Avaya Patch Program Frequently Asked Questions (For All Audiences)

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1 Avaya Patch Program Frequently Asked Questions (For All Audiences) This document was designed to address questions that you may have regarding Avaya s Patch Policy and how this initiative will help to increase the quality of the Service Packs that are produced and delivered. If you should have additional questions related to this policy, you may contact the Global Services Delivery Team or your Avaya Client Executive or Authorized BusinessPartner. 1.) How and when will customers benefit from the new Avaya Patch Policy? Beginning no later than 9/30/2007, Avaya will make Service Packs available on support.avaya.com based on a predictable, published schedule. These Service Packs will bundle multiple fixes into a thoroughly tested deliverable. This will reduce risk, make implementation easier and provide for additional quality control beyond what is associated with individual patches. 2.) What is being done to increase the quality of future Service Pack deliverables? Avaya continuously evolves its Solution Verification testing process for Service Packs. Continuous improvement based on root cause analysis of customer found issues is a core component of our Solutions Verification and Development processes. Solution Verification provides an independent assessment of the Service Pack from a customer perspective. For increased Service Pack quality, Avaya s Solution Verification process has been expanded to put additional focus on customer-like configurations (that may include: Servers, Gateways, End Points, Messaging, Call Center Applications and Communication Manager and other capabilities that are important to the customer) and usage. In addition to complex call scenarios, feature interactions, high call volume, and large capacities, System Verification places emphasis on the user experience, reliability, solution performance, system load, recovery, networking and interoperability. Automated testing is a fundamental element to testing Service Packs. Feature and regression tests, fault injection and traffic generation tests are examples of the automated test suites. These areas continuously evolve based on customer feedback, industry norms, as well as new tools and techniques.

2 3.) Why do Service Packs have better quality than a Patch? A Service Pack is a bundle of numerous updates, fixes and previously released patches for a particular product, and follows the comprehensive System Verification Process outlined in Question 2. Since Service Packs deliverables will be planned in advance, the Development and the Solution Verification teams will have time allocated for thorough Service Pack testing. A Patch is intended to correct a critical customer problem, requiring a tradeoff between urgency and risk. Generally, patches undergo basic sanity tests but there are times when a customer can not be duplicated in a lab environment or in a timely manner. If a fix to a critical problem can be replicated in a timely manner the patch is tested to verify that the problem is resolved. Exhaustive testing is not performed due to the length of time required versus the immediate need (urgency vs. risk). 4.) If a critical patch is created how is it tested? Avaya will attempt to replicate the problem that the customer is encountering. If the problem can be duplicated within the lab; a patch will be created, applied to the lab system and tested to verify that the fix corrected the problem. Fundamental sanity testing will be performed on a critical patch; however regression testing will not occur. If the problem can not be duplicated, then a fix will be created, testing will be performed and the patch deployed. 5.) How will I know what fixes and updates are included within a Service Pack? When a Service Pack is made available on the Download Center, it will clearly state the issues that are addressed within the deliverable. We will be encouraging customers to implement Service Packs for their applications even if they are not experiencing any problems since it will help to keep their system updated and minimize the likelihood of any future impacts from known issues. 6) How often will a new Service Pack be made available and how can I receive notification that a new Service Pack is now available? Effective September 30, 2007, all Service Packs for all Avaya developed software products, will adhere to a common schedule. This applies to both the current release (N) and one prior major release (N-1). Specifically, Service Packs will be made available on the first Monday of even numbered months (February, April, June, August, October, or December). If it has been determined that a Service Pack is not needed for a particular product, one will not be scheduled for that release period. Also, if a problem is identified late in the development cycle of a Service Pack, a problem and fix may be deferred to the next scheduled Service Pack release. If you would like to receive an electronic notification when a new Service Pack has been made available, you may sign up to receive enotifications. To register for enotifications, go to support.avaya.com and click on My enotifications on the right hand column. This will require that you have an Avaya Single Sign on Login. For in-depth instructions on how to sign up for enotifications, you will find a document How to Sign up for enotifications under the What s New section on this site.

