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IBM Cloud Pak and Red Hat OpenShift version compatibility objective

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IBM Cloud Paks come with a Red Hat OpenShift limited license where both follow slightly different lifecycle policies. This document is to explain how version compatibility should work between Cloud Pak versions and OpenShift versions. 

Background:
IBM Cloud Pak follows the continuous delivery support lifecycle policy* (CD)
  • Product technical support for a minimum of two years, which starts at the availability of the product version or release
    • IBM may offer a one-year support extension, for an additional fee
  • Product version format may follow the standard IBM V.R.M.F format, or may choose to take advantage of other methods, including date-based versioning or Semantic Versioning (Major.Minor.Patch). Products using the V.R.M.F format do not follow the guidance that a change to the Release level or ‘R’ restarts the standard two-year support term
  • Frequency of continuous delivery will vary by Cloud Pak
    • New functionality, product maintenance and security updates are provided through the release of CD update packages
    • For high severity defects, an interim fix may be provided for the most recent CD update package
    • IBM may elect to declare any CD update package a Long Term Support Release (LTSR), which is supported for a minimum of one year
  • Versions are in major.minor.micro format for example 4.7.x where 4 is major version, 7 is minor version and x is micro version
    • Minor version are intended to release 3 times a year
  • Lifecycle phases for minor versions:
    • OpenShift minor version 4.6 and before: Each minor version is typically supported a minimum of 9 months, with two phases:
      • Full Support: From GA of minor release to 1 calendar month after GA of next minor (n+1) version
      • Maintenance Support: From end of full support to release of the second subsequent (n+2) minor version
    • OpenShift minor version 4.7 and after: Each minor version is supported 18 months, with two phases:
      • Full Support: 6 months OR 90 days after the GA of the superseding minor release, whichever is later.
      • Maintenance Support: 12 months (if Full support was 6 month) OR the remaining amount of time for the accumulated Full and Maintenance support phases to be 18 months.
      • Version 4.8 and following even numbers minor versions (4.10, 4.12 and beyond) will be designated as Extended Update Support (EUS) with an easier upgrade EUS releases.
Objective to stay compatible:
  • IBM objective is to continue stay compatible with Red Hat OpenShift releases.  It will be necessary to update Red Hat OpenShift at least once during the Cloud Pak support lifecycle to remain on a supported Red Hat OpenShift level
  • All supported Cloud Pak continuous delivery versions will support the latest OpenShift EUS minor version (e.g. 4.6) within 30 days of its release, for the duration of its support period. To stay current with the updated RedHat OCP lifecycle policy (https://cloud.redhat.com/blog/time-is-on-your-side-a-change-to-the-openshift-4-lifecycle), EUS versions are even minor releases beginning with 4.8.
IBM Cloud Paks and RH OpenShift current compatibility is documented here: https://www.ibm.com/docs/en/cloud-paks/1.0?topic=clusters-openshift-platform-compatibility
Policy updated: November 16th 2021

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Document Information

Modified date:
05 April 2022

UID

ibm16457303