POW! Efficiently keep your PeopleSoft PUM images current with PAU

March 15, 2023 | 5 minute read
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jeremy-radwanThis blog post has been guest authored by Jeremy Radwan, a System Administrator at the University of South Florida.

 

The University of South Florida (USF) is the fastest-rising university in America, according to U.S. News and World Report’s 2023 Best Colleges rankings. Located in the Tampa Bay region, with campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee, its campuses serve more than 50,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, and professional degrees.

 

USF has been using Oracle’s PeopleSoft HR/payroll and financials products for about 25 years. The staggered release of HCM and FSCM PUM images means we are typically deploying a new demo environment about every other month. Applying PRPs (patches) to these images used to be additional time-consuming tasks, but the release of PUM Automated Updates (PAU) with PeopleTools 8.59 has streamlined our process of keeping those environments current, especially with regards to applying tax updates for HCM.

 

To quickly set up PAU after deploying a fresh PUM image, click on the “Update Settings” tile on the “Update Manager” Fluid home page and fill in your My Oracle Support credentials. These are used to connect to MOS to download the PRPs:

Update Manager

 

Then, from the “Update Scheduler” tile, create the PAU jobs you want to run. At USF we are using two ad-hoc jobs: one to download the PRPs and a second one to apply them:

Update Manager 2

 

These jobs aren’t hard to set up, but to make it even quicker we exported our initial clean setup using a Data Mover script and then used the corresponding import script to load in the setup after deploying a new PUM image (note: if your MOS password has changed, you’ll need to update it on the page and then re-export for next time).

 

Once everything is set up, we run the ad-hoc download job and review the high-level log in the list (HCM_92_Windows.log in my screenshot below) to see which PRPs were downloaded from MOS (the other logs just contain the download details for each zip file):

Update Manager 3

 

In this example, 20 separate PRPs (patches) were downloaded to the PUM server in about a minute. You can find all the typical Change Assistant folders (downloads, staging, output, etc.) under psft\lcm\ca_work_dir on the PUM server, which is also where you’ll find the downloaded archives:

PRP Patches

 

Already we have saved a lot of time compared to the old method of searching MOS for each PRP and downloading the zip archive through the browser!

 

Next, we run the ad-hoc apply job:

ad-hoc apply job

There’s not much to see in the Job Monitor (it will only show “Running”).  You can also view the running App Engine processes in Process Monitor but again there’s no indication of what is happening behind the scenes:

Process Monitor

 

You can, however, watch the “prp_apply.log” on your PUM server to see the Change Assistant processing taking place:

change assistant processing

 

Notice the folder name (1675960467392-21756) in my screenshot above is the PTIAAUTASKID in the PS_PTIAAUTASK table:

folder name

 

In this example, PAU applied the 20 individual patches in just under an hour, with no manual intervention needed: another tremendous efficiency boost!

Job Monitor

 

At this time, we don’t have plans to fully automate the processes of downloading and applying the PRPs, but that certainly is an easily implementable option for organizations that wish to go that route: always having an up-to-date PUM image ready to deploy fixes for selective adoption or catch-up upgrades.

 

If you haven’t tried PUM Automated Updates in your demo images yet, I highly recommend you check it out!

 

Don’t apply changes manually, use Change Assistant to apply them automatically. POW! (Or, should I say, PAU!)

Guest Author


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