Getting Started Guide for Cisco UCS E-Series Servers, Release 2.x
BIOS
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BIOS

This chapter includes the following sections:

BIOS Overview

BIOS initializes the hardware in the system. After it initializes the CPU, other chips on the motherboard get initialized. BIOS discovers bootable devices in the system and boots them in the provided sequence. It boots the operating system and configures the hardware for the operating system to use. BIOS manageability features allow you to interact with the hardware and use it. In addition, BIOS provides options to configure the system, manage firmware, and create BIOS error reports.

BIOS provides the following features:

  • Option ROM to provide PCI connected device boot
  • Manage virtual and physical boot devices: SCSI, FC, network, and USB
  • Processor Settings
  • Memory Settings
  • Power Management (C-states)

BIOS supports the following standard PC compatible functionality:

  • ACPI 3.0, SMBIOS 2.5, WHEA, and USB 2.0
  • EFI Shell boot
  • EFI native operating system boot

Determining the Current BIOS Version

To view the current version and build number of the BIOS, press F2 during server bootup. The BIOS setup utility appears. The listing on the Main page displays the current version and build number of the BIOS.

Options for Obtaining Firmware from Cisco Systems

Obtaining Software from Cisco Systems

Use this procedure to download drivers, BIOS and CIMC firmware, and the diagnostics image.

Procedure
    Step 1   Navigate to http:/​/​www.cisco.com/​.
    Step 2   If you are not already logged in, click Log In at the top right-hand edge of the page and log in using your Cisco.com credentials.
    Step 3   In the menu bar at the top, click Support.

    A roll-down menu appears.

    Step 4   From the Downloads (center) pane, click All Downloads (located at the bottom right corner).

    The Download Software page appears.

    Step 5   From the left pane, click Products.
    Step 6   From the center pane, click Unified Computing and Servers.
    Step 7   From the right pane, click Cisco UCS E-Series Software.
    Step 8   From the right pane, click the name of the server model for which you want to download the software.

    The Download Software page appears with the following categories.

    • Unified Computing System (UCSE) Server Drivers—Contains drivers.
    • Unified Computing System (UCSE) Server Firmware—Contains the Host Upgrade Utility and the BIOS and CIMC firmware images.
    • Unified Computing System (UCSE) Utilites—Contains the diagnostics image.
    Step 9   Click the appropriate software category link.
    Step 10   Click the Download button associated with software image that you want to download.

    The End User License Agreement dialog box appears.

    Step 11   (Optional) To download multiple software images, do the following:
    1. Click the Add to cart button associated with the software images that you want to download.
    2. Click the Download Cart button located on the top right .

      All the images that you added to the cart display.

    3. Click the Download All button located at the bottom right corner to download all the images.

      The End User License Agreement dialog box appears.

    Step 12   Click Accept License Agreement.
    Step 13   Do one of the following as appropriate:
    • Save the software image file to a local drive.

    • If you plan to install the software image from a TFTP server, copy the file to the TFTP server that you want to use.

      The server must have read permission for the destination folder on the TFTP server.


    What to Do Next

    Install the software image.

    Installing the BIOS Firmware

    You can install the BIOS firmware through the browser or from a TFTP server.

    Installing the BIOS Firmware Through the Browser


    Note


    To avoid potential problems, we strongly recommend that you use the Host Upgrade Utility (HUU), which upgrades the CIMC, BIOS, and other firmware components to compatible levels. For detailed information about this utility, see the Host Upgrade Utility User Guide for Cisco UCS E-Series Servers at http:/​/​www.cisco.com/​en/​US/​products/​ps12629/​prod_​installation_​guides_​list.html. This guide also provides information about the compatible HUU, CIMC, and BIOS software releases.

    If you choose to upgrade the CIMC and BIOS firmware manually—instead of using the HUU—you must update the CIMC firmware first, and then the BIOS firmware. Do not install the new BIOS firmware until after you have activated the compatible CIMC firmware or the server will not boot.


    Before You Begin
    Procedure
      Step 1   In the Navigation pane, click the Server tab.
      Step 2   On the Server tab, click BIOS.
      Figure 1. BIOS



      Step 3   In the Firmware Actions area, click Install BIOS Firmware through Browser Client.
      Step 4   In the Install BIOS Firmware dialog box, click Browse and use the Choose File dialog box to select the file to install.
      Step 5   Click Install Firmware.

      The BIOS is downloaded, the host is powered off, the BIOS is upgraded, and then the host is powered on.


      Installing the BIOS Firmware from a TFTP Server


      Note


      To avoid potential problems, we strongly recommend that you use the Host Upgrade Utility (HUU), which upgrades the CIMC, BIOS, and other firmware components to compatible levels. For detailed information about this utility, see the Host Upgrade Utility User Guide for Cisco UCS E-Series Servers at http:/​/​www.cisco.com/​en/​US/​products/​ps12629/​prod_​installation_​guides_​list.html. This guide also provides information about the compatible HUU, CIMC, and BIOS software releases.

