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MMark29
Novice
7,313 Views

How do I update the BIOS on a very old S2600CP motherboard?

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Hi,

I've just been given an ancient, refurbished S2600CP2J motherboard complete with CPUs and RAM and would like to get it fully working again.

The obvious first step is to update the BIOS but the oldest EFI update package available (01.02.003) states that I need to have at least version 01.01.1002 before starting or "the update process may render the system not operatable!"

According to the BIOS screen, my system is currently SE5C600.86B.99.99.x034, build date 08/23/2011.

As I have no wish to kill the system before I get started, is there any way of upgrading it to 01.01.1002 as a minimum?

Thanks.


Accepted Solutions
TMark3
Beginner
1,138 Views

This week I have been unbricking a S2600CP that failed a BIOS update, and I've learned some interesting things.

Most importantly: believe what the instructions say about BIOS flashing. If you flash a too-old board, you really can brick it.

So... we have 10x Chenbro RM13704 servers with S2600CP2 boards inside. It turns out there's at least two versions of the RM13704, with two versions of the board.

RM13704 rev B, contains a dark green S2600CP2 board. PBA E99552-306 (written on sticker), P/N DA056CMB8C0 rev C (written on soldermask), KCC-REM-CPU-S2600CP (soldermask)

Distinguishing features: 'Nomko' (or 'Nemko'?) written in large silkscreen between the CPUs, dark green soldermask, metal clips for the PCIe 16x retention hook

BMC flash chip sticker: S6C-A BMC / CS:D807 / Rev R21

BIOS flash chip sticker: S6C-A BIOS / CS:717E / Rev R32.2

BIOS reports:

Platform ID: S2600CP

BIOS version: SE5C600.86B.99.99.x034

Idle power consumption of server: ~130-160W (dual E5-2670, 128GB RAM, 1x SSD, Ubuntu 16.04 x64)

Ubuntu /proc/cpuinfo says "model name: Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2670 0 @ 2.60GHz, stepping: 6, microcode: 0x619"

(I'll call this board 'rev C')

RM13704 rev C, contains a bright green S2600CP2 board. PBA G56797-507 (sticker), P/N DA056CMB8F2 rev F (soldermask), KCC-REM-CPU-S2600CP (soldermask)

Distinguishing features: bright green soldermask, plastic PCIe 16x retention hooks, a gap where the 'Nemko' is on the other board

BMC flash chip sticker: S6C BMC / CS:0543 / R01.00.2612

BIOS flash chip sticker: S6C BIOS / CS:BEBA / R01.02.0005

Idle power consumption of server: ~80W (dual E5-2670, 128GB RAM, 1x SSD, Ubuntu 16.04 x64)

previously successfully reflashed to BIOS 02.06.0005

(I'll call this board 'rev F')

Having attempted to flash 02.06.0005 to the rev C board, the result was the board displayed 3 lines of boot text (including S2600CP) but not the version of the BMC, ME, etc firmware, and got stuck there.

The board LEDs showed 0x71 which the S2600CP Technical Product Specification says means 'DXE SB SMM Init' - I guess that means the Management Engine failed to initialise, because its firmware was wrong in some way.

Of course, Intel doesn't publish full raw flash images, so I had to desolder the SPI flash chips and copy images from one machine to another (using a Raspberry Pi, 'flashrom' and an adaptor I made). The chips are Winbond W25Q64BV for the BIOS and W25Q128BV for the BMC. I believe the W25Q64FV and W25Q128FV they sell at Digikey are compatible, but I haven't tried them as I managed to reuse the existing chips.

I tried:

1) Flashing the BMC from the rev F board to the rev C board. No change.

2) Flashing the BIOS from the rev F board to the rev C board. The board now fails to power up. When power is applied, the board flashes through some light sequences that indicate the BMC is powering up. When the power button is pushed, the fans spin for about a second then go off for about 10 seconds, with no diagnostic lights. This repeats until you pull the power.

