This section explains the difference between Instant Software Upgrades and Platform Upgrades. For more information, see Performing Qumulo Core Upgrades by Using the qq CLI on Qumulo Care.

Understanding the Differences Between Upgrade Modes

For information about which upgrade modes different Qumulo Core releases use, see Qumulo Core Upgrade Mode Reference.

Instant Software Upgrade

The more common, faster instant software upgrade requires restarting only the container on your nodes and has a downtime of less than 30 seconds.

Because in Qumulo Core 3.3.2 (and higher), the Qumulo file and data protection systems are separate from the host in charge of running the operating system and the services specific to each hardware or cloud platform, and because these services run in a lightweight container (by using Ubuntu-native systemd-nspawn containerization) in the user space, it is possible to move quickly from one version of Qumulo Core to another by loading a new container and pointing the runtime environment at updated software.

Platform Upgrade

The infrequent, somewhat slower platform upgrade requires either a complete reboot (rebooting all nodes in your cluster at the same time) or—in Qumulo Core 5.0.3 (and higher)—a rolling reboot (rebooting the nodes in your cluster one at a time).

In contrast with instant software upgrades, your nodes maintain the Linux operating system, and certain services that Qumulo Core relies on, through most upgrades because the underlying host changes less frequently than the container and the file and data protection systems.

Understanding the Upgrade Phases

Every Qumulo Core upgrade has two phases, preparation and commit.

  1. Preparation: Qumulo Core stages a new image in an alternate boot drive partition while the current image continues to run. This phase is responsible only for the background work (unpacking and writing the platform image and upgrade firmware, and so on). When the preparation phase is complete, we continue to the commit phase.

  2. Commit: Qumulo Core does one of the following:

    • Instant Software Upgrade: Stops the existing container and starts a new one.
    • Platform Upgrade: Initiates a reboot and selectively upgrades the operating system image.

To determine what phase an upgrade is in, use the qq upgrade_status command while your cluster is performing and upgrade. For more information, see Performing Qumulo Core Upgrades by Using the qq CLI on Qumulo Care.

The following is example output from the command.

{
  "install_path": "/upgrade/qinstall.qimg",
  "state": "UPGRADE_PREPARING",
  "details": "",
  "error_message": "",
  "error_state": "UPGRADE_ERROR_NO_ERROR",
  "is_blocked": false,
  "blocked_reason": ""
}