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Community Member

IOS qustion on naming


I am installing/upgrading an IOS on some 2960x units; however, the only update is

15.0.2 EX5 (RD)


Now - just making sure I still understand the naming scheme -


EX = Enterpirse but the 'X' makes this image a one time ios version?


RD = Early Development


So, techically this is not mission critical ready? Since it has a 'one time release", which is makred by the 'X'? and is still in early development?


If this image ever comes out of "X", what usually is the normal naming scheme? This is the first time I have worked with an image with an "X".





Hi Jason, In general "X"

Hi Jason,


In general "X" refers to the special version in IOS terms.

ED is early deployment and also i notice there are only rebuilds of the version and there is no intermediate or update or maintainence release for these IOS. 15.0.2 E1,E2,E3,E4 and E5 like that.... not 15.0.2(55).EX1 or something like that.


So it means that it is all the special versions and single deployment release.





Community Member

Hi Karthik:Thanks for the

Hi Karthik:

Thanks for the reply and details. I am still torn  about this IOS since it is marked as Early Development and a 'special version'. I guess this is due to the switch chassis being new. If I am not mistaken, the c2960x came out last year.


I will let you and the community know how it it goes.




Hi JJ, Yeah. Might be. As per

Hi JJ,


Yeah. Might be.


As per my observation on the naming, they are not releasing bug fix releases or maintainence or interim releases for these ios.... might be they are trying with a new IOS standard.... they go and do rebuild everytime they releases the new ios.....




Hall of Fame Super Blue

The "EX" line of IOS is an

The "EX" line of IOS is an INTERRIM software.  It's ain't designed for long-term production.   The objective/aim for the "EX" is to get the switch "across the line" until the main release version gets out.


And the first main release IOS is 15.2(2)E (Release Date of 27 July 2014).  

Hi Leo,Intresting....So 'X'

Hi Leo,


So 'X' term is used for interim versions... not for special versions right?




Hall of Fame Super Blue

Karthik,  I don't want to



I don't want to hazard a guess to what the "EX" stands for.  But if you look at Cisco switch appliances lately, all NEW appliance release gets loaded with "EX" IOS.  


No way I'm going to use this particular train if the main release is available.  

I believe the E in EX may be

I believe the E in EX may be for Enterprise product lines, compared with, say S which is targeted more at Service Providers, M for mainline router based platforms, and T for Technology/preview/beta quality code.  If I haven't got that right someone from Cisco will correct me ;-)

OP - as per Leos advice I agree you definitely want to move to a mainline E release such as 15.2(2)E - the EX builds are short term releases for that platform which will probably now see few (if any) further bug or security fixes.


Historically there are far fewer special builds around on CCO now than there used to be a few years ago, as Cisco seem to be reducing the number of special branch builds and moving everything they can into the more platform independent E, S, M and T trees.  Which is a very welcome move IMHO.

Community Member

Hi Leo,Thank you for

Hi Leo,
Thank you for participating in my discussion. I am a little confused because you mention “IOS is 15.2(2)E (Release Date of 27 July 2014)”; however, when I look at IOS items for my switches via my SmartNet account – I only see the option for ’15.0.2 EX5 (RD).

What version of software are you referring to when you speak of “15.2(2)E”. Perhaps I am over looked something and I really want to get an image that is not marked with an “X” or an image that is not designated as “RD”

Thank you

When you get into the

When you get into the Download Software section and select your switch, there should be menu options on the left of "Suggested", "Latest" and "All Releases":


15.2(2)E is listed under "Latest".


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