3) Flashing the BIOS from a good rev C board to a bad rev C board: successful unbrick (back to the old BIOS version). This worked even after updating the BMC in step # 1 above (ie I didn't need to downgrade the BMC to match). It also didn't clone the MAC address which I had expected (it may have changed the serial number as displayed in BIOS - I didn't have the old one to check)

A missing BIOS flash chip / bad solder joint can give symptoms like # 2 above, or that all the 'DIMM error' lights come on and the board doesn't attempt to power up at all.

One thing I notice in some of the firmware release notes is they say the firmware is suitable for 'Intel(R) Server Board S2600CP Fab 5 or later'. I wonder if the 'rev C' is a 'Fab' of some number other than 5?

In the interests of science (masochism), I downloaded firmware package:

System BIOS - 02.06.0005

ME Firmware - 02.01.07.328

BMC Firmware - 01.27.9958

FRUSDR - 1.11

and flashed just the BIOS (UpdateBIOS.nsh) and it was successful. (Don't forget to reset to default settings in the BIOS afterwards - before that I had an embarrassing period where Ubuntu had broken USB. That was awkward)

So the moral of my story is you can upgrade the BIOS but not the ME.

Digging yourself out of holes is going to require soldering, however.

It didn't fix the idle power consumption issue though - still 130W.

(I have the flash dumps in case anyone manages to brick and needs an SPI reflash)

View solution in original post

24 Replies
Cesar_B_Intel
Employee
1,138 Views

Hello Woodles

These are the instructions for updating Firmware on your board

Latest firmware package is available for download at https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/25956/Intel-Server-Board-S2600CP-Family-Firmware-update-pa... https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/25956/Intel-Server-Board-S2600CP-Family-Firmware-update-pa...

1. Boot the system into the EFI Shell

2. Copy UEFI iFlash32 11.0 Build 8 or higher, ipmi.efi and BIOS capsule file

to a HD or USB Flash Drive

3. Map the respective storage device in the system with the command

Shell> map -r

4. Change the Shell to the mapped device file system

Example: Shell> fs0: (or fs1:)

5. Run the iflash32 utility at the prompt

fs0:\> iflash32 /u /ni [Cap File Name]

6. Reboot system, press F2 to setup and check BIOS ID. If BIOS ID is upgraded

version the BIOS updated successfully.

7. Do *NOT* interrupt the BIOS POST during the first boot.

Full instructions on how to update Firmware are available at https://downloadmirror.intel.com/25956/eng/Release.txt https://downloadmirror.intel.com/25956/eng/Release.txt

Please let us know if you have any questions

Best regards,

Caesar B.

MMark29
Novice
1,138 Views

Hi Cesar,

Thanks for the reply, sorry but I wasn't clear. I know how to actually update the BIOS and have downloaded the files ready.

My problem is that the release notes for them all state a minimum starting level before the update should be attempted. The oldest update version I can find specifies a minimum existing version of 01.01.1002 and my current BIOS version is older than that.

Ideally, I'd like to find a source of a BIOS update files that can upgrade 99.99.x034 or older as then there won't be the risk of killing the motherboard completely.

... Or are you saying that the latest version is safe to use to update any previous version?

A secondary question related to that is, do I have to go through the older updates in turn or only install the latest one?

Regards,

idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello,

 

 

I was unable to identify properly the BIOS version you have, Where are you seen this BIOS version?

 

 

Could you please provide the PBA number of the board? This would help us determine what was the initial firmware level installed in the unit when it was built.

 

 

I was checking the historical firmware list and it seems that the initial firmware was 1.01.0001. Please confirm the details requested above to provide a more detail response.

 

 

Regards,

 

Dave.

 

 

TMark3
Beginner
1,139 Views

This week I have been unbricking a S2600CP that failed a BIOS update, and I've learned some interesting things.

Most importantly: believe what the instructions say about BIOS flashing. If you flash a too-old board, you really can brick it.

So... we have 10x Chenbro RM13704 servers with S2600CP2 boards inside. It turns out there's at least two versions of the RM13704, with two versions of the board.

