AWS Snowball
Developer Guide

This guide is for the Snowball Edge. If you are looking for documentation for the Snowball, see the AWS Snowball User Guide.

Updating an AWS Snowball Edge

The software update feature for Snowball Edge allows you to update the software on Snowball Edge devices in your on-premises environments. These updates happen in the background, meaning that you can continue to use your devices as normal, as the latest software is downloaded securely from AWS to your device, and then updated. To apply the updates, you need to restart the device.

Warning

We highly recommend that you suspend all activity on the device before you restart the device. Restarting a device stops running instances, interrupts any writing to Amazon S3 buckets on the device, and stops any write operations from the file interface without clearing the cache. All of these processes can result in lost data.

Prerequisites

Before you can update your device, the following prerequisites must be met:

  • You've created your job, have the device on-premises, and you've unlocked it. For more information see Getting Started with an AWS Snowball Edge Device.

  • Updating a Snowball Edge is done with the Snowball client, which must be downloaded and installed on a computer in your local environment, with a network connection to the device you want to update. For more information , see .

  • (Optional) We recommend that you configure a profile for the Snowball client. For more information, see Configuring a Profile for the Snowball Client.

Now that you've completed those tasks, you can now download and install updates for Snowball Edge devices.

Downloading Updates

There are two primary ways that you can download an update for a Snowball Edge device:

  • You can trigger manual updates at any time using specific Snowball client commands.

  • You can programmatically determine a time to automatically update the device.

The following procedure outlines the process of manually downloading updates. For information on automatically updating your Snowball Edge device, see snowballEdge configure-auto-update-strategy in Updating a Snowball Edge.

To check for and download Snowball Edge software updates

  1. Open a terminal window, and ensure that the Snowball Edge device is unlocked with the snowballEdge describe-device command. If the device is locked, use the snowballEdge unlock-device command to unlock it.

  2. When the device is unlocked, run the snowballEdge check-for-updates command. This command returns the latest available version of the Snowball Edge software, and also the current version installed on the device.

  3. If your device software is out of date, run the snowballEdge download-updates command.

  4. You can check the status of this download with the snowballEdge describe-device-software command. While an update is downloading, the status displayed with this command.

    Example output

    Install State: Downloading

Installing Updates

After you've downloaded updates, you need to install them and restart your device for the updates to take effect. The following procedure guides you through how to manually install updates.

To install Snowball Edge software updates that were already downloaded

  1. Open a terminal window, and ensure that the Snowball Edge device is unlocked with the snowballEdge describe-device command. If the device is locked, use the snowballEdge unlock-device command to unlock it.

  2. Run the snowballEdge install-updates command.

  3. You can check the status of this installation with the snowballEdge describe-device-software command. While an update is installing, the status is displayed with this command.

    Example output

    Install State: Installing //Possible values[NA, Installing, Requires Reboot]

    You’ve successfully installed a software update for your Snowball Edge device. Installing an update does not automatically apply the update to the device. To finish installing the update, the device must be restarted.

    We highly recommend that you suspend all activity on the device before you restart the device. Restarting a device stops running instances, interrupts any writing to Amazon S3 buckets on the device, and stops any write operations from the file interface without clearing the cache.

    Warning

    Restarting your Snowball Edge device without stopping all activity on the device can result in lost data.

  4. Run the snowballEdge list-services command to list the currently running services on the device.

  5. Run the snowballEdge describe-service command for each of the running services, to see their status.

  6. Use this information to stop those services (setting the services to the INACTIVE state).

  7. When all the services on the device have stopped, run the snowballEdge reboot-device command. This command immediately power-cycles the device to complete installation of the downloaded software updates.

  8. After the device powers on open a terminal window and use the snowballEdge unlock-device command to unlock the device.

  9. Run the snowballEdge check-for-updates command. This command returns the latest available version of the Snowball Edge software, and also the current version installed on the device

You have now successfully updated your device and confirmed that your device is up-to-date with the latest Snowball Edge software.