Best Practices for FTD Installation on ASA Hardware
Consider the following best practices before reimaging ASA 5500-X Series hardware:
If you have just received a new ASA 5500-X, it might already have the FTD software preinstalled. In this case, you just need to update the FTD to the latest release and complete the configurations. However, reimaging is necessary when the hardware has traditional ASA software installed or when FirePOWER Services is running as a separate module.
You should perform reimaging during a maintenance window because the process interrupts the network traffic.
Prior to the maintenance window when you plan to do the reimaging, make sure you are able to access the software.cisco.com website and can download all the FTD software. If needed, register for a Cisco account. If after the self-registration process you cannot download any of the desired software, you might need to get further assistance from your Cisco channel partner or the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC).
The reimaging process may take about an hour, depending on the hardware model. However, you should plan for additional time to fulfill any prerequisites.
After you download any software from software.cisco.com, always verify the MD5 or SHA512 checksum of the files you have downloaded to confirm that the file is not corrupt and has not been modified during download. Figure 2-2 shows how the MD5 and SHA512 checksum values are displayed at software.cisco.com when you hover your mouse over a filename.
Figure 2-2 Checksum Values of a Boot Image File
Reimaging an ASA with FTD software wipes out all the previous configurations, so make a backup of the existing configurations before you start the reimaging.
Never power off, shut down, or reboot ASA hardware when reimaging is in progress. A login prompt appears after all the reimaging processes are complete.
Read the release notes to determine any known issues and any special requirements or instructions.