Notes on my E3000 Upgrade

These are some notes about an upgrade that recently performed on my personal Sun E3000 on Dec 7, 2002.  These notes are not meant to be a HOWTO, these notes are just information that I found useful.

  My E3000 was a twin 250Mhz/1M machine with 512M of RAM.  I upgraded it to a quad 336Mhz/4M machine with 1G of RAM.  The part numbers are:

1 x X2602A     501-4882     CPU/Memory Board  (any speed up to 100Mhz)
2 x X2610A     501-4287     I/O Board with SOC (Fibre Channel) (83/84Mhz only)
2 x X2530A     501-4178     250Mhz UltraSparc-II CPU module with 1M cache
1 x                   501-4286     Clock Board (any speed up to 100Mhz, 1:1, 2:1, 3:1, 4:1 multipliers)

Upgraded to:
2 x X2602A     501-4882     CPU/Memory Board (any speed up to 100Mhz)
2 x X2610A     501-4287     I/O Board with SOC (Fibre Channel)
4 x X2530A     501-4178     336Mhz UltraSparc-II CPU module with 1M cache
1 x                   501-4286     Clock Board (any speed up to 100Mhz, 1:1, 2:1, 3:1, 4:1 multipliers)

  This upgrade was pretty simple, it included installing a second CPU/Memory board and relpacing the 250Mhz CPU modules with the new 336Mhz modules.  The new CPU/Memory board already had 2 336Mhz CPU modules and the new 512M of RAM installed on it.  The biggest problems were removing the 250Mhz CPU modules and replacing them with the 336Mhz modules and updating the OBP/EEPROMs.

  To replace CPU modules on a CPU/Memory board you MUST use a Sun torque wrench.  If you do not, you are almost assured of failure.  The CPU modules do not have pins, they only have stubs (ball point) and the exact correct pressure must be maintained between them and the CPU/Memory board.  Not enough pressure and they don't make contact, too much pressure and you break the CPU/Memory board.

  The other big issue was syncronizing the OBP versions.  The newer CPU/Memory board had a higher rev than the old CPU/Memory board.  When I booted my E3000 with the new CPU/Memory board in it I got a warning that the OBP versions didn't match and to run "update-proms":

Board  5:   OBP   3.2.29 2001/06/18 17:28   POST  3.9.29 2001/06/18 17:50
Board  7:   OBP   3.2.24 1999/12/23 17:31   POST  3.9.24 1999/12/23 17:35

There have been many discussions on USENET about this issue.  I didn't have any problems.  Just make sure that you RESET the system before you run "update-proms" and then power cycle the machine (waiting at least 30 seconds so that the capacitors discharge).

That's it!  It was very painless as long as you do it correctly.

Interesting supporting documentation (from USENET):
(I think that John  forgot to RESET the system before he ran "update-proms", and thus, wiped out his system)

Unfortunately I only received 2 replys and I am still without an answer.  I
have included the original message and one reply of what NOT to do (or at
least exercise caution when doing).  Thank you to both who replied.

The original message:

> Dear Sun Managers,
>   We are doing some capacity planning work and therefore we are changing
> out hardware between machines pretty regularly.  As you know when adding
> faster CPU's, you must also add the appropriate system card which
> corresponds to the newer, faster CPU's.  After doing this, we rebooted
> system and received the following error message ...
> Multiple PROM versions detected.  Use 'update-proms' to update prom
> on boards
> At the OK prompt I typed 'update-proms' and the system gave a message
> indicating that it was in fact updating the proms (i.e. copying PROM
> version from board 5 to board 7).  After a few seconds passed the system
> reported the following ...
> MMU miss
> And then returned to the OK prompt.  I then rebooted the system and
> apparently the update-proms command was unsuccessful as the "... use
> update-proms command ..." still appears.  The system is up and running
> fine, but I would feel better if the problem were fixed.
> 1) Does anyone have knowledge of the "update-proms" fourth command, and
> so, does it simply update firmware versions ??
> 2) Does anyone understand what the "MMU miss" could be telling me ??  (I
> know MMU is Memory Management Unit and is responsible for managing the
> memory at the hardware level, but I probably need more details to
> understand why I am seeing a "MMU miss")
> 3) Why doesn't the 'update-proms' command work ??  (Perhaps the same as
> answer to #2)
> 4) Does anyone know how to fix the system ? (either through the use of
> 'update-proms' or other method - if not possible through the
> command, why ?)
> TIA,
> John Hilger

The first reply simply stated the MMU miss was due to the version of the OS
being not up-to-date, and suggested using a different version of the OS
(Solaris 2.5.1 5/98) - unfortunately this was NOT an option.

Unfortunately the following reply/recommendation resulted in further
adverse affects (I point this out only to educate NOT to humiliate).

=================8< Begin 8<=====================

For our E3000 the documentation said (in an obscure corner of the book)
that the machine needed to be powered down for at least 15 seconds for
the new eprom to take permanentaly after being updated.  If you reboot
without the power cycle the prom upgrade won't take (as per your
1- Update the proms : 'update-proms'
2- shutdown system
3- power off
4- wait at least 15 seconds (you may want to give it a minute)
5- power back up
This worked.
Strange though, we have upgraded proms in the past and we don't remember
having to power off.  It may have something to do with the new levels.
=============8< End 8<===============

When I performed the above recommendation the system failed to even perform
the POST  (Power On Self Test).  Apparently this erased the flash-prom.
The system will not boot with the "updated" board in slot #3, it must be in
another slot in order to even perform the POST.  The board that was updated
contains 2 processors and 1-Gig of memory.  Now, if the board is moved to
another slot the memory can be seen, but the processors are NOT seen.  It
appears as though the flash-prom on the board has been erased.  I managed
to get another board and Sun has been contacted - I am hoping it is just a
firmware load.  The morale of the story - Exercise caution when performing
the "update-proms" command !!!

If anyone reads this and has additional information on the issue please let
me know.


John Hilger

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