Avaya Media Gateways – 4 Upgrade Steps

Avaya Media Gateways – 4 Upgrade Steps

These 4 upgrade steps will help you through the process of updating these three elements (Media Gateway, Media Modules, and Phones. Also by the end of this post you will have a better understanding in how to use the built-in server tools, 3rd party applications, and usb flash drive data transfers.

Some time ago, I got sent to install a new media module and some headsets. The only problem was that my team never bothered to check the customer’s software version and other requirements.

I encountered two issues when I arrived to the job site. For starters, the headsets were not compatible with the phone’s software release. See, they wanted to use the headset key, not the headset-lifters to answer calls, which required the phones to be updated to a newer software version. The second issue was the media module, which needed to be updated as well.

So now I needed to come up with 4 steps to update the MM and upgrade the customer’s phones. That’s when I thought of sharing with you, these 4 steps=

  • 1.- Data collection
  • 2.- Get to work 
  • 3.- Preliminary test
  • 4.- Schedule the upgrade

1.- Data collection

Okay, I know what you are thinking, but this has to be done in order to successfully complete your task. I have seen when techs just install the hardware, drop the headsets, and tell the customer that they are done and that there’s nothing else they can do, and then leave the site.

To be more effective, here are two quick ways to gather the information needed.

I.- walk-up to a phone – Make sure that all the phones are the same model/type so you can provide the correct files and file version.

II.- list config all – From the SAT terminal, run the list config all command and compare media modules Hardware releases.

2.- Get to work

There are multiple ways to update firmware with Avaya systems. Follow these

  • a.- Built-in server tools
  • b.- The TFTP App Method
  • c.- USB HDD Method

a.- Built-in Server Tools

The media server Method – Depending upon the Avaya software revision, you might be able to use the software already resident in the local server. Normally, when unpacking a new ISO (Communications Manager CD) it will load its files in a local directory. Always check the Avaya Comparability Matrix.

You can always download the files from the support.avaya.com or PLDS website and upload the files to the /var/home/ftp/pub directory.

Using the SMI Tool navigate to “Download Files” to upload the media modules and phone firmware and any other files to the server.

As a precautionary measure, browse the working directory using PuTTy to assure the files exists.

Move the files to the tftpboot folder by running the mv (move) command. e.g. mv filename.bin /tftpboot. After moving the files, it is a good procedure to list the tftpboot directory files.

The TFTP App Method Transferring files using this method is more user friendly if you are not comfortable using CLI. These apps provide a GUI interface allowing you to navigate through the file Avaya Server file system. I normally use FileZilla or WinSCP.

To connect, simply open the app, then type the Host Name IP, Login and Password. Make sure you are setting port 22 for the Secure Shell. Once connected, most likely if using the admin login, the program will connect to the user-accounts / admin working directory, you will need to navigate out to the /var/home/ftp/pub directory. Once in the pub directory, copy the files out to the tftpboot folder.

USB HDD Method – Using a USB Jump/thumb/flash drive connected to the Media Gateway is another way to transfer the files. Make sure to test the Flash Drive before doing any file transfers.

USB_File_Transfer_IPServTechnologies (c)

USB_File_Transfer_IPServTechnologies (c)

Once you have moved your files onto the Flash Drive, run these commands=

  • show usb all (locate the usb device id) – Do not proceed if device is not on the list
  • dir usbdevice0 (confirm that your files exist in the usb flash drive)
  • copy usb sw_imageA  usbdevice0 sw_NewImageFileName.bin.

Upgrading Procedures

First connect to the media gateway and run these commands=

  • show version (identify which boot-bank is active)
  • copy run start (saves the running configure file to the Media Gateway’s NVRAM)
  • *copy tftp sw_image(image name) 192.168.1.1 (Call Server IP)
  • copy tftp module mm7xx.fdl 192.168.1.1 (Call Server IP)
  • show download status XX (Will show the upgrade process)
  • show boot-bank (displays existing boot-bank versions for a and b)
  • *set boot-bank b (if boot-bank a is used as the active boot-bank you can change it by running this command)
  • *reset chassis

* Note if files are not resident on the tftpboot folder, you will have to specify the file location.

* By upgrading and setting boot-banks, you are essentially telling the media gateways to use a newer release of firmware.

*For G700 run the command “reset mgp”

* USB Flash Drive – Only SW_Images, Phone_Images, auth_files, Phone_Script, and startup-config files are transferable.

Upgrading-Procedures using 3rd party apps

I normally use the Avaya TFTP server app. The Solarwinds  app is also a good one to use.

These apps are pretty much the same when it comes to setting them up. Put the files or browse to where the files are located for both inbound and outbound traffic directions. Keep it simple and don’t setup authentication on these. Lastly, if secure transfer is an option, then use it (e.g sftp)

To start upgrade process refer to the “Upgrading Procedures listed above”. 

Note – Change the Call Server IP Address to the tftp/ftp Server IP Address.

Phone Upgrade

To test the file, new features and functions, upgrade a test phone first before proceeding, and refer to this blog post to learn the steps.

3.- Preliminary Test

Now with the Media Modules, Media Gateways, and one end-point running the latest version of software, you can start testing. Make sure the headsets work just fine without those annoying handset-lifters.

4.- Schedule the Upgrade

With everything working as designed, it is time to show the customer how everything works. Ask him/her for a window or time frame to upgrade the phones. Remember that upgrading a phone might take up to 15 minutes (digital or IP).

How about you?. Which methods do you use to upgrade MM, MGs, and End-Points firmware?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • jerry

    I was one of original Avaya Serviceability Engineers that introduced all of the Branch Gateway products I have made some suggestions to some of your text/commands in the document..Due to the number of BGWs and many firmware loads in place I hae address the commands from the perspective of the most recent command syntax/context.

    A number of comments in the sections
    below with my text edited below your original line. My comments are indented

    First connect to the media gateway
    and run these commands=

    show version (identify which
    boot-bank is active)

    The above command show be
    either show image version

    § show image version

    § Bank Version
    § ———– ——-
    § A 36.10.0
    § B (current) 36.12.0
    The (current) is the active bank.

    2nd command

    show boot bank
    Default boot bank set to bank-B

    copy run start (saves the running configure file to the Media Gateway’s NVRAM)

    *copy tftp sw_image(image name)
    192.168.1.1 (Call Server IP)

    copy tftp SW_imageAorB

    NOTE: The A or B is the last character in the back to be upgraded

    copy tftp module mm7xx.fdl 192.168.1.1 (Call Server IP)

    show download status XX (Will show the upgrade process)

    show download software status [module_number]

    NOTE: the module number is many times 10 if upgrading the

    firmware of the BGW else 1-8 if G450 or 1-higest slot number

    for the other BGWs.

    show boot-bank (displays existing boot-bank versions for a and b)

    Note: My use of the “show boot bank” command above as this could

    vary BGW to BGW

    *set boot-bank b (if boot-bank a is used as the active boot-bank you can change it by running this
    command)
    NOTE: the command could very by BGW Type
    set boot bank bank-A or B Note the bank-A or back-B is the final option syntax

    *reset chassis

    NOTE: Although the above command is available “reset” is the standard

    command to run for switching to the other bank for BGW firmware

    upgrades.

  • bharat

    Hi paez,
    where would be the tftp boot loader

    • Brahat, Can you be more specific on your question. The TFTP Server mentioned in this post, refers to a 3rd party TFTP Server. As far as I know only Avaya Switches come with a TFTP Boot-loader.

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