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Old 04-07-2005, 11:44 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation 3.6.2 to 3.6.5 to 4.0.x upgrade...

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I am the lucky new recipient of my company's 3.6.2 BES. Having never done anything BlackBerry'ish in the past, this is a new realm to me, and I want some 3rd party opinions.

One of my immediate goals is to post this thing up to 4.0. However, the only prerequisite I don't meet is BES 3.6.3+. I spoke with TSupport, and they assured me an SP5 upgrade would go no hitch.

My challenge: I have 103 BlackBerry units attached to this server, that are deployed world wide. If this BES dumps a database amid upgrade, I'll be searching for a new job! There's no way I can survive the requirement to recraddle all of these handsets. Especially since most of our remote users haven't ever installed the Desktop Manager.

My question: What's the cleanest and easiest way to go about this upgrade? I require 100% transparency to the end users, and a minimal amount of downtime. I've heard TSupport's answers, but they sound way too confident. I want the opinion of actual admins who face brutal beatings by end users if something like this fails.

Thanks in advance!

Last edited by aklino : 04-07-2005 at 11:47 AM.
Old 04-07-2005, 11:52 AM   #2 (permalink)
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We upgraded last week, and had a downtime of approx 20 minutes.

Obviously you'd want to backup the database before you do it in case it does dump, the SQL backup for our 186 user BES database took about 5 seconds.

The beauty about this upgrade, is that the users will be transparent aside from the stopping of the service to do the actual upgrade - the user's handhelds don't *HAVE* to be 4.0, thus they shouldn't need to cradle in order for them to see the BES.

After I brought up the server initially all the handhelds were showing as 'initializing' in BES manager, so i sent out an APB just stating the upgrade was succesful and they all went to 'running' as soon as i fired it off. I assume it works like a ping so they see the server again.

The upgrade should be 100% transparent, barring unforseen events. And the downtime is very minimal.

We did a MSDE upgrade & BES upgrade and the server was down for approx 22 minutes. We ran into no issues, however we have not as of yet applied the hotfixes.
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Last edited by exiled : 04-07-2005 at 11:57 AM.
Old 04-07-2005, 01:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Just a word of advice... all of these need to be the same from 3.6 to 4.0:

-SRP Auth Key
-BES Admin mailbox
-BES Virtual Server Name

As long as that is the same, then the upgrade process should be transparent to the users.

Also, to note, the database can take a dump for 3.6, and you can create a new one in its place, and you won't lose a bit of data aside from IT Policy information. Thats not really that big of a loss, in my opinion. With 4.0, you will lose some handheld configuration information, options and history, I believe, but still nothing to get too worried about.
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