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Release Note: Upgrading from BIG-IP software versions 4.5 PTF-04 through 4.5.10 to BIG-IP software version 9.0.1 using the remote upgrade procedure
Release Note

Updated Date: 09/08/2004


This technical note documents upgrading to BIG-IP software version 9.0.1 from BIG-IP software versions 4.5 PTF-04 through 4.5.10, using the remote upgrade procedure. For information about installing the software, please refer to the instructions below.


- Minimum system requirements and supported browsers
- Supported platforms
- About the BIG-IP version 9.0.1 remote upgrade
- Saving a copy of the version 4.5x dossier
- Installing the upgrade

Minimum system requirements and supported browsers

The minimum system requirements for this release are:

  • Intel® Pentium® III 933Mhz processor
  • 512MB disk drive or CompactFlash® card
  • 512MB RAM

The supported browsers for the Configuration utility are:

  • Microsoft® Internet Explorer TM, version 6.x and later
  • Netscape® Navigator TM, version 7.1, and other browsers built on the same engine, such as Mozilla TM, Firefox TM, and Camino TM.
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Supported platforms

This upgrade is supported only on the following platforms:

  • D39 (BIG-IP 1000)
  • D44 (BIG-IP 2400)
  • D51 (BIG-IP 5100 and 5110)

If you are unsure which platform you have, look at the sticker on the back of the chassis to find the platform number.

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About the BIG-IP version 9.0.1 remote upgrade

This technical note describes how to remotely upgrade the BIG-IP software to version 9.0.1. If you do not have direct access to the system, you need to perform a remote upgrade. The remote upgrade provides the ability to serve the installation files from a different network using HTTP. We recommend using the local upgrade if you have a direct connection to the unit you want to upgrade.

Warning:  The BIG-IP system does not support upgrading from version 4.5 PTF-03 or earlier. If you are running BIG-IP software version 4.5 PTF-03 or earlier, you must upgrade to version 4.5 PTF-04, before you can upgrade to version 9.0.1.

Warning:  You can only apply this upgrade to BIG-IP HA systems. The following software is not supported by this upgrade: BIG-IP versions 4.6 and later, the Link Controller, the eCommerce Controller, the Blade Controller, and the 3-DNS Controller.

Note:  The BIG-IP 9.0.1 upgrade does not support upgrading from version 4.6 or later. If you are running BIG-IP software version 4.6 or later, you must downgrade to version 4.5 PTF-04, before you can upgrade to version 9.0.1. Any additional features added in version 4.6 will be lost during the downgrade.

The BIG-IP version 9.0.1 Upgrade CD ROM contains a special One-Time Conversion Utility (OTCU) for converting the current configuration during the upgrade. The OTCU parses pre-9.0.1 configuration files and uses the data to create a 9.0.1 configuration database. This conversion is necessary because the configuration files, file locations, and file formats in 4.5 versions are different in version 9.0.1.

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Saving a copy of the version 4.5x dossier

Before you begin the upgrade process, you should save the dossier from the 4.5x system you want to upgrade. This is in the event that the entitlement process during the installation is not successful.

To save a copy of the version 4.5x dossier

  1. Open the Configuration utility on the unit you want to upgrade.
  2. In the navigation pane, click System Admin.
    The System Admin screen opens.
  3. In the System Admin screen, click the License Administration tab.
    The License Administration screen opens.
  4. In the License Administration screen, click Manual Authorization
    A screen containing the Dossier displays.
  5. Copy the dossier to a safe place.

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Installing the upgrade

If the BIG-IP system is currently running version 4.5 PTF-04 through 4.5.10, you can upgrade directly to version 9.0.1, using the following procedure.

If you are running a pre-4.5 PTF-04 version of the BIG-IP software, you must first upgrade to version 4.5 PTF-04, and then upgrade to version 9.0.1.

The process of upgrading to BIG-IP version 9.0.1 requires you to do the following:

The following sections describe how to perform these tasks.

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Save and back up existing 4.5.x BIG-IP configuration data

Before you upgrade to BIG-IP version 9.0.1, you need to save your version 4.5x configuration data. This file is used by the OTCU to convert your 4.5 configuration files to the 9.0.1 configuration file format. In addition, this prevents loss of data if, for any reason, the version 9.0.1 upgrade is not successful.

Collect and archive the version 4.5 configuration files, by typing the following command. Note that config.ucs is the name you must use for the UCS file and the file must be saved at the / partition.
bigpipe config save /config.ucs

Note: If you are upgrading a system that is using zonefiles with named, you must manually back up all necessary zonefiles and save them to a remote location. After the upgrade is complete, you can place them on 9.0 system. There is a new location on the 9.0 system for these files: /var/named/config/namedb.

