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Cisco C220-M5 Booting into UEFI Shell instead of Installed OS

By August 27, 2018September 18th, 2020Blog, Cisco, Networking

Looks to me that a recent firmware change took place with CiscoC220-M5 servers that requires adding an extra item in UEFI configuration. When booting the server you are greeted with the following screen:

“Press ESC to skip Startup.nsh”

Startup-nsh CiscoC220-M5

This happens BOTH when the device is fresh out of box with no RAID or any storage configured and EVEN AFTER you’ve installed the OS.

Fixing “Press ESC in 1 Seconds to Skip Startup.nsh” Screen Occurrence

  1. Setup your raid and install the OS.
  2. Enter Bios and choose ‘boot options’
  3. Create new Boot Option and browse to the first partition
  4. Select Bootx64.EFI (VMware 6.0 was used in this example)
  5. Change boot priority and use the entry you created in step 4.

This will allow you to auto boot to the installed OS and permanently fix the issue.

Bootx64-EFI CiscoC220-M5 boot properly

JacobR, PEI


  • Miguel says:

    Excelente work, I like so much and thanks you 🙂 😉

  • Jeremy C says:

    Thank you for sharing this. I was scratching my head for a few weeks and Dr. Google was failing me. I tweaked my search and found your article. Seriously, thank you for posting this!

  • ed says:

    I have a Cisco UCS C220 M5 and do not see “Add Boot Option”. I only see “Delete Boot Option”. Can someone tell me where to find it?

    Thanks in advance.

  • Ed says:

    When no RAID disk is created, I can see “Add Boot Option”. After the RAID disk (RAID 1) is created and CentOS 7.7 is installed, this option is no longer available. I don’t even see the M2 RAID Controller is listed under “Boot Option Priorities”.

    • Stephanie Hamrick says:

      Hi Ed,

      Thanks for reading! Here’s a response from the post’s author:

      Sounds like your server came with 8 or more NICS – read on. It’s not immediately obvious where to find the ‘add’ option, but the list of bootable devices is SCROLLABLE. Since you don’t have mouse control that’s even more tricky to find.

      In the EFI screen that lists all current bootable options you will see ‘Network Adapter 1’, Network adapter 2’, Network adapter 3’…etc – use the bottom arrow key on your keyboard to get to the bottom of the list and the ‘add’ option hides there.

      In addition, there also appears to be a hard limit on how many boot options you can have so you might need to ‘Delete’ before you can add new option, especially if you have 8+ NICS and all of them are populating boot options for PXE’

      Let us know if you have any further questions!

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