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Switch IOS software

We have a set of Cisco series 3500XL sitches and the IOS is out of date. The current IOS version is (12.05.4)WC(1). The current bin file on the switch is c3500xl-c3h2s-mz.120-5.4.WC.1.bin . I checked the website and have downloaded the following files :c3500xl-c3h2s-MZ.120-5WC8.bin or c3500xl-c3h2s-tar.120-5WC8.tar? What is the difference? It mentions something about CWS? Can someone clarify the diferences?

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Re: Switch IOS software

I think, the .tar file has the cluster management suite files included and its an archived file. It has both the CMS and the Switch IOS file, compressed into the .tar file (an archive format used commonly in Unix systems).

You will need to use the archive tar command to untar (uncompress) the IOS and CMS files into the switch.

The .bin file is just the compiled IOS file. You can use the regular tftp file to load the software on to the switch.

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