch Software Update XMODEM

Originally published in 2012 and still one of the most popular posts on this blog as of late 2015. Thanks for reading! One of the top rules for network security and performance is to keep your equipment updated with the latest software (security & bug fixes).

HP ProVision / ProCurve switches can be upgraded over the serial port with the XMODEM protocol. The switches can also be upgraded over the network if you manage them by IP. Here are some hints to get the XMODEM Serial switch updates working:

  • Get a serial terminal program that supports XMODEM such as the free Tera Term (ttssh2) available from en.osdn.jp
  • Set the serial settings (IN TERMINAL PROGRAM) to 115200 baud, 8 data bits, 1 stop bit, No parity, No flow control
  • Use the highest baud rate supported by the switch, listed by the command console baud-rate ? DO NOT SET THE BAUD RATE ON THE SWITCH, IT WILL AUTO-DETECT
  • Press Enter a few times and the switch will auto-sense the baud rate you’re using. If nothing happens, power-cycle the switch and try again after a few minutes.
  • copy flash flash secondary to save primary image over old secondary. Verify with show flash.
  • Use the command copy xmodem flash primary to begin the transfer, press “Enter” as requested by the switch and then begin the transfer from the terminal program (“File – Transfer – …” in Tera Term)
  • XMODEM Send
    XMODEM Send Screen-shot.
  • XMODEM is slow, it can take from 3 to 5 or more minutes per MB at 115200 baud (varies with system hardware and software performance). That’s 30 to 50 or more minutes for 10MB.
  • write mem and reload the switch to boot from the new system software. CHANGE YOUR TERMINAL BACK TO 9600 BAUD during the reboot – normal operation should always be at 9600 baud! show version to verify running software is the new version.
HP-Switch# show flash
Image Size(Bytes) Date Version
----- ---------- -------- -------
Primary Image : 3368329 07/16/09 Y.11.12
Secondary Image : 3368329 07/16/09 Y.11.12
Boot Rom Version: N.10.02
Current Boot : Primary

HP-Switch# copy xmodem flash primary
The Primary OS Image will be deleted, continue [y/n]? y
Press 'Enter' and start XMODEM on your host...

Validating and Writing System Software to FLASH...

HP-Switch# show flash
Image Size(Bytes) Date Version
----- ---------- -------- -------
Primary Image : 3379637 09/11/12 Y.11.41
Secondary Image : 3368329 07/16/09 Y.11.12
Boot Rom Version: N.10.02
Current Boot : Primary

HP-Switch# show version
Image stamp: /sw/code/build/cod(cod11)
Jul 16 2009 02:13:03
Boot Image: Primary

HP-Switch# reload
Device will be rebooted, do you want to continue [y/n]? y

Rebooting the System

Linux users on CentOS or Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) may be interested in the supported “minicom” and “lrzsz” packages which together provide a serial terminal with Xmodem transfer capabilities. The name lrzsz stands for something like copy-Left Receive-Zmodem Send-Zmodem (Xmodem and Ymodem are also included). Minicom uses the lrzsz command sx for Xmodem sending. To start sending a file in minicom, use the Ctrl+A then S sequence. An excellent minicom lrzsz example is available on the Armadeus Serial Transfer page.

Good luck! 🙂

About notesbytom

Keeping technology notes on WordPress.com to free up my mind to solve new problems rather than figuring out the same ones repeatedly :-).
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5 Responses to HP Switch Software Update XMODEM

  1. Michael says:

    Thank you for these instructions. Easy to follow.

  2. ray says:

    i want to update an msr 20 series router

  3. John says:

    Thank you for these instructions.

  4. Aad van de berg says:

    Top its working 🙂 Thanks !!!

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