setboot - display and modify boot variables in stable storage
/usr/sbin/setboot [-p primary-path] [-a alternate-path]
[-b on|off] [-s on|off]
[-v] [-t testname=on|off|default]... [-T
The setboot command displays and sets boot variables in stable storage
(also known as nonvolatile memory). Any user can display the values;
only a superuser can change them.
On all systems, the variables are: primary path, alternate path,
autoboot flag, and autosearch flag. If SpeedyBoot is installed, the
variables expand to include: early CPU tests, late CPU tests, full
memory tests, processor hardware tests, and central electronic complex
With no options, setboot displays the current values for the primary
and alternate boot paths and the autoboot and autosearch flags. If
SpeedyBoot is installed, setboot -v also displays the status of the
CPU, memory, hardware, and electronics tests.
The SpeedyBoot firmware and software extensions allows a superuser to
control which firmware tests are executed by the system during the
boot process. The tests settings can be specified both for all
subsequent boots and for the next one only. They are described in the
"The Tests" section below.
The -v, -t, and -T options of the setboot command provide the user
interface to the firmware tests.
SpeedyBoot augments the test control that is available on systems that
have the Boot Console Handler (BCH). By turning off some or all of
the boot tests, you can shorten boot time appreciably. However, in
the event of a system panic or boot failure, all tests are executed on
the subsequent boot.
Some older platforms can be upgraded to new firmware that supports
The SpeedyBoot tests and the possible display values are summarized in
the following table:
Test Current Supported Default NEXT BOOT
all on|off|partial yes|no|partial on|off|partial on|off|partial
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SELFTESTS on|off|partial yes|no|partial on|off|partial on|off|partial
early_cpu on|off yes|no on|off on|off
late_cpu on|off yes|no on|off on|off
FASTBOOT on|off|partial yes|no|partial on|off|partial on|off|partial
full_memory on|off yes|no on|off on|off
PDH on|off yes|no on|off on|off
CEC on|off yes|no on|off on|off
Test The keyword names of the tests that can be controlled by
SpeedyBoot. See "The Tests" section below.
The current enablement of each test. on means the test is
normally executed on each boot. off means the test is
normally omitted on each boot. partial means some of the
subtests are normally executed on each boot.
Whether the test is supported by the system firmware. yes
means the test is supported. no means the test is not
supported. partial means some of the subtests are
The default values for each test. on, off, and partial are
the same as for Current.
The values for each test that will be used on the next boot.
If they are different from Current, the Current values will
be reestablished after the next boot. on, off, and partial
are the same as for Current.
These are keywords for the hardware tests that are executed by
processor-dependent code (PDC) or firmware upon a boot or reboot of
all All the listed tests.
Includes the early_cpu and late_cpu tests. This is
equivalent to the SELFTESTS option in the boot console
handler (BCH) service menu. The difference is that setboot
can control the subtests separately, while BCH cannot.
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When on, run firmware, cache, and CPU-specific tests.
Performed out of firmware. When off, skip the tests.
When on, run firmware, cache, and CPU-specific tests.
Performed out of memory and therefore faster than the
early_cpu tests. When off, skip the tests.
Includes the full_memory and PDH tests. This is equivalent
to the FASTBOOT option in the boot console handler (BCH)
service menu. The difference is that setboot can control
the subtests separately, while BCH cannot.
Note: When FASTBOOT is on, the tests are performed, and vice
When on, run write/read-write/read tests on all memory
locations. When off, only initialize memory.
PDH Processor-dependent hardware. When on, test a checksum of
read-only memory (ROM). When off, do not.
CEC Central electronic complex. When on, test low-level bus
converters and I/O chips. When off, do not. CEC is not
available on all systems.
The setboot command supports the following options:
Display the current values for the primary and alternate
boot paths and the autoboot and autosearch flags. See
example 2 in the "EXAMPLES: General" section.
Set the primary boot path variable to primary-path. See
ioscan(1M) for the correct format.
Set the alternate boot path variable to alternate-path. See
ioscan(1M) for the correct format.
Enable or disable the autosearch sequence. The
interpretation of Autoboot and Autosearch has changed for
systems that support hardware partitions. Refer to the
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Enable or disable the autoboot sequence. The interpretation
of Autoboot and Autosearch has changed for systems that
support hardware partitions. Refer to the WARNINGS section.
-v Display the current values for the primary and alternate
boot paths and the autoboot and autosearch flags and a
status table of the SpeedyBoot tests. See example 1 in the
"EXAMPLES: SpeedyBoot" section.
Change the value for the test testname in stable storage to
value for all following boots. The changes are reflected in
the Current and NEXT BOOT columns of the setboot -v display.
testname can be one of the following keywords, as described
above in the "DESCRIPTION: SpeedyBoot Tests" section.
value can be one of:
on Enable the test.
off Disable the test.
Reset the test to the system default, which is
shown in the Defaults column of the setboot -v
Change the values for the test testname for the next system
boot only. The changes are reflected in the NEXT BOOT
column of the setboot -v display. The change does not
modify stable storage, so the permanent values, shown in the
Current column, are restored after the boot.
testname and value are the same as for the -t option.