3 7.) What is the best way to keep a system current? Avaya will encourage all customers with an Avaya Maintenance Agreement or Support Contract to implement newly available Service Packs that apply to their systems by going to the Download Center on support.avaya.com. Service Packs will be developed for the current major release (N) and one prior major release (N-1), with the most current update or Service Pack, so it is very important to upgrade your systems as new releases become available. 8.) When does the Avaya Patch Policy go into effect? All Avaya products will adopt the Patch Policy by September 30, Distributed Office has adopted this new policy upon general availability. 9.) Can you explain what is meant by N and N-1? N refers to the first digit of a Current Major Release N-1 refers to the latest version of the Prior Major Release. For example, in the case of a fictitious product R8.y.z N = Major Release, Y=Minor Release, z = is the most current update/sp If N = R8.0 N-1= R7.Y.z Service Packs and Critical Patches will only be created on the most current Minor release (Y) and current update (z) for N and N-1. 10) If a system is not on the most current release or N-1, does this mean that Avaya Global Services will not provide support? Avaya Global Services will continue to support customers with a valid support agreement; however, Avaya will no longer be developing critical patches or Service Packs for older releases. Service Packs posted to the Support site prior to September 30 th, 2007 will be accessible for download and may include Service Packs for an N-2 or older release. For N and N-1 releases only the most current Service Pack will remain accessible. On a going forward basis, Service Packs will combine all updates and will be a cumulative build. Service Packs are cumulative in nature such that all fixes in previous Service Packs are incorporated into the next subsequent Service Pack. Enterprise customers with an Avaya maintenance contract will be able to upgrade to the latest Software Service Pack.

4 11.) How does the Patch Policy relate to the new Software Support offers? The new Software Support offers provide customers access to minor releases and Service Packs. Because Service Packs will only be developed for N and N-1 releases; it is strongly recommended that customers continue to upgrade to keep their systems within N and N-1 releases. Software Support Plus Upgrade provides enterprise customers the benefit of receiving major upgrade releases as well, which is part of the support contract. 12.) Will all customer found defects be included in a Service Pack? If the problem was identified early enough in the Service Pack build and test cycles to adequately address the problem with high quality then the fix will be included. If the problem was identified late in the Service Pack s development and testing cycles, then the resolution to the problem will most likely be deferred to the next Service Pack so it can be fully tested. Customer requests for enhancements or fundamental changes in feature operations may not be included in a Service Pack and will be referred to new release management processes for consideration. 13.) How will Service Packs be deployed? Software Service Packs will be accessible to enterprise customers with an Avaya Service Agreement through the download center located on support.avaya.com. (SMB customers will be able to access Service Packs without requiring a Software Support Agreement.) Firmware and Security updates will also be accessible through the download center to customers with an SSO Login and who have equipment that is registered with Avaya. 14.) Will existing Service Packs still be available on the Download Center? All Service Packs that are currently on the Download Center as of 9/30/2007 for older releases (N-2 and older) will remain on the site. Effective on 9/30/2007, the current Service Pack associated with the most current Release N.Y.z will be available for N and N-1. These will be accessible through the Avaya Download Center. The most current Service Pack will remain available once a release has reached End of Manufacturer Support. Service Packs are cumulative in nature such that all fixes in previous Service Packs are incorporated into the next subsequent Service Pack. Enterprise customers with an Avaya Maintenance contract will be able to upgrade to the latest Software Service Pack. 15.) How do customers access the Download Center? Go to and Click on Download Center link. 16.) Do I have to have a Maintenance Agreement in order to access Security related updates? No, Security vulnerabilities (as defined in the Avaya Security Policy) will be made available without requiring an Avaya Service Agreement to all customers that have registered their products and have an Avaya Single Sign On login.

