HOWTO: Use SUMA to Download AIX Updates PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Michael Felt   

IBM has changed it's website - I suspect to be more aligned with the policy of using technology levels as the basis of updates. And, maybe even to promote SUMA as the method for managing updates.

Right now, I miss the old interface - but as I get more accustomed to using SUMA top automate the process I may be glad IBM gave me a reason to look into using SUMA after all.

Right now, I am only worrying about a simple situation of maintaining only one software level (AIX 5.3) and not managing several levels. So read more if you are interested in automating the download process of AIX software updates.

The fisrt step to using SUMA is to make sure you have a location where you will store the downloads. I created a logical volume - 4G large, and mounted it at /data/suma

Step 1: Create Storage area
    mkvg -y lvSuma -c 2 -t jfs2 vgData 4G
    crfs -v jfs2 -A yes -m /data/suma -d lvSuma
    mount /data/suma

Step 2: Setup suma (as root)
    smit suma
    There are several settings you may want to change - for example, the default directory from /usr/sys/inst.images to /data/suma. But for the most part, you can start by leaving the defaults as they are.


                      Configure SUMA

Move cursor to desired item and press Enter.

  Base Configuration
  Task Defaults
  Saved Email Addresses

            View/Change SUMA Task Defaults

Type or select values in entry fields.
Press Enter AFTER making all desired changes.
                                         [Entry Fields]
  Action                          [Download]    +
  Directory for item storage      [/data/suma]
  Type of item to request         [Critical]    +
  Name of item to request         []
  Level of item to request        []
  Get prerequisites/corequisites? yes           +
  Get ifrequisites?               yes           +
  Get superseding items           yes           +
  Get items which fix regressions?[If Available]+
  Repository to filter against    []
  Maintenance or Technology Level []            +
  System or lslpp output to filter[localhost]
  Maximum total download size (MB)[-1]         +#
  EXTEND file systems if space needed? no       +
  Maximum file system size (MB)   [-1]         +#
  Notify email address            [root]        +



The next step is to start your downloads. My experience is that it doesnt really matter too much what you do - your downloads are going to be a lot. Perhaps the most likely request is to download the current technology level using All latest files. Or you might only download the critical files. I downloaded my current technology level, and afterwards a smitty update_all to verify that I had it all up to date.


However, I had a slight puzzle. How can I request the next technology level if SUMA does not know about the next technology level. The 'trick' is to download the fileset bos.rte.install at Latest level. 


An example

After using my trick above to get the next technology level downloaded (5.3 TL07) I did a smitty update_all - and was surprised by a failure notice (I had already installed bos.rte.install from the command line, so that wasn not the cause of smit's idea of a 'failure' (non-zero exit).

Instead, it was a problem with the xlC run-time environment. 

Requisite Failures 
SELECTED FILESETS:  The following is a list of filesets that you asked to install. They cannot be installed until all of their requisite filesets are also installed. See subsequent lists for details of requisites.
    xlC.aix50.rte      # XL C/C++ Runtime for AIX 5.2
    xlC.cpp            # C for AIX Preprocessor
    xlC.msg.en_US.cpp  # C for AIX Preprocessor Messa...
    xlC.msg.en_US.rte  # XL C/C++ Runtime Messages--U...
    xlC.rte            # XL C/C++ Runtime
  MISSING REQUISITES:  The following filesets are required by one or more
  of the selected filesets listed above.  They are not currently installed
  and could not be found on the installation media.
    xlC.aix50.rte      # Base Level Fileset
    xlC.msg.en_US.rte  # Base Level Fileset
    xlC.rte            # Base Level Fileset
    xlC.rte 8.0.9998.0         # Base Level Fileset
  << End of Failure Section >>

Using SUMA I choose to download a fileset:
            Download by Fileset Name

Type or select values in entry fields.      
Press Enter AFTER making all desired changes.

                                  [Entry Fields]
* Fileset name                [xlC.aix50.rte]         +
  Fileset level               []

And SUMA supplied all the files I needed!

Download SUCCEEDED: /data/suma/installp/ppc/xlC.msg.en_US.rte.
Download SUCCEEDED: /data/suma/installp/ppc/xlC.msg.ja_JP.rte.
Download SUCCEEDED: /data/suma/installp/ppc/xlC.msg.Ja_JP.rte.
Download SUCCEEDED: /data/suma/installp/ppc/xlC.rte.
Download SUCCEEDED: /data/suma/installp/ppc/xlC.aix50.rte.
        5 downloaded
        0 failed
        492 skipped

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