Best Practices Question

What is the best way to upgrade my K1000 from version 5.3 to the current server software version 6.2?

11/25/2014 5127 views
I have been tasked with managing our KACE appliance and have found it to be way behind in software version. I have updates available for the software and want to ensure that I don't overlook any potential "gotchas". Can anyone give me the best practices steps to upgrade the software, including the agents, so I don't hose the project altogether? Thanks for any assistance.
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All Answers

I haven't done it from that low of a version but my usual steps are...
1. Read the change log and make sure I know what is changing, fixed, broken and still broken.
2. Backup kbox and ftp the files to a secure location
3. Deploy update.
4. Verify logs to make sure update is successful.
5. Create ticket in test queue and test rules and any functionality that stood out from step 1.
6. Update agent on the kbox.
7. Advertise new agent and test to make sure it pushes to machines correctly.
8. Go through and check all settings to make sure they have not changed.
-- Some updates turn off Provisioning, etc... so make sure to go through all your settings and double check everything.

Other points:
You might also want to take screenshots of all your configs so you can refer to them after.
Going from 5.x to 6.x is a big change in features and gui. For example, you loose the "printer friendly" option so do some research to make sure you're not losing any feature you really need.
See if you can get a KBOX vm and test the updates out on that. I've heard that if you have the physical appliance you can get the VM for testing purposes free. 
Answered 11/25/2014 by: h2opolo25
Red Belt

At first: Verify all agents are on 5.3.xxx
Do a full backup.
Update to 5.4
This may fail due to a software defect. Contact support if you run in to this issue that you database is bloated (>150MB)
Do a full backup
Update the agents to 5.4
Update to 5.5
Update your agents to 5.5
Do a full backup
Update to 6.0
Do a full backup
Update to 6.2.109329
Do a full backup
Update to 6.2.109330
Update the agents to 6.2.1025

5.3 agents don't check in into late 5.5, so you should also update them step by step.
5.5 agents check in into 6.x, so the update of the agents is only needed on the last step

Alternatively you can also uninstall all agents via GPO and install them new
Answered 11/26/2014 by: Nico_K
Red Belt


In addition to the above be aware that you will need to do THREE upgrades and a final .kbin patch to be fully upgraded:

  1. Upgrade from 5.3 to 5.5
  2. Upgrade from 5.5 to 6.0
  3. Upgrade from 6.0 to 6.2
  4. Install KBIN 6.2.109330

Depending on the size of your database you could be looking at 1-2 hours per upgrade.  Also I would suggest you contact KACE support in advance and have Level 3 do a check of your database for errors or stale data prior to any updates as it appears you have been running on the same database for years.

If you have access to a QA box (or VM) start there, you can learn a lot (most licenses provide for up to 3 devices).  Restore your DB to the QA (which must be the exact same version) and run through the upgrade process.

If you are running on old hardware, it may not support the upgrade, again check with support.  And finally KACE is no longer supporting 5.3, so you need to upgrade.

Good luck.

Answered 11/25/2014 by: gke565
Senior Yellow Belt

  • no, 5.4 is missing ...
I upgraded ours from appliance version 5.5.90548 to 6.2.109330 yesterday. All agents were at 5.5.30275 prior to the upgrade from 5.5 to 6.0, as this version is a minimum requirement as specified here: https://support.software.dell.com/k1000-systems-management-appliance/kb/124573

The first problem I ran in to, was that the "Upgrade Now" functionality returned the error "can't open output file" as described in this post: http://www.itninja.com/question/kace-6-0-can-t-upgrade-error

Apparently, its a permission issue and there is a hotfix for it. However, as Dell Kace recently changed their support and download portal, the links no longer work. I found the new area where downloads are availble ( https://support.software.dell.com/download-product-select ), but was unable to find the hotfix.

In the end, I just downloaded the 6.0 kbin from the new download area and "manually" installed the new appliance version. As also described in the other posts here, I then went from to 6.2.109329 and from 6.2.109329 to 6.2.109330 (which contains an upgrade of bash, fixing the Shellshock vulnerability). Between each upgrade, I ran a backup through the webinterface and downloaded the newly generated file and database backup to my local machine.

Apart from the rocky start, it was a smooth process and took 2-3 hours in total. Since the upgrade, I've found a few agents that are having trouble with sync'ing. It seems most common problem on them is either the kinventory-process which is stuck (probably due to losing the connection to the kbox while an inventory was in progress) and huge inventory.db, which I've just deleted, restarted the ampagent service and then run a "runkbot.exe -s 4 0" to force an inventory update.
can't open output file
Answered 11/26/2014 by: AdamiteDK
White Belt

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