By Steven Chan - EBS-Oracle on May 25, 2010
Support windows for Oracle E-Business Suite are listed here:
- Oracle Lifetime Support > "Lifetime Support Policy: Oracle Applications" (PDF)
Here's a graphical summary of the EBS 11.5.10's support stages:
First year of Extended Support fees for EBS 11.5.10 waived
Regular readers may recall that fees for the first year of Extended Support for EBS 11.5.10 are waived. There is nothing that customers need to do to remain fully supported other than keep your support contracts current. Higher fees for Extended Support will start December 1, 2011 for most platforms. This is formally documented here:
- Technical Support Policies > "Oracle's Technical Support Policies" (PDF)
The differences between Premier and Extended Support coverage are summarized here (see the Lifetime Support Policy document for the product of your choice for a more detailed discussion of these coverages):
This table shows
that when a product goes into Extended Support, Oracle no longer has
the obligation to certify it with "most new third-party
From an E-Business Suite perspective, third-party products include:
- Microsoft Windows operating
systems for end-user desktops
- Mac OS X operating systems for
- Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari
browsers for end-user desktops
- Microsoft Office releases for
- Server-based operating systems for
application-tier and database-tier servers, including Microsoft Windows
Server, IBM AIX, HP-UX, RedHat Linux, Novell SUSE, and others
An illustrative example may be useful: As a strictly fictitious example, let's consider a case where Microsoft releases a new version of Internet Explorer in, say, February 2011. I need to emphasize that this is strictly a hypothetical example; I am not privy to IE release dates and would not be permitted to speculate about them here.
Extended Support for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i began on December 1, 2010. Therefore, Oracle has no formal obligation to certify Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i with this February 2011 version of IE. For the sake of this hypothetical example, let's assume that we have not made any plans for certifying this new IE version with Apps 11i.
Taking this example one step further, let's assume that you choose to deploy this latest IE version to your end-user desktops, disregarding the risk that it hasn't been formally certified with Apps 11i. Your early tests look promising, so you roll it out.
You then encounter a critical issue with EBS, that new IE release and, say, the latest JRE release. If you report that issue, we will (in all likelihood) attempt to investigate and resolve the issue. However, if it turns out that the fix would require broad or deep changes to EBS 11i, Oracle has the option of suggesting that you roll back to a previously-certified browser such as IE 8.
Let me stress that this is an hypothetical example only, one designed to illustrate the possible risks associated with Extended Support. We haven't made any concrete plans for certifying -- or not certifying -- EBS 11i with new browser versions yet. But this example serves to underline that Oracle has no formal obligations to release new third-party certifications once EBS 11i moves into Extended Support status.
What should EBS 11i users do?
We now have three major EBS codelines: Release 11.5.10, Release 12.0, and Release 12.1. Here's a graphical summary of the support windows for these three releases (drawn from the Lifetime Support Policy above):
Planning for the worst-case scenario where we don't release any new third-party certifications for Apps 11.5.10 at all, "frozen" means that you shouldn't expect to be able to upgrade anything on your EBS 11.5.10 desktop clients, application tier servers, or database tier servers.
There's no justifiable business case for EBS 11i users to upgrade to EBS 12.0 at this point. All E-Business Suite 11.5.10 users should plan on upgrading to the EBS 12.1 codeline.
What about the minimum baseline for EBS 11.5.10 Extended Support?
A new set of minimum technical requirements for Apps 11i goes into effect when Extended Support begins in November 2010. These new minimum baseline patch requirements are listed here:
- Minimum Baseline Patch Requirements for Extended Support on Oracle E-Business Suite 11.5.10 (Note 883202.1)
If you report a new issue that requires a new bug fix, you should be aware that new patches will be released only for the new baseline patches listed in the Minimum Baseline Patch Requirements Note. You should plan to apply the baseline patches (at minimum) listed in Note 883202.1 by November 2010 in order to receive any new bug fixes.
For a more detailed discussion about the new 11.5.10 patching baseline, see this article
This is the year when upgrade fever begins to glow red-hot. OAUG/Collaborate 2010 sessions last month that covered EBS 12 upgrades were filled to ballroom capacities. Naturally, Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 upgrades will be heavily covered at OpenWorld 2010 this year, too. I expect that this year's conference will have a large number of customer case studies about R12 upgrades and reimplementations, R12 upgrade panels, and lots of sessions with practical tips for upgrading.
One more critical resource: R12 Upgrade Forum
There are many resources to support your upgrade to R12 (see the Related Articles section below), but don't forget that we have an Oracle-sponsored R12 upgrade forum on the Oracle Technology Network:
The discussions in this forum run around the clock, notably led by Hussein Sawwan, one of the EBS community's most-prolific Oracle ACEs. Apparently, Hussein never sleeps. But Hussein's not alone: a core team of Oracle engineers and some of the most-experienced Apps DBAs in our EBS community hang out there. They collectively provide amazing advice about R12 to novices and veterans alike. Some questions are answered in minutes, much faster than most Service Requests logged via Oracle Support.
Premier Support for 10gR2 10.2.0.4 Database ends July 2010
- New Minimum Patching Baselines for E-Business Suite 11i Extended Support
Whitepaper: Planning Your E-Business Suite Upgrade from Release 11i to
Suite Release 12.1.1 Consolidated Upgrade Patch 1 Now Available
Suite Release 12.1.2 Now Available
- Five Key Resources for Upgrading to E-Business Suite Release 12
- Case Study Redux: Oracle's Own Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 Upgrade (OpenWorld 2008 Recap)