D-Link and firmware updates

I am maintaining 4 D-Link switches in the building where I live.

  • 3 x DES-3226S
  • 1 x DES-3250TG

How do you find the most recent firmware update for them? Their web-site? Ok, I found a DES3226S_4.02B42 which according to the change log should work on my hardware revision (2B1). Err! Invalid firmware. try again. same result. After googling a bit I found a new change log for a 4.02B52, which I can’t find on any of D-Link’s official technical support pages or FTP servers. [...]

To make a long story short I have made a list of issues I have found while updating the 4 switches to the newest firmware:

  1. No central web-site/database for firmware information
    Which firmware is the newest heavily depends your country. The newest firmware firmware for DES-3226S is from late 2006, but on many of the official websites the newest was from 2003/2004/2005. Why does every country maintain there own database?
  2. No central master FTP server
    And just about every country have there own FTP server with there own content and own file structure, so its a byte random which firmwares they offers. The Russian one seams to be the best rough.
  3. Poor QA
    I think 450B25 was the only firmware for DES-3250TG on the Danish site. (was? the european sites currently doesn’t exists, see 8). But you can’t install DES-3250TG_450B25 on the hardware the change log says you should be able to. The DES-3250TG is revision 3A1 hardware and the firmware is for A1 harware. Is 3.00B09 -> 450B25 to big a jump? When the upgrade path should be described in the release notes, like it is for updates from v1 firmware. It would properly work if I could make the update step by step but I can’t because there’s no archive. However I manged to find 450B25 on the British FTP, but it still won’t update to 450B25, even through there isn’t any public releases in between, acording to the 450B25 release notes. Isn’t that pretty basic QA? Updating form one firmware to the next.
  4. No firmware archive
    On most official sites you can only download the “newest” firmware, even when the change log states that you should update to 1.00.029 first, if you have 1.00.026. I haven’t seen 1.00.029 anywhere else than the Russian ftp site and ftp.dlink.com, but not on the support pages.
  5. Change logs / Release notes in doc format
    The change logs are available in either plain text xor doc. Just stick to plain text, its a lot more lightweight.
  6. Wrong metadata in doc files
    Then where isn’t a good official site for firmware information, what do you do? Google? Useless, since D-Link apparently have used a DES-3226S release notes document as template for the rest without changing the document title in Word! Stick to plain text.
  7. Off-topic: Only provides MIB files for few devices in some countries
    I can’t find a MIB file for 3226S, but only for 3250TG.
  8. Off-topic: Internal Server Error
    When I wrote I think in point 3, it’s because I couldn’t check it because I got the following error when I tried hitting dlink.dk
    Internal Server Error
    The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was
    unable to complete your request.
    Please contact the server administrator, ebd@dlink-web1.und.svefi.net
    and inform them of the time the error occurred, and anything you might
    have done that may have caused the error.
    More information about this error may be available in the server error log.
    Apache/1.3.31 Server at www.dlink-europe.com Port 9999

    Very professional (it has been so for several hours)

The newest firmware for DES-3226S that I have been able to find is 4.03.B04 from Dec 22, 2006, yet I haven’t been able to find it at any official web-sites, maybe next year ;) . I you come from the windows world and are afraid of CLI, might stick with 4.02B52 from Oct 3, 2006 which is currently the newest one with web-interface, and properly the last. But I will recommend the CLI, over the web-interface, which uses simple java applets for updating (which freezes on my machine; kill required), ECMAscript or basic server push HTML would have done a much better job there. Thanks to TAG Hosting for providing recent firmwares for DES-3226S when D-Link can’t.

Now the 3 x DES-3226S are running 4.03.B04, but the DES-3250TG is still running 450B13, it won’t eat the “recommended security patch” 450B25 firmware.

1 Response to “D-Link and firmware updates”

  • Nice post man, you are 100% right.

    To make it worse there are usually differences between the countries and the firmware. EG common problem for NZ D-Link helpdesk is that they are upgrading using US firmware (they just go to D-link.com).

    Then there is the problem that while there are the official bugs, there are often things that you can pickup from the forums etc that tell you how things really work (eg version x also tunes latency slightly better or the wireless is less stable).

    A lot of that can be traced to the individual setups eg I saw a recent problem that was thought to be Dlink DGL-4500 v1.10 but was actually an interoperability with a firewall program.

    From an ISP helpdesk this just gets ridiculous – by my count I am aware of 2300 DSL modems in the world (and most times I check there are more to add!), then you have all the country variation in firmware, and then the variation in firmware itself, and then how that interacts with all the other programs in the world…

    I have been trying to build up a database that starts with the listings of the .
    dsl modem, key settings and that sort of thing, but it needs sorting out for sure..

    Just my 2 cents worth..
    ADSL geek..

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