Back in February not long after FreeNAS 8 RC1 was released I wrote a blog about how to set up FreeNAS. After several release candidates FreeNAS 8 was finally released yesterday so I decided I would go ahead and upgrade from RC1 to the release version of 8.0.
After downloading the update file I logged into the web interface and proceeded to upgrade the firmware. In the web GUI the firmware update feature can be accessed by clicking on the firmware update tab on the settings page.
After uploading the firmware image and entering the hash I clicked on upgrade and the button text changed to “Please wait…”. I hate waiting without a progress bar so I decided to leave it alone and work on something else while the update ran its course.
About 10 minutes later I went back to check on it and nothing had changed, it was still stuck on the same screen. I decided that it would be a good idea to reboot it and try again. On this attempt I kept an eye on the console to make sure I wasn’t missing an error message that might provide a clue to the update failure, yet nothing was logged.
After that test failed I came to the conclusion that the GUI update feature in FreeNAS-8.0-RC1-i386 must be broken. I decided I had two options, #1 burn a CD and reinstall FreeNAS from scratch, or #2 try to do the update manually. Since I was too lazy to burn a CD I decided to go with option #2. After some googling and testing I found out that you can manually update the firmware on FreeNAS.
Manual Update Proceedure
1. Log in to FreeNAS via SSH
2. Remount the root filesystem as read/write (
mount -uw /dev/ufs/FreeNASs1a)
3. Copy the update file to FreeNAS (I used WinSCP to copy FreeNAS-9.0-RELEASE-i386.GUI_upgrade.xy to /root)
4. Apply the firmware update (/usr/bin/xz -cd /root/FreeNAS-8.0-RELEASE-i386.GUI_upgrade.xz | sh /root/update && touch /data/need-update)
If the update is successful you should see some output like this…
To complete the update you’ll need to reboot FreeNAS either through the GUI or using the command line (shutdown -r now). After FreeNAS starts back up you can verify if the update applied successfully.
Hopefully the developers have fixed this bug so future updates don’t have to be applied this way. Although if you ever need to upgrade several FreeNAS systems and you want to automate the process you now know how to do it 🙂