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Patch HP UNIX Cluster Server

Posted on 2009-03-29
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Hello ,

Hello please provide me the step by step process how to patch HP UNIX Cluster Server

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Question by:prashantchauhan
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In general, this is the same as patching a single server - but as your cluster is probably running business critical applications, a cautious approach is needed.

1) Download the patch bundle and create a software depot on a central server, e.g. your Ignite server. Review the documentation with the patches for any warnings or special actions needed. If you're installing a Quality Pack (bundle of patches), some of the patches may already be installed and some may not be needed. Quality Packs have been tested with a wide range of commercially available application software (e.g. Oracle), so you shouldn't find any incompatibilities. But if you have specialist or "home grown" software, it may be affected by the patches.

Firmware patches may require installing separately

2) Do a preview of the patch install with `swinstall -p -x patch_match_target=true -x auto_reboot=true <other options>` and review the results with `swlog`.  Resolve any problems such as disk space requirements. Re-check any special actions or warnings for the patches that will actually be installed. Note that kernel patches require a reboot.

3) Ensure the server is healthy before you make any changes:
- Reboot the server(s) to ensure they restart and all apps restart correctly _before_ patching.
- Take a full Ignite image of vg00 and ensure all your data is backed up in case of disaster. Ensure you have a proven plan for recovering from disasters!
- Use `swverify` before and after patching, to ensure all software is in a consistent state. You may see some errors or warnings that can be ignored, e.g. the chksum on a configuration file has changed. In my opinion, as long as the `swverify` output from before and after patching is the same, the patching hasn't introduced any new issues.

4) swinstall the patches using the same command line as above but without the `-p`. Monitor the reboot to ensure there are no (new) errors on starup.

5) Ensure all patches installed & configured correctly, with `swlist -l fileset -a state`
Ensure the server restarted OK and all apps restarted.

Ideally you should install the patches on a Test cluster first and check that all your apps still work before installing in Production. Or if you don't have a Test cluster, at least on Test systems to enable you to check the apps. Then when you roll the patches out to Production systems you don't have to check app funtionality.

In a cluster environment, you have additional steps to move all the packages to another node and halting Serviceguard on that node before you patch it. After patching, move the packages back to ensure they run on the patched node before starting patching the next node.  On the bright side, it may be easier to arrange a few minutes downtime to move the packages than 30+ minutes while the server reboots...

Software packages like the Online Diagnostics don't get patched by Quality Pack patch bundles - You need to upgrade them to the current version.
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