Timeline to applying Sybase (ASE) EBFs

Possibly this is a mis-use of this area, we'll see.

I have a client who has asked Sybase to tell them about typical take-up rates for a new ASE EBF on the latest maintenance release.

ie. when a new ASE EBF is released, how many sites will have put this into DEV, TEST & PROD after 1 week? 2 weeks? 1 month? 3 months?

The client is looking for some conservative figure to say "we will wait this long before we believe the EBF is not a dud and is worth some testing effort".

I personally think that magic number is probably 2 weeks, since I do remember once (in 13 years) Sybase recalling an ASE EBF, and they recalled it within a week.

Anyway, they've asked me and I'm asking you for any stats or anecdotal figures you might have. Sybase have said - reasonably! - that they can only infer this based on version strings reported when cases are raised.
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Joe WoodhousePrincipal ConsultantAsked:
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Joe WoodhousePrincipal ConsultantAuthor Commented:
To clarify, I'm looking for anything at all anyone can say here:

"In the last ten sites I've worked at, it took about an average of a month to get a new EBF into test, and three months into Prod"


"we seldom saw the latest EBF until it was no longer the latest EBF, often by months"


"we have a strict policy of upgrading our standard dev/test build every quarter to whatever the latest patches are for the OS and Sybase"


Unfortunately, many of the SMB Sybase sites I have dealt with in the last few years have taken an "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" approach to EBFs.  Oracle sites are a different story....

One of my clients develops software and ships it to customers who test, integrate, and eventually deploy it.  The cycle between start of development of a new release and actual deployment can be as long as 18 months.  As a result, I got them to go from 12.5 0.x to 12.5.1 several years ago but only because it was not stable on the version of Linux they were running on.  I tried for almost three years to get them to "upgrade" to 12.5.4 but that was considered and "upgrade" so they were afraid of it.

It wasn't until a combination of feature requirements and the customers asking about using the "free" Sybase Express edition that they agreed to upgrade to ASE 15.0.2 for a release that is in the works now.  They way the CM folks and I decided to handle database versions from now on is to only specify the major and minor release numbers and treat everything else as "patches"; e.g. 15.0  This way when 15.0.3 comes along, we can move to it and still call it 15.0

To be honest, I not sure I would apply every EBF that comes along.  If my system is stable, performing well, and I am not running into or potentially running into any of the bugs the EBF repairs, I am hard pressed to find a strong case to fool with things, particularly production.  I might role them into DEV on a routine basis if only to figure out if they have any real impact and test them before they get to a critical system, but I would be more inclined to figure on upgrading DEV, TEST, and PROD at double-dot releases and apply EBFs on an as-needed basis.



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Joe WoodhousePrincipal ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Thanks for some feedback!

Anyone else? Between the regulars here we must know about quite a few sites!
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Joe WoodhousePrincipal ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Anyone else? Was really hoping to see a comment from all the regulars here...
Jan FranekCommented:
Hi Joe,

we have no systematic approach.
Basicly there are two scenarios:
1. If we experience the problem probably repaired by EBF, then we apply EBF as soon as possible.
2. If we don't see any problems, we don't apply EBF until HW upgrade. At that point we usually google up latest EBF for reported problems. If we don't see any problem reports, we apply latest EBF.
Joe WoodhousePrincipal ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Hmm. Interesting. Thank you.

Anyone else? 8-)
Joe WoodhousePrincipal ConsultantAuthor Commented:
Thanks for sharing. I was hoping for more responses but EE is nagging me to close this. 8-)
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