The setboot command returns one of:
0 Successful completion
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The setboot command returns the following error messages:
"bootpath" is not a proper bootpath
The boot path bootpath is not in correct format. See ioscan(1M)
for the proper hardware path format.
cannot open /dev/kepd - message
setboot cannot open the kernel pseudo driver file /dev/kepd. The
message explains why.
cannot set autoboot/autosearch flags
The autoboot or autosearch flag could not be set.
cannot set type boot path
setboot can't set the specified boot path. type may be primary
error accessing boot path - message
The message explains why. For example, you may not have
permission (not be superuser) to change parameters.
error accessing firmware - message
The firmware could not be read or written. The message explains
Invalid Arguments Passed to the invoked PDC routine
This is an internal error.
test not found in /etc/setboot_tests file
The test you specified is not defined for your system.
The firmware of your system does not support querying or changing
SELFTEST and FASTBOOT settings except through the boot-time console
interface, ie, BCH menu. Invoked PDC routine [option] not implemented
You have specified a SpeedyBoot option (-t, -T, or -v) and your
system does not have the firmware to support it.
Unknown error errornum encountered by setboot(1M)
An unexpected error, number errornum, was encountered while
setboot was processing SpeedyBoot parameters.
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Warning: Autoboot flag must be on for autosearch flag to have effect
If the autoboot flag is off, automatic searching for a bootable
system cannot occur, even if the autosearch flag is on.
warning: invalid data in /etc/setboot_tests
The /etc/setboot_tests file contains tests that are not supported
by setboot on your system. Do not modify this file.
1. Set the primary path to 2/4.1.0 and enable the autoboot sequence:
setboot -p 2/4.1.0 -b on
2. Display the boot paths and auto flags:
Primary bootpath : 2/0/1.6.0
Alternate bootpath : 2/0/2.0.0
Autoboot is ON (enabled)
Autosearch is ON (enabled)
1. Display all current stable storage values.
Primary bootpath : 10/0.0.0
Alternate bootpath : 10/12/5.0.0
Autoboot is ON (enabled)
Autosearch is OFF (disabled)
TEST CURRENT SUPPORTED DEFAULT NEXT BOOT
---- ------- --------- ------- ---------
all partial partial partial partial
SELFTESTS partial yes on partial
early_cpu off yes on off
late_cpu on yes on on
FASTBOOT partial yes on partial
full_memory off yes on off
PDH on yes on on
CEC off no off off
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2. Enable full_memory and PDH tests and have those tests executed on
all subsequent reboots.
setboot -t FASTBOOT=on
3. Disable the late processor tests and have those tests skipped on
all subsequent reboots. If early CPU tests are on when this
command is executed, the SELFTESTS state in BCH stays on while
setboot -v shows it as partial.
setboot -t late_cpu=off
4. Reset all tests to the machine-shipped default values.
setboot -t all=default
5. Reset only the FASTBOOT (full_memory and PDH) tests to their
setboot -t FASTBOOT=default
6. Cause the early and late CPU tests to be executed on the next
system boot. The previously set test values take effect again
after the single boot.
setboot -T SELFTESTS=on
7. Cause all tests to be skipped on the next reboot. The previously
set test values will take effect for subsequent reboots.
setboot -T all=off
The setboot command fails under the following circumstances:
+ The number of writes to the stable storage exceeds the number
allowed by the architecture implementation.
+ Hardware failure.
+ The implementation does not have memory for the alternate boot
path, in which case, this variable is neither readable nor
The interpretation of Autoboot and Autosearch has changed for
systems that support hardware partitions. The firmware interprets
the bits in combination and not individually as done before. In
order to approximate the traditional behavior of setboot, the user
input for the autboot and autosearch flags is internally mapped to
the right combination to achieve the desired behavior. This mapping
should be transparent to the user of setboot, but might show up when
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accessing the firmware using means other than setboot.
For the primary path, the boot action corresponds to the Autoboot
and Autosearch flags in the following manner:
AutoBoot AutoSearch Boot Action
off off Go to the BCH and prompt the user.
on off Attempt the primary path; on failure
go to BCH.
on on Attempt the primary path; on failure
try next path.
off on Skip the primary path and try alternate path.
If the alternate paths are not configured to
boot or fail, go to BCH.
Additionally, systems with hardware partitions support a boot action
for each path. However the boot action for the paths other than the
primary path cannot be set using setboot. Instead, these must be
set through the Boot Console Handler using the pf command. The
default boot action for the hardware partitions is to "skip this
device and try next path". The case where both the autosearch and
autoboot flags are on will not work as expected until the path flags
for the alternate paths are set appropriately through the BCH. In
the default case, specifying setboot -b on -s on will not cause an
alternate path to be automatically booted when the primary path
fails, instead the user will be prompted.
If SpeedyBoot is not installed on a system, options -v, -t, and -T
will produce a diagnostic error.
setboot was developed by HP.
/dev/kepd Special device file used by the setboot command.
/etc/setboot_tests Definitions of tests which can be viewed or
controlled with the -v, -t, and -T options.
hpux(1M), ioscan(1M), isl(1M), mkboot(1M).
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