How to update PA-RISC firmware

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This article shows the firmware upgrade process for an HP 9000 (PA-RISC) system running HP-UX. PA-RISC firmware is delivery on special media that Onsite Engineers can use to update all the hardware series or as HP-UX user installable patches.

These patches copy the required software on the boot disk LIF area and reboot the system. Next time the system boot, it will run those programs stored on the LIF area first as reboot the system a second time.

An rp7400 (N4000-55) is used along the article as an example.

Obtaining the Software

Firmware patches for HP-9000 servers can be obtained directly from the ITRC website or visiting, Drivers and Downloads. Search for your server model and select the proper OS independent software.

Installing the Patches

1. Use swinstall command to start the installation process.

# swinstall -x autoreboot=true -x mount_all_filesystems=false -s /<PATH>/PHSS_<XXXX>.depot


# swinstall -x autoreboot=true -x mount_all_filesystems=false -s /var/tmp/PHSS_31214.depot

2. The system will reboot the system and initiate the upgrade using the files copied on the LIF area.


To discontinue, press any key within 10 seconds.
10 seconds expired.

Trying Primary Boot Path
Boot IO Dependent Code (IODC) revision 1

HARD Booted.

ISL Revision A.00.38  OCT 26, 1994

ISL booting  hpux srvrflash

: disk(0/0/2/;0)srvrflash
37848 + 8768 + 2099224 start 0x1e04240

Firmware Reflash Utility Ver. 1.20: SPU HVersion = 0x5d3
Current firmware (42.06) will be replaced by revision 43.43, described as:
    "N4000/rp7400 CPU FW Image, Version 43.43"
    "N4000/rp7400 PDC firmware image, Version 43.43"
Enable Flash ROM

Beginning ROM reflash.
Do NOT turn off power during this operation!
    Programming firmware ROM................................................................
    Verifying firmware ROM  ................................................................
    Programming and verification successfully completed.
Disable Flash ROM
System will now reboot...
************ EARLY BOOT VFP *************
End of early boot detected

Firmware Version  43.43

Duplex Console IO Dependent Code (IODC) revision 1

   (c) Copyright 1995-2002, Hewlett-Packard Company, All rights reserved

  Processor   Speed            State           CoProcessor State  Cache Size
  Number                                       State              Inst    Data
  ---------  --------   ---------------------  -----------------  ------------
      0      550  MHz   Active                 Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      1      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      2      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      3      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      4      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      5      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      6      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB
      7      550  MHz   Idle                   Functional         512 KB   1 MB

  Central Bus Speed (in MHz)  :        133
  Available Memory            :   15728640  KB
  Good Memory Required        : Not initialized. Defaults to 32 MB.

   Primary boot path:    0/0/2/1.6
   Alternate boot path:  0/0/2/0.6
   Console path:         0/0/4/0.0
   Keyboard path:        0/0/4/0.0

Processor is booting from first available device.

To discontinue, press any key within 10 seconds.

Verify firmware version using STM

The current system firmware version can be checked using the STM | CSTM tools.

sel dev #           <--- Select any CPU device
-- Information Tool Log for CPU on path 37 --
Log creation time: Mon Nov 10 16:40:08 2008
Hardware path: 37

Product ID:                CPU          Module Type:              0
Hardware Model:            0x5d3        Software Model:           0x4
Hardware Revision:         0            Software Revision:        0
Hardware ID:               0            Software ID:              642329373
Boot ID:                   0x2          Software Option:          0x91
Hard Physical Address:     0xfed25000   Soft Physical Address:    0
Slot Number:               9            Software Capability:      0x100000f0
PDC Firmware Revision:     43.43        IODC Revision:            0
Instruction Cache [Kbyte]: 512          Processor Speed:          N/A
Data Cache        [Kbyte]: 1024         Processor State:          N/A