Steps to add a new phone load to Cisco Call Manager (CUCM)

Recently I needed to update the software on a Cisco 7925G wireless IP Phone. The last time I had updated a phone load in CUCM 7.x had been a few years ago. I read the release notes of the phone load for the phone to make sure I could go directly to that version, I was fine. I also looked for directions on how to install it. I ended up loading it to the Publisher and changing the phone load on the phone configuration page. I kept getting “Firmware download failed” error on the phone.

After some more digging, I figured out that I wasn’t fully completing all of the steps to get the software installed. I have listed the steps below.

Steps to add a new phone load to Cisco Call Manager (CUCM)
1. Download code from
a. Before downloading a new version, read the release notes to make sure you can go from your current version to the version you want to go to. You may have to upgrade to an incremental version, then upgrade to the version you want.
2. Copy old phone load name
a. CM Administration
i. Device –> Device Settings –> Device Defaults
1) Find the model of phone you are wanting to upgrade, then copy file name under “Load Information”. Paste this into another file so you remember this file name. You may need to put it back.
3. Copy the phone load to all Call Manager Servers (CUCM)
a. OS Administration
i. Software Updates –> Install/Update
1) Fill in the proper information for your FTP or SFTP server
a) Make sure the file you downloaded is in the correct directory for your FTP/SFTP server
2) Click Next
3) CUCM will find the valid files. Select the one you want and click “Next”
b. Repeat this on every TFTP server you have in your cluster
4. Restart the TFTP services on every CUCM server running the TFTP Service
a. Navigate to “Cisco Unified Serviceability”
i. Select your server, click “Go”
1) Click the radio button next to “Cisco TFTP”
2) Click “Restart” at the bottom of the page
b. Repeat this for every server you have
5. Wait a few minutes, then reset or reboot your IP phone. The phone should now download the new software.
6. If you do not want all of your phones to download the software, you need to go back into the device defaults and put that old file name back in the filed under “Load Information”.
a. You can setup individual phones to use this phone load
i. Under the Phone Configuration page, add the new phone load file name in the “Phone Load Name” Field.

These steps are for CUCM 7.X. Can anybody confirm if these steps are the same in Version 8.X or 9.X?
Do you have a story to share regarding phone load updates?
Have you ever broke a phone by upgrading it?

3 thoughts on “Steps to add a new phone load to Cisco Call Manager (CUCM)

Leave a Reply