Below will outline how to upgrade firmware on a Force10 MXL blade switch.

To determine which version of firmware is currently running on the switch issue the show version command.

FTOS#show version


In the output of the sh ver command you can see that it’s using version of the firmware. To obtain the most recent version of the firmware you’ll need an account on Once logged in navigate to the Software Center tab.


At the time of this writing the the most current release was 9.2(.0.2). Download the FTOS-XL- file.

You can use a serial cable to connect to the switch, then connect to the switch via software like Putty.

If this is a new switch you may want to disable logging to console, as it will generate a lot of output preventing you to type commands properly.

FTOS(conf)#no logging console

In case you haven’t already done so, you’ll want to assign an IP address and subnet mask to the Management Interface of the switch. Note that this information can be entered in the format of ipaddress /subnetmask (i.e. /24).

FTOS(conf)#interface management 0/0
FTOS(conf-if-ma-0/0)#ip address x.x.x.x /x

Next, we’ll need to transfer the .bin file you’ve downloaded previously to the switch. The easiest way to go about this is to use a TFTP server. My go to tool for something like this can be downloaded here, and comes in 32 and 64 bit versions.

You’ll also want to make sure you have connectivity with the computer acting as your TFTP server by pinging it.

You can review the boot variables by issuing the show bootvar command. This will show you which system images are being used.

FTOS#show bootvar


show boot system stack-unit all command will show you which image (out of the two) is currently active (on the Master switch in the stack).


To upgrade the blade switch by uploading the file and overwrite firmware image A issue the upgrade system tftp: a: command.

FTOS#upgrade system tftp: a:


FTOS(conf)#boot system stack-unit 0 default system: a:
FTOS(conf)#stack-unit 0 stack-group 0



After the blade switch reboots it will obtain the running configuration from the Master switch in the stack. You can see that firmware was upgraded to 9.2(0.2).

SW01(standby)#sh ver


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