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Upgrade process steps

Before beginning to upgrade Data ONTAP software, you should plan the upgrade and familiarize yourself with the required steps.


  1. Plan your upgrade by familiarizing yourself with requirements and issues before you upgrade.
    Plan to do the following:
    • Review the Release Notes for your Data ONTAP upgrade target release.
    • Understand any requirements for upgrading to the target release from your existing software.
      Attention: You should use the Upgrade Advisor tool (if it is available in your environment) to assess your upgrade conditions and generate an upgrade plan.
    • Create a back-out plan, in the unlikely event that you need to revert or downgrade to the Data ONTAP release that was running on your system before the upgrade.
    • Be prepared to note any changes to your system after the upgrade.
    • If you have storage systems in an HA pair, select the appropriate upgrade method and ensure that the HA configuration is correct.
    • If your storage system is in a SAN environment, ensure that your SAN configuration is fully supported.

      All SAN components—including target Data ONTAP software version, host OS and patches, required Host Utilities software, and adapter drivers and firmware—should be listed in the Interoperability Matrix.

    • If you run the SnapMirror software, identify storage systems with destination and source volumes.
    • If you are running MetroCluster systems, verify that all MetroCluster components are compatible with the target release.
  2. If necessary, perform any required preliminary procedures before upgrading to the new Data ONTAP release.
    Required procedures might include the following:
    • Resolve upgrade issues, including performing an intermediate upgrade.
    • Ensure that you have a current Snapshot copy of the root volume of any system being upgraded.
    • Ensure that you have a current Snapshot copy of the SnapMirror source and destination volumes.

      This helps avoid a baseline transfer if you need to revert or downgrade the system to a previous Data ONTAP release.

    • Update disk firmware.
    • Update disk shelf firmware.
    • Update storage system firmware.
  3. Obtain the appropriate software image from the NetApp Support Site.
    These images must be available to your storage system directly or to an HTTP server on your network.
  4. Install the Data ONTAP software image on your storage system.
    You can extract the system files from the software image before or during the download process.
  5. Download the new Data ONTAP system files to the boot device.
    The upgrade process is finished when the HA pair or single system reboots with the new version of Data ONTAP.
    Note: The Data ONTAP kernel boots from a boot device, not from a boot volume on disk. For more information about booting Data ONTAP, see the Data ONTAP System Administration Guide for 7-Mode.
  6. Verify that your systems are operating as expected after the upgrade.
    Before returning storage systems to production, you should check the status of configured functionality and re-enable any functionality that was suspended before the upgrade.