We have dozens of P8 5700SMs maxed out to version 7.3.6 in the field. If we were to upgrade our 7.3.6 APs to the P9 Advantage APs, would we need to swap out all of those SMs for newer versions, or could we keep the old 7.3.6 SMs and slowly phase in newer modules with new customers?
Firstly, you can run the newest firmware, i.e. 13.4 (if you're using NAT on the P8 SM you should use 13.4.1 beta or wait until 13.4.1 stable is released) on those P8 radios. Secondly any newer revision board and/or advatage radio is compatible with P8, so there's no need to swap out SM's. The only reason to swap out an SM would be if there is a customer that needs more bandwidth and you need 2X modulation (P8 radios are only capable of 1X).
In my opinion, if you have only a handful of P8s, just swap them out. All SMs running at 2X will be better in the long-run. However, we have a couple lightly loaded FSK APs with two or three P8s, so we're going to leave them alone. I think the biggest hurdle will be going from software scheduled v7, loading the hardware shceduling FPGA image, swapping the AP to h/w scheduled, upgrading everything... and nothing breaking along the way.
Thanks for the replies!
George, could you point me towards more information on this process?
My understanding is that we would need to:
- Swap out current P8 APs with new P9 Advantage APs (left in software scheduling)
- Load all P8 SMs into CNUT and switch them to hardware scheduling
- Load new P9 Advantage APs into CNUT and switch them to hardware scheduling
- Upgrade hardware-scheduled SMs to the same version as the new APs
- Hope nothing breaks
Am I missing anything?
Yup, that's the process. And keep in mind that you'll probably have to step all of the P8s through the various releases since the flash is so small. 7.3.6 > 8.2.4 > 9.5 > 10.5 > 11.2 > 12.1 > 13.1.3. But 8.2.4 isn't in the archive on the support site. I think last time I did this, 7.3.6 to 9.5 worked fine.
And do NOT load 13.4 on any P8s running NAT. They will not boot if the NAT table size is greater than 1024. We're staying at 13.1.3 until 13.4.1 is done.
Yup , whst George said... I've been through a simmullar process not to long ago. Going from 7.3.6 to ver 9.5 is relatively safe as far as I kow ... well , worked for me :) Do you have a copy of version 7.3.6 ? I think you'll need it when you swap from software to hardware schedular if I recall correctly.
1. In CNUT discover the SM.
2. refresh the SM to make sure CNUT is talking to them
3. select all SM's to be changed
4. In CNUT select Tools/Configure Advantage scheduler/check selected network elements and ok.
5. In the pop up select 7.3.6 software
6. apply config, hardware scheduling, propagate, active. (don't forget to check box the element!)
7. The screen should say it found elements if so
8. run now , It will set them to hardware mode
9. Upgrade software on SM's to latest version