I have just added three useful STPs to the Cisco Support Community:
- UCS STP003 Firmware Download
- UCS STP004 Firmware Core Activation
- UCS STP005: Firmware Component Activation
New UCS code was released last week (1.1.1j) so I’m hoping that folks are going to test these STPs and help me improve them.
These are the first cut based on my own procedure, so they are tested and work but as people use them I’m sure good ideas will emerge on what’s missing or could be changed.
Here’s some reasons I love UCS when it comes to production operations:
- Choice - The upgrade process can be executed different ways to suite YOUR operational environment. You can use GUI or CLI, or your own provisioning tool like Bladelogic. Cisco doesn’t force you down any proprietary path, despite what the FUD spreaders want you to think.
- Automation – You can update components directly (make it so, Number 1!) or via policies attached to your service profile so wherever your workload runs, the profile and policies make sure it runs on a blade with the latest firmware. If you’ve ever managed large farms of servers you will know what a pain it is to manage firmware and match workloads to firmware. This is now automated, part of the Wire Once and Walk Away design of UCS.
- Parallelism – UCS is massively parallel – all the components are updated via their own Finite State Machine which means you can update all your blades at the same time, if your operational environment allows it. That means it does more work in less time than any competitor solution.
- Backout – it’s so easy to go back to a previous version of code, just change the specific option and do it!
But the most important thing is that It Just Works, just like ESX sells because it is rock solid, it’s the same for UCS.