Supermicro Xeon D SuperServer BIOS 1.2b / IPMI 3.58 released

Posted by Paul Braren on Sep 11 2017 (updated on Oct 21 2017) in
  • CPU
  • HomeLab
  • HomeServer
  • ESXi
  • SuperServer
  • Looking to ignore release notes and disclaimers/warnings to get right to the downloads and detailed upgrade procedures? There's no big fix or issue we're trying to resolve here, but if you're still in a hurry to try anyway, jump below.


    Here's the current Supermicro Xeon D-1500 systems with X10SDV motherboards with RJ45 10GbE, in form factors suited for home and small business (single PSU), eligible for these new August BIOS and June 2017 IPMI releases:

    Note, the Flex ATX E300-8D with the X10SDV-TP8F motherboard has not received a new BIOS. Flex ATX releases have historically arrived many months later, see also table below. Unfortunately, I don't own a Flex ATX system to test, but I have heard that boot-from-NVMe does work fine.

    Latest BIOS and IPMI Versions

    Last updated Sep 11 2017

    SYS-5028D-TN4T
    Mini Tower
    Mini ITX
    SYS-5018D-FN4T
    1U
    Mini ITX
    SYS-E200-8D
    Mini 1U
    Mini ITX
    SYS-E300-8D
    Mini 1U
    Flex ATX
    BIOS Aug 16 2017 / 1.2b Aug 16 2017 / 1.2b Aug 16 2017 / 1.2b Aug 16 2016 / 1.0b
    IPMI Jun 09 2017 / 3.58 Jun 09 2017 / 3.58 Jun 09 2017 / 3.58 Jun 09 2017 / 3.58
    superservers-ready-for-bios-upgrades.JPG
    I managed to borrow one of each X10SDV system, for VMworld 2016. As for updating your BIOS and IPMI firmware to the latest release, you might not have to. For all SuperServer Bundle customers, Wiredzone handles these upgrades for you prior to shipment, along with the DIMM install, and 4 hour burn-in test with certificate. Nice touches that save you about 45 minutes while reducing your risk.

    Here's Supermicro's Disclaimer:

    WARNING!

    Please do not download / upgrade the BIOS/Firmware UNLESS your system has a BIOS/firmware-related issue. Flashing the wrong BIOS/firmware can cause irreparable damage to the system.

    Here's a copy of TinkerTry's Disclaimer, exactly as posted below every article:

    Disclaimer

    Emphasis is on home test labs, not production environments. No free technical support is implied or promised, and all best-effort advice volunteered by the author or commenters are on a use-at-your-own risk basis. Properly caring for your data is your responsibility. TinkerTry bears no responsibility for data loss. It is up to you to follow all local laws and software EULAs.

    This all boils down to you needing to contact Supermicro's SuperServer Technical Support if something goes wrong, with no guarantees that they can help you if you bricked your system. I would add that you should be sure to run your SuperServer off an uninterruptable power supply during any firmware upgrades, and be sure you use a stable network connection, or a known-good USB flash drive for bootable media.

    Backstory

    Right here at TinkerTry, there's full release notes that go all the way back to the beginning. It would be even better if Supermicro published them themselves, but having them here is a good start. Just one of those little victories, trying to help everybody out there, and I'm so very glad I'm able to share these notes with everybody here:

    BIOS 1.2b Known Issues

    BIOS 1.2b RELEASE NOTES (Aug 16 2017)

    IPMI 3.58 Known Issues

    IPMI 3.58 RELEASE NOTES (Jun 09 2017)

    Download

    Download BIOS and IPMI updates, the easy way

    FlashBIOS

    BIOS 1.2b Upgrade Procedure

    There is a way to upgrade the BIOS over IPMI that I describe here, but it may require waiting for a trial license key for Supermicro Update Manager. So instead, I present to you the old school safest way to upgrade your BIOS(s), anytime:

    1. make sure your SuperServer is on UPS-protected power
    2. power on or reboot your SuperServer, then enter the BIOS setup by pressing Del when prompted
    3. document all your BIOS settings that aren't default, in case they're lost, see also Recommended BIOS Settings for Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T
    4. to (temporarily) turn UEFI OFF, going into the BIOS's Boot tab, and choosing Legacy mode
    5. to turn CSM ON (Compatibility Support Mode) to On (it's on by default), see details here
    6. create a bootable USB flash drive on another Windows workstation using Rufus
    7. extract all X10SDVF7_816.zip files to the root directory of the USB drive, which includes the BIOS image itself named X10SDVF7_816
    8. properly eject the USB drive using the Windows Taskbar Safely Remove... icon.
    9. insert the USB drive into any available USB port on your SuperServer
    10. power up or reboot, and get ready to press that F11 key to choose alternative boot device, then choose the USB drive from the list
    11. Using either a locally attached keyboard and mouse, or over iKVM, at the DOS command line, type:
      FLASH X10SDVF7_816 (you can use type-ahead to auto-complete)
    12. wait until it's done, takes about 5 minutes, it will tell you when it's done
    13. unplug the power cord from the SuperServer for about 15 seconds
    14. remove the USB flash drive
    15. plug the power cord back into your SuperServer
    16. power on your SuperServer
    17. you will notice it boots, finishes POST but doesn't prompt you to press any buttons, then it auto-reboots again, this is normal
    18. press Del to enter the BIOS setup again, you will see you've been reset to factory default BIOS settings. Switch back to UEFI mode, and turn CSM back to off if you like, see the rest of the Recommended BIOS Settings and differences between UEFI and BIOS
    19. reboot, make sure your default boot device comes up, you're done!
    20. if you encounter issues, you can go back to the prior BIOS level 1.1c, found here.
    How to upgrade to Supermicro Xeon D SuperServer BIOS 1.1c using Rufus & bootable DOS USB drive, procedure for going to BIOS 1.2b should be very similar.
    FlashIPMI

