Upgrading a BladeSystem c7000 with HP Smart Update Manager 5

After reviewing the new features found in HP Smart Update Manager (SUM) version 5 at HP Discover, I wanted to walk through the steps required to upgrade a c7000 BladeSystem running vSphere ESXi 5 blades. This post assumes you have an HP Passport ID and administrative access to your BladeSystem enclosure, along with a Windows PC to run the SUM installer on.

Obtaining SUM

You’ll need to snag the latest Service Pack for ProLiant (SPP) for your first time. At the time of this writing, the latest SPP is 2012.06.0 and can be obtained from:


Make sure to snag the SPP zipped ISO file with the latest build – it should look something like this.

Continue on to the download page (requires signing in with your HP Passport ID) and choose to either download directly or use a download manager. The SPP file is roughly 1.9 GB in size, zipped; If you plan on extracting the ISO instead of burning it, plan on having 5 or so GB of free space to work with.

Once downloaded, I opted to extract the zip into an ISO, and then extract the ISO into a folder. I then deleted all of the files except for the extracted folder.

Getting Started

At this point, you are encouraged to run the Start.htm file located in the root directory. It provides a sort of landing page to the EULA and location of the Windows and Linux installers. I’m sure you love reading EULAs, but if you want to skip ahead just fire up:


You’ll be greated with a splash screen for HP SUM.

You’ll get a welcome screen with a lot of information on SUM, the screens, and new features. Browse at your leisure, then click next.

Source Selections

The first step is to determine your source selections, which are repositories to use for updating components. The scope of this walkthrough is a c7000 BladeSystem enclosure, so I am sticking with the “Default” repository that points to the SPP on disk. For a Windows server, you may want to go in and configure the various components with credentials and access information. I didn’t bother checking for the latest updates from ftp.hp.com because I knew the SPP I downloaded was very recently released.

Click next.

Select Targets

Now that a repository has been prepared, some targets must be selected. I’ll put in the IP of the primary Onboard Administrator (OA) of my c7000 enclosure. You won’t need to discover the standby OA; the updates will occur for both components.

After clicking OK, SUM will start a discovery process. The results should show associated targets for you to select. In my case, it found the Virtual Connect Manager and the three blade iLO addresses.

Now, SUM will start investigating the blade iLO addresses and possibly ask you for credentials to Virtual Connect by showing a status of “Need Credentials”. Make sure to click on Virtual Connect, press the “Edit Target” button, and enter credentials. You don’t need to discover any other Virtual Connect modules, they will be updated.

Click next.

Review / Install Updates

The final screen reviews all of the various components that were set as targets previously. Since I already chose the Default SPP in the source selection screen, all of the BladeSystem components have a green checkmark next to them and are set to upgrade using the SPP. No other action is necessary.

The only significant choices left are to select when to schedule the update using the “Schedule Update” button and setting up automated reboots with the “Reboot Options” button.

By default, HP SUM does not automatically reboot any components.

Satisfied with the components being updated, I’m ready to click “Install” to start the install process immediately without creating any schedules.

The Update Process

During the upgrade process, HP SUM is intelligent about the logical order of updates. First, you’ll see that all components except for the OAs are marked “Waiting on OA host(s) to be updated first” while the OA is busy installing updates. This is a set-it-and-forget-it type of operation, although I hung around to take screenshots for this post.

When completed, all of the components should have a status showing the amount of updates that were installed and failed. Hopefully, failed is 0 and the rest are installed. 🙂

That’s it, you’re done. You can generate some reports on the installed components if you’d like, which turn into fancy looking HTML or XML pages.

Standby Components

Previously,  I mentioned that you don’t need to discover standby components, like the standby OA or Virtual Connect modules. Let’s check to verify this. Here is a screenshot of the standby OA module, showing that it is still in standby mode, running the latest firmware version, and shows a green check mark for the firmware mismatch diagnostic field. The same held true for my four Virtual Connect modules.


Using HP Smart Update Manager 5 on the c7000 BladeSystem enclosure is ridiculously easy now. SUM has a lot of other cool features with regards to repository selection, scheduling updates, using credentials, and so on, that make it even more powerful. For the Administrator that just wants to do straight forward firmware and software updates, the basic next-next-next-finish process is just about all that is required. Total time to update the entire enclosure was about 30 minutes, mostly because I have four Virtual Connect modules. I did not see any errors or issues in the vSphere environment during the upgrade process.