RM13704 rev B, contains a dark green S2600CP2 board. PBA E99552-306 (written on sticker), P/N DA056CMB8C0 rev C (written on soldermask), KCC-REM-CPU-S2600CP (soldermask)

Distinguishing features: 'Nomko' (or 'Nemko'?) written in large silkscreen between the CPUs, dark green soldermask, metal clips for the PCIe 16x retention hook

BMC flash chip sticker: S6C-A BMC / CS:D807 / Rev R21

BIOS flash chip sticker: S6C-A BIOS / CS:717E / Rev R32.2

BIOS reports:

Platform ID: S2600CP

BIOS version: SE5C600.86B.99.99.x034

Idle power consumption of server: ~130-160W (dual E5-2670, 128GB RAM, 1x SSD, Ubuntu 16.04 x64)

Ubuntu /proc/cpuinfo says "model name: Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5-2670 0 @ 2.60GHz, stepping: 6, microcode: 0x619"

(I'll call this board 'rev C')

RM13704 rev C, contains a bright green S2600CP2 board. PBA G56797-507 (sticker), P/N DA056CMB8F2 rev F (soldermask), KCC-REM-CPU-S2600CP (soldermask)

Distinguishing features: bright green soldermask, plastic PCIe 16x retention hooks, a gap where the 'Nemko' is on the other board

BMC flash chip sticker: S6C BMC / CS:0543 / R01.00.2612

BIOS flash chip sticker: S6C BIOS / CS:BEBA / R01.02.0005

Idle power consumption of server: ~80W (dual E5-2670, 128GB RAM, 1x SSD, Ubuntu 16.04 x64)

previously successfully reflashed to BIOS 02.06.0005

(I'll call this board 'rev F')

Having attempted to flash 02.06.0005 to the rev C board, the result was the board displayed 3 lines of boot text (including S2600CP) but not the version of the BMC, ME, etc firmware, and got stuck there.

The board LEDs showed 0x71 which the S2600CP Technical Product Specification says means 'DXE SB SMM Init' - I guess that means the Management Engine failed to initialise, because its firmware was wrong in some way.

Of course, Intel doesn't publish full raw flash images, so I had to desolder the SPI flash chips and copy images from one machine to another (using a Raspberry Pi, 'flashrom' and an adaptor I made). The chips are Winbond W25Q64BV for the BIOS and W25Q128BV for the BMC. I believe the W25Q64FV and W25Q128FV they sell at Digikey are compatible, but I haven't tried them as I managed to reuse the existing chips.

I tried:

1) Flashing the BMC from the rev F board to the rev C board. No change.

2) Flashing the BIOS from the rev F board to the rev C board. The board now fails to power up. When power is applied, the board flashes through some light sequences that indicate the BMC is powering up. When the power button is pushed, the fans spin for about a second then go off for about 10 seconds, with no diagnostic lights. This repeats until you pull the power.

3) Flashing the BIOS from a good rev C board to a bad rev C board: successful unbrick (back to the old BIOS version). This worked even after updating the BMC in step # 1 above (ie I didn't need to downgrade the BMC to match). It also didn't clone the MAC address which I had expected (it may have changed the serial number as displayed in BIOS - I didn't have the old one to check)

A missing BIOS flash chip / bad solder joint can give symptoms like # 2 above, or that all the 'DIMM error' lights come on and the board doesn't attempt to power up at all.

One thing I notice in some of the firmware release notes is they say the firmware is suitable for 'Intel(R) Server Board S2600CP Fab 5 or later'. I wonder if the 'rev C' is a 'Fab' of some number other than 5?

In the interests of science (masochism), I downloaded firmware package:

System BIOS - 02.06.0005

ME Firmware - 02.01.07.328

BMC Firmware - 01.27.9958

FRUSDR - 1.11

and flashed just the BIOS (UpdateBIOS.nsh) and it was successful. (Don't forget to reset to default settings in the BIOS afterwards - before that I had an embarrassing period where Ubuntu had broken USB. That was awkward)

So the moral of my story is you can upgrade the BIOS but not the ME.

