09-27-2012 05:11 PM
I inherited a setup with FWS624G switches. They haven't been used yet. I looked at the versions and they all say FGS07202d. However when I go online to see what the latest rev is, I see images under FastIronWS up to 07400a as well as FastIronGS-STK and those are the ones that have FGS07202d (and the latest is 07202g.
I'd like to put the latest on all of these that are the most stable but not sure which to use. These are simple lan switches connected to a CORE FCX648S stack. The core is on FCXR07100a which leads to two other questions:
1. Is it bad to have the CORE be at a different rev than the branch switches? I can't upgrade all our switches every time we buy a new switch but it seems silly to put a new switch at older code levels when you buy a new switch.
2. Is there any way to keep our environment up while upgrading the core stack? everything connected to it is connected via 1 to 2 ports per switch. So with two FCX648S switches in a stack, all the branches are connected by 2 or 4 port trunks. A lot of the traffic is iSCSI storage traffic so that may complicate things.
10-02-2012 04:11 PM
Not a bad thing to have two different version (core and edge) - If you do not need the feature or bug fixes in the later versions.
However I would yry and keep the same rev on all edge switches.
You can use Brocade Network Advisor to manage all the devices and do software upgrades from that if you have it.
10-02-2012 04:16 PM
Not sure if it changes your advice, but by "edge" I mean ends of the spoke in a hub and spoke topology. the core is the center of the wheel (the hub) and connected to it are various other switches, none of which are connected except via the core switch.
Sounds like you're recommending keeping them all at the latest version they support when we buy them and then upgrade them as we have reason and time?
Also, any ideas on upgrading a stack? Is it possible to do this without downtime for devices that are connected to both?
10-02-2012 04:20 PM
Yep hub and spoke.
Leave the core (hub) at the version you have if you have no issue with it.
I would suggest 7202d for the edge (spokes), if you get a new switch with newer firmware then downgrade it to 7202d.
10-02-2012 05:03 PM
There is a difference between the FGS, and the FWS, they are not the same hardware, and shouldn't use the same binary. It looks like the file name was FGS in 7.2, but switched to FWS format after that. I would say to use the 7.4.00a, if you are going to to through the trouble of upgrading. As for your other questions:
1. No, you shouldn't run into any problems mixing versions within the network, unless you are doing specific things like multi-chassis trunking, VRRP/VRRP-E, or stacking. Most other things including LAG's should be fine in a mixed environment. From a logistical standpoint it does make sense to standardize on an image or two, but technically you should be fine.
2. Not really, without doing some unnatural things. You could split the stack, and maybe upgrade them one at a time, but that seems kind of ugly. It probably makes more sense to just do the stack at once. The FCX is a pretty quick boot, even in a stack, and all the image copies happen in the background before-hand.
Hope that helps.
10-02-2012 05:12 PM
Thanks for the tip. Unfortunately iSCSI traffic passes through the stack in question as we have a very large environment for storage and this stack is that hub. Thus we would see dropped drives if we took it down.
As for the firmware to use, since these were out of the box it's as if the manufcturer put on the FGS firmware, but since they are FWS switches should I go that route? Seems fishy.
10-02-2012 08:26 PM
It looks like the file names were changed along the lines, see the tables below, from the release notes. Sounds like you are going to need an outage if you want to upgrade the stack.