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How to update DRAC5 firmware using Web GUI

  1. Go to the Dell FTP site – ftp://ftp.dell.com/sysman/
  2. Search for “f_drac5”
  3. Find the latest edition.  As of this article, it is f_drac5v160_A00.exe
  4. Download, Run and Extract the file which will contain a d5 file
  5. Open up your DRAC5 interface and go to Remote Access – Update (or DRAC Update)
  6. Click the Browse button and choose the d5 file extracted from step 3.
  7. Click Update and don’t interrupt the process.

Dell Firmware Updates – How to create a boot disk

There is nothing more miserable than a Dell firmware upgrade.  This includes BIOS, DRAC, PERC controllers and any other hardware that needs to be upgraded.  For those of you that are spoiled using HP technologies, you will soon find out what I mean…

HP has the smartstart DVD which is a well compiled single piece of bootable media.  Dell has the Systems Build and Update Utility (SBU) and Server Update Utility (SUU) which depend on each other to make this work.  Yes, that means you need two DVDs in order to flash your BIOS.  Now lets start this miserable task…

The Dell Drivers and Downloads site is confusing and convoluted.  You never really know what utility you need so you download everything and try to sort out the mess later.  The goal of this guide is to remove the confusion.

  1. Download the SBU.  You can typically find this under Systems Management on your systems download page. The iso name starts with “cdu”.  I would highly recommend going to the Dell FTP site ftp://ftp.dell.com/sysman/ and search for cdu.  The latest version, as of this writing, is cdu_1.6_core_173_A01.
  2. Download the SUU.  This is listed under the Systems management page as “Server Update Utility ISO”.  If it is not listed, remove the OS refinement.  Read the readme and verify the SUU applies to your machine.  Download all available parts and combine them together using “copy /b”.  More information here.
  3. Burn both DVDs and boot from the SBU.  This disk can take a while to run so be patient.  Go through the steps and when it asks you to select the repository location, choose CD/DVD and enter the SUU.
  4. For a more detailed run through of the actual firmware update process using DRAC, go to http://www.getyournerdon.com/2010/07/dell-firmware-updates-with-sbu-and-suu/.  A video is also provided which is extremely helpful.

How to force detach DRAC5 virtual media

Sometimes if DRAC5 virtual media is acting up (which is more often than not), you need to force terminate the session.  Unfortunately, there is no way to detach using the System – Media – Configuration tab since you cannot apply changes.

You must terminate all sessions from the Remote Access – Session Management page.  Click the trash can next to the hung session and your virtual media will be detached once again.