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7318 Model S20 Guide and Reference

7318 BIOS

The 7318 includes a simple command interpreter, the basic input/output system (BIOS), in nonvolatile random access memory (NVRAM), which permits configuration even when no other software is loaded.

The BIOS has four main functions. The most basic function is to obtain and execute an operational kernel from a load host. This load sequence is done automatically. Once you plug in the 7318, the BIOS runs until an operating image downloads into the 7318 RAM and takes control from the BIOS.

The second function is to verify the basic functionality of the 7318 hardware before the load image is downloaded and executed. The BIOS does this using power-up diagnostics, which disallow a download if the platform is deemed unstable. An unstable platform might be able to run the operational kernel; however, the operation might be erratic.

The third function is to run post-power up diagnostics (PPDs), which are used for field troubleshooting of a 7318 that might pass power up diagnostics but operate improperly. Normally, with the BIOS, you can take a 7318 out of the shipping carton, attach it to the Ethernet, plug in the line cord, install the software, and download.

The fourth function provides a console to set various nonvolatile fields stored in the NVRAM of the 7318. The following partial list specifies key fields you can set using the BIOS console:

BIOS Download Overview

The BIOS download has a general sequence of operation as follows:

  1. At power-up, the power-up diagnostics are run.
  2. If successful, the BIOS checks for a console request.
  3. If the console is requested, the BIOS prompts for input from the user.
  4. If the console is not requested, the BIOS seeks an operational kernel, downloads, and runs it.
  5. The kernel seeks a configuration file and downloads it.

Once the BIOS has successfully downloaded, it puts the hardware in a known state and runs the kernel. The BIOS does not regain control until one of the following:

In the case of a reboot, the BIOS can either reload the normal operational image or reload a directed image (using the set loadi command).

BIOS Upload Sequence

In the case of certain reboot commands, and in the case when the watchdog timer expires and the NVRAM upload field is set (using the set upload command), the BIOS attempts to upload a dump image, which then can be used as a diagnostic tool.

When uploading, the BIOS operates differently than previously described. The sequence is:

  1. The watchdog timer expires and the 7318 resets itself. The watchdog will not expire unless there is a software or hardware failure. The BIOS examines memory contents to distinguish between a cold start and a watchdog timer restart. If the memory appears to have an image loaded, the BIOS assumes that the watchdog timer has expired. In the event of a brief power outage, memory may not erase sufficiently for the BIOS to recognize that a power failure has occurred instead of the watchdog timer timing out. The BIOS may decide to upload even though the system is operating normally. Log records from this type of upload can be ignored.
  2. The BIOS does a very low-level diagnostic and loads fields from the NVRAM.
  3. The BIOS checks for a console request.
  4. If the BIOS determines that an upload is necessary, it immediately uploads the image.
  5. Whether or not the upload succeeds, the BIOS resets the 7318.
  6. The BIOS proceeds as if the 7318 had been powered up.

The BIOS sends the upload image to the /usr/lib/cns directory, where it creates the XXXXXXXX.uld file. The XXXXXXXX parameter is the lower eight digits of the 7318 Ethernet address.

7318 BIOS Load Sequence

The interface and protocol fields control the process by which the 7318 locates a load image. If the protocol field is set to 0, the Internet Packet Exchange (IPX) and User Datagram Protocol/Internet Protocol (UDP/IP) sequences alternate, beginning with the IPX sequence, until one of them succeeds. The inet , loadi , host1 , and host2 fields are also used in the configuration process as the following information details.

7318 Load Sequence Using IPX

The load sequence proceeds as follows:

  1. The first step has one of two possibilities:
    1. An undirected load issues a Service Advertising Protocol (SAP) message and places the responses in a host list.
    2. A directed load initializes the host list from the host1 and host2 fields in NVRAM.
  2. The 7318 issues an IPX Routing Information Protocol (RIP) request to get network information for each host in the host list.
  3. The 7318 issues an IPX/BOOTP request, one at a time, and listen for replies for each host on the host list.
  4. When a valid Boot Request Protocol (BOOTP) response is received, a Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) request is sent for the download image to the responding host. In the case where the loadi field in the NVRAM is default , the name of the file contained in the BOOTP response is used for the TFTP request. Otherwise, the loadi field specifies the load image for the TFTP request.

7318 Load Sequence Using UPD/IP

If the criteria for the directed load are satisfied, it runs. Otherwise, the undirected load runs.

