• Understanding EOS Software Download Options

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This post is to help explain the different Software Download options for a particular EOS release. For recommendations on which train or version of EOS you should use, please take a look at our Software Lifecycle, and Recommended Release pages. This advice only concerns images located in the Active and Support Only Releases folder. Images from the Other Releases and EFT folders are not for general use. Those releases are available only for specific deployments, and should only be used when specifically recommended by Arista. In this case, I’m taking a look at EOS-4.17.1F and you can see from the screenshot below that there are a number of different files available.

EOS Software Downloads

In terms of documentation for the release in question we have the CommandApiGuide, the Manual, the System Message Guide [SysMsgGuide] and the Release Notes [RN] in PDF format. We also have sha512 and md5 checksums for the various EOS images. In terms of software we have a number of options;

  • EOS-4.X.Y.swi – This is the EOS image that you install on the Arista hardware itself. Arista EOS is not platform-specific, though some features may only be available on certain platforms. This image is also used for upgrading CloudVision Exchange upgrades.
  • EOS-4.X.Y.vmdk – This is the image for CloudVision Exchange deployment.
  • vEOS-lab-4.X.Y-combined.vmdk – This is a virtual EOS image (vEOS) that can be used for testing and development purposes. Take a look at this post for more details on how to get started. The -combined moniker indicates that this vmdk image contains both the Aboot bootloader, and the vEOS disk image.
  • vEOS-lab-4.X.Y.swi – The vEOS-lab .swi file allows you to upgrade an already existing vEOS VM to this release, using the same procedure as you would on a physical switch.
  • vEOS-lab-4.X.Y.vmdk – This provides only the vEOS lab image, but is missing the required Aboot bootloader. That can be found under vEOS (see bottom section).
  • vEOS-lab-4.X.Y-virtualbox.box – This is a Vagrant box image, see https://eos.arista.com/using-veos-with-vagrant-and-virtualbox/ for usage.


Starting in EOS-4.18.1F, reduced size images were added. This images are designed to only run on older platforms that have 2GB of flash storage available, and are designated as EOS-2GB-4.X.Y.swi. They are functionally identical to the full-sized images, but are only supported on platforms that shipped with 2GB of flash storage e.g.

  • DCS-7050T
  • DCS-7050S-48/52/64
  • DCS-7050Q-16
  • DCS-7050QX-32
  • DCS-7150-24/52/64

If you attempt to use this image on any other platforms, you may see undesirable behavior.

Bootloader Options

Running EOS requires the use of the Aboot bootloader. If you are using the vEOS-lab vmdk file then you can download the bootloader separately, from under the vEOS section. NOTE: The separate Aboot loader is only required for virtual EOS instances. Arista hardware ships the the correct Aboot bootloader pre-installed.

Aboot Downloads

Here we have a few different revisions of the Aboot ISO file, with Aboot-veos-8.0.0.iso as the latest release. There are two flavours of Aboot for vEOS;

  • Aboot-veos-A.B.C.iso – This is the standard image. Console output (boot messages) will be sent to the VGA console of QEMU, VirtualBox, etc.
  • Aboot-veos-serial-A.B.C.iso – This image redirects the console output towards the serial port. Note that you would have to enable a serial port and create a host pipe for this to work – without the serial mapping the vEOS instance will be unable to boot.



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