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We were informed by a consultant that many past driver and firmware version updates need to be installed to bring them up to the latest version. Is that correct or are the updates supplied cumulative? We were under the impression that just the latest version update would be necessary.

Example drivers update page. See older version info at bottom

https://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/04/drivers/driversdetails?driverid=f3kfn&oscode=w12r2&productcode=poweredge-r720

https://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/04/drivers/driversdetails?driverid=cn7mv&oscode=w12r2&productcode=poweredge-r720

The recommendation by the consultant is to install the first and last update of each major version. This ends up being a dozen installs with reboots after each to bring drivers/firmware up to date for one device. They are also recommending BIOS and Chipset updates, bringing the total count of installs and reboots up to 20. Doesn't seem like the most efficient way to go about it but is that accurate?

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    Does he bill by the hour? – Michael Hampton Sep 3 at 16:01
  • @MichaelHampton ha, no actually we are planning on doing the work. – dmr83457 Sep 3 at 16:59
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I've never heard, nor have I ever done that. In most cases, you should be installing the latest version driver and firmware updates. Make sure to read the release notes and installation instructions for each to make sure that there are no prerequisites.

There may be cases where your driver or firmware version is so old that you need to install some intermediate version before installing the latest version, but needing to install every prior version sounds a bit like nonsense. Again, make sure to read the release notes and installation instructions for each to make sure that there are no prerequisites, and if in doubt, contact Dell tech support.

If you're in doubt about this, call Dell tech support and ask them this question. As I said, I've never heard what this consultant is telling you and have never done what he's telling you.

  • hi, i am sorry to inform you that the Consulting person is right up at the point of dell, dell uses not over all complete Firmware Upgrades they use diff and rewuire a minimum if firmware Version to Upgrade to a newer one, soeciall this is for the bios, ie if you have a01 and want to upgrade to a24, it csn be thst you need zo upgrade really alot of times – djdomi Sep 3 at 16:34
  • I made that point in my answer. If your drivers/firmware is old enough then you may have to install one or more intermediate versions before installing the latest version. The idea that you have to install EVERY previous version is patently ridiculous. – joeqwerty Sep 3 at 16:49
  • @joeqwerty I didn't mean to imply that we were told that EVERY previous update needed to be installed, just the first and last version of each major revision. The concern being that between drivers and firmware that ends up being a dozen installs and reboots for one device. – dmr83457 Sep 3 at 16:57
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    OK. I understand what you're saying. I'm still in disagreement and I would implore you to contact Dell tech support to get their input and recommendation. If you have version 1.x and you want to upgrade to version 4.x then the consultant is telling you to install version 1.xx, then 2.x and 2.xx, then 3.x and 3.xx and I'm saying that I've never heard that, have never done that, and have never been told that by Dell. At the end of the day, Dell is the resource you should use as the authoritative answer. – joeqwerty Sep 3 at 17:06
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I am adding another answer to add a detail for DELL firmware.

You can simply use the update DVD supplied for your model. That will bring to the latest version directly, multiple boot may be necessary, but the media will handle that corrcetly on it's own and will warn you.

See there for PowerEdge server: Update PowerEdge Servers with Platform Specific Bootable ISO

See there for your model: Platform Specific Bootable ISO, PER720 19.07.00

Install method;

Download the ISO for the platform and run the ISO using any of the below methods:

iDRAC virtual media: 1.Mount the ISO using the iDRAC virtual media. 2.Mark the next boot option as virtual media. 3.Reboot the system. 4.The system will boot into the ISO and upgrades the system components.

USB drive: 1.Run any Bootable USB drive creator software. 2.Select the downloaded ISO and create bootable media from it. 3.Plugin in the USB drive to the server. 4.Boot using the USB from BIOS settings. 5.The system will boot into the ISO and upgrades the system components.

CD-ROM: 1.Burn the downloaded ISO into a DVD. 2.Boot using the DVD from BIOS settings. 3.The system will boot into the ISO and upgrades the system components.

In my experience For Driver I always used the latest driver as told by joeqwerty, but I can't tell in your specific case, but for firmware as you can see it can be simple.

  • I am looking at the Server Update Utility. What is the differences between that and Platform Specific Bootable? – dmr83457 Sep 3 at 18:50
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    @dmr83457 Its the same in the end, just bigger as the SUU target all hardware, but both do the trick, but it's only one pass that I remember when using the SUU, I don't know why your consultant told it's multiple's pass / multiple version to install, as try it in detect mode, it will tell each firmware need update to version X, and the version X would be the latest. – yagmoth555 - GoFundMe Monica Sep 3 at 19:23
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    @dmr83457 A note, your consultant is right about firmware of like Dell Storage Array, like Equalogic SAN. You need a upgrade path for such. – yagmoth555 - GoFundMe Monica Sep 4 at 14:24

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