With the directed User Datagram Protocol/Internet Protocol (UDP/IP) load sequence, the following fields must be set:

The undirected UDP/IP load has two steps:

  1. The 7318 issues a BOOTP broadcast request to locate a valid load host.
  2. When a load host responds, fetch the load image file using the TFTP protocol.

The directed UDP/IP load has two steps:

  1. The 7318 issues an Address Resolution Protocol (ARP) message to the directed IP address.
  2. The 7318 issues a TFTP request for the load image specified by the loadi field (from the host or hosts specified by the host1 or host2 fields).

7318 Configuration File Load Sequence

After the operating kernel loads, the BIOS tries to load a configuration file in the following order:

If the config field is set, the BIOS tries to load that configuration file. If this fails, no configuration file loads and an error message displays.

If the config field is set to default , the BIOS uses the following sequence to locate a default configuration file.

  1. The BIOS uses the download path and the 12-digit form of the Ethernet address as the file name (hexadecimal digits a-f in lowercase, for example, 00406e0002e3.cfg ).
  2. If step 1 fails, the BIOS uses the download path and the 8-digit form of the Ethernet address as the file name (hexadecimal digits a-f in lowercase, for example, 6e0002e3.cfg ).
  3. If step 2 fails, the BIOS uses the download path specified in the downloaded image.

Failure to find any of the three files results in an error message. For the Model S20, this failure is fatal, and the 7318 will immediately attempt to reload. For the Model P10, this failure is nonfatal; however, all functionality defined by the configuration file remains inactive.

BIOS Console Operation

The BIOS console allows a terminal to communicate with the 7318 BIOS in an interactive way. Using the BIOS console, the system administrator can change certain basic 7318 fields as well as customize the load sequence.

If you need to use the BIOS console on the 7318, do the following:

  1. Unplug the 7318.
  2. Connect an ASCII terminal to any one of the 7318 serial ports.
  3. Set the terminal to 9600 baud, 8 data bits, one stop bit, no parity.
  4. Plug in the 7318.
  5. Type # (pound sign, ASCII 0x23) continually until the console echoes #### (four pound signs).
  6. The BIOS should respond with a console header and the > (redirect symbol) prompt.

The BIOS console interaction follows the same form for all commands.

The set command, which changes fields, interacts as follows:

#>set Field Parameter

giving the response:

Error: Message



An indication of success or failure always follows a set command, that is, either the text string Error: and a message, or OK displays. The BIOS always supplies a command prompt for input.

For fields that are informational, such as the show command, the interaction is:

#>show Field

Response ...


The response to the show command is specific. Responses to the other informational commands have a variety of output formats.

The BIOS console has two different privilege levels. These privilege levels allow the user different access to the NVRAM in the 7318. The modes are:

In password privilege mode, the BIOS console operator can change certain NVRAM fields necessary for reconfiguring the 7318.

The BIOS requests input by issuing a prompt. The prompt has the following forms:


The prompts correspond to normal mode and password privileged mode, respectively. To enter password privilege mode, use the admin command. For more information on the admin command, refer to "admin Command".

Note: All set subcommands run only in password privilege mode.

BIOS Console Configuration Commands

The BIOS console is a simple interactive command-response language. Typed characters echo to the console and can be deleted by typing Backspace (Ctrl-H). A carriage return ends a line.

The following commands are useful for configuring the 7318:

Refer to "BIOS Command Summary" for a complete listing of BIOS commands.

set Command

The set command configures the fields in the NVRAM. The BIOS keeps a local copy of the NVRAM, from which it runs. The set command changes this local copy. The user must run the save command to modify the actual NVRAM and to continue with the load.

Some of the set command fields define standard user functions, while others toggle debugging functions. For information on the troubleshooting fields, refer to "7318 Troubleshooting".

The format for inputting parameters for the set command varies, depending on the command. The following information defines the allowed parameter formats. The set command makes use of the following special strings:

default Specifies the default parameter.
auto Specifies automatic selection (may also have a numeric equivalent).
disable Turns off (may also have a numeric equivalent).
enable Turns on (may also have a numeric equivalent).
null Specifies the default parameter (same as default).
none Specifies the parameter is not used.

If a parameter is a Boolean value, then the numeric values of 0 (False) or 1 (True) toggle the function. The enable or disable strings may also be used for Boolean parameters.

