importing mars configuration failed

Unanswered Question
Apr 15th, 2010

Hi all,

we have two MARS version 6.0

we configured one and successfully exported its configuration to NFS server on windows server as following:

pnexp> export config

WARNING: this will stop CS-MARS, do you wish to continue (yes/no): yes

!!! The exported config data is saved under sub-directory of
!!! Stopping CS-MARS processes ...
!!! Exporting config data now

Dumping configuration data, may take a while ...
Configuration dump finished.
Sanity checking for post config data export ...
Config file size check OK ...
Exported config data sanity check passed.
Configdump to /tmp/pnexport/MARS_2010-04-15-12-09-12 finished successfully.

and when trying to import it to the other MARS device we did the following:

pnimp> import config
Failed to mount

we do not know why this happened.

can anyone help in this case


Ayman Yehia

I have this problem too.
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Jennifer Halim Thu, 04/15/2010 - 05:36

pnexp and pnimp commands are not used to export and import configuration between MARS 6.0.x. Those commands are used when you are migrating from earlier version of MARS, ie: 4.x and 5.x to version 6.0.x.

Here is the command reference for pnexp and pnimp:

To import config from 1 MARS running version 6.0.x to another, you would need to use the archieve feature: Admin > System Maintenance > Data Archiving.

To restore the config to another MARS, you can run the pnrestore command:

Please note that both MARS needs to be running exactly the same version, ie: if MARS 1 runs version 6.0.5, MARS 2 also needs to run version 6.0.5 for database restore to work.

ayman emara Thu, 04/15/2010 - 07:23

dear halijenn,

i had a problem in the NFS server as it forgot to add the privileges of the second server.

i did the pnimp and it already imported the config on the second MARS server:

pnimp> import config

i think that restore just restore to the initial config of the MARS.


Ayman Yehia

racquel.mays Fri, 12/10/2010 - 12:18


Ok, now I'm confused.  My task is that I am upgrading my MARS appliance to 6.1.1 from 6.0.3 (yes, we are quite behind).  So what I want to do is completely backup my MARS configuration in total-similar to backing up the entire config of a router, switch, firewall, etc. prior to upgrading my appliance. I was thinking I would pnexp my config to a server to achieve this and in the event that something failed I could just pnimp from the aforementioned server to my appliance.  Is this not feasible?  If not, please advise the best route to take.

Jennifer Halim Fri, 12/10/2010 - 15:17

Hi Racquel,

For MARS backup, you would need to backup/export it to a supported NFS server, and please find the following link of supported NFS for your reference:

(towards the bottom of the page).

Further to that, you can only restore to the version that you backup the data on. So if you are now running version 6.0.3, and backup the data, in the event of failure during upgrade to version 6.0.5 for example, then you would need to reimage your MARS back to version 6.0.3 and restore the data. Restoring data to a different version from the version you back it up on is not supported.

Please kindly be advised that MARS upgrade is incremental upgrade, ie: if you need to upgrade from version 6.0.3 to 6.1.1, here is the steps:

6.0.3 --> 6.0.4 --> 6.0.5 --> 6.0.6 --> 6.0.7 --> 6.0.8 --> 6.1.1

Here is the release notes for version 6.1.1 for your reference:

Hope that answers your question.

racquel.mays Wed, 12/15/2010 - 14:22

Jennifer thanks for your response.  What happens in the event that I need to restore the entire contents of the export?  Which pnrestore mode should I use?  My confusion comes from this statement taken from the Cisco Security MARS Initial Configuration and Upgrade Guide,  6.X "Guidelines for Restoring" section which states:

"Mode 5 of the pnrestore command restores from a backup  in the local database; you cannot use it to restore from a NFS or SFTP archive.  As such, you do not need to have archiving enabled to perform this restore  operation. The configuration data is backed up every night on the appliance.  Beware that if you upgrade to a newer release and attempt a restore before that  configuration has been backed up, the restore will fail. See pnrestore, page 1-57,  for more information on types of data and restore modes."

My goals are as follows:

Export entire contents of MARS Config to a server (sftp)

Upgrade MARS to current

-If upgrade fails; reimage appliance back to current image

-use pnrestore to put the previously backed up config back onto the MARS appliance.

This being said, which mode of pnrestore should I use and what does MARS consider to be the local database.


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