R210 II / new BIOS (1.3.1) file unavailable ?

George Hills george at brightbox.co.uk
Mon Jan 9 08:18:17 CST 2012


On 09/01/12 12:56, Martin Hamant wrote:

> I saw from dell.com/support there was a BIOS update 1.3.1 available but 
> it seems the hdr file is not present from 
> http://linux.dell.com/repo/firmware/bios-hdrs/ for my system ID (which  
> is 0x04DD)
> Any tip ?

Dell firmware updates are a complete mess as far as I can tell - here's
how it seems to me. I'd be (very) grateful for corrections if I'm wrong.

The key thing is that *there is no one single up-to-date source*. That
said, the repo you mention is usually very out-of-date.

The best way for most purposes is to visit
and enter your service tag.

If you're lucky, and the database has the correct details for your
service tag, then this will offer you updates for all the components of
your system.

If you've added things later (RAID card upgrade etc) then you'll have to
resort to the website's search engine as you won't be offered everything
you need on the basis of your server's service tag. I've never had much
luck with this - in particular, although you can find individual
firmware releases (google "h700 firmware" for instance), there is no
webpage which definitely states what the latest version number is.

It's sometimes the case that a new BIOS or firmware has been released
but the website's search engine hasn't updated. In this case you'll need
to call support and ask for it.

It used to be the case that you could look on ftp.us.dell.com in the
appropriate directory (/BIOS /power /sata etc etc) and find the most
recent update by filename - eg

Within the past few weeks, it seems the policy has changed, and the
various updates are now scattered in randomly-named directories off the
root of the ftp site named things like "FOLDER98821M". So there's no
point looking on the ftp site any more unless your hardware is so
ancient (2900/1900 generation) that there are no more updates.

There's also the "SUU" (bootable DVD of firmware updates) route - but as
these are only compiled every few months, you're always installing
slightly out-of-date firmwares if you use this.

I do understand that a lot of good people within Dell are working very
hard to bring us updates and keep repositories, websites, etc, all
up-to-date - but our experience is one of great frustration :-(


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