If a parameter is a decimal value, a positive integer from 0-32768 (depending on the bounds of that value) defines that function. Integers in the BIOS are not signed.

A string is a sequence of characters (0-9, a-z, A-Z, # (pound sign), _ (underscore), and / (slash)) entered for a parameter. Strings start after the first space after the command field (for example, set name StringStartsHere) and may contain blanks. A carriage return ends the string. If a parameter is a string, the string default leaves the field undefined. Strings should not contain quotes.

The BIOS allows entry of either IPX or IP addresses. In either case, the string null leaves the address undefined. An IPX address is of the form:


where nnnnnnnn is a hexadecimal representation of the internal network number, and dddddddddddd is a hexadecimal representation of the node number. An example of an IPX address might be:


An IP address is of the form:


where xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx is a dotted decimal representation of the network number.

The following configuration subcommands require password privilege mode.

Note: In the following command syntax information, italics identify parameters whose actual names or values are to be supplied by the user.
Set Name (P10)

The set name command enables a system administrator to modify the NVRAM name field, a requirement for use with the SAP protocol. The default name is CNSEthernetAddress, where the EthernetAddress parameter specifies the 7318's 12-digit hexadecimal Ethernet number (alpha digits A-F are in uppercase). The system administrator can specify an alphanumeric name for a 7318, which then is assigned automatically using the save command. To specify a unique name for a 7318, type:

set name Name 

where the Name parameter is an alphanumeric string.

Set Load Image (P10 and S20)

The download image field for the 7318 is normally set to default . In this case, the host determines the download image. However in some circumstances, it is useful to preconfigure the load image. The set loadi command specifies a complete path name on the desired host. If the path name isn't found, the 7318 does not download. Set the download image field by typing:

set loadi Path

As mentioned, setting the Path parameter to null sets the download image field to null.

Note: AIX paths should be used in this command.
Set Config (P10 and S20)

The set config command specifies a configuration file for the 7318. The values for the name parameter are as follows:

default The XXXXXXXXXXXX.cfg file is the default download configuration image for the 7318, where XXXXXXXXXXXX is the 7318's 12-digit hexadecimal Ethernet address (alpha digits a-f in lowercase). The host directory path for this file is the same as the download image path. If the 7318 does not find the XXXXXXXXXXXX.cfg file, it looks for the XXXXXXXX.cfg file, where XXXXXXXX is the lower 8 digits of the 7318's 12-digit hexadecimal Ethernet address. Failure to find either of these files results in a request for the p10.cfg or s20.cfg file. Failure to find all three files results in no error message.
none Indicates that no configuration file is downloaded. The 7318 enables a single session on each port. This is only valid for the model P10.
<string> Indicates the full pathname of the configuration file to load. BIOS tries to load only this file.

Set the config parameter by entering:

set config Name
Note: AIX file names should be used in this command.
Set Password (P10 and S20)

Initially, no password is defined. As long as the password is null , access to password privilege mode is unrestricted; that is, the admin command requires no password. Set the password to restrict access to password privilege mode. Because the set password command requires password privilege mode, you must run the admin command prior to setting the password. The maximum length of this password is 10 characters. Set the password by issuing the command:

set password String

Once you have set the password, you must supply it with the admin command to enter password privilege mode.

Note: If you forget or misplace this password, call your next level of support.
Set Frametype (P10 and S20)

Run the set frametype command by typing:

set frametype Type

Acceptable values for the Type parameter are the following:

auto Specifies that the 7318 will automatically select the frametype.
ethernet_ii Specifies a standard Ethernet version II frametype.
ethernet_802.3 Specifies IEEE 802.3 Ethernet frametype for Model P10.
ethernet_SNAP Specifies IEEE 802.3 Ethernet frametype for Model S20.
Set Interface (P10 and S20)

The interface field, a decimal value, determines from which network interface (if any) to load. Valid values for the Integer parameter are:

0 or auto Determines interface automatically.
1 Specifies a 10Base-T interface.
2 Specifies an AUI interface.
3 Reserved.
4 Disable loading.

This field defaults to 0 or auto. To set the network interface from which to load, type:

set interface Integer
Set Protocol (P10 and S20)

The protocol field, a decimal value, determines the network load protocol type. Valid values for the Integer parameter are:

0 or auto Use SPX/IPX or UDP/IP for load.
1 Use SPX/IPX for load.
2 Use UDP/IP for load.

