Let's Talk About Maintenance
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Should we or shouldn't we?
The typical question of the IT Manager when her/his datacenter automation software releases a new fixpack. This question stems from prior nightmares attempting to deploy fixes that were half-baked, poorly documented and delivered in haste.
I'm not an 'alpha' adopter but I certainly am an early adopter. The reasoning I take into deploying a new fix or new release fixpack is that I want the newest features, I want the bugs corrected - especially if there is a specific one that I'm subscribed to, and I want the latest enhancements in stability and serviceability. This will invariably cause some churn in my current calendar which may in turn force other projects to take a break, downtime will have to be scheduled, and service request tickets opened to alert dependent teams, but that short team pain will always bring a longer term gain.
Further reasons to keep up to date include the following:
To emphasize this point we'll look at the upcoming TPM 7210-IFIX03 release due at the end of October 2012. In it we include a host of fixes and enhancements which improve the overall function and quality of the product. In particular a migration function to upgrade your WebSphere version 6.1 to version 7.0. This is really key for shops that need to keep their web-hosting environments running at the latest technology and security levels. The IFIX03 installation is redesigned as well, moving many of the prior manual steps into scripted pre- and post- installation sections. This is really great and should be a major step forward at alleviating many common maintenance headaches. While you're at it you should also take a moment to register for the upcoming training on this TPM721 IFIX03 release,