Thursday, March 24, 2005

OBP updates, or not?

Sometimes, when I rebuild my Sun machines, I update the OBP (OpenBoot PROM).

Not always, and not necessarily to a systematic pattern. Part of the reason for this is that I don't always have a convenient window to do so, but also I'm not entirely sure whether it's really a good idea - it's not broken, so why fix it?

I have had SunService complain about non-current OBP versions, but without any particularly good justification. And I have had one case where an OBP update actually stopped a system working.

It's easier to update systems now - US-III machines (most of them, anyway) can be updated from Solaris with a script, which is good. I just have to put the keyswitch into normal (which involves physically going to the machine) on servers. Older machines are slightly more tricky.

I know there are some cases where I have to upgrade OBP. For example, before a CPU upgrade so it will recognize the new processors.

I wonder what other people do as a strategy. Do you religiously upgrade OBP, or avoid doing so like the plague?


Mark Mayo said...

Avoid, unless it's *required* before connecting / upgrading some piece of hardware.

Jaimec said...

I do with the OBP the same thing I do with all patching, is it needed? If yes, go for it. Else, don't bother.
Now, you just have to decide what does "is it needed" means. "System may crash under particular conditions" may (or may not) be needed. "Security vulnerability in telnet" sure is needed (unless you don't use telnet, of course.
There are people that upgrade because there is something new. Never could understand them, ...