Monday, February 4, 2013

QT002: CIOS Minor Version Upgrades

Quick Tip 002: CIOS Minor Version Upgrades

The process for performing minor upgrades to your Cast Iron environment is fairly straight-forward, but our customers often have trouble navigating the IBM site to find appropriate files and instructions.

Before you get Started

It is important to note before starting that even minor upgrades can contain regressions or fixes to features that may impact the behavior of your integrations.  You should treat any upgrade seriously and due diligence requires regression testing of upgrades in your test environment before applying them to your production system.  Also, note that your version of Studio must be in sync with your appliance version.  If you upgrade your appliance you should also install the corresponding version of studio.  Projects are automatically updated when you open them in a new version of studio, however, you should archive the old version because they cannot be downgraded.

Upgrades are Platform Specific

First you must determine which Platform you are using, the upgrade process is different depending on whether you have a HyperVisor Edition or a physical appliance or HA pair.  If you have an old Dell appliance, you may need to upgrade your hardware as well.

Cast Iron® Cast Iron XH40 Integration Appliance

  • First consult the instructions appropriate to your version of CIOS on upgrades.  Direct Link for Version 6.3.0.0
  • Download the appropriate patch from IBM at the Cast Iron Cloud Integration Support Home.  
    • From the Cast Iron Support home you can either click the "Fixes (downloads)" link and specify the version you would like or click the availability announcement for the desired version which you will usually find in the featured links.  If you choose the "Fixes (downloads)" link you will be taken directly to a list of files.  If you choose the availability announcement you will be taken to a page with more information about the release such as release notes as well as a link to a page with direct download links towards the bottom of the overview tab.  Note: If you choose the second option the links provided will be for fix packs, if you want to install an interim fix you must choose option one to list all downloads for a release.  See below for more details on Fix Packs and Interim Fixes.
    • For the Cast Iron XH40 Integration Appliance patches end with a .scrypt2 extension.  See Below for more information on the different files available for download.

WebSphere Cast Iron® HyperVisor Edition

  • First consult the instructions appropriate to your version of CIOS on upgrades.  Direct Link for Version 6.3.0.0
  • Download the appropriate patch from IBM at the Cast Iron Cloud Integration Support Home.  (The above instructions refer you to fix central, but the patches are easier to find from CI Support home)
    • From the Cast Iron Support home you can either click the "Fixes (downloads)" link and specify the version you would like or click the availability announcement for the desired version which you will usually find in the featured links.  If you choose the "Fixes (downloads)" link you will be taken directly to a list of files.  If you choose the availability announcement you will be taken to a page with more information about the release such as release notes as well as a page with direct download links.  Note: If you choose the second option the links provided will be for fix packs, if you want to install an interim fix you must choose option one to list all downloads for a release.  See below for more details on Fix Packs and Interim Fixes.
    • For HyperVisor Edition patches end with a .vcrypt2 extension.  See Below for more information on the different files available for download.

Which File do I Need?

Once you navigate to the downloads page there are several files available below is brief overview of available files.

Fix Packs Vs Interim Fixes

Both Fix Packs and Interim Fixes are cumulative for upgrades, they incorporate all previous fixes.  The difference is, a fix pack is a scheduled release, whereas an interim fix is the most up to date version that contains fixes incorporated between releases.  The interim fix is mostly to incorporate critical fixes for specific customers.

File Types

There are four different file types:
  1. *.studio:  This is the Windows installer for Cast Iron Studio.
  2. *.scrypt2:  This is the patch upgrade for the Cast Iron XH40 Integration Appliance.  (Hardware Appliance)
  3. *.vcrypt2: This is the patch upgrade for the Cast Iron HyperVisor Edition.  (Hardware Appliance) 
  4. *.ova:  This is the fresh install for VMWare, .ova is an Open Virtual Appliance file for installation on VMWare ESX.  For more info on the VMWare install go here.
  5. *-xen:  This is the fresh install file for the Xen virtualization environment.  For more info on the Xen Install go here.

Additional Resources

IBM WebSphere Cast Iron planned maintenance release dates
WebSphere Cast Iron Support Lifecycle

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