Important:  It is critical that you back up the archived configuration files to a remote location. If the upgrade process fails for any reason, you may need to use the remotely-stored file in order to restore your 4.5x configuration data.

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Copy the remote upgrade package to the remote BIG-IP system from the CD ROM

After you save the existing 4.5x configuration, you need to copy the file from the /install directory on the 9.0.1 CD ROM to the /var/tmp directory on the target BIG-IP system.

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Designate and configure a remote host to be an installation server

Before you run the remote upgrade, you must designate and configure a remote host to be an installation server. The installation server must meet the following criteria:

  • Contain a CD-ROM drive
  • Support a CD-ROM boot
  • Reside on the same network as the BIG-IP client

Note:  If you are connecting directly from one machine to another, you must use an Ethernet cross-over cable.

Once you have designated a host, complete the following steps:

  1. Insert the CD into the drive on the installation server and reboot the host system from the CD-ROM drive.
    The following message displays:
    Select installation option:
    1 Setup server to provide network installation
    2 Install software onto hard disk
    3 Reboot to your current system
    4 Boot to maintenance kernel
    Enter choice [1]?
  2. Select 1.
    A list of available network interfaces displays. You are prompted to select one for the installation server interface.
  3. Select the interface you want to use as the installation server interface. The following prompt displays:
    Use existing DHCP server on subnet [no]?
  4. Indicate your DHCP choice:
    • If there is an existing DHCP server on your subnet that you want to use, type yes.
      The server configuration automatically completes.

      If you choose this option, skip to step 5.
    • If you want to set up this server as the DHCP server, type no.
      The following series of prompts displays:
      IP network [10.1.10]?
      IP address of server 10.1.10[n] [199]?
      Lower range for clients 10.1.10.[n] [199]?
      Upper range for clients 10.1.10.[n] [200]?

      • If your subnet consists only of the server and the target BIG-IP unit, or is otherwise a private subnet, use the default IP addresses provided.

        If other machines share the subnet and there is a possibility of conflict, substitute the appropriate unique IP addresses and ranges. When you have finished entering the addresses, they are displayed and you are asked to accept or reject them.

        Note: When you enter the IP address of the server, you need to enter only the last octet. When completing the lower and upper ranges for the clients, enter the network number(s) where the clients are situated.

      • If the settings displayed are correct, enter yes. If they are not, enter no and you are prompted to re-enter the addresses.
  5. Finally, you are prompted to specify the protocol you want to use to transfer the installation files. For remote upgrades you must use the default protocol, HTTP.

    Once you accept the settings, the server configuration is complete.
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Run the installation script to install the new software

Now that you have copied the remote upgrade package to the target system and configured an installation server, you are ready to install the 9.0.1 software. To install the new software, use the following procedure:

  1. Extract the remote_upgrade script from the IM package using the following command:
  2. The remote_upgrade script prompts you to confirm your licensing information. You are also prompted to specify admin settings including the installation server IP address and default route.
    When you are asked to configure the syslog settings, you can use the installation server as the syslog server or specify an alternate address.
  3. To run the remote_upgrade script and complete the remote upgrade installation, type the following command:
  4. Follow the promps to complete the installation. After you have accepted all of the settings, the BIG-IP system reboots and you will lose connectivity to the BIG-IP system.

    Note that you must license the version 9.0.1 software before you can run the OTCU or configure the system. You can log in to the Configuration utility and license the system as soon as the installation process is complete.
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Licensing the traffic management software using the Configuration utility

Before you can convert your configuration files or configure the system, you must license the version 9.0.1 software. To activate the license for the system, you must have a base registration key. The registration key is a 27-character string that lets the license server know which F5 products you are entitled to license. We recommed that you save a copy of the 4.5x dossier to another system before you begin the upgrade process. For details, see Saving a copy of the version 4.5x dossier. It is important to note that during the remote upgrade, the entitlement check contacts the F5 License Server and creates a license for the system.

During the remote upgrade entitlement check a 9.0.1 registration key should have been provided. The Configuration utility displays this registration key. You simply need to activate the license. Certain systems may require you to enter keys for additional modules in the Add-On Registration Key List box.

To activate the license using the Configuration utility

  1. Open a web browser on a work station attached to the network on which you configured the management port.
  2. Type the following URL in the browser, where <IP address> is the address you configured for the management port (MGMT):
    https://<IP address>/
  3. At the password prompt, type the default user name admin and the default password admin, and click OK.