      If you choose to upgrade the CIMC and BIOS firmware manually—instead of using the HUU—you must update the CIMC firmware first, and then the BIOS firmware. Do not install the new BIOS firmware until after you have activated the compatible CIMC firmware or the server will not boot.


      Before You Begin
      Procedure
        Step 1   In the Navigation pane, click the Server tab.
        Step 2   On the Server tab, click BIOS.
        Figure 2. BIOS



        Step 3   In the Firmware Actions area, click Install BIOS Firmware from TFTP Server.
        Step 4   In the Install BIOS Firmware dialog box, complete the following fields:
        Name Description

        TFTP Server IP Address field

        The IP address of the TFTP server on which the BIOS firmware image resides.

        Image Path and Filename field

        The BIOS firmware image filename on the server. When you enter this name, include the relative path for the image file from the top of the TFTP tree to the file location.

        Step 5   Click Install Firmware.

        The BIOS is downloaded, the host is powered off, the BIOS is upgraded, and then the host is powered on.


        Accessing the BIOS Setup Menu

        You can access the BIOS Setup menu in two ways:

        • Through CIMC from the KVM console.
        • Through a console that is physically attached to the E-Series Server.

        Accessing the BIOS Setup Menu from the KVM Console

        Procedure
          Step 1   In the Navigation pane, click the Server tab.
          Step 2   On the Server tab, click Summary.
          Step 3   From the Actions area, click Launch KVM Console.

          The KVM Console opens in a separate window.

          Step 4   From the Server Summary page, click Power Cycle Server to reboot the server.
          Step 5   To access the BIOS setup menu, press F2 during bootup.

          The Aptio Setup Utility appears, which provides the BIOS setup menu options.

          Figure 3. BIOS Setup Menu



          The following table provides information about the BIOS setup menu tabs.

          Tabs

          Description

          Main tab

          Provides the following:

          • General information about the BIOS version, system memory, and access level
          • Settings to define the system date, time, and language

          Advanced tab

          Allows you to do the following:

          • Enable or disable boot option for legacy network devices and legacy mass storage devices with option ROM
          • Configure PCI, PCI-X, and PCI express, trusted computing settings, and WHEA configuration settings
          • Configure CPU, thermal, USB, and system IO chip parameters
          • Configure runtime error logging support setup options
          • Configure console redirection to the serial port

          Chipset tab

          Allows you to do the following:

          • Define North Bridge, South Bridge, and ME subsystem parameters

          Server Mgmt tab

          Provides the self test status of CIMC and allows you to do the following:

          • Enable or disable interfaces to communicate with CIMC
          • Enable or disable FRB-2 timer
          • Configure the FRB-2 timer expiration value and configure how the system responds when the FRB-2 timer expires
          • Enable or disable the OS watchdog timer
          • Log the report returned by the CIMC self test command
          • Change the system event log configuration

          Boot tab

          Allows you to do the following:

          • Configure the time in seconds the system should wait for the setup activation key
          • Enable or disable the keyboard NumLock keys
          • Define boot order rules
          • Configure Gate A20 parameters
          • Enable or disable CSM support
          • Define boot order for devices in the following groups: hard disk drives, network devices, CDROM, DVD, and floppy drives

          Security tab

          Allows you to do the following:

          • Define or change the BIOS administrator and user passwords

          Save & Exit tab

          Provides options to do the following:

          • Save changes, discard changes, or restore the configuration to its default settings

          Changing Configuration Using the BIOS Setup Menu

          Use this procedure to change the BIOS settings for your server. Detailed instructions are also printed on the BIOS pages.

          Procedure
            Step 1   In the Navigation pane, click the Server tab.
            Step 2   On the Server tab, click Summary.
            Step 3   From the Actions area, click Launch KVM Console.

            The KVM Console opens in a separate window.

            Step 4   From the Server Summary page, click Power Cycle Server to reboot the server.
            Step 5   To access the BIOS setup menu, press F2 during bootup.

            The Aptio Setup Utility appears, which provides the BIOS setup menu options.

            Figure 4. BIOS Setup Menu



            Step 6   To navigate between menu items, use the right or left arrow keys on your keyboard.
            Step 7   To modify a field, do the following:
            1. Use the Up or Down arrow keys on your keyboard to highlight the field to be modified.
            2. Press Enter to select the highlighted field, and then change the value in the field.
            3. Do one of the following:
            • To save changes and exit the BIOS setup, press F4.
            • To exit without saving changes, press Esc.
            Step 8   To enable or disable a field, press the space bar on your keyboard.