    IPMI 3.58 Upgrade Procedure

    1. on another PC, use a browser and type in the IP address of your BMC/IPMI/iKVM management interface in the URL area
    2. login, default is ADMIN/ADMIN
    3. you should gracefully shut down any OS you may have running on this system, and leave it powered off, or use iKVM's Power Off button
    4. under Maintenance, IPMI Configuration, you may wish to use the Save IPMI Configuration feature to save a config file for possible restore later, since you are about to lose all of your IPMI configuration settings
      uncheck-IPMI-preserve-boxes-with-callout-cropped
    5. under Maintenance, Firmware Update, select the Enter Update Mode button and follow the instructions, using the IPMI file downloaded REDFISH_X10_352.bin, then make sure to Un-check both checkboxes when prompted to preserve your configuration, as seen pictured at right. Keeping your certificate or not is up to you, I went with unchecking all 3 boxes. If you don't uncheck those first two, you may get voltage alerts or critical sensor error / 5V Dual warnings in VMware ESXi, or other problems, which folks resolved by reflashing to the same level again, making sure to uncheck the boxes this time.
    6. wait until it's done with the IPMI upgrade, takes about 5 minutes, when done, it will prompt you to wait another minute, click OK and wait some more as it says "Rebooting..." and once the IPMI Web Interface starts to respond to login again, you can continue
    7. unplug the power cord from the SuperServer for at least 15 seconds (optional but recommended, more difficult if you're remote, I realize)
    8. plug the power cord back in to your SuperServer
    9. power on your SuperServer, wait a minute for IPMI to boot up
    10. on another PC, use a browser and type in the IP address of your BMC/IPMI/iKVM management interface in the URL area
    11. optional - under Maintenance, IPMI Configuration, you may wish to use the Reload IPMI Configuration feature to choose your saved file, and restore it

    Video - BIOS 1.2b and IPMI Upgrade 3.58

    I've added some testing in here, finding out that it appears 2400MHz memory is now properly supported, but note that only Xeon D-1541 supports that speed.

    Supermicro SuperServer Xeon D-1500 BIOS 1.2 and IPMI 3.52 Upgradeapolooza. Very similar for 1.2b. Recorded on May 3 2017.

    Video - IPMI 3.46 Features and Known Issues

    This shows you around the features of the 3.46 IPMI version, minimal changes in the later 3.58 version that is now validated.

    Supermicro SuperServer SYS-E200-8D iKVM/HTML5 testing of IPMI 3.46, same code used for all of the X10SDV motherboard Mini-ITX based systems and motherboards.

    Video - New iKVM/HTML5 removes your need for Java

    With Supermicro iKVM/HTML5 Remote Console, avoid Java by booting from a network share ISO

    Optional - Download BIOS and IPMI updates, the Supermicro ways

    Method 1 - Start with the Product Page

    You are actually supposed to first find the product for your Embedded/IoT Solution here:

    or your X10 IPC & Embedded motherboard here:

    then Ctrl+F to seek out those BIOS and IPMI download links, which will make you read this End User License Agreement before allowing you to download.

    Method 2 - Start with the Support page

    Another way is at supermicro.com, jump into Support > BIOS & IPMI Downloads > Intel here:

    In the box where it says Enter Model Search Text, type X10SDV then click Search, it should look a lot like this:

    Supermicro-download-page-for-X10SDV-2017-09-11-by-TinkerTry

    Notice that this same page used to mention the series of Xeon D systems and motherboards that the BIOS release applies to:

    Intel® Xeon® processor D-1518/1528/1520/1521/1540/1541; Single socket FCBGA 1667

    Intel® Xeon® processor D-1537/1557/1587, Single socket FCBGA 1667; 8/12/16-Core, 16/24/32 Threads, 35/45/65W

    2400MHz Speed Clarification

    The only Xeon D CPU released last year that supports 2400MHz speeds is the Xeon D-1541, see validation of this in Intel's Product Brief. Thank you for spotting this newly revised update to the brief, reported by Bryce Wilkins right here at TinkerTry. Keeping this minor issue in perspective, 2400MHz is easier to find and cheaper to acquire, so the argument that you're not getting what you paid for is weakened somewhat, see also this excellent article about how little most workloads would ever notice this difference in speed.

    6d14805444c13b019a3676795a99d3a7ede6f74cf9771729c791bfd9c2df0db2
    Image provided by Bryce Wilkins.

    I've successfully updated my SYS-5028D-TN4T system based on the Xeon D-1567, see new screenshot atop this article. Testing is still underway, but so far, it's looking to work OK. I did have to set up VT-d passthrough under ESXi 6.5.0d all over again for my Windows 10 VM, but that's normal behavior.

    I did spot 2 new settings in the BIOS 1.2a release, also seen in BIOS 1.2b:

    • SMCBiosActionFlag [0]
    • SumBbsSupportFlag 48

    as seen pictured on the first two rows below, with no explanatory help text at top-right. Googling for either term comes up with nothing. The BIOS release notes don't include these new terms either, and the instruction manual hasn't been updated since it was published on Feb 22 2016.

    SMCBiosActionFlag-and-SumBbsSupportFlag
    New SMCBiosActionFlag and SumBbsSupportFlag options appeared back on BIOS 1.2a.

    Oct 21 2017 Update

    BIOS 1.2c has been released, see article here.


    See also at TinkerTry

    supermicro-superserver-redfish-api-cropped
    How to upgrade to Supermicro Xeon D SuperServer BIOS 1.1c over the IPMI Web UI

    See also