The default for this field is 0 or auto. To set the network load protocol, type:

set protocol Integer
Set Host1/Host2 (P10 and S20)

When downloading in an SPX/IPX or UDP/IP environment, you can force the BIOS to direct its network load to a particular host. This is done by issuing one of the following commands:

set host1 nnnnnnnn:dddddddddddd
set host2 nnnnnnnn:dddddddddddd


set host1 xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx
set host2 xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx

Use the SPX/IPX format when downloading in a NetWare environment. Use the UDP/IP address format when downloading in a BOOTP environment. The default value for the host1 and host2 fields is auto . Setting this field to auto disables the feature. Refer to "7318 BIOS Load Sequence" for more information on loading. Refer to "Set Command" for information on acceptable address formats.

Set Inet (S20)

The set inet command assigns an IP address to the 7318. The IP address needs to be assigned when the 7318 uses the UDP, BOOTP, and TFTP to download the boot image and configuration file. If you use an SPX/IPX environment, an Internet address is unnecessary. If the bootptab file specifies the IP address, it is unnecessary to set the address in NVRAM (using the set inet command). Assign an IP address by typing:

set inet xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx
Set Netmask (S20)

The set netmask command assigns a gateway netmask. Specify the netmask if the operating kernel is using TCP/IP and the netmask field is not set in the configuration or bootptab file. To set the netmask, type:

set netmask xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx
Set Gateway (S20)

The set gateway command assigns a default gateway address. Specify the gateway if the operating kernel is using TCP/IP and the gateway field is not set in the configuration or bootptab file. To set the gateway, type:

set gateway xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx
Set Nameserver (S20)

The set nameserver command assigns a name server address. Specify the name server if the operating kernel is using TCP/IP and the nameserver field is not set in the configuration or bootptab file. To set the name server, type:

set nameserver xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx
Set Domain (S20)

The set domain command specifies the Internet domain name of the 7318. The default value for the domain field is undefined. To set the domain, type:

set domain String

show Command

The show command displays the internal settings of the 7318 as they pertain to the BIOS. The show command invoked without arguments displays many of the field values, translating some of the field settings into more meaningful output.

In cases where the translated output differs significantly from the command syntax value, the syntax value (as well as its mnemonic) are shown in parentheses. To run the show command, type:


The output from the show command is as follows:

#> show
Internet Address (inet=  
Netmask (netmask=        
Gateway (gateway=        
Nameserver (nameserver=  
Domain (domain=null):                       null
Primary Download Host (host1=auto):         auto
Download Framing (frametype=auto):          ETHERNET_II
Download Image Name (loadimage=default):    /usr/lib/cns/cns-s20
Configuration File (config=default):        default
Name (name=CNS<ethernet>):                  CNS00406E0002DB
Ethernet Address:                           00406E0002DB
Debug Console (console=disable):            disable
Ram Available:                              2M
Self Test Result (self):                    passed
BIOS version:                               5.20
BIOS date:                                  12/01/94

Useful items from this list are:

Name Specifies a name assigned to the 7318.
Ethernet Address Shown on a sticker on the back of 7318.
Ram Available Specifies the 7318's configured memory size (M=megabyte).

Any field that can be set, using the set command, can be shown by typing the command:

show Field

For more information about the show command's troubleshooting capabilities, refer to "BIOS Console Troubleshooting Commands". The following show subcommand, as well as the save and default commands, are useful as installation commands.

Show Version

The show version command displays the BIOS version in the form:


where the N.M parameter specifies the version.

admin Command

The admin command places the BIOS console in password privilege mode. The format for the command is:

admin Password

where the Password parameter is the administrative password. The system returns to normal mode when you type:


without a password. If no password is defined, typing admin without a password places the BIOS console in password privilege mode.

default Command

The default command resets the contents of the NVRAM back to initial settings. Depending on the mode of operation (normal or password privilege), some or all of the BIOS NVRAM can be reset.

Note: Remember to run the save command to write the reset values to the NVRAM.

reboot Command

The reboot command resets the 7318 hardware and restarts the BIOS. The reboot command is useful when users want to restart the 7318 from the BIOS console instead of power-cycling the unit.

Note: The reboot command acts like a warm start for the BIOS.

save Command

The save command rewrites the NVRAM and stores local copy values, changed with the set command, in a permanent manner. Run the save command before running the load command to save changes. Refer to "set Command" for a description of configuration fields.

Note: Issuing the load command after having changed parameters without saving results in a warning.

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