Cisco hardware routers are normally shipped with the Cisco IOS XE software pre-installed. Because the Cisco CSR 1000V Series Cloud Services Router is not hardware-based, you must download the Cisco IOS XE software from Cisco.com and install it directly onto the virtual machine. However, as part of the initial installation process, you must first provision the attributes of the VM so that the Cisco CSR 1000V software can install and boot.
Note This document does not provide procedures for deploying the Cisco CSR 1000V in an Amazon Web Services environment. For more information, see the Cisco CSR 1000V Series Cloud Services Router Deployment Guide for Amazon Web Services.
Figure 3-1 shows the high-level tasks required to install the Cisco CSR 1000V on the VM. The different installation options are dependent on the hypervisor being used. See the following sections for more information.
Figure 3-1 Cisco CSR 1000V Installation Task Workflow
Obtaining the Cisco CSR 1000V Software
Step 1 Go to the product page for Cisco Routers at
Step 2 Navigate to the Cisco CSR 1000V Cloud Services Router product page.
Step 3 Click the “Download Software” link.
Step 4 Select the Cisco IOS XE release package and click Download Now or Add to Cart.
Follow the instructions for downloading the software.
Cisco CSR 1000V Installation Files
The following file types are included in the Cisco CSR 1000V software image package and are used to install the Cisco CSR 1000V on the supported hypervisors.
Used for deploying the OVA template on the VM (in TAR format)
Used for installing the software image on the VM (requires manually creating the VM)
Used for installing the software image in KVM OpenStack environments.
Used for upgrading and downgrading the software only. For more information, see the “Upgrading the Cisco IOS XE Software” section.
Note The .bin upgrade file cannot be used to upgrade AMIs obtained from Amazon Web Services. You must create a new AMI instance and migrate your configuration and license(s).
Guidelines and Limitations
Be aware of the following general guidelines and restrictions before installing the Cisco CSR 1000V in your network:
- If the hypervisor does not support vNIC Hot Add/Remove, do not make any changes to the VM hardware (memory, CPUs, hard drive size, and so on) while the VM is powered on.
- (Cisco IOS XE Release 3.11S and later) The GigabitEthernet0 interface is no longer available. You can designate any interface as the management interface.
- Cisco IOS XE Release 3.10S and earlier) The GigabitEthernet0 interface is the default management port and cannot be changed.
- The Cisco IOS XE CLI can be accessed either through the virtual console or on a serial port console. The console can be selected from GRUB mode during the first-time installation, or it can be changed using the Cisco IOS XE platform console command after the router boots. For more information, see the “Booting the Cisco CSR 1000V and Accessing the Console” section.
Note Some hypervisors may not support serial console access. Verify support using your hypervisor documentation.
ROMMON and the Cisco CSR 1000V
The Cisco CSR 1000V does not include a ROMMON image similar to what is included in many Cisco hardware-based routers. During the initial bootloader process, the installation script creates a clean version of the Cisco CSR 1000V software image known as the Golden Image and places it in a non-accessible partition. This clean version can be used if the software image is not working properly or is not bootable.
Note that although the Cisco CSR 1000V does not include ROMMON, the platform does include a GNU GRand Unified Bootloader (GRUB)-based bootloader. The GRUB function on the Cisco CSR 1000V provides more limited functionality compared to the ROMMON available on other Cisco platforms.
Note that although ROMMON is not present on the Cisco CSR 1000V, some Cisco IOS XE commands such as show version may show references to ROMMON in the command output.
Note After the Cisco CSR 1000V completes the first-time installation, you can configure the router to automatically enter GRUB mode when the router is booted. For more information, see the “Installing Cisco CSR 1000V Licenses” section.