5 17.) What level of Maintenance must I have in order to access non Security related Software Service Packs? Enterprise products under the new Software Support Model will require that the customers purchase one of the two levels of Software Support in order to receive Service Packs. Enterprise products that have not yet migrated to the new Software Support Model (such as older releases of enterprise products or SMB solutions), will follow the same process as today for download access. 18.) Must every Service Pack that is released be implemented? It is highly recommended that customers keep their system current with the latest Service Packs available on the Avaya Download Center. The most current Service Pack should correct problems encountered by our customers and/or remove the possibility of future incidents. Service Packs for Communication Manager R4.0 are cumulative in nature such that all fixes in previous Service Packs are incorporated into the next subsequent Service Pack. 19.) Must a system be upgraded to a new release in order to install Service Pack? Service Packs are unique to each specific product and release. Avaya will only develop new Service Packs for N and N-1 versions; therefore, a customer may be required to upgrade in order to implement a Service Pack. It is important to check the requirements of the Service Pack before installation. 20.) Can the customer pay Avaya to manage and implement Service Packs? Avaya has several service offers that can provide assistance with deploying and implementing Service Packs. For customers with an IP Enabled Communication Manager, Software Release Management will provide for the remote deployment of Service Packs. If a technician is needed or desired the Product Correction Support offer can be leveraged to dispatch out a technician to the site to install the Service Pack for the covered products. Avaya Managed Services also incorporates the deployment of Service Packs within their offers. For more information, please go to: Avaya.com > Services> Product and IP Support 21.) Is Avaya planning to distribute software upgrades for minor release through the Download Center? The Avaya Download Center is used to distribute Service Packs to customers; as well as minor releases of some products, such as Communication Manager. 22.) Are there any problems anticipated with customers accessing the Avaya Download Center to obtain a service pack? Assuming that a customer has the appropriate level of software support for enterprise products, we do not anticipate any problem in term of bandwidth to download the Service Pack. While security and firmware related Service Packs will not require a support agreement; access does require that the product is registered and that the person accessing that site has a Single Sign On log in.

6 23.) Must customers engage Avaya to perform an upgrade? Avaya would be happy to provide installation assistance; however, most product upgrades do not require that Avaya performs the implementation. 24.) Will Service Packs be "hot" (applied to live systems without disruption) or cold (service disrupting)? Given that Service Packs will incorporate both critical and non-critical fixes, it will be increasingly difficult to keep Service Packs "hot". One cold fix will render the entire Service Pack as cold. Customers should plan for the high probability that future Service Packs will be service-disrupting and may require an outage window. 25.) Does the New Patch Policy imply that releases older than N-1, be at End of Sale? No. End of Sale is announced by the Product Manager. Once the announcement has been made, there is minimally a year timeframe before the product reaches End of Manufacturer Support. End of Manufacturer Support indicates that Avaya will discontinue development support of a specific product release including patches, service packs and documentation updates. The general flow of Life Cycles stages include: a. Product Management announces, End of Sale b. Product Management announces, End of Manufacturer Support c. Avaya Global Services (AGS) announces, Extended Support, ) where AGS provides maintenance support though no further development will be provided d. AGS announces, End of Support If you would like to reference the "Manufacturer Support Policy" you will find it on the home page of support.avaya.com. Avaya Global Services will continue to provide technical support for customers that have a valid support agreement and are on loads older than N-1. Service Packs that are available on the Support site for N-2 and older will remain on the download center for customer access if needed. 26.) If I feel that a patch is required and would like to pursue a patch request, where do I call? In a situation where you feel that a patch is needed, you may call to open a maestro case or create a service request at Avaya Support site (support.avaya.com) with the Avaya Service Desk for proper escalation to the Backbone Team.

7 27.) Where can I find additional reference materials? For information on: End of Sales Policy End of Support Policy Manufacturer Support Policy Go to and look below the header Maintenance Information Services Extended Support Policy End of Sale and Support Notices me=prodtran Rolodex Maintenance Index by Product https://support.avaya.com/cgi-bin/gx.cgi/applogic%2bselectproducta

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