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What are Fixpacks, Interim Fixes and Limited Availability Fixes?

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Abstract

What are Fixpacks, Interim Fixes and Limited Availability Fixes?

Body

After posting my last blog 'What you always wanted to know about hotfixes...', our L3 (Level 3) manager sent me some really excellent and detailed information about the definition and attributes of Fixpacks, Interim Fixes and Limited Availability fixes. I want to share this information with you here:

 

FIXPACK

Fixpacks deliver product defect fixes that have undergone a full development release cycle and the most extensive QA testing of all maintenance releases.  The fixes delivered are for any issue reported either internally or externally regardless of severity.  Fixpacks occasionally deliver minor functional enhancements and modifications to add or update supported platforms/browsers/databases/middleware

The primary attributes of fixpacks are:
  •         7.5.0.x Fixpacks are generally published 2 times per year. 7.6.0.x Fixpacks are published quarterly starting in mid 2015
  • Newer releases (7.6.0.x) usually contain 150 to 300 defect fixes, older releases (7.5.0.x)  are generally sized 50% or less than newer releases

  • Can contain new features or functionality which include potential database and application class structure changes

  • Fixpacks are cumulative and each new fixpack contains all fixes from all previous fixpacks/interim fixes for that release

 

INTERIM FIX (IFIX)

Interim Fixes are the next level of maintenance for Maximo.  They go by many names like; Hotfix, Cumulative Hotfix, IFIX, and Limited Availability Interim Fix.  They all relate to the same type of deliverable and are releases on fixpack levels for critical and high priority issues

§
The primary attributes of Interim Fixes are:
  • Interim Fixes are bug fixes only, they rarely if ever contain class structure or DB changes that would affect customizations
  • As of 2Q2013, released every 4 weeks on Fix Central.  Each contain approximately 15-20 additional fixes from the previous interim fix
  • They are QA tested for latest fixpack level and one level back, after that they are on demand, offered through Limited Availability via Support, and only unit tested by development

 

LIMITED AVAILABILITY FIX (LA FIX)

An LA Fix is an unofficial mechanism to deliver emergency fixes for severe product issues that cannot be delayed until the next regular maintenance delivery.  LA Fixes also go by the names “1-off” or “1-off Hotfix” but they all mean a single APAR fix delivered directly to a customer from Support.

Conditions that may warrant an LA Fix

  • A high severity issue in production without a fix already published in the standard maintenance streams and no work around
  • A high severity issue that is blocking a go-live for an upgrade where the fix is not available in an interim fix for the recently upgraded fixpack level
  • A high severity issue on a system that because of 3rd party regulatory compliance can not have published maintenance applied in a reasonable amount of time
§Drawbacks to LA Fixes:
  • LA Fixes are not tested prior to delivery
  • They are specific to the clients individual environment
  • Subsequent maintenance or additional LA Fixes can easily cause regressions
  • Increases difficulty for support to perform diagnostics and increases likelihood that issues can not be reproduced in-house or are unique to that environment
  • More than 90% of LA Fixes requested had been delivered in standard maintenance more than 30 days earlier

You may also be interested in the blog: What you always wanted to know about hotfixes...

 

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ibm11132179