Digging yourself out of holes is going to require soldering, however.

It didn't fix the idle power consumption issue though - still 130W.

(I have the flash dumps in case anyone manages to brick and needs an SPI reflash)

View solution in original post

MMark29
Novice
1,138 Views

Hi Dave,

Sorry for the delay in answering, it's been a busy few days.

The BIOS version is reported in the BIOS itself and also on the system status screen at the end of the POST.

There is a sticker on my board with "PBA E9952-306" printed on it, the same as on calistons board and also with the "Nemko" logo and the metal PCIe retention clips. I assume this is a batch number rather than a discrete board number?

I can't tell if it's a light green or a dark green as I have nothing to compare it to.

Regards

MMark29
Novice
1,138 Views

Hi Caliston,

Good to know that I was right to be cautious about flashing the BIOS. As it's not causing any problems, I may stay with this revision.

Thanks for the very detailed and comprehensive reply.

Regards.

TMark3
Beginner
1,138 Views

I think E99552-306 is the Intel SKU for the board. -306 is some kind of revision ID: if I google I find E99552-507, -508, -511, etc.

Seems like G56797-507 is a different part number (possibly a different manufacturer).

It is possible also that my ME problems come from having an early CPU, either an engineering sample or one of a different stepping. I didn't have time to remove the heatsinks and look at the CPU package, but I wonder what the extra 0 in 'E5-2670 0' means, and how 'stepping 6' compares. The machines were supposed to have stepping SR0KX, but it's possible some have something else.

I'm told that some of our other 'rev C' boards accepted the ME firmware update with no issues. The 'rev F' board seems to have CPUs with stepping 7: it might be that's the SR0KX and stepping 6 is the SR0H8.

(we're not using VT-d so wouldn't notice the difference otherwise. I'm not able to check the BIOS at this point)

idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello Mark,

 

 

Could you please provide us with the Syslog. So we could further investigate this particular situation.

 

 

Do you know if you S2600CP is a retail product?

 

 

Best regards,

 

Caesar B.

 

Cesar_B_Intel
Employee
1,138 Views

Hello Woodles ,

If possible, please provide us with the Syslog.

by doing this we will be able to further investigate this particular situation.

Do you know if you S2600CP is a retail product?

Best regards,

Caesar B.

RPark3
Beginner
1,138 Views

Just soft bricked a S2600CP2J REV F updating to BIOS SE5C600.86B.02.06.0005 and all i see is this (Both in BIOS Recovery mode and normal boot) https://gyazo.com/e15688cb215629b8285519f5d66d0e93 Gyazo - e15688cb215629b8285519f5d66d0e93.jpg . Here is a pic of my board https://gyazo.com/eab88722ef3370aff57428d95f90e378 Gyazo - eab88722ef3370aff57428d95f90e378.jpg . Side note the BMC remote console just shows distorted text that is not remotely similar to what was on the screen (pic above)

Cesar_B_Intel
Employee
1,138 Views

Hello TheLok ,

From which BIOS Version were you trying to upgrade to before you tried BIOS SE5C600.86B.02.06.0005?

You could try Flashing https://downloadcenter.intel.com/downloads/eula/26296/Intel-Server-Board-S2600CP-Firmware-Update-Pac... Intel® Server Board S2600CP Firmware Update Package for EFI via BIOS RECOVERY by following the instructions provided at https://downloadmirror.intel.com/26296/eng/ReleaseNotes_BIOS_02.06.0005.txt Release Notes (txt).

Best regards,

Caesar B.

idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello TheLok ,

We would like to know if you were able to follow our recommendations and what results did you get.

