Fix packs, interim fix packs and test fixes
An Authorized Program Analysis Report (APAR) is a formal report of a problem caused by a suspected defect in a current unaltered release of an IBM program. APARs describe problems found during testing by IBM, as well as problems reported by customers.
The modified Db2® code that resolves the problem described in the APAR can be delivered in fix packs, interim fix packs and test fixes.
- Fix pack
- A fix pack is a cumulative collection of APAR fixes. In particular, fix packs address the APARs
that arise between new releases of Db2. They are intended to
allow you to move up to a specific maintenance level. Fix packs have the following characteristics:
Note: The status of an APAR is changed from "Open" to "Closed as program error" when the APAR fix is provided in a fix pack. You can determine the status of individual APARs by examining the APAR descriptions on the Db2 Technical Support website.
- They are cumulative. Fix packs for a particular release of Db2 supersede or contain all of the APAR fixes shipped in previous fix packs and interim fix packs for that release.
- They are available for all supported operating systems and Db2 database products.
- They contain many APARs.
- They are published on the Db2 Technical Support website and are generally available to customers who have purchased products under the Passport Advantage® program.
- They are fully tested by IBM.
- They are accompanied by documentation that describes changes to the database products, and how to install and remove the fix pack.
- Interim fix pack
- An interim fix pack is a cumulative collection of important APAR fixes that arise between fix
packs. To qualify for inclusion in an interim fix pack, an APAR must be considered pervasive or
otherwise important. Candidate APARs are evaluated and approved by experts on the Db2 technical support
team. Interim fix packs have the following characteristics:
- They are cumulative. Interim fix packs for a particular release of Db2 supersede or contain all of the APAR fixes shipped in previous fix packs and interim fix packs for that release.
- They are available for a subset of operating systems and Db2 database products.
- They usually contain 20 to 30 new APARs.
- They are published on the Db2 Technical Support website and are generally available to customers who have purchased products under the Passport Advantage program.
- They are fully tested by IBM.
- They are accompanied by documentation that describes how to install and remove the interim fix pack.
Interim fix packs are supported in production for two years after they are released. They are available at the approximate midpoint between fix packs and are intended as the preferred alternative to test fixes, which do not receive the same level of testing or enjoy the same level of support as interim fix packs.
- Test fix
- A test fix is a temporary solution that is supplied to specific customers for testing in
response to a reported problem. Test fixes are sometimes referred to as "special builds" and they
have the following characteristics:
- They usually contain a single APAR.
- They are obtained from Db2 Support and are not generally available to the public.
- They undergo limited IBM testing.
- They include minimal documentation, including a description of how the test fix should be applied, the APARs it fixes, and instructions for the removal of the test fix.
Test fixes are supplied in situations where a new problem has been uncovered, there is no workaround or bypass for the problem and you cannot wait until the next fix pack or interim fix pack becomes available. For example, if the problem is causing critical impact on your business, a test fix might be provided to alleviate the situation until the APAR is addressed in a fix pack or interim fix pack.
It is recommended that you keep your Db2 environment running at the latest fix pack level to ensure problem-free operation.
To learn more about the role and purpose of Db2 fixes and fix packs, see the support policy statement. To help ensure problem-free operation, keep your Db2 environment running at the latest fix pack level. To be notified of the availability of new fix packs, subscribe to "My notifications" email updates on the Db2 Technical Support website. For a list of fix packs, see the Download DB2 Fix Packs by version for DB2 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows page.