    The Licensing screen of the Configuration utility opens.
  4. To begin the licensing process, click the Activate button. Follow the on-screen prompts to license the system. For additional information, click the Help tab.
  5. Once you have activated the license, STOP. DO NOT continue with the Setup utility if you want to use the One Time Conversion Utility (OTCU) to convert your 4.5x configuration files. For more information see Convert the configuration data
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Convert the configuration data

After you install and license the 9.0.1 software, you can configure the 9.0.1 system from scratch. If you want to configure the new software from scratch, you can use the Setup utility to configure the system.
To convert your existing 4.5 configuration files to 9.0 configuration files, you use the One Time Conversion Utility (OTCU). The OTCU parses 4.5x configuration files and uses the data to create a 9.0.1 configuration database. Due to the complexity of the 9.0.1 release, and differences in the 4.5x and 9.0.1 feature sets (which depends on your configuration), the OTCU may produce some unexpected results. We ask that you use the OTCU as a starting point for converting your 4.5x configuration files. Keep in mind that, in most cases, you will need to examine the resulting configuration files, troubleshoot the contents, and make adjustments where necessary. The following notes are to help you understand the conversion process and interpret the output of the OTCU.

To view an example of a converted file, see conversion example .

When you run the OTCU, the files in /otcu.ucs are converted and saved to /renamed_otcu.ucs. In addition, a log file is created and saved as /var/tmp/otcu.log. Information about the conversion is saved to /var/tmp/otcu_9.0. These log files are useful for understanding what files are converted, and for reviewing or troubleshooting the resulting configuration. If you want to refer to your 4.5x configuration files, these files are saved in /var/tmp/otcu_4.5. The /var/tmp/otcu_4.5_miscellaneous directory contains 4.5x files that are not carried forward during the conversion.

The following files are removed during the conversion:

/config/default_base.conf (no user alert)
/etc/ssh_host_key (no user alert)
/etc/ (no user alert)
/etc/ssh_config (no user alert)
/etc/sshd_config (no user alert)
/etc/ssh3/hostkey (no user alert)
/etc/ssh3/ (no user alert)
/etc/ssh3/ssh3_config (no user alert)
/etc/ssh3/sshd2_config (no user alert)
/etc/snmptrap.conf (no user alert)
/etc/rc.local (no user alert)
/etc/syslog.conf (no user alert)
/etc/login.conf (no user alert)
/usr/local/www/bigipgui/.users (no user alert)
/config/bigconfig/slapd.txt (no user alert)
/etc/irs.conf, /etc/irs.conf.dns, /etc/irs.conf.nodns (no user alert)

The following files are moved forward with no conversion:

/root/.ssh/ (no user alert)
/root/.ssh/id_dsa (no user alert)
/root/.ssh/ (no user alert)
/root/.ssh/identify (no user alert)
/root/.ssh/authorized_keys (no user alert)
/root/.ssh/authorized_keys2 (no user alert)
/root/.ssh/known_hosts (no user alert)

The following table lists the files that are moved during the conversion process.

4.5x config files 9.0.1 conversion notes
/config/routes Routes commands are converted to 9.0 bigpipe commands.
/config/bigconf/httpd.conf The ServerName line from this file is inserted into the new httpd.conf located at /config/httpd/conf/httpd.conf.
/config/bigconfig/ssl.crl/ is moved to /config/httpd/conf/ssl.crl.
/config/bigconfig/ssl.crt/ is moved to /config/httpd/conf/ssl.crt.
/config/bigconfig/ssl.key is moved to /config/httpd/conf/ssl.key.
etc/named.conf is converted to BIND version 9, and references to 3-DNS are removed.
/etc/snmpd.conf sysip is deleted and com2sec is changed to com2sec6.
/etc/snmpd.conf.disabled sysip is deleted and com2sec is changed to com2sec6.

Using the command line utility to run the OTCU

Use the following procedure to convert your existing 4.5x configuration data to version 9.0.1:

  1. From the command line, type the following command:


    This command starts the utility that converts the version 4.5 configuration files.
  2. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the conversion.

    The utility prompts you for the following information:

    • The time zone
    • The root password

    Once the 9.0 conversion is complete, the files are moved to their correct locations and loaded.

    Note:  If at any point you want to go back to version 4.5x, you must re-install the 4.5x software. For information on how to install the 4.5x software, please refer to the 4.5x release notes. For instructions on how to reinstall your previous 4.5x configuration files, see SOL1493.

  3. After you you have reviewed the log files and are completely satisfied with the resulting configuration, you can remove all conversion files from the system by typing the following command:


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