Best regards,

 

Caesar B.
JSixp
Beginner
1,138 Views

I'm currently experiencing the exact same problem that TheLok described and illsutrated. My board is a newer "Rev F" that calistron indicated, e.g. G56797-507. I flashed from 01.02.0003 straight to 02.06.0005 to support E5 V2 CPUs. Unfortunately, it seems that even the BIOS Recovery mode does not now work and it results in a last checkpoint at the "DXE NB SMM Init" if it finds a USB drive it actually likes (which is also an whole 'nother issue and will result in a catastrophobic error otherwise, e.g. 2 beeps then 4 beeps). Normal boot fails a little earlier at the "DXE IPL Started" checkpoint.

I was hoping it was just a memory incompatibility issue with the new and unreachable BIOS settings as I get 4 beeps during a normal boot, but it seems like I'm now doomed to acquire and install new BIOS chips?

idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello JoeSixpack,

 

 

Problems on your S2600CP board. Could you please provide me with the model and revision on the board you are working with and also the hardware installed (CPU, Memory type and size, etc). Also provide me with a picture or the error message your are getting. You can also check the http://download.intel.com/support/motherboards/server/s2600cp/sb/g26942005_s2600cp_p4000cp_tps_rev18... Technical Product Specification for this board. You will find several options for the CMOS Clearing on Page 100.

 

Also please verify the board if any AMBER LED (Page 104 – 107).

 

Also you can try to re-flash the https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/26296/Intel-Server-Board-S2600CP-Firmware-Update-Package-f... BIOS.

 

 

If there is anything else we can help please feel free to ask.

 

 

Best regards,

 

 

Henry A.
JSixp
Beginner
1,138 Views

This is a PBA G56797-507 Rev F, P/N DAO56CMBBF2. CPU is either one or two E5-2620 V1 / E5-2660 V2 and memory is either one or two 8GB 2Rx4 PC3-14900R DDR3 1866MHZ ECC REG sticks (I also tried one or two regular 8GB DDR3 sticks). The error on normal startup is:

Since neither memory is on the approved list, I just bought one that is to rule out that variable in case the BIOS upgrade imposed new strictness as suggested by Intel support.

The BIOS Recovery mode does not work despite trying three different USB sticks with one more on the way. And since I've taken the motherboard out of the case, it no longer works at all, e.g. no LED posting and just goes straight to System Status amber. Before that I believe it was reporting:

There are no other amber LEDs showing on the motherboard.

Unlike TheLok I've never gotten a POST screen during BIOS Recovery, only akin to this during normal startup:

The board is no longer under warranty since it is a server pull. Caliston has not responded. Worst case, how and where and how am I going to get working BIOS chip replacements to unbrick it? I'm very frustrated here.

idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello Mark,

 

 

We do not handle separate BIOS chips for this board. We could check the warranty of your board.

 

 

In case you want us to check the current warranty status of your board please provide the Serial Number.

 

 

 

Best regards,

 

Caesar B.
JSixp
Beginner
1,138 Views

Thanks, but it is out of warranty. Do you offer out-of-warranty repair services?

In the meantime, I found an authoritative solution for fixing BIOS flash problems that caliston seemed to be referring to:

http://www.win-raid.com/t58f16-Guide-Recover-from-failed-BIOS-flash-using-Raspberry-PI.html [Guide] Recover from failed BIOS flash using Raspberry PI

Can you send me a raw dump of the BIOS for the board? Where can I find the specs for the exact BIOS chip needed?

idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello JoeSixpack,

 

To get information on out of warranty repair you best option will be with your local https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/partner/where-to-buy/overview.html Intel® Authorized Distributors and Approved Suppliers.And about your second question, about re-flash or fix your BIOS chip using an alternative solution, none Intel. We don't recommended, again your best option will be to get in contact with an Intel® Authorized Distributors, and they can provide you with options on repair or even purchase a similar or another system board that will handle the hardware you already have.If there is anything else we can help or if we can close the case, please feel free to ask.

 

 

Best regards,

 

 

Henry A.
idata
Community Manager
1,138 Views

Hello JoeSixpack,

 

I will like to follow up on your questions. If there is anything else we can help or if we can close the case, please feel free to ask.Best regards,

 

 

Henry A.